Salmon Caesar Salad

Salmon Caesar salad is a hearty main dish salad for dinner everyone loves! It’s irresistible drizzled with a creamy homemade…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

Salmon Caesar salad is a hearty main dish salad for dinner everyone loves! It’s irresistible drizzled with a creamy homemade dressing.

Salmon caesar salad

In summer, we crave all the main dish salads for dinner. Here’s one that’s basic but satisfies every time: Salmon Caesar Salad! Imagine: tender, perfectly seasoned chunks of salmon nestled with bursts of crunchy romaine, juicy cherry tomatoes and crunchy croutons. It’s all covered in a creamy homemade Caesar dressing that makes each bite absolutely sublime. This one is a smash hit every time we serve it (and our kiddo loves a deconstructed version with the Caesar as a dipping sauce!).

Elements in this salmon Caesar salad

You barely need a recipe for salmon Caesar salad: just cook salmon and add it to a bed of romaine with Caesar dressing. But making a big plate of this at home requires homemade dressing, in our opinion! We’ve also got a few adders that take it to the next level. Here’s what you’ll need for salmon Caesar salad:

  • Fresh salmon, canned or smoked salmon
  • Croutons (try them homemade!)
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Romaine hearts
  • Parmesan cheese shavings
  • For the dressing: mayonnaise, Greek yogurt, garlic, Parmesan cheese, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce or anchovy paste, salt and pepper
  • Optional: capers, dill sprigs
Salmon Caesar Salad

How to cook the salmon

This salmon Caesar salad works with a variety of different types and methods of cooking salmon. In fact, there are a few ways to make this salad without cooking the fish at all! It’s also a great way to use leftover salmon. Here are our top methods for cooking the salmon:

  • Pan Seared: Whip out a pan and cook it up on the stovetop.
  • Baked: Baked salmon is a simple, no fail method (though you do have to wait for the preheating).
  • Broiled: Faster than baked and just as good!
  • Blackened: Use the pan-seared method and coat the fish in a mix of Cajun seasonings. This makes a killer Caesar salad!
  • Grilled: If it’s the season, grilled salmon is ideal for this summery main dish.
  • Poached: Poaching is one of the fastest ways to cook salmon and what we used here! It’s melt-in-your-mouth tender.
  • Canned: Don’t have time to cook? Use canned salmon and mix it with olive oil, salt and pepper before adding to the salad.
  • Smoked: Another no cook method! Tear off pieces of smoked salmon for a quick fix salad.
Poached Salmon
Poached salmon is a fast and easy way to cook it for this salad

For Caesar dressing

The star of this salmon Caesar salad is the fresh, creamy homemade Caesar dressing. It’s a go-to we’ve been making for years. Using Greek yogurt lightens it up and reduces the calories from a standard Caesar. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Greek yogurt: Yogurt replaces some of the standard mayonnaise in this dressing: it reduces calories while staying irresistibly creamy.
  • Mayonnaise: You’ll still need a bit of mayo for richness and to help the dressing cling to the greens.
  • Lemon juice: Fresh juice brings a pop of acidity.
  • Parmesan cheese: Cheese adds a savory saltiness.
  • Anchovy paste or Worcestershire sauce: Anchovies are traditional, or substitute Worcestershire sauce for vegetarian.
  • Garlic & Dijon mustard: These round out the savory flavor.

Serving tips

And that’s it! Mix up the creamy dressing, compose the salad and douse it all in Caesar. A few other notes on serving:

  • Capers add a nice briny pop. We love adding a handful of drained capers to a Caesar salad.
  • Add other veggies if you like. A traditional Caesar doesn’t have tomatoes, but we added them to make this into more of a main dish salad for dinner. Feel free to add other veggies of your choice!
  • Serve as a decomposed salad for kids. Our son loved this separated out with salmon, “lettuce chips,” cherry tomatoes, croutons, and a small cup of Caesar dipping sauce.
Salmon Caesar salad

More salmon recipes

Salmon is a dinnertime standby over here! Here are a few more easy salmon recipes to work into your repertoire:

This salmon Caesar salad recipe is…

Pescatarian. For gluten-free, use gluten-free croutons. For dairy-free, use Vegan Caesar Salad.

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Salmon caesar salad

Salmon Caesar Salad


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4

Description

Salmon Caesar salad is a hearty main dish salad for dinner everyone loves! It’s irresistible drizzled with a creamy homemade dressing.


Ingredients

For the salad

  • 1 pound salmon (or 2 cans salmon or 12 ounces smoked salmon)
  • 1 cup croutons
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 3 romaine hearts (or 1 large head romaine)
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese shavings
  • Optional garnish: capers, fresh dill

For the Caesar dressing (makes 1 cup)

  • 1 medium garlic clove, minced or grated
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice (½ lemon)
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt
  • ½ tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon anchovy paste or Worcestershire sauce (or omit)
  • ¼ teaspoon each kosher salt and black pepper

Instructions

  1. Cook the salmon using one of the following methods: Pan Seared, Broiled, Baked, Blackened, Grilled, or Poached (pictured). If using canned salmon, mix it with a drizzle of olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. 
  2. Whisk together the Caesar dressing ingredients in a bowl. Store leftovers refrigerated in a covered jar for up to 1 week.
  3. Tear the romaine leaves into pieces (or chop them). Top each salad with croutons, cherry tomatoes, Parmesan cheese shavings, and dressing. If desired, add a sprinkle of drained capers or dill sprigs. 
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Salad
  • Cuisine: Salad
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Keywords: Salmon caesar salad

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.

Smoked Salmon Pasta

This smoked salmon pasta is easy and irresistibly tasty, pairing the smoky fish with a creamy sauce, lemon and fresh…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

This smoked salmon pasta is easy and irresistibly tasty, pairing the smoky fish with a creamy sauce, lemon and fresh dill.

Smoked salmon pasta

It’s hard to tire of the rich, buttery goodness of smoked salmon: it’s ideal for pairing with everything from bagels to dip to appetizers. Here’s the newest way we’ve fallen hard for it: Smoked Salmon Pasta! Imagine: chewy al dente pasta, bathed with a creamy sauce punctuated by bright lemon zest and herbaceous fresh dill. It’s hard not to be head over heels about this one! It’s extremely versatile: try it as an easy dinner, a fun brunch idea or picnic pasta salad.

