While holiday appetizers are often indulgent and high in calories, these Mini Salmon Sliders with Garlic Aioli are a bit on the healthier side. I always like to include a few healthy holiday appetizers every year as we can’t indulge all season long. These Mini Salmon Sliders with Garlic Aioli are bite-sized and full of protein, so they will leave you satisfied after a few bites!
Read on to see how I made these Mini Salmon Sliders with Garlic Aioli and to get the full recipe! Visit my Appetizers page for more holiday recipes!
Cooking with Wild BC Sockeye
This recipe is made with fresh wild BC sockeye salmon, so there is not a can of salmon in sight with this recipe! I really prefer fresh salmon as opposed to canned salmon in this recipe since it’s a bit more elegant for an appetizer. I like to cook with sockeye salmon and you can find it frozen quite often when it is in season or even out of season. Sockeye has a rich colour and flavour and can stand up to adding fresh herbs and lemon.
I also like pink salmon or chinook salmon in this recipe as well, but I like to splurge on sockeye for the holidays.
No matter what time of year, a great resource that I refer to when cooking seafood is http://seafood.ocean.org/. The Ocean Wise program lists all certified seafood including the best/most sustainable capture methods, and harvest locations. Also, when in doubt, just talk to your local fish monger—they know everything there is to know about seafood and sustainability!
Making a Slider that Holds Together
For great texture in these sliders, I like to finely chop the salmon fillet into a small pieces so that it has the texture of ground meat. This will give you some chunks of salmon in the burgers, and enough “paste” to hold the burgers together. Apart from the salmon, I also add in some fresh lemon juice, dill, parsley, red onion, chili flakes, capers and lemon zest.
To bind the burgers together, I use an egg and panko breadcrumbs. The panko breadcrumbs really help to absorb the moisture from the salmon and egg. This ensures that the sliders will hold together as they are cooking in the pan. Allowing the sliders to rest for 30 minutes in the refrigerator also ensures that everything can firm up and stick together!
I like to pan fry these sliders over medium heat with some olive oil. It takes about 4 minutes per side to fully cook the sliders.
Garnish the sliders with some homemade garlic ailoi, a sprig of fresh dill, and some fried capers for a touch of elegance. Serve these on their own or on a salad topped. Either way, these Mini Salmon Sliders with Garlic Aioli will be a huge hit this holiday season, or any other time throughout the year!
Get the Recipe!
Mini Salmon Sliders with Garlic Aioli
- 1 side filet sockeye salmon ~700g, skin and bones removed
- ¼ cup red onion finely diced
- ¼ cup flat leaf parsley finely chopped
- 3 tablespoons fresh dill finely chopped
- 1/4 cup capers divided
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon red chili flakes optional
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 egg
- ½ cup panko breadcrumbs
- 3 tablespoons olive oil for frying
- ¾ cup mayonnaise
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons capers whole
- Finely chop the salmon fillet into small pieces, almost to the consistency of ground meat. Add it to a large bowl with the red onion, parsley, dill, 3 tablespoons of capers, lemon zest, chili flakes, salt and pepper. Mix to combine. Add the egg and panko breadcrumbs and mix to combine. The mixture should hold together lightly. If it is too crumbly, add some more breadcrumbs.
- Shape the sliders into rounds about 2 centimetres thick by pressing the salmon mixture between your hands or using a ring mold or cookie cutter. Place the rounds on a lightly oiled plate and repeat the process for the remaining mixture. Refrigerate for at least one hour to let the sliders set.
- In the meantime make the garlic aioli. Mix the mayonnaise, garlic, lemon juice, salt, and pepper in a bowl. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.
- Heat a frying pan over medium heat and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Place 6 salmon sliders (or as many can fit in the pan without touching) into the pan and fry for 3 minutes. Flip and continue to cook for another 3-4 minutes or until golden brown and there is no bright pink colour left. Set aside on a serving plate for later. Repeat this process for the rest of the salmon sliders, adding 1 tablespoon of oil to the pan for each new batch.
- Finally, prepare the fried capers. Add the 1/4 cup of olive oil to a small pan over medium-high heat. Add the capers and fry for 5-6 minutes, tossing often until the capers are crisp. Remove from the pan and drain on a paper towel.
- Garnish each salmon slider with a dollop of garlic aioli, a few fried capers, and a fresh sprig of dill.
- Serve warm or at room temperature. Enjoy!