Tandoori Salmon with Cucumber Yogurt Sauce

Tandoori Salmon with Cucumber Yogurt Sauce

Make this quick and easy recipe for tandoori salmon with cucumber yogurt sauce! Tandoori is a delicious Indian spice that pairs perfectly with salmon. The cucumber yogurt sauce helps to cool it down a bit. Serve with grilled vegetables and cooked grains to make a complete balanced meal! 

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Salmon Burgers with Creamy Yogurt-Dill Sauce

Canned salmon is one of those staples I always keep in the house. I try and get more fatty fish in my diet, but also wild salmon can get super expensive when you buy it fresh. Thank goodness for canned salmon as an affordable option!

These salmon burgers are one of my favorite ways to enjoy canned salmon. They are simple to make and really flavorful from the addition of lemon zest, grill seasoning, and capers. It’s a great basic salmon burger recipe that gets taken up a notch with the creamy yogurt-dill sauce.

Easy salmon patties with creamy yogurt-dill sauce! #salmon #cannedfish #easyrecipe #salmonburger #healthyrecipe
Salmon burgers with creamy yogurt dill sauce! #patty #burger #salmon #yogurt #healthyrecipe

I like to enjoy these on a bun with lettuce, tomato and red onion, or as a main with roasted veggies and potatoes.


Salmon Burgers with Creamy Yogurt-Dill Sauce

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 lbs canned wild salmon

  • 2 eggs

  • 1/2 cup whole grain panko

  • 1 lemon, zested

  • 2 tablespoons capers, chopped

  • 1 tablespoon grill seasoning

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

Yogurt-Dill Sauce:

  • 1 cup plain full fat yogurt

  • 1/4 cup dijon mustard

  • 1/4 cup dill, chopped

  • 1/2 lemon, juiced

  • 1 tablespoon horseradish

Instructions:

  1. In a large bowl, mix salmon, eggs, panko, lemon zest, grill seasoning, capers, salt and pepper. 

  2. Heat olive oil in a large sided skillet.

  3. Form four patties with the salmon. Place patties in the skillet, press down with the back of a spatula, and cook about 5-7 minutes per side until browned and cooked through. 

  4. While burgers are cooking, whisk together yogurt, mustard, dill, lemon juice and horseradish. Season with salt and pepper.

  5. Serve patties with creamy mustard dill sauce.


More salmon recipes:

Nicoise Sandwich

Nicoise Sandwich

Everything Bagel Salmon Burger

Everything Bagel Salmon Burger

Mayoless Tuna Salad, Three Ways

Mayoless Tuna Salad, Three Ways


Easy salmon burgers served with a creamy yogurt-dill sauce! It’s a budget friendly way to enjoy fatty fish! #cannedsalmon #cannedfish #burger #salmon #healthyrecipe #easyrecipe

Curry Salmon Noodle Bowl with Mango and Soy-Lime Dressing

This curry salmon noodle bowl with mango is packed with fresh flavors! Drizzle with a soy-lime dressing for even more of a kick! 

Curry Salmon Noodle Bowl with Mango and Soy-Lime Dressing

With intuitive eating, you're never done learning. I consider myself a fairly intuitive eater at this point, but I still have learning moments! Like last Thursday, for example.

It was a really crazy day with leading a lunch and learn at Colonial Life, a client session, our last meeting before launching Joyful Eating and an evening meeting for our Columbia dietetics association, where I'm serving as the education chair for the second year. Running around all day, I wasn't really hungry and ended up eating a late, light lunch. Going into my five pm meeting, I felt comfortable, probably a five on the hunger/fullness scale. I figured I'd be ready to whip up dinner as soon as I got home, but as the meeting ran late, my stomach started to growl, my head started to throb - I was famished.

After the meeting was over, I was way too hungry and tired to cook and decided to meet my husband and friends at our local soccer bar where they were planning to watch the Copa America game. I glanced over the menu, and even though I knew Thursday was curry night and they make seriously one of the best curries I've had, my famished stomach was yelling "YOU NEED THE BURGER WITH BACON AND FRIED EGG AND CHEESE AND AAAAAALLLL THE FRIES."

