Canned Salmon Recipes

Here are our favorite canned salmon recipes. We have included only those we actually use at home and on the boat.

Folks who have tasted our salmon at in-store demonstrations will recognize some of the recipes, and we encourage people to think of some of your favorites, and just substitute canned salmon for the protein called for in the recipe. Often canned salmon makes an easier, tastier, more nutritious and economical protein than the one replaced.

Wild Alaska salmon are pure-enjoy every ounce! In addition, there are many wonderful resources for recipes. We highly recommend the following:

The below links take you to the canned salmon recipes further down this page.

Jim’s Best, Easiest Go-To Canned Salmon Recipe

It couldn’t be easier– and these ‘nutritional good guys’ seem to get along very well in this ultimate of easiest recipes.

  • Wild Alaska salmon
  • olive oil
  • onion

Drain a can of ThinkPink,  put contents of the can, including highly nutritious skin & bone, into small bowl.  Add a teaspoon or two of olive oil, some chopped onion &  lightly mix.

Use this on bagels, salads, or just as is.  Squeeze on a little lemon juice, or even a little vinegar if you like.   If you use Redhead, drain some of the liquid and supplement with a little olive oil in addition to the onion.   The olive oil seems to refreshingly lighten the flavor and seems to increase the shelf life of the flavor.

You can also mix the Redhead and the Thinkpink.

Lemony Salmon Coleslaw

This Lemony Salmon Coleslaw recipe keeps well and with loaf of French bread makes an exceptional light summer meal with no cooking.  Just open the can!  Either Redhead or Thinkpink work well in this recipe, but Redhead’s deeper color is a nice touch.

Lemony Salmon Coleslaw

4 cups chopped green cabbage
1 bunch green onions, chopped, including green tops
1 chopped cucumber
1/2 cup sliced red radishes (optional)
1- 7.5 oz can of Redhead or Thinkpink–drained, lightly crumbled and mashed, including nutritious skin and bone
DRESSING (recipe below)
1 avocado, sliced or chopped
1/2 TBSP fresh squeezed lemon juice

Toss cabbage, onion, cucumber, along with optional ingredients in large bowl.  Prepare dressing and mix in with cabbage mixture.  Arrange avocado on top of salad, squeezing lemon juice over avocado to prevent darkening.  Serve immediately.  Keep chilled.


1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 TBSP lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt or celery salt
Dash of paprika

Salmon Curry Cakes with Ginger and Pistachios

With pistachios and ginger these salmon cakes are a little more exotic than usual, but they are delicious and make for a nice lunch the next day. They would also make wonderful appetizers. Redhead or Thinkpink would work equally well in this flavorful recipe.

Salmon Curry Cakes with Ginger and Pistachios

1 TBSP butter
2 TBSP curry powder of choice
5 green onions. or 1/3 cup regular onion, chopped fine
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced fine, adjust amount to taste
3 garlic cloves, chopped fine
1 piece ginger, about ½ inch long, peeled and chopped fine
2-7.5 oz cans Redhead or Thinkpink, canned wild Alaska salmon, drained and mixed—include highly nutritious skin & bone, they will just disappear into the recipe
3 eggs lightly beaten
3/4 cup dry breadcrumbs Panko breadcrumbs are preferable
½ cup pistachios, coarsely chopped
Generous ¼ cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
Vegetable or light olive oil for frying

Melt butter in small frying pan over medium heat, then add curry powder, cooking briefly until it darkens slightly and becomes aromatic. Add chopped onion, jalapeno pepper, garlic & ginger. Cook over medium heat about 2 minutes or until garlic is golden. Remove from pan and set aside. Let cool.

Gently blend cooked ingredients, drained & chunked salmon, eggs, breadcrumbs, pistachios, parsley and salt and pepper in bowl.

Make 8 balls, pressing each into a nice salmon cake. You may also make 16 portions and serve as delicious appetizers.

Heat large frying pan over medium heat, add oil, and fry a few cakes at a time about 3 minutes per side or until nicely browned.