Ingredients in this smoked salmon pasta

This smoked salmon pasta is designed as fast and easy meal, using a protein that’s totally no cook: smoked salmon! It makes it simple to throw into the pasta after you cook it, using cream cheese to make a quick and creamy sauce. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Smoked salmon: Look for cold-smoked salmon or lox (with a soft texture), not hard-smoked (which is flaky and more like cooked salmon)
  • Short cut pasta like penne, rigatoni, or farfalle
  • Cream cheese
  • Olive oil
  • Grated Parmesan cheese
  • Garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper
  • Lemon zest
  • Fresh dill
Smoked salmon pasta

Tips for smoked salmon pasta

This recipe is as easy as they come: boil the pasta, add the sauce ingredients, stir it up and add smoked salmon! There are a few things to note about the method and what to expect. Here’s what to know:

  • Make sure to cook the pasta to al dente. This means “to the bite” in Italian: ideally when it’s tender with a small white speck inside when you bite into a piece. Boil it a few minutes less than the package instructions indicate, and start taste testing early!
  • Save the pasta water! This ingredient will be used to make a creamy sauce. It’s easy to forget (been there), so my mom shared a tip with us. Place a liquid measuring cup inside your strainer. When you go to dump the pasta, you’ll remember to remove the liquid!
  • The texture is best when served immediately. This smoked salmon pasta is best when the pasta is freshly cooked and it’s warm: especially since you use the pasta water to help create the sauce. You can eat it later, but it does get drier in texture. More on that below!
Smoked salmon pasta

Leftovers and storage instructions

Want to save this smoked salmon pasta for later, or make it in advance? Here’s what to know:

  • Make ahead tip: The best way to prep in advance? Measure out all your sauce ingredients and place them in a covered container in the fridge. Then cook the pasta and dump them in when you’re ready to serve.
  • Leftovers become dry with refrigeration. They store up to 3 days refrigerated, but you’ll notice the texture becomes drier. You can reheat the pasta with a splash of water on the stovetop, and revive the flavors with a pinch or two of salt.

And that’s it! We hope you love this smoked salmon pasta as much as we do. It disappeared very quickly at a dinner we made for my parents recently!

More smoked salmon recipes

Smoked salmon is ideal for quick and easy meals because it’s a healthy protein that requires no cooking! Here are some of our top smoked salmon recipes:

This smoked salmon pasta recipe is…

Pescatarian. For gluten-free, use gluten-free pasta.

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Smoked salmon pasta

Smoked Salmon Pasta


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings

Description

This smoked salmon pasta is easy and irresistibly tasty, pairing the smoky fish with a creamy sauce, lemon and fresh dill.


Ingredients

  • 12 ounces penne (or other short-cut pasta like rigatoni, farfalle, etc.)
  • ½ cup cream cheese (1/2 8-ounce block)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 6 to 8 ounces smoked salmon*, flaked into pieces with a fork
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill

Instructions

  1. Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta until it is al dente, testing a few minutes before the package instructions indicate. Using a glass liquid measuring cup, reserve 1 cup of the hot pasta water, then drain the pasta.
  2. Return the pasta to the pot. Add the cream cheese (broken into dollops), olive oil, grated Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, onion powder, kosher salt and a few grinds black pepper. Pour in ½ cup of the pasta water and toss until a creamy sauce forms; adding a splash of additional water as necessary to come to a creamy consistency.
  3. Add the smoked salmon (flaked into pieces with a fork), lemon zest, and fresh dill. Gently mix, adding another splash of pasta water so that it’s creamy. Serve immediately. (Leftovers store up to 3 days refrigerated, but you’ll notice the texture becomes drier. You can reheat the pasta with a splash of water on the stovetop, and revive the flavors with a pinch or two of salt.)

Notes

*Look for cold-smoked salmon or lox (with a soft texture), not hard-smoked (which is flaky and more like cooked salmon).

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Pasta

Keywords: Smoked salmon pasta

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.

Nicoise Salad

Nicoise salad is a French main dish that’s hearty and satisfying! This colorful Mediterranean recipe is ideal for summer or…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

Nicoise salad is a French main dish that’s hearty and satisfying! This colorful Mediterranean recipe is ideal for summer or anytime.

Nicoise Salad

When it comes to classic French dishes, there’s nothing better than the carefree vibe of the great Nicoise salad. This Mediterranean main dish salad is colorful, light yet satisfying, and ideal for summer. Boiled eggs, green beans, olives, tomatoes, and tangy potato salad sit on crunchy lettuce and are covered in a zesty lemon dressing. Eat it al fresco with a glass of wine in hand and you’ll be transported to the South of France. Here’s how to make this classic salad!

What is Nicoise salad?

Nicoise salad (Salade Niçoise in French) is a composed French salad that’s served as a main dish. In French, it means “salad from Nice, France” and it’s a classic dish from the Southern coast. The hearty salad features canned tuna, potatoes, blanched green beans, olives, tomatoes, hard boiled eggs, a vinaigrette salad dressing. Because it’s packed with protein, it’s filling and incredibly satisfying.

How to pronounce Nicoise? Here’s how to say it: Nee-SWAZ salad. Or in French, sah-LAHD nee-SWAZ.

Nicoise Salad

Ingredients in Nicoise salad

Eating our first Nicoise salad in Paris cemented this French classic in our summer repertoire. This recipe is an adaptation of Julia Child’s rendition of the French standard that we’ve grown to love. What makes it so impressive is the potatoes: her French potato salad is the base for the potatoes, and it’s so delicious you won’t be able to keep from sneaking bites. Here’s what’s in a classic Nicoise salad recipe:

  1. Tuna: Tuna is traditional in Nicoise salad, though you can make variations with salmon or even eat it as a vegetarian salad. It’s best with oil-packed tuna, but you can also use water packed and mix in a bit of olive oil. Another option? Make it with seared tuna.
  2. Hard boiled eggs: This key element is ideal for making ahead. Try our perfect stovetop method, steamed, or in the Instant Pot.
  3. Green beans: This salad calls for blanched green beans: this cooking method makes them tender and bright green.
  4. French potato salad: This classic recipe uses red potatoes to make a French potato salad with shallot, capers, and a vinaigrette dressing.
  5. Olives: Olives are key to the briny, salty flavor. Look for Nicoise olives if you can find them, or use Kalamata.
  6. Tomatoes: Cherry tomatoes bring in color and freshness; you can also use wedges of large tomatoes.
  7. Butter lettuce: Crisp Bibb or butter lettuce serves as a base for the flavors.
  8. Lemon vinaigrette dressing: A zingy lemon vinaigrette salad dressing ties everything together.
Blanching green beans

Tips for prep

This Nicoise salad recipe is easy to make, but there are quite a bit of elements to prepare. While you can make a lot of the components at the same time, it can feel like a lot especially if you don’t have a partner in the kitchen. Here are a few tips for advanced prep:

  • Make the hard boiled eggs in advance. They’re ideal for advanced prep: simply refrigerate until serving. Tip: you can also find pre-packaged hard boiled eggs at some grocery stores, which makes this recipe a breeze.
  • Make the dressing in advance. The Nicoise salad dressing is simple to prep ahead; refrigerate and allow to come to room temperature before serving.
  • Blanch the green beans in advance. Blanch the green beans up to 5 days in advance and refrigerate until serving.
  • Make the potato salad in advance. The French potato salad stays good 4 to 5 days if you prep it before hand; refrigerate until serving.

Pick even 1 or 2 of these items to make in advance, and it makes for a much simpler prep the day of. If you decide to make it all in one evening, it’s nice to have a friend or partner to help!

Nicoise salad

How to serve Nicoise salad

Nicoise salad is the perfect spring salad or summer meal for enjoying al fresco. It screams for a glass of white wine or rosé (or even frozen rosé?). Serve it with a starter of crostini or a side of crusty bread, and you’ve got patio meal perfection.