Three bites in and I had regrets. What my body was really craving was to feel energized after a long day and for fresh flavors with lots of spices. Not a greasy burger, which was already making my stomach hurt.

Years ago, I would have beaten myself up for it. Blamed willpower. Told myself I was a poor excuse for a dietitian. But instead, I filed the experience into my mental bank where it'll serve as a reminder to be prepared with snacks and reheat and eat meals on full days and that when I'm really physically hungry, any food will fill the empty hole in my stomach. And then I stared longingly with sad puppy dog eyes when my friend was served his delicious looking chicken and vegetable curry, being the mature adult that I am.

This curry salmon noodle bowl is super filling, energizing and packed with the same fresh flavors I was craving that night. If only I had the ingredients on hand that day to whip this up real fast!

Ever since our trip to Vietnam, I've been obsessed with noodle salads. I usually use rice noodles or cellophane noodles, which are very thin and have a nice chewy texture. Plus, they soak up all the delicious flavor from the dressing. Also, feel free to use different vegetables or protein if you like. Chicken, pork or baked tofu would go great here, and for vegetables, radish, peppers, snap peas and sprouts would all add a similar fresh crunch.

Curry Salmon Noodle Bowl with Mango and Soy-Lime Dressing

Serves 4

Ingredients

Dressing: 

  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar or coconut sugar

  • 1/4 cup warm water

  • 1/2 jalapeno, seeded, finely minced

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sesame oil

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce

  • Juice of 1 lime

Bowl:

  • 1 1/4 lb salmon filet

  • 1/2 teaspoon Thai curry powder (or regular curry powder if you can't find it)

  • 8 ounces cellophane or brown rice noodles

  • 1 head butter lettuce, stemmed, chopped, rinsed and dried

  • 1 large carrot, shredded

  • 1 cucumber, cut into matchsticks

  • 1 mango, peeled, pitted and thinly sliced

  • 1 avocado, peeled, pitted and thinly sliced

  • 1 scallion, sliced

  • 1/3 cup cilantro leaves

  • 1/4 cup cashews, toasted and chopped

Instructions

  1. First make dressing. Whisk together sugar and warm water until dissolved. Whisk in jalapeno, sesame oil, soy sauce and lime juice. Set aside until ready to use.

  2. Heat oven to 250 degrees. Pat salmon filet dry with a paper towel, place on a baking sheet and spray lightly with olive oil. Sprinkle with curry powder and season with salt and black pepper. Place in the oven and roast until it flakes easily with a fork, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool slightly.

  3. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook noodles according to package instructions. Drain and rinse with cold water. Use scissors or shears to cut a few times into smaller strands.

  4. Divide butter lettuce between four bowls. Break salmon into pieces. Divide carrot, cucumber, mango, avocado, scallion and cilantro between the four bowls. Sprinkle with cashews. Drizzle with dressing and serve.

More fresh flavors for summer: 

Dark Cherry and Crispy Proscuitto Salad

Dark Cherry and Crispy Proscuitto Salad

Green Panzanella

Green Panzanella

Tropical Vegan Salad with Mango Macadamia Dressing

Tropical Vegan Salad with Mango Macadamia Dressing

Cedar Plank Trout with Asian Guacamole

Move over salmon! Get your omega 3s from this wild cedar plank trout with Asian guacamole, plus, learn what makes wild trout is a Good Mood Food. 

Almost weekly, my husband pesters me to open my own restaurant. I don't know much about the restaurant business, but I do know enough to know that I have zero desire to do such a thing.

Then every so often, I come up with a dish so perfect that I think to myself "maybe he's on to something!" This is one of those dishes. Fatty trout soaks up delicious flavors from the cedar plank and smokiness from the grill. Guacamole spiked with Asian flavors from ginger, lime, mint and cilantro adds a burst of fresh flavor and creaminess. And I'm pretty proud of the lemon glazed roasted radishes with pea shoots I came up with on a whim. I'd happily spend $25 on this meal.