Serve with your favorite chutney or perhaps the following;

Curry-Lemon Sauce

Mix together
¼ cup mayonnaise, ½ tsp curry powder, ½ tsp grated lemon peel. ¼ tsp paprika

Delicious and Quick Salmon Spread

For a printable recipe card, click here.


2 – 7.5 oz cans Thinkpink salmon, drained

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

¼ cup red onion, chopped fine

1 lemon, juiced

3 teaspoons lemon zest (or more)

You may also add, if you like:

1 clove garlic, chopped very fine

2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley

Mix the salmon, including the highly nutritious skin and bone (when mixed, they are undetectable).

We also recommend, when possible, pre-chilling the unopened cans of salmon.

Combine salmon with the rest of the ingredients and serve on a bagel, a cracker, or a slice of fresh vegetables.

A thin layer of cream cheese on the bagel tastes good.

Spicy Curried Salmon Cakes

For a printable recipe card, click here.

Mix together in small bowl and set aside:

2 teaspoons curry powder

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon dry mustard

¼ teaspoon black pepper

⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper

Saute in oil over medium heat, cover and cook for 10 minutes, giving a stir now & then:

1 cup onion, chopped fine

1 cup red pepper, chopped fine

1 cup celery, chopped fine


2 teaspoons finely minced ginger

2 cloves garlic, finely minced

Curry spice mixture

Cook uncovered 5 minutes, stir frequently. Put mixture large bowl to cool.

When cooled add:

½ cup breadcrumbs

2 TBSP corn meal or corn flour

¼ cup mayonnaise

1 teaspoon lemon zest

2- 7.5 oz cans Redhead and/or Thinkpink, drained- including highly nutritious
skin and bone. When mixed in they are undetectable

1 large egg, lightly beaten

Form cakes of desired size, but about ½” thick. These make nice dollar-sized appetizers or full-sized entrees. Coat cakes in breadcrumbs.

Heat skillet on medium and add:


½ TABLESPOON olive oil

Fry cakes about 3 to 4 minutes per side, or until browned.

Serve with favorite sauce, if desired:

Mix together:

¼ cup mayonnaise

½ teaspoon curry powder

½ teaspoon grated lemon peel

¼ teaspoon paprika

dash of Tabasco

Wild Salmon and Sweet Potato Cakes

For a printable recipe card, click here.


1 large sweet potato, roasted and mashed
2 – 7.5 oz cans Redhead and/or Thinkpink, drained
1 TBSP butter
1 TBSP oil
½ cup red pepper, fine dice
½ cup onion, fine dice
¼ cup canned (drained) or frozen corn
¼ cup cilantro or Italian parsley, chopped fine
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
2 cups bread crumbs

Heat skillet on medium, melt butter, then add oil. Saute peppers and onions until browned and softened.

Combine sauteed vegetables, drained salmon (including highly nutritious skin & bone (when mixed in, they are undetectable), corn, cilantro or parsley, salt & pepper. Mix well.

Put bread crumbs in a shallow dish. Form cakes in desired size, about ½ inch thick.

Cook in skillet at medium heat 3 to 4 minutes each side, or until well browned.

Serve with sauce of choice and a squeeze of lemon or lime.

Salmon Corn Chowder

Carrie Rowe of Outpost Natural Foods in Milwaukee, Wisconsin came up with this great, easy recipe…


1-32 oz Imagine brand Sweet Corn Soup
1 – 7.5 oz can Redhead or Thinkpink wild Alaska salmon-do not drain
1 – 10oz bag frozen corn
2 TBSP olive Oil
2 medium Russet Potatoes, diced
1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
Salt & pepper to taste

1. Heat oil in large stock pot or Dutch oven.
2. Add diced potato and onion, saute for 10 minutes
3. Add minced garlic and stir to combine
4. Saute all veggies 10 or 15 minutes more, or until potatoes are fork tender. Add a little water if the potatoes begin to stick.
5. Meanwhile, mash the salmon, including the highly nutritious skin and bone (when mixed in they are undetectable).
6. When potatoes are tender, add frozen corn, corn soup and salmon.
7. Simmer and stir for 10 or so minutes, or until heated through.
8. Add salt & pepper to taste, garnish with chopped green onions and cheese, if desired.

