Many people have a preconception that any food canned will have less nutritional value than if it is fresh. But canned salmon shouldn’t be overlooked, because it typically includes wild Alaska salmon, and therefore, is another excellent food source. While it is true that some processing methods can reduce the amounts of nutrients and increase the sodium content in canned Alaska salmon, there are still a few reasons it should be included in a person’s diet.
As with other sources of wild Alaska salmon, canned salmon contains four times the amount of omega-3 fatty acids. In addition, it includes more than 20 times the amount of calcium found in other canned proteins, such as tuna or chicken. The reason for this lies in fish bones. Just like a human, a salmon stores its calcium in its bones. The canning process softens salmon bones and crushes them to be part of the canned contents. For those who can’t drink milk or simply don’t get enough calcium in their diet, a four-ounce serving of canned salmon has the equivalent amount of calcium as one cup of milk.
Another advantage of canned Alaska salmon is the fact it primarily comes from wild Alaska salmon. The wild Alaska sockeye and pink salmon species are abundant and managed well enough to supply the canned salmon industry. Therefore, the same advantages fresh, wild Alaska salmon brings, such as low PCBs and other chemicals, can be found in canned salmon also. Sockeye will have the more red canned flesh, while the pink salmon has a paler, pink color to it.
Lastly, most of the fresh, wild Alaska salmon options are constrained to several seasons throughout the year. Canned salmon can be purchased and eaten year-round.
Canned Salmon Recipes
Canned wild Alaska salmon can be eaten a variety of ways. Below are two recipe ideas to enjoy it.
Grilled Salmon Patties (Makes two)
4 cans (7 oz) canned salmon
1 cup bread crumbs
½ cup chopped onion
Mix all ingredients except live oil in bowl. Pour off any excess liquid.
Form patties by hand and place on wax paper.
Grill over low heat, limiting the number of times the patties are flipped to reduce chance of crumbling.
Other optional ingredients:
Salmon Salad (serves 4)
4 (7 ounce) cans salmon
4 tablespoons mayonnaise
4 tablespoons plain yogurt
2 cup chopped celery
4 tablespoons capers
Salt and pepper to taste
Mix all ingredients in bowl.
Refrigerate for 1 hour.
Serve on ciabatta chips, or on spinach bed.
Use low fat versions of mayonnaise and yogurt to increase health benefits.