Serving vegetarians? Tuna is traditional for Nicoise salad, but for a vegetarian salad you can omit it and it’s still just as tasty! The potatoes and hard boiled eggs make it a filling vegetarian salad.

More dinner salad recipes

There’s nothing better than a great main dish salad in the summer! Here are a few more main dish salads that work for dinner:

This salad Nicoise recipe is…

Gluten free and pescatarian.

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Nicoise Salad

Nicoise Salad


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4

Description

Nicoise salad is a French main dish that’s hearty and satisfying! This colorful Mediterranean recipe is ideal for summer or anytime.


Ingredients

  • 8 eggs
  • 1 1/2 pounds baby red potatoes
  • 1 pound fresh green beans
  • 1 small shallot (2 tablespoons minced)
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 2 tablespoons capers
  • ½ tablespoon fresh parsley
  • 7 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • ½ cup Nicoise or Kalamata olives
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes or 1 large tomato
  • 2 cans tuna, packed in oil or water
  • 1 head Bibb lettuce (aka butter lettuce)
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 small garlic clove, minced

Instructions

  1. Cook the hard boiled eggs: Follow the instructions to make the Hard Boiled Eggs or Steamed Hard Boiled Eggs, or complete this step in advance and refrigerate.
  2. Boil the potatoes and beans: Fill a large pot with cold water and add 1 tablespoon kosher salt. Add the whole potatoes and bring to a boil. Once boiling, boil for 8 to 12 minutes until fork tender.
  3. Blanch the beans: Cut the ends off the beans. Bring a separate pot of water to a boil with ½ tablespoon salt. Boil the beans for about 5 minutes until tender but still bright green. Prepare a large bowl of ice water (or use the same one as for the hard boiled eggs). Right when the beans are tender, remove them from the boiling water with tongs and transfer them to the ice bath. Remove the beans and dry them with a towel, then mix them with a few pinches of salt and fresh ground pepper.
  4. Finish the potatoes: While the potatoes are cooking, mince the shallot. When the potatoes are done, drain them. When they are cool enough to handle, slice them into bite sized pieces. Place them in a bowl and gently mix in the minced shallot, white wine vinegar, ½ teaspoon kosher salt, and ¼ cup warm water. Let stand for 5 minutes, gently stirring occasionally. Then add the capers, chopped parsley, 1 tablespoon olive oil, and a few grinds black pepper. Taste and add additional salt if necessary.
  5. Make the dressing: In a medium bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, Dijon mustard, minced garlic, and ¼ teaspoon kosher salt. Gradually whisk in 6 tablespoons olive oil working one tablespoon at a time, until creamy and emulsified.
  6. Prep the salad ingredients: Slice the tomatoes into wedges (or cherry tomatoes in half) and sprinkle with a little kosher salt.
  7. Prep the tuna: Drain the tuna and flake it using a fork. If not packed in oil, add a drizzle of olive oil and a few pinches of salt.
  8. Serve: To serve, in large shallow bowls or on large platters, add the Bibb lettuce leaves. Top with the potatoes, green beans, hard boiled eggs, tomatoes, tuna, and olives. Drizzle with the dressing and serve.
  • Category: Main dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: French
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Keywords: Nicoise salad, salad nicoise, nicoise salad recipe, salade nicoise

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.

Tuna Burgers

These tuna burgers are thick, savory, and irresistible! Pile on the toppings and smother with aioli for a satisfying meal.…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

These tuna burgers are thick, savory, and irresistible! Pile on the toppings and smother with aioli for a satisfying meal.

Tuna Burger

Here’s a unique way to use a can of tuna…try Tuna Burgers! Tuna makes an unexpectedly excellent burger: thick and savory. Balanced on a bun with chipotle aioli and veggie toppings, it’s a satisfying meal that everyone will enjoy. Plus, it’s economical and a great alternative to red meat. Just like our popular tuna patties, it’s a healthy dinner idea that will surprise and delight. Here’s how it’s done!

Ingredients in tuna burgers

Tuna burgers are simply a burger where canned tuna stands in for ground meat. You’ll also need to add some binders to help the tuna stick together, like egg, breadcrumbs, mustard and mayonnaise. It all comes together into a savory, hearty mix of flavors! Here’s what you’ll need:

  • White meat tuna (see below)
  • Green onion
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Garlic powder
  • Kosher salt
  • Plain panko or coarse breadcrumbs (or gluten free breadcrumbs; see below*)
  • Dijon mustard
  • Mayonnaise
  • Eggs
  • Olive oil
Tuna Burger

Tips for buying canned tuna

There are lots of options at the grocery store when it comes to canned tuna. Here’s what to look for when buying for these tuna burgers:

  • Look for light tuna caught by pole and line fishing, which is the most sustainable choice. Light tuna that comes from skipjack has the lowest mercury levels of all types of tuna. (Read more here.)
  • Buy BPA free cans. Look for cans or pouches that are BPA free.
  • Oil packed or water packed work. Use whatever is your personal preference for this recipe! Either way, drain the can before using.

Panko vs breadcrumbs

Do you stock panko in your pantry? It’s extremely versatile and our favorite option when it comes to breadcrumbs. The breadcrumbs are important to get a cohesive, solid texture to a tuna burger. Here’s the difference between panko and traditional breadcrumbs, and why we prefer panko:

  • Panko is a Japanese-style breadcrumb mixture that is airier and lighter than traditional breadcrumbs. It makes a beautifully crispy coating and it’s very versatile. Use it in recipes like Pistachio Crusted Salmon or Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms. Or our favorite way: use it as a stand-in for croutons in a Kale Caesar Salad or Romaine Salad.
  • Breadcrumbs also work! Packages labeled “coarse breadcrumbs” are best, since traditional breadcrumbs have a finer texture like sand. But either should work! You can also make homemade breadcrumbs.
  • Want breadcrumb substitutes? Try gluten-free panko or gluten-free breadcrumbs, or use an equal amount of crushed crackers of any type.
Tuna Burger

How to make tuna burgers: some tips

Once you’ve got all your ingredients, tuna burgers are simple to put together. Just make sure to leave 15 minutes for allowing the burgers to firm up in the fridge. Here are some notes on the process:

  • This recipe makes 4 very large or 5 medium burgers. We prefer the size with 5 because it fits in a bun nicely but still has some heft (the size with 6 is too small). It might be an odd number, but then someone gets seconds! Or leftovers save well for 2 to 3 days.
  • Form the burgers, then refrigerate 15 minutes. This helps them firm up prior to pan frying. Use this time to make the burger sauce or prep other parts of the meal.
  • Pan fry 4 minutes per side. Fry in olive oil until they’re golden brown on both sides.

Tuna burger toppings

Once you’ve got your tuna burgers: the best part is the toppings! Make sure you pair a creamy sauce with these tuna burgers, otherwise the sandwich will be on the dry side. Here are some of our favorite sauces and toppings for a tuna burger:

Chipotle Aioli

More tuna recipes

There’s so much you can do with a can of tuna! Here are a few more ideas:

This tuna burger recipe is…

Pescatarian and dairy-free.