Speaking of happy, the omega 3 packed trout in this dish is, you guessed it, a good mood food! There's probably no nutrient more intensely studied for it's role in brain health than omega 3 fats. If I had to name a number one food for mood, without a doubt it would be omega 3 rich fatty fish, like wild trout.

Since WWII, the rate of depression has increased 20-fold. Hmm, isn't that about the time real foods took a back seat to margarine, Swanson frozen meals, and cheez whiz. Coincidence? I think not. When processed foods went mainstream, intake of omega 3 fat declined dramatically.

Omega 3s in fatty fish affects the brain in many ways. All cell membranes are made of fat, but the only polyunsaturated fats the cell membranes in the brain can use are DHA (a type of omega 3) and arachadonic acid. The DHA fats create a more fluid cell membrane, improving brain functioning. Omega 3 fats also reduce inflammation in the brain and increase brain volume.

Studies have shown countries with the highest intakes of fatty fish have the lowest levels of depression. We also know people with depression have low levels of omega 3 fats in their blood. There's been many studies showing omega 3 fats can reduce symptoms of depression. 

So you may be thinking why not just take a supplement? While omega 3s are great, there are many other brain boosting nutrients in fatty fish. One 3 ounce serving has almost 100% your daily needs of B12. A deficiency in B12 has been linked to depression, irritability and cognitive decline and it's estimated that 40% of people have suboptimal levels of B12 (considered a deficiency in other countries). Wild trout also packs a dose of vitamin D, the sunshine vitamin, also thought to be the culprit behind seasonal affective disorder. Almost 75% of Americans are deficient in vitamin D.

While I love salmon, the go to choice for omega 3 fats, I actually prefer trout, which is semi-local (North Carolina) to us. The taste is pretty similar to salmon, so feel free to swap out wild Alaskan salmon if that's easier to find. If you want to keep things local, my gulf coast friends could easily use shrimp!

Cedar Plank Trout with Asian Guacamole

Serves 4

Feel free to use any fatty fish you like, or try this with shrimp. Leftover guac is great as a dip with brown rice crackers.

Ingredients

  • 2 cedar planks, soaked in water at least 2 hours
  • 1 lb wild trout filets, cut in four pieces
  • 1-2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
  • Sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper

Asian Guacamole: 

  • 1 avocado, pitted and peeled
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
  • 2 scallions, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh mint leaves
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro (leaves and stems)
  • 1 jalapeno, stemmed and seeded
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Instructions

  1. Set half the grill to medium-high heat.
  2. Drain the cedar planks and arrange the trout filets, skin side down, on top. Brush with sesame oil and season with salt and pepper. Place on the grill on the opposite side of the heat source, cover, and cook 20-25 minutes until the fish flakes easily with a fork. Remove and set aside.
  3. To make guacamole, place all guac ingredients in a food processor and blend until pureed and well combined. Taste and season with more salt or lime juice if needed.
  4. Serve trout with a heft dollop of guac.

Lemon Sesame Roasted Radishes

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 bunches radishes, leaves and stems removed, radishes halved or quartered if large
  • Sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • Juice from half a lemon
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • Pea shoots (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Heat olive oil in a large, oven safe skillet on medium high heat. Add radishes and saute about 5-7 minutes until lightly golden. Move to the oven and roast 10-15 minutes until browned and tender.
  3. While radishes are roasting, whisk together garlic, lemon zest and juice, honey, red pepper flakes and sesame seeds in a small bowl.
  4. Remove from oven and place back on the stovetop on medium high heat. Add sauce and pea shoots if using, stir to combine. Cook 2-3 minutes until glaze is thickened.

