August 4, 2020

by Alyssa

Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes

Jump To Recipe

These Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes are so delicious! If you're looking for a quick and easy weeknight meal, that tastes like you've spent hours in the kitchen, then look no further.

Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes Recipe

If you're looking for a quick and easy weeknight meal, that tastes like you've spent hours in the kitchen, then look no further. These Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes are sensational.

And surprise: they're a cinch to whip up! The ingredient list is short, but they're full of flavor and I promise they won't disappoint.

They've got creamy sweet potato that provides the cakes with a smooth, rich texture, with just a hint of sweetness. Combined with quinoa which adds are really unique texture. And then the salmon! It's the ultimate combination and yields a salmon patty that is light but totally sticks together.

Ingredients for Salmon Cakes

Ingredients for Healthy Salmon Cakes

Sometimes my ingredient lists can get pretty long, but for this one, I wanted to keep it as simple as possible. We've got the option of using freshly baked or canned salmon, and just a few other simple ingredients.

Here's what you'll find inside our salmon patties:

  • Steamed sweet potato: this gives the patties a really nice sweet flavor, gorgeous orange color, and also helps to bind them. If you're not a sweet potato fan, you can replace it with regular potatoes, more salmon, or even squash!
  • Cooked quinoa: I love making these patties with leftover quinoa. They're fantastic for meal prep! You can use any variety of quinoa you'd like – my personal favorite is tri-color.
  • Salmon: as I said, you can use either fresh baked salmon or canned salmon. My mom loves to make extra salmon when they're making it for dinner and save the leftovers to make these cakes!
  • Eggs: we're using 2 eggs in this recipe to help bind them together.
  • Flour: we need a little bit of a dry ingredient to also help with binding, but since it's such a small amount, you can use any type you'd like. I went with quinoa…duh!
  • Scallions: these add a really nice bite and flavor to the cakes! You can leave them out, but rather than doing that, I'd suggest swapping them with shallots or red onion just to get that extra bit of zing.
  • Salt & pepper: that's all we're using for seasoning because really I think that's all they need!

Salmon Cakes Recipe with Quinoa

Baked vs. Canned Salmon for Salmon Cakes

What's great about this recipe is that you can use either fresh or canned salmon. If you are using canned salmon, try to get skinless and boneless os that you don't have to deal with that. But otherwise, you can follow the recipe 1:1.

What's the main difference you might wonder? The flavor.

If you're using freshly baked salmon you're going to have a richer flavor. Canned salmon can be a little briny – similar to how canned tuna fish tastes – and that does come through in the flavor of the final cakes.

But don't worry! Both are absolutely delicious – you really can't go wrong.

How to make Salmon Cakes

How to Make Salmon Cakes from Scratch

All you need for these salmon cakes are a pot, a bowl, and a saute pan!

STEP ONE: The Potatoes

We'll start by steaming our sweet potato. You'll want to peel your sweet potato first and then cut it into cubes. It should be about 2 cups worth of cubes. Then add your potatoes into a steamer basket, put the basket in a pot with a bit of water and steam the potatoes. It should take about 5 – 7 minutes – you're waiting for them to get fork-tender.

STEP TWO: Make the Cakes

Next is to make our salmon patty “dough”. Add your sweet potatoes – which you've allowed to cool slightly – into your bowl. Mash them up until they're almost smooth. Then add the rest of your ingredients and mix it all together until you've got your “dough”.

STEP THREE: Cook the Cakes

I personally like to pan sear my salmon cakes. They get crispy on the outside and stay nice and soft on the inside. To do that, I'll just add a bit of oil into a pan, drop in my patties and let them cook until they're golden brown. It takes about 2 – 3 minutes, then just flip them over and cook them on the other side.

And no joke…that's it!


Tips for Keeping Salmon Patties from Falling Apart

Do you ever run into the issue where you're salmon cakes fall apart? I think the two main reasons this happens are:

  • They're too dry
  • They don't have enough binders

For salmon patties to stick together, you don't want the dough to be dry. You should be able to pick it up with your hands, but only gently form it into a patty. Not like a burger that you can full shape.

If they're still falling apart and your dough isn't too dry, you don't have enough binders (i.e. eggs). The eggs are part of the reason the cakes stay together – as they cook, they start to firm up and hold their shape. Think about how scrambled eggs cook – they're liquid and then they hold their shape. They're doing the exact same thing with your salmon patties.

So if you keep having issues with your salmon patties falling apart, trying reducing your flour a bit and adding in an extra egg!

Bite of Salmon Cakes with Quinoa

Can you Freeze Salmon Patties?

Want to make these for meal prep? Great! They're an awesome option for meal prep because they'll not only stay good in the fridge for a few days, but they can also be frozen.

  • For the refrigerator: keep for 3 – 4 days in a sealed container
  • For the freezer: wrap in parchment and store in a sealed container; keep for 3 – 6 months

What to Serve with Salmon Cakes

Last but not least…let's talk toppings!

