Find out how to cook salmon in the oven with this super simple baked method. Quick, easy, healthy and delicious!
I’ve been cooking salmon for years as you can see on my salmon category recipes, you’ll find lots of salmon recipes that are great for weeknight dinners such as salmon recipes with melted butter, olive oil, minced garlic, lemon juice, fresh herbs and lots of seasonings. They’re so good!
Some of my favourite baked salmon recipes are: Garlic Butter Salmon in Foil Recipe, Blackened Salmon Recipe and Easy Chopped Salmon Salad. Or if you prefer, you can make this delicious Grilled Salmon too.
Today, I’m sharing with you my easy, simple tips on how to cook salmon. If you want a delicious, healthy and easy meal for dinner during the week, this oven baked salmon is perfect for you.
How to cook salmon in the oven
I make this oven baked salmon for weeknight meal very often. We all love it especially my little one. I love to bake salmon fillet because it’s very simple to make and it takes about 10 minutes to cook, depending on the thickness of your salmon. So, here is how I make it:
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F and place a rack in the middle of the oven. Then, line a baking sheet or a baking dish with parchment paper or if you prefer just use a cast iron skillet like a did. Remove salmon from the fridge and pat the salmon fillets with a paper towel to dry. This way olive oil will stick easily on top of the salmon as water and oil don’t mix.
2. Place salmon (salmon skin-side down – this is very important) in the baking sheet or cast iron skillet. Next, drizzle some oil over the top of each salmon fillet. Here you can use a pastry brush or your fingers to rub the oil all over the salmon.
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3. Season the salmon filets with salt, pepper and paprika (or Cajun seasoning) and transfer to the oven.
4. Bake for 10-15 minutes. It’s hard to say a precise cooking time, because it all depends on the thickness of your filets. So, check it after 10 minutes . If it’s not done cook for more 3 or 5 minutes.
5. Salmon is done when it reaches a minimum internal temperature of 145˚F. Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature. You also know if it’s ready when the salmon flakes easily with a fork. Before serving top with some fresh parsley or thyme.
How To Store Leftovers
- To Store: Transfer leftover salmon fillets to an airtight glass container and keep in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Or, portion them out into meal prep containers to have for lunches throughout the week.
- To Freeze: Allow leftovers to cool and place them in a freezer-safe food storage container. Store frozen for up to 3 months.
- To reheat: When this oven baked salmon is cooked, it is very delicate. As a result, you will want to be sure to reheat it gently to prevent it from over cooking and becoming dry. For best results when reheating, heat leftovers in a pan on the stove so the salmon stays crispy. You can also heat in the microwave along with some salad for a full meal at once. These Easy Salmon Recipes also will give you some inspiration on how to cook salmon and how to use your salmon leftover.
How to cook frozen salmon
- Fresh fish can be difficult to find, especially if you live in a remote area, away from oceans and lakes. In situations like these, buying frozen salmon filets is the best option.
- The good news is, even in its frozen state, salmon cooks very quickly. If you have time, you can thaw it in the refrigerator before cooking. Otherwise, season the fish according to your recipe, and increase the cooking time by 5 minutes.
- If you plan to baste the salmon with any type of sauce or glaze, wait to apply it until after the fish thaws. Otherwise, it won’t stick to the filet.
Frequently Asked Questions
The FDA states that once the salmon has reaches an internal temperature of 145°F at its thickest part, it is fully cooked.
If you don’t have a meat thermometer, you can check when your salmon is fully cooked, by using a fork to check if it the fillet flakes apart easily. Once it flakes, it’s fork tender and ready to be eaten.
Sometimes while your salmon fillet cooks, there’s some white liquid that comes out of them. The white liquid might look a little weird but not to worry, it’s perfectly fine to eat. The white stuff is called “albumin” and it’s just protein that solidifies as salmon cooks. If it bothers you, you can scrape it off the salmon as it appears or at the end.
First, choose the type of salmon, you would like to buy/cook. There are several types of salmon such as King salmon (Chinook), silver salmon (Coho), pink salmon, Atlantic salmon and so on. Any of these types of salmon can taste delicious baked in the oven. It depends on the size and thickness of your salmon fillet. If your fillet is thick, I would say about 15 minutes in the oven at 375F. But if it’s a normal size, I would say about 12-13 minutes or until the salmon flakes easily with fork.