Print
Tuna Burger

Tuna Burgers


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4 large or 5 medium burgers

Description

These tuna burgers are thick, savory, and irresistible! Pile on the toppings and smother with aioli for a satisfying meal.


Ingredients

  • 3 5-ounce cans white meat tuna
  • 1 green onion, finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 ½ cups plain panko or coarse breadcrumbs (or gluten free breadcrumbs*)
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, for cooking
  • 1 recipe Chipotle Aioli, Truffle Aioli, Remoulade, or Tartar Sauce, for serving*
  • To serve: red onion, tomato slices, lettuce, buns

Instructions

  1. Drain the tuna and flake it into small pieces with a fork, smashing up any big chunks. In a medium bowl, mix it with green onion, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, kosher salt, panko, Dijon mustard, mayonnaise, and eggs.
  2. Form the dough into 5 small or 6 large patties. Refrigerate the patties for 15 minutes to firm up the texture (or up to 24 hours). If desired, use the time to make the aioli, remoulade or tartar sauce.
  3. When ready to cook, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the burgers and cook for about 4 to 5 minutes until lightly browned, then gently flip them with a spatula and cook about 3 to 4 minutes more until lightly browned on the other side.
  4. Serve on a bun with tomato, red onion, lettuce, and aioli, remoulade or tartar sauce. Leftovers save well refrigerated for 2 to 3 days.

Notes

*Make sure to have a creamy sauce with these tuna burgers, otherwise the texture will be on the dry side. 

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Seafood

Keywords: Tuna burgers

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.

Sheet Pan Shrimp & Veggies

This sheet pan shrimp dinner is the epitome of easy and full of flavor! It stars Mediterranean veggies, lemon and…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

This sheet pan shrimp dinner is the epitome of easy and full of flavor! It stars Mediterranean veggies, lemon and feta cheese.

Sheet Pan Shrimp

A meal in a sheet pan never really gets old, does it? Introducing our newest sheet pan creation: the Mediterranean Sheet Pan Shrimp dinner! Combine juicy shrimp with colorful Mediterranean veggies like cherry tomatoes and tangy artichoke, then top it off with a squeeze of lemon and a hearty sprinkle of feta cheese. Serve with orzo, couscous or rice and it’s an explosion of flavor on your plate (or bowl). Here’s how to whip up this tasty weeknight dinner.

Ingredients for sheet pan shrimp

This sheet pan shrimp dinner can be made with a variety of vegetables: but the ones we chose here are quick to cook! The veggies are only baked for 10 minutes before you add the shrimp, so you’ll need to stick with quick cooking vegetables if you plan to get creative. Here are the veggies and seasonings to make this sheet pan meal:

  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Red onion
  • Canned artichoke hearts
  • Green beans: make sure the beans are as thin as possible; if not, you may want to slice them in half lengthwise to avoid tough beans
  • Olive oil
  • Spices: Garlic powder, oregano, smoked paprika, onion powder, salt
  • Shrimp
  • Lemon juice
  • Feta cheese
  • Parsley or dill
Sheet Pan Mediterranean Shrimp

Basic concept: dinner on a sheet pan

The basic concept for a shrimp sheet pan dinner? You’ll cook the veggies and protein right on the very same sheet pan. Shrimp cooks very quickly, but the veggies need a bit more time in the oven (though not much!). So you’ll cook the veggies first, then add the shrimp. Here are the basic steps:

  • Prep the veggies by mixing them with olive oil and seasonings. Place them on a parchment lined baking sheet.
  • Bake the veggies for 10 minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Meanwhile, prep the shrimp by mixing it with olive oil and seasonings.
  • Add the shrimp to the same sheet pan and bake 6 to 8 minutes, until it’s opaque and cooked through. Easy as that!
Sheet pan shrimp dinner

Ways to serve this sheet pan shrimp dinner

While the sheet pan shrimp bakes, you’ve got time to make a simple side for serving it. This looks lovely on the plate or bowl when you serve it, and makes the meal more filling. Here are our top picks for making sheet pan shrimp into dinner:

Sheet Pan Shrimp

More sheet pan dinner recipes

Looking for more healthy and easy dinners? Here are some easy sheet pan dinners you might enjoy:

This sheet pan shrimp is…

Gluten-free and pescatarian.

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Sheet Pan Shrimp

Sheet Pan Shrimp


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 14 minutes
  • Cook Time: 16 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 3 to 4

Description

This sheet pan shrimp dinner is the epitome of easy and full of flavor! It stars Mediterranean veggies, lemon and feta cheese.


Ingredients

  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced
  • 8.5 ounce can (dry weight) quartered artichoke hearts, drained
  • 8 ounces green beans (as thin as possible, or sliced in half lengthwise)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder, divided
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • ½ teaspoon oregano
  • 1 pound medium shrimp, deveined (tail on or peeled)
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika (or substitute standard paprika)
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ½ cup feta cheese
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley or fresh dill, to garnish
  • Lemon Orzo, Easy Couscous, rice or quinoa, to serve

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Chop the vegetables as noted above. Place them in a bowl and mix with 1 tablespoon olive oil, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, ½ teaspoon oregano, and ¾ teaspoon kosher salt. Pour onto the baking sheet in a single layer and bake for 10 minutes.
  3. Pat the shrimp dry. In a medium bowl, mix the shrimp with 2 tablespoons olive oil, ½ teaspoon smoked paprika, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, ½ teaspoon onion powder, and ½ teaspoon kosher salt.
  4. Add the shrimp to the baking sheet on top of the vegetables. Return the sheet pan to the oven and bake for 6 to 8 minutes until the shrimp is opaque and cooked through.
  5. Remove from the oven. Sprinkle with the lemon juice, feta cheese, and chopped parsley. Serve immediately.
  • Category: Main dish
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Sheet Pan
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Keywords: Sheet pan shrimp, Sheet pan shrimp dinner, Mediterranean shrimp

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.

Tuna Tacos with Cilantro Lime Slaw

These ahi tuna tacos are bursting with flavor! They pair seared ahi tuna with cilantro lime slaw and creamy chipotle…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

These ahi tuna tacos are bursting with flavor! They pair seared ahi tuna with cilantro lime slaw and creamy chipotle crema.

Tuna tacos

Love a good fish taco? Here’s a new spin that you’ll fall for just as hard: Ahi Tuna Tacos! Meaty tuna steak is the ideal filling for a taco, contrasted with fresh cilantro lime slaw. Top it off with chipotle sauce and another sprinkle of cilantro, and it’s a little bit of everything: savory, spicy, fresh, cool, and creamy. It’s ideal for an easy weeknight meal, but impressive enough for entertaining. If you’re a tuna steak lover like we are, you’ll love this unique way to serve this versatile fish.