Crispy Wild Salmon and Hash Brown Cakes

For a printable recipe card, click here.


2 – 7.5 oz cans Redhead and/or Thinkpink, drained
¾ cup green onion, including tops, chopped fine
2 eggs, plus 1 egg white, lightly beaten
1 TBSP whole grain or Dijon-type mustard
1 teaspoon seasoning salt
Salt & pepper to taste
4 cups frozen hash browns–about 12 oz
2 TBSP corn meal or flour as needed for added binding

Combine first six ingredients, plus salt and pepper. Make sure to leave in the highly nutritious skin & bones – when mixed they are undetectable. Add in potatoes. Sprinkle in corn meal or flour as needed for a little more binding to the cakes. Form 6 to 8 generous sized cakes about ½ inch thick.

Heat skillet on medium, add 1 TBSP oil, cook until browned, about 3 to 5 minutes on each side. Add oil as needed for subsequent batches. Serve with dill sauce of choice, or even ketchup.

Cranberry and Wild Salmon Salad


2 – 7.5 oz Redhead and/or Thinkpink, drained
½ cup unpeeled apple, chopped medium
4 TBSP dried cranberries, (or cherries or blueberries, all preferably unsweetened)
2 TBSP Italian parsley, minced
4 TBSP balsamic vinegar
5 teaspoon lemon zest
½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 tsp salt
2 tsp black pepper
¼ cup olive oil

Combine chunked salmon, cranberries, and parsley. In separate bowl, combine the last six ingredients to make viniagrette. Toss vinaigrette with salmon, serve chilled on mixed greens.

Katherine’s Marshal Tito Salmon Cakes

Katherine Zuanich, Jim’s right-hand girl on the Marshal Tito, (yes, she does it all, deck work, piloting the boat) is also a gifted chef. Even while fishing, in Alaska, she used canned Alaska salmon…it is so easy and delicious!

Katherine’s Marshal Tito Salmon Cakes


2 – 7.5 oz cans of Redhead and/or Thinkpink, drained
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 heaping TBSP mayonnaise
&#189 cup cilantro, chopped fine
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 TBSP ginger, fine mince
1 tsp soy sauce
&#189 cup fresh bread crumbs

Combine ingredients, including the highly nutritious skin and bone – when mixed they are undetectable. Form into 6 to 8 cakes about ½ inch thick. Heat skillet on medium, add 1 TBSP oil, or as needed, cook each side until brown, about 4 to 5 minutes each side. Serve with rice or on foccacia rolls, seasoned with a mixture of soy sauce, lime juice and Dijon mustard.

Straight Out of the Can

For a printable recipe card, click here.


There is nothing easier or better than canned wild Alaska salmon, straight out the can. Squeeze on just a little lime or lemon juice; grab a fork and start eating. Other easy ideas:

* On a toasted bagel with cream cheese, a squeeze of lemon, maybe some sliced red onion or capers

* Piled it on some greens dressed with a little olive oil and lemon juice

* Mixed with Dijon mustard and finely chopped onion-deceptively easy and absolutely delicious-on a cracker or bagel

* Canadian customers recommend mixing just a little onion and a little cider vinegar with the salmon

Pure Alaska salmon are canned within hours of capture, in USDA-inspected canneries. Pure Alaska salmon is a wild, pure product-enjoy every ounce.

Fabulous Salmon Curry Salad

For a printable recipe card, click here.

This is a recipe which is traditionally made with chicken breast but which translates beautifully with Thinkpink and or Redhead. We often serve this at store demonstrations as it is so delicious and surprising.


