Grilled Salmon Burgers with Cilantro, Ginger, and Red Onion

Week three of “Salmon September” focuses on the salmon burger, grilled in a cast iron skillet. If you missed weeks one and two, please check them out with the above links.

I guess you could also call this a grilled salmon cake recipe as well but I tend to think of it as a salmon burger. This recipe comes with a homemade tartar sauce recipe which is really easy to make and tastes fantastic. These Grilled Salmon Burgers with Cilantro, Ginger, and Red Onion are made with some very fragrant ingredients and has quite a bit of flavor. I’m very impressed with this one: healthy and very tasty!
Grilled Salmon Burgers

Ingredients (for three salmon burgers):
1 lb Salmon (check for bones and remove them)
2.5 T Diced Cilantro
2.5 T Diced Red Onion
3/4 tsp Diced Peeled Fresh Ginger
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper

Cast Iron Skillet

Ingredients (for the homemade tartar sauce):
1/2 cup Mayo
3 T Diced Dill Pickles
3 T Diced Red Onion
1/2 tsp Lemon Juice

Grilled Salmon Burgers

To start off with this really tasty salmon burger recipe pick up 1 lb of salmon. This recipe works great with sockeye salmon, Atlantic salmon, or Norway salmon. At least those are the varieties I have had success with. Trim off the skin of the salmon filet and dice the salmon up very fine. Be careful not to mush the salmon up. Use a very sharp knife and dice it up as small as you can get it.

Grilled Salmon Burgers

Grilled Salmon Burgers

Grilled Salmon Burgers

Grab your cilantro, red onion and ginger and dice it up!

Grilled Salmon Burgers

Take all the diced ingredients, the salt, the pepper and add it right on top of the diced salmon.

Grilled Salmon Burgers

Use your hands to lightly toss the ingredients together. When the mixture is quite homogenous start to form patties. For 1 lb of salmon I can make 3 salmon burgers.

Grilled Salmon Burgers

Once the burgers are formed you can either grill them or put them in the fridge. I put them in the fridge for about 1-2 hours before grilling so they firm up a bit. You’ll notice that these burger patties (salmon cakes) are quite fragile.

For lighting the grill I prefer a medium high/high heat and I use a cast iron skillet over direct heat.

I cannot get these burgers to hold together sitting directly on the grates. Trust me, I’ve tried. They are better in a skillet. Most of the internet salmon burger/salmon cake recipes call for bread crumbs to help hold things together. I strongly dislike burgers with bread crumbs in them. I will not make the trade off. I don’t like the texture that the breadcrumbs provide. So go get yourself a cast iron skillet and you’ll be thrilled with the results.

Pour some canola or cooking oil into the skillet, let it get pretty hot and toss the salmon burgers right in. You should hear a nice sizzle when those burgers hit the skillet.

Grilled Salmon Burgers

After about 5 minutes take a little peek under your salmon burgers with a spatula. If they look crispy and brown flip them over. As I said, these burgers are fragile so I try to only flip them once. Once they are nicely colored on both sides the salmon burgers will be done.

Grilled Salmon Burgers

Oh man do they look good! The edges get a bit crispy but because of the fragile nature of the burgers they are so soft and tender inside! They are fantastic to eat alone, or check out this homemade tartar sauce recipe you can use to top your salmon burger:

Homemade tartar sauce is perfect for these salmon burgers. Grab 1/2 cup of good quality Mayo. Add in 3 T of diced red onion (you should have some left over from above). Next grab some dill pickles or just use the little hamburger topper pickles. Dice them up and add 3 T into the Mayo mix. Finally add about 1/2 tsp lemon juice to the mix and stir well. Place on top of your salmon burger.

Grilled Salmon Burgers

This is a really tasty and healthy way to add some salmon into your diet. Obviously the homemade tartar sauce takes away from the overall health vibe of the salmon burger but it’s so good it’s worth it!

This recipe is modified from the cooking magazine/website Eating Well.

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