Elements in tuna tacos

These tuna tacos are a spin on the fish taco, invented in the 1950s in Mexico’s Baja California peninsula. In fact, both the cities of Ensenada and San Felipe, Mexico claim to have invented the fish taco! The idea then quickly spread across the border to San Diego, where they became popular in America in the 1980’s (much in part to a restaurant called Rubio’s Fresh Mexican Grill).

This recipe seeks to honor the traditional Mexican flavors, using seared tuna instead of the typical breaded fish and pairing it with a zingy fresh slaw. Here are the elements in these ahi tuna tacos:

  • Ahi tuna steaks
  • Spices: Cumin, chili powder, smoked paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder
  • Cilantro lime slaw
  • Chipotle crema (or alternative sauce; see below)
  • Tortillas
  • Red onion (for garnish)
Ahi Tuna Tacos

Tips for buying ahi tuna steak

Ahi tuna, aka yellowfin tuna or bigeye tuna, is a mild, lean fish commonly served as sushi, in poke bowls, or cooked rare or medium-rare. Here’s what to look for when buying tuna steaks for these tuna tacos:

  • Make sure it’s sushi or sashimi grade. There are no specific regulations around the label “sushi-grade,” but it means it’s a high quality fish that is safe to be eaten raw.
  • Check at the fish counter. You should be able to find ahi tuna steaks at your local grocery counter.
  • Look for frozen steaks. Or, it’s possible that your grocery might have frozen steaks. These can be even fresher than fresh tuna if they’re flash frozen right when they’re caught. You’ll just need to thaw the night before in the refrigerator.
  • Find wild caught. Fish that is wild caught is usually a sustainable choice. There are also quality options in well-regulated farms; see Seafood Watch Consumer Guide.

How to cook tuna steak

Once you’ve got a great piece of fish, the hardest part of this recipe is searing the tuna. Here are a few tips on how to cook tuna steaks:

  • Allow it to come to room temperature first! This is important: otherwise the inside is still cold when the exterior is cooked! Allow it to sit at room temperature for at least 20 minutes prior to cooking. You can use this time to prepare the slaw and sauce, then sear the fish right before serving.
  • Use a food thermometer to assess temperature (130 degrees Fahrenheit). Add the steaks to a skillet and cook 1 to 2 minutes per side, until lightly browned on the outside but still rare the inside. For a medium-rare tuna steak, the internal temperature should be 130 degrees Fahrenheit when measured with a food thermometer at the thickest point.
  • Rest for 2 minutes. This helps it to set and become easier to cut.
Cilantro Lime Slaw

For the cilantro lime slaw

A great fish taco often has a creamy slaw, and this one is no exception! The cilantro lime slaw in these tacos is so good, you’ll find yourself continually sneaking bites. This recipe has a bit of a shortcut so you’re not spending too much time chopping. Use a bag of coleslaw mix, then combine it with shredded red cabbage! It makes for a lovely mix of color and texture.

Tip: Got any leftover cilantro lime slaw? Eat it as a side dish for the tacos!

Sauces for tuna tacos

These tuna tacos are fantastic drizzled with chipotle crema, which adds a savory creaminess and a bit of smoky heat. Mix it up while your tuna comes to room temp, or try one of these alternative sauces based on your preferences and what you have on hand:

  • Chipotle crema: A sour cream-based sauce with adobo sauce, garlic and lime
  • Chipotle sauce: A zingy vegan sauce with tahini, adobo sauce and lime
  • Yum Yum sauce: A mayo-based savory sweet sauce that originated at Japanese steakhouses (not spicy)
Chipotle Crema

More tuna recipes

Tuna is one versatile fish! Here are a few more great tuna steak recipes with ideas for how to cook it:

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Tuna tacos

Tuna Tacos with Cilantro Lime Slaw


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 (8 tacos)

Description

These tuna tacos are bursting with flavor! They pair seared ahi tuna with cilantro lime slaw and creamy chipotle crema.


Ingredients

For the cilantro lime slaw

  • 14 ounce bag coleslaw mix (7 cups)
  • 2 cups shredded red cabbage
  • ¾ cup chopped cilantro, plus more for serving
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup Greek yogurt
  • 4 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper

For the tuna tacos


Instructions

  1. Allow the tuna steak to come to room temperature by letting it stand for at least 20 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, make the slaw: Shred the red cabbage and chop the cilantro. Place it in a large bowl with the coleslaw mix. Mix in the mayonnaise, Greek yogurt, lime juice, maple syrup, chili powder, kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper to taste.
  3. Make the sauce: Make the Chipotle Crema, Chipotle Sauce or Yum Yum Sauce.
  4. Cook the tuna: When ready to cook, pat the tuna dry. In a small bowl, stir together the salt, chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder. Sprinkle the seasoning mix liberally on all sides of the tuna. Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium high heat. Add the tuna steak and cook 1 to 2 minutes per side, until lightly browned on the outside but still rare the inside. The tuna will continue cooking while sitting. For a medium-rare tuna steak, the internal temperature should be 130 degrees Fahrenheit when measured with a food thermometer at the thickest point. Cool for 2 minutes. Then slice the tuna against the grain into ½-inch slices. Taste and add additional salt if necessary.
  5. Warm the tortillas: Warm and char the tortillas by placing them on an open gas flame on medium for a few seconds per side, flipping with tongs, until they are slightly blackened and warm. (See How to Warm Tortillas.)
  6. Assemble the tacos: Add generous spoonfuls of cilantro lime slaw, then slices of tuna. Top with Chipotle Sauce and more fresh cilantro. Enjoy immediately. 

Notes

*Frozen is okay, just thaw in the refrigerator before serving.

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Mexican Inspired
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Keywords: Tuna tacos, ahi tuna tacos

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.

Smoked Salmon Bagel

There’s not much better than a smoked salmon bagel (aka lox)! Top with herb cream cheese for a stunning breakfast,…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

There’s not much better than a smoked salmon bagel (aka lox)! Top with herb cream cheese for a stunning breakfast, brunch or lunch.

Smoked salmon bagel

When it comes to a lazy weekend brunch or a deli-style lunch, smoked salmon to the rescue! There’s nothing better than a great Smoked Salmon Bagel or lox, though there are some subtle differences we’ll cover below). It’s a study in bold contrasts: homemade herbed cream cheese against smoky, buttery salmon, herbaceous dill against briny capers, and of course a fluffy, perfectly toasted bagel. Guess what? You can make a next-level version of this treat right at home. Or, use our alterative option and make a homemade deli-style smoked salmon cream cheese! Let’s get to it.

Ingredients for smoked salmon bagels

The classic smoked salmon bagel is a deli special, pairing buttery salmon with briny capers and cream cheese. It’s also known as lox or gravlax, though lox is technically brined salmon that may or may not be smoked. But the two types of salmon are generally served in the same way: on a bagel with cream cheese and tasty toppings. Here’s what you’ll need for this smoked salmon bagel recipe:

  • Fresh bagels
  • Smoked salmon: Look for cold-smoked salmon or lox (with a soft texture), not hard-smoked (which is flaky and more like cooked salmon).
  • Cream cheese: This homemade herb cream cheese brings the best herbaceous flavor, but you can substitute with plain cream cheese
  • Capers: Briny capers add a pop of salty flavor and are required here (see below)
  • Red onion: Another classic topping that cannot be missed
  • Fresh dill sprigs: Dill adds fresh flavor and completes the look
  • Lemon wedge: Garnishing with a lemon wedge before eating adds just the right pop of acidity
  • Optional toppings: Thinly sliced English cucumber and tomato are also traditional on a smoked salmon bagel, but to us they’re not essential.
Smoked salmon bagel brunch
Bagel brunch with herb cream cheese and smoked salmon spread

Variation: smoked salmon cream cheese!