2 – 7.5 oz. cans ThinkPink and/or Redhead, drained
1 cup celery, chopped fine
½ cup unpeeled apple, chopped medium
2 Tablespoons raisins or dried apricots, chopped
¼ cup chopped coarsely chopped pecans or slivered almonds*
1 teaspoon curry powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cider vinegar
½ teaspoon black pepper
⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
½ cup mayonnaise, or moisten to taste (plain yogurt can be substituted)

* Optional tip: Toast the nuts in a 325 degree oven for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring frequently.

Mix the salmon, including the highly nutritious and edible skin and bones. When mixed they are not detectable. We also recommend, when possible, pre-chilling the unopened cans. Combine with following ingredients and serve on the bread or vegetable of choice.

Serve on crackers or toasted bread or fresh sliced vegetables. Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Warren’s “Everything I Love in One Dish” Pasta

Pasta is another dish which really benefits from the addition of canned salmon. This is an elegant, quick and delicious meal.  An added note here, by cooking pasta as the Europeans do, al dente, the pasta will have a lower glycemic index than if it is cooked soft.


2 – 7.5 oz cans Redhead, drained and chunked
1 large shallot, chopped medium
2 TBSP olive oil
1 TBSP butter
1 large clove garlic
¼ cup white wine
¼ cup chicken stock
1 – 8 oz can Artichoke hearts, either in oil or water, drained
3 TBSP capers salt & pepper to taste
Fresh grated Parmesan cheese
Chopped parsley for garnish

Cook pasta ala dente to package directions. Heat frying pan on medium.  Seven minutes before pasta gets done, throw the shallots in the butter and oil until translucent. Add garlic and cook, cook one minute.

Take pan off of heat, but immediately add wine, scraping the cooked food particles off of the pan, this  steps adds flavor.

Add stock, artichokes, and capers, turn up heat to medium and let the sauce reduce by half.  Throw in can of Redhead, and gently break up.

Add salt and white pepper to taste. Keep warm.

Drain fettucine well. Spoon a little sauce in the serving dish, add pasta and gently toss.  Pour remainder of sauce over pasta,  sprinkle parmesan on top, and garnish with chopped parsley.

Serve with Parmesan, crusty French bread and big green salad.

Lemony Salmon Burgers

For a printable recipe card, click here.

Salmon burgers offer a host of opportunities to create the comfort food that makes memories.   How often have we heard from customers, “My grandmother used to make salmon cakes, and I loved them!” This one recipe we like on the boat.  We buy large cases of lemons to take to Alaska.  Fresh lemons last surprisingly well, and add a nice touch to boat cooking.


2 – 7.5 oz cans Thinkpink and/or Redhead, drained, mashed & mixed including skin and bone
2 eggs, beaten
4 TBSP finely chopped parsley or 1 tsp dried parsley
1 large lemon, juiced and zested
3 TBSP garlic, minced
Shake or two of hot sauce, to taste
½ cup dry, fine bread crumbs
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine ingredients, shape into four cakes.  Heat frying pan on medium, when hot add small amount of oil. Cook 5 to 7 minutes on one side, then turn, cooking 3 to 5 minutes more or until nicely browned.

Easy Salmon Chowder

Switching to winter fare, this is a wonderful and easy chowder.  You can make extra soup base (not including the milk or seafood) and freeze it for an extra easy meal later on.  Incidentally, buying clam juice in 48 oz institutional sizes is a bargain.

Saute in a large soup pot until onions are soft:

1 TBSP butter
1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced

When onions are soft, add roux (1 TBSP flour mixed with 1 TBSP melted butter)

Add the following and cook until potatoes are tender, keep pot at a steady simmer, but not boiling:

4 cups of clam juice
2 cups of water
3 or 4 cups of potatoes, scrubbed and cubed, with skin on
2 medium carrots, diced
⅓ cup dried potato flakes
2 TBSP finely chopped parsley
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried tarragon
Salt &pepper to taste

Add and warm to serving temperature, but do not heat to boiling!

