Basic crispy salmon fish cakes

Fish cakes! These are nothing fancy, but are full of delicately flavoured salmon and fresh, subtle flavours. My favourite part is the crispy exterior - mmmmm!
Course Main Course
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4 -5 people (based on 2 fish cakes each)
Calories 348 kcal
Author Helen


for the fish cakes

  • 14 ounces potatoes peeled and diced (about 4 smallish potatoes)
  • 2.5 ounces peas frozen
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 9 ounces salmon I used 3 portioned fillets
  • 1 lemon (zest)
  • 1 teaspoon mustard
  • parsley one handful, finely chopped
  • 1 ounce grated cheese about a handful (I used a sharp cheddar but any strong cheese works e.g. parmesan)
  • 1 pinch chili flakes optional
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • salt and pepper

for the crispy coating

  • 3 tablespoons flour (roughly)
  • 1 egg whisked
  • 4 tablespoons breadcrumbs (roughly) I used Japanese panko, but any work
US Customary - Metric


  1. Cook the potatoes in salted boiling water until tender (about 15 to 20 minutes). Add the peas for the last few minutes. Drain then return to the pan and lightly mash with the butter (I prefer to leave the potato a bit ‘chunky’). Tip into a large bowl.
  2. Meanwhile, put the salmon in a microwavable dish with 100ml milk, then cover with plastic wrap and microwave for 2 minutes or until just cooked.
  3. Flake the salmon into the bowl with the potato, then add the lemon zest, mustard, parsley, cheese, chili flakes, and mayonnaise. Add a generous grinding of salt and pepper and mix well.
  4. Cool the mixture for a while in the fridge (half an hour is fine), then take golfball-sized amounts of mixture and shape into 8 to 10 fish cakes.
  5. To coat the fish cakes, put the flour, egg and breadcrumbs in separate dishes, then roll the fishcakes first in the flour, then in the egg and lastly in the breadcrumbs. Place on a plate or baking tray ready to cook.
  6. Heat up a good drizzle of oil in a frying pan, then pan fry the fishcakes for about 5 minutes on each side or until golden and crispy. Serve immediately.

Recipe Notes

These fish cakes freeze really well. Simply freeze them between layers of baking paper in a Tupperware. When ready to eat, defrost in separate layers then cook as from fresh.

I used salmon but any fish would work. I think smoked fish would work especially well. You could even use tinned fish (which would probably be cheaper!).

Don't waste the milk you cook the fish in! Freeze it and use it for the sauce when you make this fish pie!

Nutrition Facts
Basic crispy salmon fish cakes
Amount Per Serving
Calories 348 Calories from Fat 144
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 16g 25%
Saturated Fat 5g 25%
Cholesterol 93mg 31%
Sodium 256mg 11%
Potassium 837mg 24%
Total Carbohydrates 29g 10%
Dietary Fiber 4g 16%
Sugars 2g
Protein 21g 42%
Vitamin A 7.6%
Vitamin C 39.6%
Calcium 12.4%
Iron 28.5%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.