Want a variation on a smoked salmon bagel that uses the same flavors in a different way? Try the bagels with Smoked Salmon Cream Cheese! This tasty spread mixes cream cheese, Greek yogurt, fresh dill and smoked salmon into a savory, salty deli-style spread. Make it instead of the standard, or use it along with the herb cream cheese as another option! Go to Smoked Salmon Spread.

Why capers and salmon go hand in hand

Capers are often paired with fish like smoked salmon or baked fish, because they add a pop of briny, salty flavor that complements this protein. What are they, exactly? Capers are a berry of the caper bush, a plant that’s native to the Mediterranean. They’re round and dark green gray, about the size of a peppercorn. You’ll find them in Italian and Mediterranean recipes.

Capers are served pickled, and they’re always sold in a long, thin jar. Find capers for this smoked salmon bagel in the condiments near the olives at the grocery store. Or check in the international aisle near the Italian products. PS You can use up the rest with our favorite Caper Recipes, like Lemon Caper Sauce, Pasta Puttanesca, and more.

Smoked salmon bagel

Bagel brunch board ideas

This smoked salmon bagel is ideal for a bagel brunch! Make a big platter with bagels and different types of cream cheese and bagel toppings, and it’s ideal for a lazy brunch with friends. Or try it for Mother’s Day, baby showers, Easter, or more! Here are a few ideas for what to have on hand for a bagel brunch:

Smoked salmon bagel

More smoked salmon recipes

Love smoked salmon? Here are a few more smoked salmon recipes you’ll love:

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Smoked salmon bagel

Perfect Smoked Salmon Bagel


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 1 bagel

Description

There’s not much better than a smoked salmon bagel (aka lox)! Top with herb cream cheese for a stunning breakfast, brunch or lunch.


Ingredients

  • 1 bagel
  • 2 tablespoons Herb Cream Cheese (recommended; or plain cream cheese)
  • 1 to 2 ounces smoked salmon
  • 4 red onion slices
  • 1 teaspoon capers, drained
  • Fresh dill sprigs, for garnish
  • 1 lemon wedge, for serving

Instructions

  1. Make the Herb Cream Cheese.
  2. Toast the bagel. Top it with a slather of herb cream cheese, smoked salmon slices, onion slices, capers, and fresh dill. Squeeze with a lemon wedge, then serve immediately.
  3. Alternative method: Make a batch of Smoked Salmon Cream Cheese and top with dill sprigs.
  • Category: Breakfast or Lunch
  • Method: No Cook
  • Cuisine: Seafood

Keywords: Smoked salmon bagel

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.

Shrimp Fra Diavolo

Shrimp Fra Diavolo is an impressive Italian-style meal with a kick! Tender shrimp swim in a garlicky, spicy tomato sauce.…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

Shrimp Fra Diavolo is an impressive Italian-style meal with a kick! Tender shrimp swim in a garlicky, spicy tomato sauce.

Shrimp fra diavolo

Want a meal to impress…with a little kick? Try Shrimp Fra Diavolo! This Italian-style dish stars tender shrimp that swim in a garlicky, spicy tomato sauce. “Fra diavolo” translates to “brother devil” in Italian, alluding to the intense heat of this dish. But make it homemade and you can customize the spiciness to your taste! It’s fast and easy, great for impressing guests but simple enough for a weeknight meal, too. Here’s how to make this dish that will wow everyone.

Ingredients in Shrimp Fra Diavolo

Fra Diavolo sauce is a spicy Italian tomato-based sauce for pasta and seafood, named “Brother Devil” for the intense heat. Origin stories of the sauce vary, but it’s most likely Italian American, invented at Italian restaurants in New York City in the early twentieth century. One New York City restaurant, Grotta Azzurra, claims to have been serving Lobster Fra Diavolo since 1908.

Shrimp Fra Diavolo is a spin on the lobster version of the dish that’s more economical: and it’s become popular on restaurant menus these days. This punchy sauce brings a kick! But made at home, it’s easy to customize to the eater. Here’s what you’ll need for this dish:

  • Large shrimp
  • Butter
  • Olive oil
  • Garlic
  • White onion
  • White wine (or broth of any type)
  • Fire roasted tomatoes
  • Chopped Calabrian peppers or red pepper flakes
  • Dried oregano
Shrimp Fra Diavolo

Use Calabrian peppers or pepper flakes

This Shrimp Fra Diavolo recipe has two options for bringing the heat. If you can find them, we highly recommend using Calabrian chili peppers! The way they lend both flavor and heat to a dish is unparalleled. But, you can use red pepper flakes too, which is the most common way to flavor this dish.

  • Calabrian peppers are a type of chili pepper grown in Calabria, Italy and often used in Italian cuisine. They add just the right level of heat that’s not too searing, along sweet, subtly smoky and fruity flavor notes. We highly recommend them here!
  • Where to find them? Chopped or crushed Calabrian peppers are available in many grocery stores near the olives and pickles, or you can find them online. You can also chop up the whole peppers if that’s all you can find (make sure to wash your hands). We use these chopped Calabrian peppers from our local grocery.
  • Can’t find them? Use red pepper flakes instead! Red pepper flakes don’t add flavor like the Calabrian peppers: they add a straightforward punch of heat.
Calabrian Chili

Customize the heat level to taste

The great thing about this Shrimp Fra Diavolo recipe? You can customize the heat level, and add spiciness until it reaches the ideal level. Here are some notes:

  • 1 teaspoon chopped Calabrian chilis makes a medium spicy dish. This is comparable to ½ to 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes.
  • Start low, then add more to taste. You can always add more spice: but you can’t remove it! So be conservative at first.
  • Or, have each eater add heat. Serve a little dish of chopped Calabrian chilis or red pepper flakes at the table, and each eater can customize the heat level.

Find fire roasted tomatoes for best flavor

The other key to this Shrimp Fra Diavolo recipe? Canned fire roasted tomatoes. Here’s what to know about this variety:

  • Fire roasted tomatoes are a type of canned tomato that’s roasted over a flame before canning. They’re sold by several different brands; look for them in the canned tomato section in your local grocery. We like Muir Glen.
  • Fire roasted tomatoes taste sweet and subtly smoky right out of the can. This means you can cook them for less time than standard tomatoes.
  • What’s a substitute? Use the highest quality canned crushed tomatoes you can find, and simmer the sauce for at least 15 minutes. Consider adding ½ teaspoon each sugar and smoked paprika to round out the flavors.
Shrimp fra diavolo

Ways to serve shrimp fra diavolo

Shrimp Fra Diavolo can be served in a variety of ways! Serving it over pasta is common, but similar to Shrimp Scampi, that’s not the only way to do it. Add a side of crusty bread, or even rice or couscous. It’s totally customizable! Here are some serving suggestions:

Shrimp Fra Diavolo

More shrimp recipes

Shrimp is quick to cook and nutritious: making it king among healthy dinner ideas! Here are a few more shrimp recipes to try:

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Shrimp fra diavolo

Shrimp Fra Diavolo


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4

Description

Shrimp fra diavolo is an impressive Italian-style meal with a kick! Tender shrimp swim in a garlicky, spicy tomato sauce.