Inspired to eat more fatty fish? Check out these recipes:

Sushi Un-Roll With Smoked Salmon and Avocado
Sushi Un-Roll With Smoked Salmon and Avocado
Mayoless Tuna Salad, Three Ways
Mayoless Tuna Salad, Three Ways
Taandori Salmon with Cucumber Yogurt Sauce
Taandori Salmon with Cucumber Yogurt Sauce

Mayoless Tuna Salad, Three Ways

Canned tuna is a quick, easy and inexpensive way to get your omega 3s. You'll love these three recipes for mayoless tuna salad - Asian, Nicoise and classic! 

There’s a lot to love about working at home. I have the worlds greatest coworkers. If I don’t have clients or meetings scheduled, showering is optional and yoga pants are mandatory. And a couple times a week, I get to enjoy live music courtesy of my Motown loving neighbor who doesn’t seem to realize how thin the walls are on our 1930s home. Best of all, I can unabashedly eat all the smelly foods I love without feeling guilty for stinking up the office. Give me all the hard boiled eggs, Indian food and tuna salad!

I try to eat omega 3 rich fish a few times a week, but it isn’t really in my food budget to purchase filets of fresh wild fish regularly. So, I rely on canned fish pretty frequently – salmon, sardines, and, of course, tuna.

Tuna salad is quick and easy, so I often whip up a big batch during Sunday meal prep. I serve it over a big bowl of greens for an easy lunch or with whole grain crackers as a snack.

There are some healthier mayos. Ideally, I look for ones that are made with organic, expeller pressed canola oil or are made with some olive oil, but they can be expensive and a bit hard to find. Using healthier oils in lieu of mayo, like the olive oil, sesame oil and tahini in these recipes, not only adds great flavor, but it isn’t overpowering and lets the tuna and other ingredients shine through.

Typically, I make tuna salad without a recipe, inspired by whatever ingredients I have on hand. I’ve gone Spring inspired, throwing in radishes, peas and herbs, Mexican with corn and chipotles, but these are three of my favorites.

Serving Suggestions:

  • Stuff into celery spears
  • Make a sandwich with sprouted grain bread, avocado slices, lettuce and tomato
  • Stuff into the hole leftover from an avocado pit
  • Serve over a big bed of greens
  • Stuff into mini whole grain pitas
  • With whole grain crackers (I like ak-mak, Wasa and soy flavored brown rice crackers)

Also, special shout out to Safe Catch Tuna, who provided me with the samples I used in this post. They test every fish for mercury, making them the only brand of tuna that meets the Environmental Working Group's criteria for best seafood. They also pack their fish in a way that retains more omega 3 fats and other nutrients. Check them out here.

Classic Mayoless Tuna Salad

This one also tastes great with a little curry powder.

Ingredients

  • 5 ounce can wild tuna packed in water, drained
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped celery
  • 1 scallion, sliced
  • 2 cornichons, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 small clove garlic, minced

Instructions

  1. Mix all ingredients together in a medium bowl. Season with salt and pepper.

Asian Mayoless Tuna Salad

Ingredients

  • 5 ounces wild tuna packed in water, drained
  • 1 carrot, shredded
  • 1 tablespoon cilantro, chopped
  • 2 scallions, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 2 teaspoon sriracha

Instructions

  1. Mix tuna, carrot, cilantro and scallions in a medium bowl. Add sesame oil, vinegar and sriracha. Toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper.

Mayoless Nicoise Tuna Salad

Ingredients

  • 10 haricot verts, halved
  • 5 ounces canned wild tuna packed in water, drained
  • 1 hard boiled egg, peeled
  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped black olives, preferably nicoise
  • 2 tablespoons chopped sun dried tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 small clove garlic, minced

Instructions

  1. Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Add haricot verts and cook 2-3 minutes until crisp tender. Drain and transfer to an ice bath to stop the cooking process.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine tuna, egg, shallot, olives, sun dried tomatoes, and haricot verts. Add olive oil, red wine vinegar and garlic. Toss to combine and season with salt and pepper.

Hummus Smorrebrod

Beet hummus stands in for butter in this recipe for smorrebrod, an open faced Scandinavian sandwich on hearty rye bread. 