1 pint of half & half or 1 can of evaporated milk (We use evaporated milk on the boat.)
2 – 7.5 oz cans of  Redhead and/or Thinkpink, undrained, as is, in chunks

Serve with crackers and bread and a tossed salad. Yumm.

Smart Salmon Salad

For a printable recipe card, click here.

Smart Salmon Salad was our first formal recipe card recipe, and delicious it is.  It is nutritious beyond compare, to boot.  We have tinkered with this recipe which first used tuna.   It is great as a dip or as a spread, and it is healthy, healthy, healthy.

Combine the salmon with the following ingredients, using just enough mayonnaise to bind.

1 – 7.5 oz can of ThinkPink and/or RedHead salmon
2 cups, yes, two cups, cilantro or Italian parsley, minced
2 ribs celery, minced
1 TBSP onion, minced
1 lemon or lime, juiced
4-6 TBSP mayonnaise
1 clove garlic, mashed
½ tsp Dijon mustard

Mix the salmon, including the highly nutritious and edible skin and bone;  when mixed they are not detectable.  We also recommend, when possible, pre-chilling the salmon for best flavor.

Makes 4-6 servings.  Serve on your favorite bread, cracker or sliced vegetable.

Irma Beulah’s Salmon Coleslaw

For a printable recipe card, click here.

This is an old family favorite recipe, created by none other than Irma Beulah Zuanich, (the greatest grandmother who ever lived) in which we used to use small pink Oregon shrimp, but then we started using canned salmon. Delicious! It is a great summer salad, but we always serve it during the Holidays as well.


4 cups green cabbage, chopped fine, not grated
1 – 7.5 oz can Redhead or Thinkpink, canned wild salmon, chunked
1 green pepper, chopped fine
4 green onions, chopped fine including green part
½ can of black olives sliced
6 sliced radishes, if desired


⅓ to ½ cup mayonnaise
3 TBSP white vinegar
2 tsp white sugar

Mix and toss into salad, chill and serve.

Slav Spaghetti (Zuanich Family Slavonian Recipe)

These directions are obviously a verbal, traditional recipe.  Many people who taste this declare it their favorite food.  The proportions are not scientific, so please adjust seasonings to your taste.  The sauce is much more sparingly used than with Italian spaghetti sauce, but the pungent spices more than make up for lack of volume.  Cinnamon and allspice, the only spices, are used cautiously and yet should be quite evident.  Read the directions through, as I may well backtrack a little midstream.  This is DELICIOUS.

Take a 3 lb. lean roast*.  Cut off ⅔ and grind it.  Also, grind a whole bunch of parsley, stems and all as well as 3 stalks of celery.

Chop 1 onion.

Brown ground meat and onion in oil in largish saucepan until very well done.  Meat should crust a little.

Scrape browned stuff, add celery, parsley, 8 oz. can tomato sauce, 8 oz. water, 1-2 tsp. allspice and equal parts nutmeg.  Also, 2 peeled, whole cloves of garlic. You can also throw in a couple of chicken wings for flavor.  Some Slavs add the grated peel of ½ an orange.

Simmer for a couple of hours, covering and uncovering the pot to achieve right consistency**.  If it gets too thin, thin with beef broth.  Meanwhile. back at the unground chunk of beef, brown in the oven with a little salt and pepper.  Brown on all sides.  Throw chunk into pot with simmering sauce.

Serve with penne pasta and parmesan cheese.

*Some heretics use very lean hamburger.

**“Right consistency” is easier experienced than described.  The liquid is quite thick, kind of, but presence of meat  is somewhat thinner than in Italian.

An excellent offshoot of this stuff an untitled dish.  People often make the painful decision that they like this better than the above.

Take 3 large jars of sauerkraut.  Rinse well, drain and squeeze pretty dry.

Brown a package of link sausage.

Mix sauerkraut, 1 onion, link sausage and perhaps 20% of above sauce.

Simmer for 2 hours.

Hope you Coloradoans enjoy this.