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Chef John's Salmon Loaf

Rated as 4.82 out of 5 Stars

"Canned salmon is a great, inexpensive source of proteins and omegas, and you may have stocked up on a few cans but not known what to do with them. This tasty shelter-in-place salmon loaf is so good for you! While salmon right out of the can may not be the most appealing thing to look at, this salmon loaf is so delicious that we can surely forgive some of its visual shortcomings. Remember, looks are less important than personality (and taste!) and this easy salmon loaf is proof of that. Serve with your favorite tartar sauce, cocktail sauce, or hot, white cream sauce."
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1 h 10 m servings 362
Original recipe yields 4 servings (1 loaf)


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  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Generously butter a loaf pan.
  2. Melt butter over medium heat in a saute pan until bubbling. Toss in onion, give the pan a quick shake, and stir with a wooden spoon; cook for 1 minute. Turn off the heat and allow to cool.
  3. Place salmon in a large mixing bowl and mash with a fork. Add cracker crumbs, salt, cayenne pepper, Worcestershire sauce, rice vinegar, butter, and onions; mix and mash with a spatula or spoon until smooth.
  4. Separate eggs, adding whites to a clean glass, metal, or ceramic bowl and adding yolks to salmon mixture. Mix egg yolks and salmon until well combined.
  5. Whisk whites to medium stiff peaks. Gently fold into salmon mixture in 2 additions.
  6. Transfer salmon mixture into the prepared loaf pan. Smooth the top with a spatula to even it out and shake and tap the pan to remove any air bubbles.
  7. Bake in the center of the preheated oven until a toothpick comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Let rest for 5 minutes, then carefully turn loaf out onto a cutting board. Slice and serve.


  • Chef's Notes:
  • Salmon will come with skin, bones, and vertebrae. You can pick those out but they are the most nutritious parts and they're just about as soft as the meat. Once mixed in, you won't even notice them.
  • If you don't have saltine crackers you can use bread crumbs, and you use lemon juice instead of rice vinegar.
  • You can add 3 whole eggs to the salmon mixture instead of separating them, but whisking the whites and adding them separately really lightens the texture.
  • This makes 4 small portions or 2 large portions. If you want a taller loaf, use a smaller loaf pan or double the recipe.

Nutrition Facts

Per Serving: 362 calories; 23.4 7.9 28.7 213 880 Full nutrition

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Very good!

I left out the rice vinegar (didn't have any, and forgot to add the white wine vinegar I did have). I also reconstitued the Worcestershire sauce from a powder a local spice merchant carries, usi...

We love Chef John's Salmon cakes, so I figured I would give this recipe a try for a change of pace (especially since we have been eating quite a bit of canned salmon recently! ). Once again, Ch...

This is good enough to make even when you're not sheltering in place. The only other time I ever opened a can of salmon, I was so appalled by the bones and skin, I spent a long time picking t...

We used green onions rather than regular onion, because we had fresh green onions that needed to be used AND we doubled the recipe. We will definitely make this again, probably adding some spic...

I love this recipe. My Mom used to make salmon loaf back in he 70s. As always with Chef John Recipes, this is a huge improvement. I made a few substitutions (nothing big). My husband and I live...

This recipe turned out great and was a nice change! I followed it exactly. Next time I will spray the loaf pan with PAM because for some reason the butter made the loaf stick even though I wai...

I used tuna & didn't separate the eggs, just mixed them in. Turned out great though I'm sure not as close to fluffy as the original

This is a keeper. Lovely texture and great flavour. Made a half recipe with 2 eggs for my husband and myself. Highly recommend for a quick meat dish.