Pan-fried taco-flavored mahi mahi burgers topped with a quick cabbage slaw, pickled onions, avocado, and chipotle mayo. Leave off the bun for an easy paleo and Whole30 weeknight summer dinner!
Day 4 of burger week and we are switching it up with mahi mahi burgers! I figured this would be a good way to change it up from the meat based burgers I’ve been sharing this week and they are great for pescatarians.
This burger is a spin on my fish taco bowls. They take all those tasty components of fish tacos we love – seasoned fish, crunchy cabbage, pickled onions, spicy mayo, and avocado – and pack it all into a burger.
They are light and flavorful, made from fresh fish, and make a super easy weeknight summer dinner. And they aren’t fishy at all – the whole family will love them!
Depending on how you serve them, they can be paleo, Whole30, and Keto – just leave off the hamburger bun. I actually prefer them with a lettuce wrap bun!
What is Mahi Mahi
I’m a huge fan of mahi mahi. My dad went fishing all the time when I was younger and we grew up eating a lot of fish. I actually have gone deep sea fishing myself and have caught quite a few kinds, including a mahi mahi!
We usually call it dolphin, but not to be confused with an actual bottlenose dolphin. I’m pretty sure if I called this recipe a dolphin burger, it wouldn’t go over so well haha.
If you’ve never had mahi mahi, it’s a delicious white fish with a mild flavor and a firm texture. It’s commonly used in tacos, grilled, or pan fried and goes well with different flavors as the flavor of the fish itself is pretty neutral.
One of my favorite things about mahi mahi, is it is all wild caught. I actually just found this out the other week when I was on the hunt for some to test this recipe. I called HEB and asked if they had any and then asked if it was wild caught.
The nicest guy told me it is always wild caught and he doesn’t know of any way it can be farm raised, unless it was some crazy science experiment. Jokes on me haha!
I always try to buy wild caught seafood as it is important to me and my eating habits. Bonus is that mahi mahi is pretty cheap and you can find it from $8-12 per pound, usually a lot cheaper than wild caught salmon or tuna. I usually buy it frozen and defrost when we need something quick for dinner.
Mahi Mahi Burgers
Enough about the fish itself, let’s get into the mahi mahi burgers! The burgers are made with 4 simple ingredients, pan fried in some oil, and then the rest is all the delicious taco inspired toppings! They come together quickly and make a perfect summer recipe!
Here is what you need:
- mahi mahi
- almond flour
- taco seasoning
- lime juice
- chipotle mayo
- pickled onions
- bun – either bread or a lettuce wrap work!
- salt and pepper
- oil, for frying
How to make a fish burger
We start off by making the fish burgers. The process might sound intimidating, but it’s super easy.
First start by removing the skin and the bones from the mahi mahi. You can ask your butcher to do this if you don’t want to. Or, even better, you can just use frozen and defrosted filets of mahi mahi (I get mine from Costco). I’ve used both in this recipe and both kinds work the same.
Roughly cut up the fish into larger pieces and add half of it to a food processor. Pulse until broken down, but still a little chunky and texture remains (check out the pictures – you don’t want mush!). I did this in two batches.
Next, add the mahi to a medium bowl and mix with almond flour, whisked egg, taco seasoning, and salt and pepper. Form into 4 equal patties. The mixture will be slightly wet, but manageable.
If needed, you can place them in the fridge or freezer for a few minutes to firm up, but I didn’t find it necessary. Coat each patty with a little more almond flour on each side.
Finally, heat up a large sauté pan (I used an enameled cast iron), add some oil, and pan fry for 6-8 minutes, flipping halfway through, until golden brown and cooked through. They are ready when the outside is golden brown and slightly crispy and they are firm to the touch.
While the Mahi Mahi burgers cook, make the toppings! I used some shredded cabbage, chipotle mayo, pickled onions, and avocados. Throw it all on a hamburger or lettuce bun and enjoy!!
Mahi Mahi Burgers on the grill or in the oven
This recipe calls for an easy pan fry, but you could also make them in the oven or on the grill.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Assemble the burgers and place on the baking sheet and bake for 8-12 minutes until cooked through, but still moist.
To make them on the grill, after you form the burgers into patties, place them in the freezer on plate lined with parchment paper for 5-10 minutes to make sure they firm up. After they are firm (you don’t want them to freeze all the way through though), spray each side with a little oil and grill over medium-high heat for 6-8 minutes, carefully flipping halfway through.
What to serve with Mahi Mahi Burgers
Here are some ideas to serve alongside your mahi mahi burgers:
- chips and salsa – or veggies and salsa if you can’t have chips
- grilled sweet potato fries
- chipotle Mexican coleslaw
- homemade plantain chips
- coconut cilantro lime rice
More Burger Recipes
Mahi Mahi Burgers with Chipotle Mayo & Cabbage Slaw
- 1 cup thinnly sliced red onion (200 grams)
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 pound deboned and skin removed raw mahi mahi
- 1/4 cup almond flour + more for coating
- 1 large egg, whisked
- 1 1/2 tablespoons taco seasoning
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil
- 2 cups thinnly sliced cabbage (200 grams) (I used a mix of red and green)
- 2 tablespoons packed fresh cilantro
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1/4 cup spicy chipotle mayo
- 1 large avocado, thinnly sliced (150 grams)
- salt and pepper, to taste
- buns or lettuce wraps for serving
- Make the pickled onions. In a large jar add onions, water, apple cider vinegar, and 1 teaspoon salt. Shake well and set aside.
- Make the mahi mahi burgers. Roughly cut mahi mahi and add half to a food processor. Pulse 3-4 times until broken down, but still a little chucky and some texture remains. I did this in two batches to make sure it didn't get too mushy.
- Add mahi mahi to a bowl with the almond flour, egg, taco seasoning, and salt and pepper. Mix to combine and form into 4 equal sized patties. The mixture will be fairly wet. Coat each patty with a little more almond flour on each side.
- Heat up a large sauté pan over medium-low heat. Add oil and let it get hot. Add burgers, spreading them out evenly, and cook for 3-4 mintues per side until golden brown and cooked through.
- While the burgers cook, make the cabbage slaw by mixing together the cabbage, cilantro lime juice, and salt and pepper. Prep the rest of your toppings if needed.
- Divide cabbage slaw, avoacdo, and pickled onions among the burgers and top with chipotle mayo. Enjoy!
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