Salmon is already a very flavourful fish and for this reason all seasonings you use to cook salmon in the oven will enhance even more the flavours.
My favourite seasonings to cook salmon with are: coarse salt, freshly ground black pepper, paprika, Cajun seasoning and some fresh herbs like fresh parsley, rosemary, oregano, or dill. Mm… Delicious!
For most cooking methods, it is best to cook salmon with the skin on. The only exception might be if you are stir frying salmon, but even then, you can leave the skin on if you want to.
Salmon skin is edible, although most people prefer not to eat it. It doesn’t have much flavor anyway. However, if you plan to eat the skin, try to purchase wild caught salmon. As a result, you can be sure that it will be free of any unnat
What should I serve with Oven baked salmon?
Like other types of fish, salmon pairs well with sides like potato salad, roasted cauliflower, mashed butternut squash, Savory Mashed Sweet Potatoes, risotto, and even pasta. It’s best to avoid heavy, starchy dishes like mashed potatoes.
How to Cook Salmon – Different Methods
When it is raw, salmon has very firm flesh. As a result, it holds up well under almost any type of cooking. It is possible to cook salmon using any of these cooking methods:
- Steaming — this method of how to cook salmon is the easiest way to keep your salmon moist with no added fats to cook it up. All you need is the salmon in a steamer basket.
- Poaching — this other method of how to cook salmon is also similar to steaming that there’s no added fats or oils to cook the salmon. This method is great for infusing flavour to the salmon.
- Grilling — If you love the smoky flavors of BBQ, grilling your salmon is the best method for cooking salmon and will give you the best results!
- Broiling — this is super quick and easy as well. It’s a great method if you want to cook a lot of salmon at once as you can fit a lot on a sheet pan if needed.
- Pan frying — this method will give you delicious crispy salmon but you’ll be using a lot of oil or butter.
- Pan searing — this method is quick but again, will require oil or butter.
- Baking — this method of cooking salmon is super hands off. Great for if you’d like to prepare side dishes as you can do both at once! You can bake it in a cast iron skillet or on a rimmed baking sheet.
More Salmon Recipes to Try:
- Easy Salmon Salad Recipe: This salmon salad is super light, fresh and healthy! The veggies are tossed in tangy lemon and Dijon dressing and it has the best ingredients
- Spicy Salmon Sweet Potato Skillet: This Spicy Salmon Sweet Potato Skillet recipe features perfectly seasoned and crispy salmon that is a great partner for the sweet potato and milted kale.
- Low-Carb Salmon Burgers with Avocado Coleslaw: This Low-Carb Salmon Burgers with Avocado Coleslaw recipe is an easy, quick, healthy and delicious meal that’s ready in 20 minutes!
- How to Bake Salmon: This Spicy Butter Salmon in Foil is made with melted butter and lots of spices. It’s cooked in 20 minutes, then broiled for the crispy finish!
How to Cook Salmon
- 3 medium skin-on salmon fillets
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Paprika to taste
- Fresh parsley to garnish chopped
- Preheat the oven to 375°. Place a rack in the middle of the oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or just use a cast iron skillet. Remove salmon from the fridge and pat the salmon fillets with a paper towel.
- Place salmon (skin-side dowin the baking sheet or cast iron skillet. Drizzle some oil over the top of each salmon fillet. Use a pastry brush or your fingers to rub the oil all over the salmon.
- Season with salt, pepper and paprika (or Cajun seasonin and transfer to the oven.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes. Time depends on the thickness of your salmon. So, check it after 10 minutes in the oven. Salmon is done when it gets at the minimum internal temperature of 145˚F. Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature. You also know if it’s ready when the salmon flakes easily with a fork.
- It’s important to pay dry the salmon so it browns nicely instead of steaming in the oven.
- I recommend keeping the skin on so the salmon stays moist. The skin is also edible and gets crispy when cooked in the oven.
- I recommend getting wild-caught salmon over farmed salmon.
- To store: Store leftover salmon in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
- To reheat: You can reheat salmon on the stovetop or microwave.
- To freeze: Freeze in a freezer-safe bag once the salmon fillets have reached room temperature. Freeze for up to 4 months.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.
Hope you like these tips on How to Cook Salmon. Enjoy!
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