This canned salmon salad is shockingly good! Inspired by the smoked salmon dip from J. Alexander’s, but without actually needing any smoked salmon, this recipe is easy to make, budget-friendly, and does NOT taste canned! You can serve it as a sandwich, on leafy greens, or as a dip with crackers or toasts.
🐟 What Makes This Recipe So Good
- Canned salmon salad is a ridiculously easy recipe to throw together in no time. Really! There’s zero cooking, and barely even any prep. Just mix up the salmon, make a quick dressing, then stir it all together. Voila! If you like tuna salad, you’ll love this.
- Don’t tell anyone it’s made with canned salmon and I guarantee, they’d never guess it on their own. It doesn’t taste canned at all! The liquid smoke, maple syrup, lemon juice, and salt help to mimic the flavors of cured and smoked salmon. It’s a great little hack to elevate the canned fish easily and cost-effectively.
- If you’ve ever eaten at J. Alexander’s, this canned salmon salad will definitely remind you of their smoked salmon dip! Of course, they use in-house-smoked salmon, not canned, but other than that. Their dip has more of a creamy, paste-like consistency than our salad version. If you want something more along those lines, make the salad as instructed below, then pulse everything in the food processor a few times.
👩🏼🍳 Chef’s Tips
- You can buy canned salmon two different ways – boneless & skinless, or “traditional style”, which includes bones and skin. The “traditional style” usually has more flavor and is much richer than the boneless alternative. If you’re not used to seeing those little bits, though, they can be kind of off-putting. You’re welcome to pick them out of the salmon if you want, but! They’re safe to eat and essentially disappear once the salmon’s mixed with everything else.
- The dressing for this particular canned salmon salad is similar to my creamy dill sauce that I use on air fryer salmon and salmon patties. Just like with tuna salad or ham salad, though, you can absolutely change or omit ingredients based on your tastes and needs. Capers, scallions, hot sauce, red pepper flakes, red onion, celery, avocado… SO many delicious flavors go with salmon!
🥘 More Irresistibly Delicious Recipes
- Easy Black Bean Soup
- Capellini Primavera
- Deviled Egg Salad
- Everything Bagel Dip
- 5 Minute Lemon Garlic Shrimp
- Sous Vide Flank Steak with Homemade Chimichurri
- Easy, Crispy Chicken Patties
- Jerk Salmon with Mango Salsa
- Garlic Bread Casserole
- 3-Ingredient Sausage Dip (Stovetop or Crockpot)
- Tonga Toast French Toast Casserole
- Baked Chicken Tacos
For the Salmon
- 2 14.75-ounce cans salmon drained well, flaked; see Notes
- 1 ½ teaspoons liquid smoke
- 4 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon salt more or less to taste
For the Creamy Dill Dressing
Serving Suggestions (All Optional)
- buttery crackers
- lettuce cups
- medium mixing bowl
- Silicone spatula or large wooden spoon
- small mixing bowl
- Add 2 14.75-ounce cans salmon, 1 ½ teaspoons liquid smoke, 4 teaspoons fresh lemon juice, 2 tablespoons maple syrup, and 1 teaspoon salt to medium mixing bowl. Stir gently until ingredients are well combined, then set bowl aside to let salmon "cure".
- Add ⅓ cup mayonnaise, ¼ cup chopped fresh dill, ¼ cup minced shallot, 1 clove garlic, 1 tablespoon dijon mustard, and ¼ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper to small bowl. Stir well until ingredients are fully incorporated into creamy mixture.
- Transfer dill dressing into bowl of salmon. Gently fold dressing into salmon, stirring until all ingredients are well blended.
- Serve salmon salad immediately, or cover bowl with lid or plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Canned Salmon: If you’re using “traditional style” canned salmon, you may notice the salmon contains bones and skin. You can remove them if you want, or you can leave them in. They’re safe to eat and typically not noticeable once the salmon’s mixed with everything else in the recipe.
- Leftovers: Refrigerate leftover salmon salad in an airtight container up to 3 days. I do not recommend freezing this recipe.
Number of total servings shown is approximate. Actual number of servings will depend on your preferred portion sizes.
Nutritional values shown are general guidelines and reflect information for 1 serving using the ingredients listed, not including any optional ingredients. Actual macros may vary slightly depending on specific brands and types of ingredients used.
To determine the weight of one serving, prepare the recipe as instructed. Weigh the finished recipe, then divide the weight of the finished recipe (not including the weight of the container the food is in) by the desired number of servings. Result will be the weight of one serving.