I think salmon cakes are incredibly versatile. I love to serve them on their own with a small side salad or some sort of veg, but I also will use them as a salad topper, as an easy side, or even as an appetizer.

For serving, I have a few favorite things:

Or they're also super tasty just on their own with a squeeze of lemon. No matter how you serve them, I know you're going to absolutely LOVE them!!

Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes

More Healthy Salmon Recipes to try:

Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes

These Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes are so delicious! If you're looking for a quick and easy weeknight meal, that tastes like you've spent hours in the kitchen, then look no further.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 6 cakes
Calories 134kcal
Author Alyssa
Print Pin
Sweet Potato Salmon Burger
4.65 from 14 votes


  • 1 medium sweet potato , peeled
  • 1/2 cup cooked quinoa I used red for this recipe because I liked the color
  • 1 6 oz can wild salmon (skinless and boneless if possible)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 green onions minced
  • 2 tablespoons gluten-free cornmeal/flour of choice
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Oil for cooking


  • Cut the sweet potato into cubes. You'll have about 2 cups. Add them to a steamer basket and steam for 5 - 7 minutes until the potatoes are fork-tender.
  • Allow the sweet potatoes to cool slightly, then transfer them to a bowl and mash them until (almost) smooth.
  • Add the rest of ingredients into the mixing bowl and mix with a wooden spoon until everything is combined and a dough has formed.
  • Form the dough into 6 patties, place on a plate and set aside.
  • Heat the oil in a 10" skillet over medium heat. Saute the salmon cakes for 3 - 5 minutes per side, until browned, crispy and heated through.
  • Serve warm with your desired dipping sauce (we used guacamole with sriracha mixed in)
  • Enjoy!



Serving: 1cake | Calories: 134kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 70mg | Sodium: 96mg | Potassium: 291mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 3245IU | Vitamin C: 2.1mg | Calcium: 26mg | Iron: 1.1mg
Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes
Sweet Potato Salmon CakesSweet Potato Salmon CakesSweet Potato Salmon CakesSweet Potato Salmon Cakes

Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes

shop this post

rate this recipe


share what you make

Tag #simplyquinoa on Instagram with your creations! We love sharing what you make with the community. We can’t wait to see!

About Alyssa

Hey there, I’m Alyssa Rimmer, a certified Holistic Nutritionist, yoga-lover, dog mom, and founder of Simply Quinoa. It’s nice to meet you! I created SQ as a way to provide solutions for women just like me, who were struggling to find helpful information about how to live a healthy and fulfilled life. My hope is that you will find inspiration here on SQ – in my story, in my recipes, in the hundreds of wellness articles, and in our amazing community. Welcome!

Interested in Healthy Eating? Grab our 7-Day Vegan Meal Plan!

With a week’s worth of simple and healthy meals, Eat Clean will help you see just how easy living a life full of whole foods can be. Recipe are 100% gluten-free and vegan!


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  1. […] Rice with Shrimp Hip Foodie Mom’s Baked Cod with Olive Topping Simply Quinoa’s Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes iFoodReal’s Bruschetta […]

  2. Hi Alyssa! Do you think these could be baked in the oven instead? How long do you think they would need to bake?

  3. GLUTEN FREE/DAIRY FREE May 2011 OAMM Menu (OAMC, Freezer Cooking, Bulk Cooking, Power Cooking) from Once A Month Mom | OAMC from Once A Month Meals says:

    […] Salmon & Sweet Potato Cakes […]

  4. I just tried this tonight, I had some leftover salmon that was just enough so I used that instead of canned salmon, and I just had to pop in to say “Home Run”!!! Absolutely delicious! I’ll be making these often. Thanks for the great recipes.

  5. Just wanted to say thank you for this recipe!!! It has become a new favorite at our house!!!

    I make guacamole using a pineapple salsa from Trader Joe’s and an aioli sauce using mayo, lemon, garlic powder, and Siracha sauce (also from TJ’s) and it is simply to die for!!!

    THANK YOU for thinking of things like this so I don’t have to!!

  6. Thanks for the great recipe! I made them with Wilderness Family Naturals coconut flour instead of cornmeal, added one minced garlic clove. I scooped them into the fry pan with a levered ice cream scoop and then flattened then top slightly. They were delicious.

    • Yes, I think you could absolutely try it with the crab cake and without the cornmeal. If you find that they’re not holding together, I’d just toss in a little flour of some sort. Let me know how it goes!!

  7. […] Queen of Quinoa – Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes […]

  8. I have some leftover king salmon that would work well in this recipe. I would like to make the cakes and freeze them…should I cook them first or freeze them uncooked?

  9. […] Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes from Yours Truly […]

  10. This recipe is the freakin’ bomb! One easy suggestion for those who had difficulty shaping the cakes: I used the tin can that the salmon came in to shape the patties. I filled it about halfway, ran a fork around the rim to loosen the mixture just before plopping it directly onto the hot skillet. They came out perfectly – plus this is more sanitary than the handheld method.