Ingredients

  • 1 pound large shrimp, deveined (peeled or unpeeled)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • ¼ cup minced white onion
  • ¼ cup white wine (or broth of any type)
  • 14-ounce can crushed fire roasted tomatoes*
  • 1 teaspoon chopped or crushed Calabrian peppers** or 1/2 to 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes for medium spicy, plus more to taste as desired
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • Optional for serving: 8 ounces pasta (like spaghetti, linguine or Easy Angel Hair Pasta) or crusty bread


Instructions

  1. Pat the shrimp dry with a paper towel. Prepare the garlic and white onion as noted above. 
  2. In a large skillet, heat the butter on medium high heat. Add the shrimp and ¼ teaspoon kosher salt and cook the shrimp for 1 to 2 minutes per side until almost cooked through, turning them with tongs (they will cook fully later). Remove the shrimp from the pan into a bowl, leaving the juices inside the skillet.
  3. Reduce heat to medium and add the olive oil, minced garlic and minced onion. Cook until the garlic is starting to become golden, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the wine to deglaze the pan, scraping until the pan is smooth. Once the wine is nearly evaporated, add the tomatoes, Calabrian peppers or red pepper flakes, oregano and 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Bring to a simmer. Taste, and if it’s not spicy enough, add more peppers to taste. Simmer partially covered, for 7 to 10 minutes until the flavor is smooth and rich (or up to 15 minutes if the tomatoes are not fire roasted). 
  4. Stir in the shrimp and cook for about 1 minute before serving. Serve with crusty bread or over pasta. 

Notes

*Fire roasted tomatoes taste sweet and subtly smoky right out of the can; they’re widely available in most grocery stores. If you can’t find them, substitute best quality crushed tomatoes and simmer longer (see recipe); you can also add ½ teaspoon smoked paprika and ½ teaspoon sugar to round out the flavors. 

**Chopped or crushed Calabrian peppers are available in many grocery stores near the olives and pickles, or you can find them online. We used these chopped Calabrian peppers. The flavor is fruity and subtly spicy, and it’s absolutely worth finding! If not, use red pepper flakes. 1 teaspoon Calabrian chilis makes a medium spicy dish. Customize the heat level to your tastes!

  • Category: Main dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Keywords: Shrimp fra diavolo

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.

Tuna Patties (aka Tuna Cakes!)

This tuna patties recipe makes a crowd-pleasing easy dinner! The tuna cakes are tender on the inside with a golden…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

This tuna patties recipe makes a crowd-pleasing easy dinner! The tuna cakes are tender on the inside with a golden crisp exterior.

Tuna Patties

Need mealtime inspiration? Here’s an easy healthy dinner that is always a massive hit in our house: Tuna Patties! Also known as tuna cakes, these unassuming burgers made of canned tuna might sound humble. But au contraire: they’re so savory on the inside and golden crispy on the outside, you won’t be able to resist another bite! This recipe is spiced with Old Bay, parsley and Dijon mustard, and it’s a total treat. We recently made them for my parents who immediately asked for the recipe…and our 5 year old licked his plate clean.

Ingredients in tuna patties, aka tuna cakes

Tuna patties are small fishcakes made with canned tuna, mayonnaise, mustard and breadcrumbs, similar to a crab cake. Also called tuna cakes, they’ve been a staple affordable meal idea in America for decades. But while they might be known as a cheap dinner, the flavors are anything but! Old Bay, Dijon mustard and fresh parsley make this tuna patty recipe taste restaurant quality. For this recipe, you’ll need:

  • Canned tuna
  • Fresh parsley
  • Green onion
  • Old Bay seasoning: Look for this classic American seafood seasoning in your grocery store in the spices aisle. Or, you can buy Old Bay online or make homemade Old Bay.
  • Garlic powder
  • Kosher salt
  • Plain panko or coarse breadcrumbs: use gluten-free panko if necessary. See below!
  • Dijon mustard
  • Mayonnaise
  • Eggs
  • Olive oil
Tuna Patties

How to make tuna patties: the basic steps

Tuna patties are simple to make: the only thing to remember is that you’ll need 15 minutes for the patties to set before you pan fry them. Here’s the basic idea for how to make tuna cakes (or see the recipe below for specifics):

  • Mix: Drain the tuna and shred it with a fork. Mix it with the other ingredients (parsley, spices, panko, Dijon mustard, mayonnaise, egg; see the recipe below.).
  • Form and refrigerate: Form the dough into 8 burger shapes, using ⅓ cup for each. Refrigerate 15 minutes to firm up the texture. (You can also refrigerate for up to 24 hours before cooking them, making them easy to make in advance.)
  • Pan fry: Heat the olive oil in skillet over medium high heat. Add the patties and cook for 3 to 5 minutes per side until lightly browned on both sides.

Panko vs breadcrumbs

The panko or breadcrumbs are an important component for tuna patties: they make the texture cohesive and help it stick together. Panko is our top choice, since it’s easy to have on hand and very shelf stable.

  • Panko is a Japanese-style breadcrumb mixture that is airier and lighter than traditional breadcrumbs. You can use it in many other recipes like Pistachio Crusted Salmon or Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms, or even in place of croutons in a Kale Caesar Salad or Romaine Lettuce Salad.
  • Coarse breadcrumbs also work! Packages labeled coarse are best, but traditional breadcrumbs also work. Or make homemade breadcrumbs.
  • Need breadcrumb substitutes? Try gluten-free panko or gluten-free breadcrumbs if necessary. You can also use an equal amount of crushed crackers to stand in in this recipe.
Tuna Patties

How to serve tuna patties

Neither Alex nor I grew up with tuna patties, which gives them a bit more allure in our household! This is one of the only dinners where our 5 year old cleans his plate and even asks for seconds. Here are several ways we like to serve these tuna cakes:

When we served this for my family as a “fancy” dinner, we plated the tuna cakes over a bed of lemon couscous with fennel salad and butter lettuce salad as sides. Extra Parmesan dressing from the salad with ideal as a sauce for the top of the cakes!

Tips for buying canned tuna

There are lots of options when it comes to the canned tuna aisle. What’s the best tuna to look for in this tuna cakes recipe? Here are some tips on buying it:

  • Look for light tuna caught by pole and line fishing, which is the most sustainable choice. Light tuna that comes from skipjack has the lowest mercury levels of all types of tuna. (Read more here.)
  • Buy BPA free cans. Look for cans that are BPA free, or some tuna is now sold in BPA free pouches.
  • Oil packed or water packed work. Some canned tuna comes packed in oil, whereas others are packed with water. Use whatever is your personal preference! Either way, drain the can before using.