It's no secret that travel is my great passion in life. Exploring new cities, soaking up the culture and sights makes me happy beyond words.Every time we travel somewhere new, I come home feeling intensely inspired. Of course, being the dietitian and food lover that I am, much of that inspiration is in the kitchen.

Traditional diets are endlessly fascinating to me. You can learn so much about a culture from what and how they eat. And from a nutritional standpoint, I realize more and more that embracing traditional diets is the key to health. Around the world, there are areas called blue zones, known for low rates of a specific chronic disease. We can learn a lot about what type of eating pattern and foods protect against chronic disease by looking at what people eat in those areas. Think of the Mediterranean diet, rich in healthy fats that reduce the risk of heart disease. Or the plant-based Japanese diet, linked to low rates of cancer. And then there's the traditional Mexican diet, rich in healthy carbs like corn, squash and beans, which offers protection against diabetes.

Since happiness and wellbeing are the name of my game, I'm particularly interested in cold spots for depression. What does a happy diet look like?

Scandinavia has some of the lowest rates of depression, thanks to a diet rich in fatty fish, whole grains and berries. With the popularity of The New Nordic Diet, some are saying it's poised to be the next Mediterranean diet. I'm all on board with that! Not only is there tons of research showing the Nordic diet promotes weight loss, heart and brain health, but the food is incredible. There's a reason the best restaurant in the world is in Denmark!

Here's a look at the basic tenants of the Nordic diet:

1. Buy local and seasonal produce. The Nordic diet is all about embracing what's fresh and local. Not only is it better for the environment, but fresher produce contains more nutrients.

2. Eat plenty of fatty fish. With plenty of access to fatty, cold water fish, the kind that's richest in omega 3 fats, Scandinavians eat fish almost daily. Salmon is a great choice, but mackerel, herring and sardines are also on the menu. The omega 3s in fatty fish are known to combat depression, anxiety and boost mood.

3. Focus on whole grains. Dense, hearty wholegrain rye bread is a Scandinavian staple. Oats, usually in muesli, and barley, also play a major role in the Nordic diet. High fiber whole grains boost levels of serotonin, a mood boosting hormone.

4. Choose wild game or grassfed options for meat, and eat less of it. While Nordic options like elk and reindeer may be a bit hard to come by, go with what's local to you. Venison, rabbit, and other game meats have higher amounts of omega 3 fats.

5. Include plenty of Nordic staple produce. Berries, dark green leafies, mushrooms, and root vegetables are great choices and local options are available most places.

Smorrebrod, a type of open faced sandwich, is one of the most popular Scandinavian dishes. Traditionally, it's made with buttered rye bread as a base, but when Eat Well, Embrace Life sent me a lifetime two week supply of hummus, including a life changing beet hummus, I decided to swap that for the butter. I'm gonna go ahead and call that a stroke of genius.

Instead of assembling the smorrebrod before serving, I put out the toppings along with a big bowl of toasted sprouted rye bread. It was a lot of fun to get creative with the toppings, although I had a hard time not going overboard with the toppings. Let's just say a few of mine needed a fork and knife!

I think this would be such a fun dish for entertaining. Feel free to go over more all out with the toppings. You could also add sliced cucumber, gravlax, watercress, cheeses, pickles, and sauteed mushrooms to round out the spread even more. Have fun with it!

Hummus Smorrebrod

Ingredients

  • Whole grain rye bread, toasted
  • Beet hummus
  • 1 tin of wild smoked sardines
  • 2 hard boiled eggs, sliced
  • Sauerkraut, preferably fermented
  • Thinly sliced red onion
  • Thinly sliced radish
  • Horseradish
  • Capers
  • Fresh dill

Instructions

  1. Spread a little beet hummus on each slice of bread and top as desired!

Toasted Nori Snacks with Smoked Trout

tofu-nori-bites-copy.jpg

Turn toasted nori sheets into a filling snack with these toasted nori snacks with smoked trout or for vegan bites, with sriracha tofu! 

