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Mackerel Pate with Horseradish

4.8 stars, average of 33 ratings

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As a child growing up in the 80s, there was never a dinner party spread that didn’t include a molded fish mousse, surrounded by crackers and decorated with curly parsley. I always had a fondness for this fishy low-carb dip, but wanted to make something a little more contemporary.

I’ve gone with tinned mackerel here because its relatively available, inexpensive and the taste is fairly subtle. My partner isn’t a fan of “fishy” fish (theres an oxymoron if I ever heard one!) so this works well in our household.

Feel free to use fresh cooked mackerel or oven smoked skinned mackerel. That said, it’s a pretty flexible recipe and you could easily use any other tinned fish or cooked and cooled fish.

You can serve this keto fish pate with crunchy vegetables such as celery, carrots, bell peppers, endive or cucumber.

Hands-on Overall

Serving size 2 tbsp, 30 g/ 1.1 oz

Allergy information for Mackerel Pate with Horseradish

✔  Gluten free
✔  Egg free
✔  Nut free
✔  Nightshade free
✔  Pork free
✔  Avocado free
✔  Coconut free
✔  Shellfish free
✔  Beef free

Nutritional values (per serving, 2 tbsp, 30 g/ 1.1 oz)

Net carbs0.4 grams
Protein5.6 grams
Fat8.4 grams
Calories98 kcal
Calories from carbs 1%, protein 22%, fat 77%
Total carbs0.5 gramsFiber0.1 gramsSugars0.2 gramsSaturated fat4.7 gramsSodium225 mg(10% RDA)Magnesium10 mg(2% RDA)Potassium56 mg(3% EMR)

Ingredients (makes 10 servings, about 300 g/ 10.6 oz)

  • 225 g (8 oz) mackerel in olive oil (note this is the drained weight from 3 x 90 g/ 3.2 oz tins)
  • 1 tsp prepared horseradish or fresh grated horseradish
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard or yellow mustard
  • 2 tbsp cream cheese or soft goat's cheese (30 g/ 1.1 oz)
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice (30 ml)
  • 75 g unsalted butter, melted (2.7 oz)
  • sea salt and black pepper, to taste
  • Optional toppings: extra virgin olive oil, paprika, spring onions


  1. Prepare all the ingredients.
    Mackerel Pate with Horseradish
  2. Drain the canned fish, and add to a blender.
  3. Add the horseradish, mustard, black pepper, crème fraîche and lemon juice and blend to a paste.
    Mackerel Pate with Horseradish
  4. Pour in the melted butter and blend until smooth.
  5. Season to taste with salt.
    Mackerel Pate with Horseradish
  6. Serve with topped with a drizzle of olive oil, chopped spring onions or dill, and a sprinkle of paprika.
    Mackerel Pate with Horseradish

Ingredient nutritional breakdown (per serving, 2 tbsp, 30 g/ 1.1 oz)

Net carbsProteinFatCalories
Fish, mackerel, jack, canned, drained solids
0 g5.2 g1.4 g35 kcal
Horseradish, prepared
0 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Dijon mustard
0 g0 g0 g1 kcal
Cream cheese, soft (full-fat)
0.1 g0.2 g0.8 g7 kcal
Lemon juice, fresh
0.2 g0 g0 g1 kcal
Butter, unsalted, grass-fed
0 g0.1 g6.1 g54 kcal
Salt, sea salt
0 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Pepper, black, spices
0 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Total per serving, 2 tbsp, 30 g/ 1.1 oz
0.4 g5.6 g8.4 g98 kcal

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Dearna Bond
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Dearna Bond

Dearna is a passionate foodie and food photographer, and loves sharing her knowledge and enthusiasm for both via her food blog and online photography courses.

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Comments (4)

*Looks at pantry* I have everything, but horseradish... argh. I always keep tins of fish like mackerel, sardines, and anchovies. Lemon and lime juice. Ghee and/or butter. But I don't keep horseradish around just because a lack of interest in my household. We like it, but we don't actively look for it at the grocery store.
What could I possibly substitute it with? I don't have any wasabi either. I keep fresh things ginger root, turmeric, garlic...

Hi Christina, you could use some more Dijon mustard or even a bit of grated ginger. Turmeric goes really well with sardines or generally fish. I also like onion, ideally finely chopped for a bit of texture (not blended), and preferably red as it's a bit sweeter and goes better with fish. Spring onion is another option 😊

Looks delicious! Do you think I can sub any other tinned fish such as sardines for the mackerel?

Absolutely! Sardines will be a great alternative. You can add a pinch of turmeric and red onion which work well with sardines 😊