My easy classic Salmon Croquettes are pan fried and packed with great flavor! This classic preparation uses grocery store staples to make a quick, inexpensive and elegant weeknight dinner. Serve with your choice of tartar sauce, garlic aioli, or horseradish-dill cream.
Salmon Croquettes were a staple of my childhood dinner table. I remember Mama’s croquettes being moist and flaky on the inside and wonderfully crunchy on the outside.
Mine don’t quite live up to hers, but they’re a close second. Plus salmon is one of the good-for-you foods so it cancels out the frying. Right?
Actually, the more I looked into the history of these simple fried salmon patties, the more I realized how elegant they are. Croquettes originated in France in about 1898 by the founder of classical French cuisine, Escoffier.
They were originally made of beef, probably leftovers that needed to be used up. As Escoffier’s chefs started to travel throughout the world, they took the recipe with them to other cultures where it was transformed based on local cuisines. From the original beef croquette, it branched out into salmon croquettes, fish, chicken, vegetarian, and many other versions.
So, that old-fashioned, simple salmon croquette that many of us enjoyed in childhood, turns out to be fancy French cooking invented by Escoffier himself. Who knew!?
💗 Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- This recipe is pure and simple nostalgia for me.
- Fish is a good-for-you protein
- It’s easy to make and inexpensive
🛒 Ingredient Notes
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- Salmon (I’ve only used the commonly available canned pink salmon for this recipe. if you’re looking for the “cleanest” choice of canned salmon, it’s my understanding that a good Alaskan salmon should meet those needs.)
- Onion (Regular old yellow onions, chopped finely are great for this recipe. You can substitute finely chopped red onions or green onions if you like.)
- Dill Weed (If you don’t have it, you can substitute dill seed or fresh dill or simply omit it.)
- Bread Crumbs (Use the plain dried boxed bread crumbs or make your own from leftover bread on hand.)
- Oil (Like most southern cooks, I use peanut oil for frying anything. You can use canola or vegetable oil if you like. I don’t recommend olive oil for frying because of its low smoking point.)
🔪 How to Make Salmon Croquettes
Do the Prep Work
Drain the canned salmon. Remove and discard any bones and skin. Use a fork to break up the salmon. Finely dice the onion and celery.
Mix the Ingredients
In a medium bowl, mix together the salmon, egg, celery, onion, dill, garlic powder, salt, black pepper, and one cup of bread crumbs.
Form the Patties
Using your hands, form the salmon mixture into eight patties just like you would if you were making burgers. Lightly dust the patties with the remaining bread crumbs. Set aside while the oil heats.
Fry the Croquettes
Add oil to a depth of approximately ¼-inch in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
Fry for about 8-10 minutes, turning as needed, until golden brown.
Remove the completed croquettes to a plate lined with paper towels to drain.
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❓ Questions About Salmon Croquettes
The terms “salmon croquettes” and “salmon patties” are interchangeable. If you’re really into technical terminology, the difference is that croquettes typically use breadcrumbs and patties typically use flour. A croquette mixture is flakier and lighter than a patty mixture. So now you know!
There are loads of choices for sauces to serve with your salmon croquettes. Kids love good old catsup. I like them with a generous squeeze of fresh lemon juice. They’re also great with tartar sauce, garlic aioli, or a horseradish-dill cream.
There are so many good choices of sides to serve with salmon croquettes! My mother always served them with English peas and mashed potatoes. I like them with roasted asparagus and baked macaroni and cheese.
Yes, you can. Canned tuna works very well for making croquettes.
You bet! Most cooks recommend freezing the croquettes for about 30 minutes before cooking in an air fryer. After the freezing time, prepare the fryer by spraying the basket with oil. Place the patties in a single layer in the basket and cook for about 6 minutes at 400 degrees. Flip the patties, sprayer the basket again, and continue cooking for another 4 minutes.
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I’d LOVE to know what you thought!
Leave a rating below in the comments and let me know how you liked it!
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- 12 ounces canned salmon drained and flaked
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup finely chopped celery
- ¼ cup finely chopped onion or sliced green onions
- ½ teaspoon dried dill weed
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 cup bread crumbs plus ¼ cup for coating
- Oil for frying
- In a medium bowl, mix together the salmon, egg, celery, onion, dill, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and 1 cup bread crumbs.
- Form the mixture into eight patties.
- Heat oil to a depth of approximately 1/4-inch in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Dust patties with remaining bread crumbs.
- Fry for about 8-10 minutes, turning as needed, until golden brown.
- Remove to paper towels to drain.
- For this recipe, the commonly available canned pink salmon is perfectly suitable.
- I use peanut oil for any type of frying. You can use canola or vegetable oil if you like. I don’t recommend olive oil because of its low smoking point.
- To make salmon croquettes in the air fryer, first freeze the croquettes for about 30 minutes. Then preheat the fryer to 400 degrees. Spray the basket with oil. Place the patties in a single layer and cook for about 6 minutes. Flip, spray the basket again and continue cooking for another 4 minutes.
Nutrition information is calculated by software based on the ingredients in each recipe. It is an estimate only and is provided for informational purposes. You should consult your health care provider or a registered dietitian if precise nutrition calculations are needed for health reasons.
— This post was originally published on April 7, 2009. It has been updated with additional information and new photos.