This sardine pate is very quick and easy to make, and a great way to add a portion of oily fish to your diet. I love using canned fish to make pate (see here for easy mackerel pate and tuna pate recipes). If you keep a couple of cans of fish in the cupboard, you can always rustle up a quick lunch with pate and a bowl of soup.
What's to love about the recipe
- This quick sardine pate is made with just 4 everyday ingredients
- Ready to eat in a few minutes
- Canned sardines are an oily fish which is good for your health. Sardines are one of the best sources of omega 3 oils and vitamin D, and the NHS recommends that we include more fish in our diet.
- This sardine pate recipe is a budget-friendly fish recipe
- Gluten free, low in carbs, high in protein
Sardines. I like to use canned sardines in brine for this recipe. You can use sardines that have been packed in oil, but the oil can leach away some of the beneficial omega 3. And although you could use posh Portuguese sardines, standard supermarket sardines are absolutely fine. Don't worry about the skin and bones in the can - although it doesn't look quite so nice, it'll break down in the pate. And canned sardines with skin and bones are much higher in calcium.
Cream cheese. It's best to not use a very low fat cream cheese as it can be a little watery. Drain away any liquid from the cheese before you add it to the recipe.
A squeeze of lemon will go perfectly with the fish. If you don't have any lemon, use a tiny splash of apple cider vinegar to add some acidity.
Parsley. This adds a nice fresh taste to the sardine pate. If you don't have parsley, use another fresh herb such as dill or chives, or add a little finely chopped spring onion.
Seasoning. Omit the salt if you are using sardines in brine. You can always add some salt at the very end after tasting if you think it needs it.
If you don't have cream cheese, you could also make a slightly more tangy tasting sardine pate with fromais frais or natural yogurt.
For an extra kick, you could add a teaspoon of horseradish sauce or mild mustard.
I also sometimes add some finely chopped gherkin or capers for extra tang and crunch.
How to make sardine pate
Drain the canned sardines really well. Squish them down with the lid of the tin or a fork to make sure that all the liquid is drained away.
Add to a bowl with the chopped parsley, lemon juice, pepper and cream cheese (again, drain any liquid from the cream cheese).
Either blitz with an immersion blender or mash well with a fork. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
Serving and storage
I like to serve sardine pate with these homemade gluten free oatcakes - a crunchy base adds a nice contrast in texture. Otherwise any kind of savoury crackers or toast would also work well. You could also serve this as a dip with crudites, or make sardine paste sandwiches with a crispy layer of salad.
Leftover pate can be stored covered in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Frequently asked questions
Any recipe that contains a high proportion of sardines will be rich in omega 3 which is an essential fatty acid. Sardines are also high in vitamin D which is found in a limited number of foods. Sardine paste and sardine pate are both an easy way to include more oily fish in your diet. However, some recipes can include a lot of butter, so if that is a concern, check the recipe!
Both canned sardines and canned tuna are a great way to include more fish in your diet. However, sardines are higher in omega 3, and they are also a very good source of calcium and a number of other key minerals.
Other healthy fish recipes
Browse the fish recipes category for more easy ways to include more fish in your diet.
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Quick Sardine Pate
- 120g can sardines in brine
- 80 g cream cheese ideally not very low fat
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley chopped
- salt and pepper
- Drain the can of sardines really well. Squish them down with the lid or a fork to make sure that all the liquid is removed.
- Add the sardines to a bowl along with the lemon juice, parsley and cream cheese (drain away any liquid from the cream cheese). Add some pepper - you can decide whether to add any extra salt at the end.
- Either mash the pate with a fork, or blitz with a hand blender until smooth. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
Please note nutritional information is per serving and is provided for guidance only.