With no required chopping and just a few minutes under the broiler, this tasty salmon melt is easy and nutritious. You might even call it comfort food!
I just got back from a lovely vacation to Norway. Beautiful vistas, clear mountain streams (that you could drink from—I did!), plus amazing seafood.
And I think I’m going through salmon withdrawal.
But I’m also still recovering my energy—that vacationing can be tough (yes, I know, first world problems). So could I find a salmon dish that’s tasty, comforting–and really easy?
How about a nice Salmon Melt?
What is a Salmon Melt?
The salmon melt is a variation on the popular tuna melt. You just use salmon instead of tuna.
And the tuna melt is a variation on the tuna fish sandwich. Wikipedia says that a tuna fish sandwich is “a sandwich made from canned tuna—usually made into a tuna salad by adding mayonnaise, and sometimes other ingredients such as celery or onion… Variations include the tuna boat (served on a bun or roll) and the tuna melt (served with melted cheese).”
And since canned salmon works just like canned tuna (if you buy boneless or take out the bones and skin), it works perfectly.
Why You’ll Love This!
Tasty, Comfort Food. Maybe it was all the tuna fish sandwiches I had as a kid, but this ranks higher than mac n cheese on the comfort scale for me!
Healthy. With omega-3 and quality protein in the salmon, calcium in the cheese and fiber in the whole wheat bread (you weren’t going to use white bread, were you?), this ranks high on the healthy sandwich scale.
Easy. Just mix a few ingredients for a simple salmon salad, top bread, sprinkle with cheese and broil. Doesn’t get much easier than that!
What You’ll Need
- Canned salmon. This is the main part of the dish and provides flavor and nutrition.
- Mayonnaise. This holds everything together and adds a creamy note.
- Onion, dried or fresh. This adds flavor to the salmon salad.
- Bread. This is the base for the sandwich. I use whole wheat, which is healthier, but I’d probably be pretty happy with a toasted artisan sourdough too.
- Cheddar cheese. This provides the cheesy topping—I used a 2 year aged cheddar. You can use any good melting cheese but it should be something strong enough to stand up to the intensity of the salmon.
- Optional tomato or avocado. This adds flavor and juiciness/creaminess if you decide to use it.
- No special tools required!
Step by Step Directions
Remove skin and large bones from canned salmon. Mix with mayonnaise and onion.
Spread each slice of bread with ¼ of the salmon mixture.
Top salmon salad with tomato or avocado if using
Top with sliced or grated cheese.
Broil on a metal pan or aluminum foil until cheese melts. (Watch carefully.). Serve immediately.
How to Serve
Like with other casual sandwiches, I love the idea of adding coleslaw when I serve this. And you’re not limited to basic cabbage coleslaw, you can also consider a carrot slaw like my Thai Carrot Slaw or Carrot Raisin Salad.
And to kick things up a notch, consider adding a cup of soup. Make it Creamy Leftover Chicken Soup and you’ll have Comfort times two!
Yes, I know, you always had this with tuna. Well go ahead, it’s great as a tuna melt too. Just use the same amount of tuna as salmon. And if you’re looking for a more casual tuna recipe, how about this delicious hot Tuna Dip!
This is a very simple salmon salad with just salmon, mayonnaise, and onion. Remember I was tired when I made it! But if you have a favorite recipe or a strong desire to add pickle relish and/or celery, then go with that.
Want to make it over the top yummy (and still really easy)? Add the optional sliced tomato for a Tomato Salmon Melt. Or the optional avocado for an Avocado Salmon Melt. I’ll admit I usually add one or the other, but I’d eat the sandwich plain too–in a heartbeat!
Only want the avocado and no salmon for a cheesy avocado melt? Well you do you! I might sprinkle with a little everything bagel seasoning in that case for some avocado toast (with extra calcium) vibes.
I like my salmon melts open-faced, but some people prefer a top slice of bread. That’s good too—just be sure to toast it. This option is especially nice if you’re feeding teenage athletes who are going to want, um, four sandwiches otherwise!
Tips & FAQs
Did you know that almost all canned salmon is wild? This means you don’t need to do the whole farmed vs wild salmon debate. Just double check your label to be sure.
Can I use fresh salmon? You can use salmon filets that you mince yourself or fresh salmon burger meat. If you do, you’ll want to make sure the salmon is cooked through if it isn’t sashimi quality. But truthfully, the canned works so well for this and is (usually) less expensive, so this is what I use. Even when I have salmon burger meat in my freezer.
Do I need to remove the salmon bones? You don’t need to remove the bones in canned salmon. The canning process makes them soft so you can smash them up when you mix up your salmon salad. The bones even provide some extra calcium though I do usually remove the larger ones. I always remove the skin, not liking the (dare I say slimy) consistency.
Sandwiches are the Star
- Baked Monte Cristo Sandwich Casserole from That Recipe
- British Cheese and Onion Sandwich from Pandemonium Noshery
- Easy Tea Sandwich from Magical Ingredients
- Grilled Chicken Sliders from Jen Around the World
- Ham and Turkey Club Sandwich Pinwheels from Blogghetti
- Muffuletta Sandwich with Homemade Bread from Karen’s Kitchen Stories
- Pulled Pork Grilled Cheese Sandwich from A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
- Salmon Melt from Art of Natural Living
- St. Louis Hot Salami Sandwich from Palatable Pastime
Easy Salmon Melt
- 14.5 ounces canned salmon large bones & skin removed
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- 1 Tablespoon dried minced onion or a couple Tablespoons fresh chopped onion
- 4 slices whole wheat bread
- 4 ounces cheddar cheese
- sliced tomato or avocado optional
- Remove skin and large bones from canned salmon. Mix with mayonnaise and onion.
- Spread each slice of bread with ¼ of the salmon mixture.
- Top salmon salad with tomato or avocado if using
- Top with sliced or grated cheese.
- Broil on a metal pan or aluminum foil until cheese melts. (Always watch food under a broiler carefully as it can burn or catch fire quickly.)
- Serve immediately.
Updated from the original published Feb 17, 2019.
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