    • I love that idea! Thanks so much for sharing your tip Adam. And I’m psyched to hear you like the burgers. They’re definitely a favorite in our house!

  11. I made these salmon burgers for the first time the other night and absolutely loved them. We enjoyed them so much that we vowed to buy extra salmon just so we can have leftovers to make them. The mixture was a little on the wet side but I just went with it and avoided the temptation to mess with them while they were cooking and all was well. I will most definitely make these again. Thanks Queenie! xoxo

  12. I loved the idea of these burgers – a new way to incorporate quinoa in our meals! Had them for lunch today and they were great but, I found the mixture was way too loose and added some extra meal and more quinoa – still a bit hard to handle but worked it out. Welcome your thoughts on why they might not have been more ‘dough’ like as you mention in your recipe.

    Thanks and look forward to trying some more of your wonderful recipes.

    • Sorry to hear they were too wet for you. They’re definitely a little sticky, but should hold together with no problem. Did you follow the proportions I used in the recipe exactly? It could be that your potatoes had more moisture in them then mine did. I would just suggesting adding a bit more dry ingredients (quinoa or cornmeal) into the mixture until you get a drier consistency. Just keep in mind, it’s going to be sticky, but not so sticky that you can’t handle it and shape it into patties. You could also try shaping them with wet or oiled hands next time. I think that should help when you’re forming the patties. Let me know and I’m glad you liked them!! 🙂 xo Alyssa

  13. […] Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes from Alyssa @ The Queen of Quinoa […]

  14. […] Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes from Alyssa @ The Queen of Quinoa […]

  15. Question for you…no matter how long I soak and rinse my quinoa, it still give me terrible bloating and gas. Is this common with quinoa?

    • Hi Nicole – honestly, and I’m not a nutritionist or anything, but I would venture a guess and say that you’re sensitive to quinoa. I’ve heard of others who have quinoa allergies, although I’m not sure of the symptoms, but usually when a food makes your tummy hurt, that means it doesn’t agree with your system. I would suggest either getting an allergy test or try not eating it and then reintroducing it to make sure it’s quinoa that’s upsetting your tummy and not something you’re using to cook it with. Hope that makes sense! Let me know if you have any other questions 🙂

  16. These look great! My husband eats salmon! He’d love these! Thanks for linking up at our Gluten Free Fridays party! I have tweeted and pinned your entry to our Gluten Free Fridays board on Pinterest! 🙂

    Thanks for linking back to the Gluten Free Fridays post!

    Party starts tomorrow at 7:05 pm eastern time! Hope to see you there!

    Cindy from

  17. Made these tonight, I can’t have cornmeal so I used ground flaxseed instead.
    (I am gluten, casein, corn and soy free).
    They were yummy! Kids asked for seconds, always a good sign 🙂

  18. These look fantastic! I love salmon cakes but have never thought to try them w sweet potato too!

    • I hadn’t either, but it makes the flavors pop so much more. We loved it and will definitely be making them again soon! And they’re so easy 🙂

  19. Made these last night and they were divine! Thanks for the recipe! Next time I think I will add some jalapeño into the mix to spice it up, and maybe even some hot sauce. Served it with an arugula salad, and a glass of white wine of course 🙂 really tasty… And fun to make!!

  20. This looks delicious!

    I only had salmon cakes yesterday actually 🙂 but with leek & potato & soya flour, which worked nicely, too.

    Genius idea to add quinoa.

    One question though: When all the ingredients are combined, what texture should the mixture have? Mine were super sticky, so I had to add lots of flour. Wondering if that can be avoided somehow. Any ideas? Perhaps quinoa is what is needed in my salmon cakes, hehe.

    P.S. I mentioned your lovely Sweet Potato Salmon Cakes recipe in my latest blog post about quinoa 🙂

  21. Quick, easy and nutritious. This is my kind of recipe, except for the cornmeal. Do you know something that would work as a substitute? Thanks a lot.

    • Hi Lois – you could use any flour to replace the cornmeal. Whether you’re gluten-free or not, it’s just there to make them a little less sticky 🙂 Hope you enjoy!!

  22. Yes for these burgers! I love salmon burgers and you’re right- quinoa is my favorite veggie-burger binder. And I love the addition of the cornmeal, I bet that adds great texture.

    • Woo hoo for quinoa burgers! One of my favorite things ever. And there are SO many ways that you can make them. Next up on my list is white bean-mushroom burgers 🙂

  23. thanks fir the recipe. Do you think it would still hold together without the eggs? Also, have you tried baking them?


    3 Day Reset

    This reset plan is an easy-to-follow timeline
    to get you back on track within 72 hours!

    Welcome to Simply Quinoa! Our mission is to help women be well + truly healthy.

    This is a community that celebrates your own unique health journey, no matter where you are on your path. We will encourage you, inspire you and support you every step of the way.