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HUMBLE SALMON PATTIES~ Casual food that's high in protein and calcium.

Paleo, GAPS, Whole30 Humble Salmon Patties

Tahini is sesame seed butter. Look for and buy HULLED sesame seed butter. It is easier to digest and MUCH lower in phytic acid. You have two main flavor variations to choose from below: the combination of tahini and dill or peanut butter and basil. Both are great. The inclusion of peanut butter with salmon certainly sounds strange; but we LOVE it. Of course, we love everything with peanut butter. (I am known to eat it with carrots and cheese.) In this Salmon Patty setting it plays a Thai roll, paired with basil, and is quite cozy and yummy. The tahini-dill variation is more traditional, a Middle Eastern ingredient marriage. Choose whichever sounds best to you, or try them both. We alternate and enjoy them for different reasons. My husband and kids love the peanut butter version. I like to eat the peanut butter version before it is cooked, fresh from the bowl– (wink)! For the recipe closest to my Granny’s, see the Variation below in Recipe Notes. She used mayonnaise and bread crumbs. So I have one final version of salmon patties, that comes out like hers, but that is free of breadcrumbs, nuts, seeds and legumes, made with homemade aioli!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 5 servings
Author Megan


  • 1 tall (large 14-ounce) can wild salmon, bones included
  • 1/2 cup grated carrot
  • 1/4 cup tahini or peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup canned pumpkin or leftover cooked winter squash BPA-free can liner
  • 2 tsp. sustainably-sourced gelatin, Great Lakes or Vital Proteins- see links below
  • 1 tsp. dried dill or basil
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/4 cup rendered animal fat, ghee or avocado oil for frying


  • If you plan to bake your patties, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Drain water from canned salmon. Place fish in medium size mixing bowl. Add remaining ingredients, except the frying oil.
  • Using the tines of a fork, smash and mix together thoroughly the ingredients.
  • Decide: to bake or to fry? To bake, line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Using an auto-scoop (tool pictured below), measure out 1 or 2-ounce mounds. With three wettened fingers*, press each mound into a flat patty. Bake until browned slightly all over, and especially around the edges, about 20 minutes.
  • For frying, cook patties in two batches, in a 6" skillet, dividing the fat in half, 2 T. for each batch. Or use a large skillet and all the fat for one big batch. (The patties are best cooked in a generous amount of fat.)
  • Heat fat in pan over medium-high heat until fully melted, about 30 seconds. Add mounds of salmon, about 1-2 ounces each, using auto-scoop (tool pictured below) and pressing down slightly to flatten each one, using the back of your spatula. Cook for 5-8 minutes on the first side, until crispy and golden brown. Reduce heat during this time, as needed, to medium or low, to prevent burning or smoking. Flip patties using some care; (they are more fragile when fried but using an offset metal spatula and the small patty size makes it quite doable. "Dig deep" with the spatula if they stick a bit). Cook 5-8 additional minutes on second side and serve.
  • Refrigerate any leftovers for easy, quick nourishment.


*By dipping your index, middle and ring fingers into a bit of water you produce a non-stick surface. Having a little bowl of water in this case is handy for dipping your three fingers in repeatedly between patties.
  • To make a version without seeds or legumes, exclude the tahini, peanut butter and pumpkin. Substitute instead 1/3 cup homemade aioli (see recipe).