Everyone has been told to "eat your greens," but today, I'm going to go one step beyond and tell you to eat your sea greens.

Yup, sea greens, better known as sea vegetables or seaweed. Tasty, right?

If you're cringing right now, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but you more than likely eaten it already. If you've eaten sushi, Asian soups, or just about any processed food, then you've had seaweed.

 So, why not just eat kale or maybe a tomato or something? Because sea vegetables grow in a completely different environment, so it's nutrients are completely different from vegetables grown on land. And actually, seaweed contains all the minerals humans need in much higher concentrations than land vegetables.

IODINE

Sea vegetables are the richest food source of iodine. In fact, one 10-calorie serving contains 500% your daily needs, so including it just once a week is a great way to ensure you're getting adequate amounts. Iodine is critically important for thyroid health, a gland responsible for regulating metabolism. Because iodine is mostly found in animal foods and iodized salt, a plant-centric, whole-food diet (overall a good thing!) can run the risk of being low in iodine, so it's important to include a regular dose of iodine-rich sea veggies!

IRON

Most types of sea vegetables contain a nice dose of iron and because sea veggies also contain vitamin C, which enhances absorption of iron, it's an even better source of bioavailable iron.

FRUCTOIDANS

Frucoidans are starch-like molecules with powerful anti-inflammatory action. They block another molecule that allows for the transmission of inflammatory signals. Because of this, sea vegetables are often used in the treatment of inflammatory diseases, like arthritis, and to promote cardiovascular health. This molecule also displays anti-viral activity and studies have shown it can help prevent replication of HIV and herpes simpex 1 and 2 virus.

VANADIUM

Sea vegetables contain vanadium, a mineral that plays a role in bone health and blood sugar control. Some animal studies and small human trials have shown the mineral makes the body more sensitive to insulin and can increase the bodies ability to store excess glucose as glycogen. Most of these studies were done with large dose supplements of vanadium, so it's unclear if the smaller amount found in seaweed has the same effects. But it's still a nutrient dense food, rich in fiber and low in starch and sugar, so it's blood sugar friendly anyway.

There are many types of edible sea vegetables, including arame, kombu and wakame, but nori, the type of seaweed used for sushi, is the easiest to find. I especially love the toasted nori snacks, packs of bite sized sheets of toasted nori. It's the perfect little snack for when you want something salty and crunchy.

Filling snack, however, it is not. I can go through a bag in about 15 seconds.

To make the snacks substantial enough to last me until my next meal, I like to use them to make a quick sushi handroll. I usually mix and match the ingredients based on what I have on hand, but I try to include at least one source of protein and/or fat to keep it filling. If you're looking for a preworkout snack, make sure you include some type of high fiber carbohydrate, like a cooked whole grain.

Pictured here are nori snacks with carrots, cucumbers and sriracha baked tofu from Trader Joe's and smoked trout. Here's some other ideas!

  • brown rice + avocado + sriracha
  • edamame spread + hot sauce
  • mango + cucumber + guacamole
  • smoked salmon + quinoa + scallions hummus + shredded carrots
  • avocado + steamed asparagus + arugula + pickled ginger

Toasted Nori Snacks with Smoked Trout

Ingredients

  • Toasted nori sheets
  • Julienned cucumber
  • Shredded carrot
  • Avocado slices (optional)
  • Smoked trout (or smoked salmon), or baked tofu, in chunks
  • Sriracha (or other hot sauce)

Instructions

  1. Lay nori sheets out flat on a plate. Place cucumber, carrots, avocado (if using) and a chunk of smoked trout/tofu in the center. Top with a drop of sriracha. Loosely roll and enjoy.

More creative uses for nori:

Vegetable Nori Wraps with Edamame Spread

Vegetable Nori Wraps with Edamame Spread

California Roll Sushi Burrito 

California Roll Sushi Burrito 

Nori Popcorn

Nori Popcorn