More tuna recipes

What can’t a can of tuna do? Here are a few more fun tuna recipes that make dinnertime easy (and affordable):

This tuna patties recipe is…

Pescatarian and dairy free. For gluten-free, use gluten-free panko.

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Tuna patties

Tuna Patties (Tuna Cakes!)


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes (+15 minutes chill)
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 8 patties (4 servings)

Description

This tuna patties recipe makes a crowd-pleasing easy dinner! The tuna cakes are tender on the inside with a golden crisp exterior.


Ingredients

  • 3 5-ounce cans tuna
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced
  • 1 green onion, finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¾ cup plain panko or coarse breadcrumbs (or gluten free breadcrumbs*)
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, for cooking

Instructions

  1. Drain the tuna and flake it into small pieces with a fork, smashing up any big chunks. In a medium bowl, mix it with the parsley, green onion, Old Bay, garlic powder, kosher salt, panko, Dijon mustard, mayonnaise, and eggs.
  2. Form the dough into 8 patties using a ⅓ cup measuring cup to portion it out, then patting it into a patty with your hands. Refrigerate the patties for 15 minutes to firm up the texture (or up to 24 hours).
  3. When ready to cook, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in skillet over medium high heat. Add the patties and cook for about 4 to 5 minutes until lightly browned, then gently flip them with a spatula and cook about 3 to 4 minutes more until lightly browned on the other side. Repeat with the next batch, adjusting the heat because the pan will be hotter on the second batch (much like pancakes!).
  4. Serve immediately, with a sauce (like remoulade, tartar sauce, Caesar dressing, or Parmesan dressing) or over rice, couscous, or quinoa.
  • Category: Main dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Seafood

Keywords: Tuna patties, Tuna patties recipe, Tuna patty, tuna patty recipe, tuna cakes, tuna cakes recipe

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.

Baked Tilapia with Lemon

This baked tilapia recipe is bursting with flavor! Pair the fish with lemon, tomatoes and feta for a impressive yet…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

This baked tilapia recipe is bursting with flavor! Pair the fish with lemon, tomatoes and feta for a impressive yet easy dinner.

Baked Tilapia

Here’s a tilapia recipe with a total wow factor: this Baked Tilapia with Tomatoes & Feta! The tender, flaky fish is covered in a lemon garlic sauce, cozied up with burst cherry tomatoes, Mediterranean seasonings and gooey bits of feta cheese. If you think baked fish sounds boring, this recipe is for you! Each bite is savory with just the right pop of brightness. It’s ready in just over 30 minutes and great for impressing on weeknights or dinner parties. This one has already jumped to star status in our house.

Ingredients for this baked tilapia recipe

This baked tilapia recipe is the ideal healthy dinner that’s impressively delicious. To be honest, when we’re meal planning the idea “baked fish” never feels that exciting. But this one? It was so tasty the first time we made it, we couldn’t wait to share it with you. The zing of the lemon, melty feta and tomatoes, and briny pop of capers make it irresistibly fresh. Here’s what you’ll need for this recipe:

  • Tilapia
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Shallot
  • Garlic
  • Lemon
  • Olive oil
  • Feta cheese
  • Italian seasoning, red pepper flakes, smoked paprika
  • Capers
  • Salt and pepper
  • Parsley, for garnish
Baked Tilapia

How to bake tilapia

Tilapia is a white fish with a mild, subtly sweet flavor. It doesn’t tasty fishy, so it’s good for people who think they don’t like fish. Tilapia is easy to bake: you can simply season with olive oil and salt, or add the tomatoes and feta like in the recipe below. Like any fish, how long to bake tilapia depends on its thickness:

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Season the fish with olive oil and salt, and add any vegetables that will be cooking alongside it (see below.)
  • Bake for 23 to 28 minutes, depending on thickness, until the tilapia is flaky or reaches an internal temperature of 140 degrees Fahrenheit.

A few tips for seasoning

This baked tilapia is one of our favorite weeknight dinner recipes to date, because it looks and tastes so beautifully fun and fresh. A Mediterranean style recipe, it goes big on lemon, garlic and olive oil. Here are a few notes on the seasoning here:

  • Bake the tilapia with lemon slices, then remove when serving. Mixing the lemon slices right into the veggies makes for bold citrus flavor. Remove them when serving: unless you love very citrusy flavors. If so, you can definitely eat the lemon slices: they’re extra tangy!
  • Don’t omit the capers! Capers are a berry of the caper bush that’s native to the Mediterranean. They’re round and dark green gray, about the size of a peppercorn. Find them in the jarred section next to the olives at the grocery store. Their briny, salty flavor absolutely makes the dish!
  • Feta is also key. You can omit it for dairy-free diets. But the small melty chunks of feta cheese sprinkled throughout is what makes this dish! We’ll admit, we were loosely inspired by the viral TikTok baked feta pasta for this flavor combination: and it’s spot on.
Baked Tilapia

Sides to serve alongside

Make this baked tilapia into a meal by pairing it with a quick salad or veggie side dish! Here are a few ideas that keep the oven free:

More tilapia & fish recipes

Tilapia is a favorite fish around here: it’s even milder than salmon, so it’s great for pleasing everyone. Here are a few more tilapia recipes to sample:

This baked tilapia recipe is…

Pescatarian and gluten-free. For dairy-free, omit the feta cheese.

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Baked Tilapia

Baked Tilapia


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4

Description

This baked tilapia recipe is bursting with flavor! Pair the fish with lemon, tomatoes and feta for a impressive yet easy dinner.


Ingredients

  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 1 large shallot, thinly sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 small lemon, thinly sliced into rings
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 ounce block feta cheese
  • 1 1/2 pounds tilapia
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 pinch red pepper flakes (optional)
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika (or standard paprika)
  • 2 tablespoons drained capers
  • Finely chopped fresh parsley or basil, for garnish
  • Fresh ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Chop the tomatoes, shallot, garlic, and lemon as noted above.
  3. Place the chopped vegetables and lemon slices in the bottom of a 9 x 13″ baking dish and mix with 1 tablespoon olive oil, ¼ teaspoon salt, and fresh ground black pepper. Crumble the feta cheese into rough chunks and add it to to the pan, tossing gently to combine.
  4. Pat the tilapia dry. Rub it with 1 tablespoon olive oil and ½ teaspoon kosher salt, split between the filets. Sprinkle both with the Italian seasoning and a few grinds fresh ground black pepper, then add the red pepper flakes and smoked paprika. Sprinkle the capers over the top.
  5. Place the pan in the oven and bake for 23 to 28 minutes (depending on the thickness of the fish), until the fish is flaky and the internal temperature is 140 degrees Fahrenheit when measured with a food thermometer. Garnish with chopped parsley and remove the lemon slices when serving (or eat them if you like!).
  • Category: Main dish
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Keywords: Baked tilapia, tilapia recipe

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