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This salmon salad recipe is made with canned salmon and comes together quickly! It’s similar to tuna salad, so it’s great in sandwiches for easy lunches.

You may also like my Easy Chicken Salad and Canned Salmon Pasta next.

canned salmon salad sandwich (two halves stacked)

Why you’ll love it

I think canned salmon is somewhat underrated. Tuna gets all the glory, so if you want to change things up a bit, give this a try. Canned salmon is healthy and fairly inexpensive, and it’s something I like to include in my diet every now and then!

I love how flavorful this easy canned salmon salad is with bright lemon juice, fresh dill, and crunchy onion. They might be your new favorite way to use a can of salmon. It may even rival my Easy Tuna Salad recipe.

What you’ll need

  • Salmon – I used canned sockeye salmon (Cloverleaf brand here in Canada)
  • Mayo – for creaminess without drenching it
  • Dijon mustard – it gives savory depth but doesn’t make it taste like mustard!
  • Lemon juice and zest – I add lemon zest to many of my salmon recipes since it really adds a ton of freshness that pairs well with the fish
  • Capers – a burst of bright, briny flavor
  • Celery and red onion – it adds crunch
  • Fresh dill – it’s the perfect complement to salmon
canned salmon salad in a glass prep bowl

A note on canned salmon

  • You can buy canned salmon without skin/bones, but I usually buy it with. Why? Because it’s more flavorful, contains extra vitamins/minerals, and you don’t even notice when you mash it all up. I know the idea may not be super appealing to some people (or if you think too much about it haha), but give it a try if you’re curious! My mom always bought canned salmon that way, and so I continued as an adult.

How to make salmon salad

This is an overview, and full ingredients & instructions are in the recipe card below.

  • Drain the salmon, and mash it in a prep bowl. Prep the other ingredients and add to the bowl.
  • Mix together, season with salt & pepper, and adjust as needed.
  • Assemble into sandwiches.

Substitutions and variations

  • Can you use fresh salmon? Yes! I recommend using about 1 pound of fresh salmon (you could definitely use leftover Cooked Salmon for this recipe).
  • This salmon salad recipe is pretty flexible. Just like with tuna salad, feel free to add/omit ingredients based on what you’ve got on hand or prefer. I encourage you to taste and adjust ingredient quantities as needed!
  • If you can’t get fresh dill, dried dill will work in a pinch, but I do prefer the flavor of the fresh stuff. I’d start with 1 teaspoon, taste it, and add more if needed.

Tools for this recipe

Check out Natasha’s favorite kitchen essentials, gadgets, and cookware!

What to serve with salmon salad

  • I just included butter lettuce in the sandwiches pictured, but feel free to add more stuff like tomatoes, arugula, cucumber, a different kind of lettuce, a slice of cheese… anything goes!
  • Try my light Potato Leek Tomato Soup for a soup and sandwich combo, or make this Super Simple Parmesan Arugula Salad on the side for more fresh goodness.

Leftovers and storage

  • Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-5 days. I would probably eat any leftovers faster if using fresh salmon, however (within a couple of days).
  • Make sure to not leave it sitting out and refrigerate promptly.
canned salmon salad in a sandwich

Leave a star rating and review if you made these canned salmon salad sandwiches! Questions? Talk to me. Give me a follow on Instagram as well.

canned salmon salad sandwich (two halves stacked)
4.97 from 29 votes

Canned Salmon Salad

This salmon salad recipe is made with canned salmon and comes together quickly! It's similar to tuna salad, so it's great in sandwiches for easy lunches.
Prep: 10 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients 

  • 2 (5 ounce) cans salmon drained
  • 1/4 cup mayo
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice + zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 stick celery chopped small
  • 1-2 tablespoons capers drained & chopped
  • 1-2 tablespoon red onion chopped small
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill chopped
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Instructions 

  • Drain the salmon and add it to a bowl. Mash it with a fork. Prep the other ingredients and add them to the bowl, then mix it all together. Taste and season with salt & pepper/adjust ingredients as needed.
  • This recipe makes enough for 4 sandwiches (try adding some lettuce, tomato, cucumber, and/or sliced cheese to each sandwich). This canned salmon salad will keep in the fridge for 3-5 days.

Notes

  • Recipe is easily halved (just use one can of salmon and cut other ingredients in half).
  • This recipe is very forgiving. If you don’t like an ingredient, you can definitely leave it out/sub as needed with what you’ve got on hand!
  • Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy only and should be construed as an estimate rather than a guarantee. Ingredients can vary and Salt & Lavender makes no guarantees to the accuracy of this information.

Nutrition

Calories: 197kcal, Carbohydrates: 1g, Protein: 17g, Fat: 14g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 65mg, Sodium: 437mg, Potassium: 262mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 91IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 205mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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Hi! Iā€™m Natasha.

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80 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Delicious! To get the right quantity of tinned fish for our pantry, I used a small tin of salmon as well as a small tin of tuna. No onion on hand, so substituted with green onion from the garden. Looking forward to making this again šŸ™‚

  2. 5 stars
    Someone mentioned that this was a Canadian thing. Its also a Midwest USA thing. There used to be a deli/bakery place and they always had salmon salad sandwiches. I was always so disappointed when they ran out. They closed several years ago and haven’t had anything like it. Thanks for bringing it back into my life.

  3. Used one can chunck style pink salmon,small dill pickle,diced,half stock celery,diced,half tsp(+ a squirt) lemon juice,almost tsp Dijon,odds and ends of left over small green onion and tiny red onion,dash of pepper. Delicious!

  4. 5 stars
    Hey Natasha…..Was looking at what to do with canned Alaska wild sockeye salmon & you gave me the answer. I’m a cook with professional training & found your ingredients list spot on even before putting it together. I opted to not use (sm. dice) red onion or celery this time. No fresh dill on hand but had dried dill that had a smidgen of life left in it, so I knew it wouldn’t be of much help & would not do any harm.
    Salt wasn’t needed. I did add maybe a tsp of caper brine.
    Anyway, great recipe. I think it would be terrific for a quick appetizer on toasted artisan bread or even a neutral cracker. Thanks…Linda L

  5. Does salmon have a fishy taste and or smell? I have a can of pink salmon in my cupboard and don’t have a clue what to do with it. If so, how do I cover the taste/smell?

    1. Hi Donna! Well… it is an oily fish, so yes, it will taste/smell a bit fishy. I am not really sure how to answer your question. There’s seasonings in here, but the recipe is for those who like salmon, so it won’t erase its taste. If you give it a try, let me know.

  6. 5 stars
    Fantastic recipe – my family and I loved it. It has become a household staple and is super easy to make. Definitely deserves a 5 star rating.

  7. 5 stars
    I cut the recipe in half and served it on toasted triangle bread for one of our appy nights…really enjoyed the capers and the crunch of the cerery and onion…used dried dill…made for “Best of 2022” tag game per Kathy D’s recommendation…

  8. 5 stars
    I laughed at this being listed as American cuisine. Most Americans I know have never tried it. Definitely Canadian!
    One of my favorites!!

    1. Very interesting! We’re Canadian, and we haven’t actually heard of anyone eating it here haha. šŸ™‚ So happy it’s a hit, Michele.