Easy Baked Salmon Recipe with Tips and Tricks on How Long to Bake Salmon, How to Store Leftover Salmon, and more.
Oven Baked Salmon
We were recently advised by our doctor to add omega-3 fatty acids to our diet, and try to include Baked Salmon at least once a week.
Our local supermarket has several Salmon offerings in the prepared foods section, but it is EXPENSIVE, and not in my weekly grocery budget.
Unprepared (not pre-seasoned) salmon though, from the Seafood Department, is much more affordable and in line with our weekly budget.
I’ve never cooked salmon before, so I began to search for an EASY OVEN BAKED SALMON RECIPE that I could personalize to my family’s taste preferences.
With our weeknight schedule, I need meals that are easy to prepare and that are fast to cook. We tried a few variations, and my crew voted this the BEST OVEN BAKED SALMON RECIPE of them all.
Health Benefits of Baked Salmon
I want to preface this section by reminding you that I am not a doctor or nutritionist. I am only sharing the information provided to my family by OUR doctors. Always consult your doctors first for your own personalized medical advice 🙂
We have a family history of heart disease on all sides – from great grandparents on down. I was just diagnosed with high blood pressure last year, and it was dangerously high. We are making many lifestyle choices to help lower blood pressure, low risk factors for heart disease, and more.
Our doctor suggested adding Salmon to our diets, specifically to help raise our good cholesterol level. He said that Salmon is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, can help raise good cholesterol levels, lower bad cholesterol levels, reduce risk of heart disease, help with weight management, and help reduce inflammation.
These are some tips and tricks I’ve found to help when preparing to bake salmon in the oven.
- Selecting Salmon at the Supermarket. TALK TO THE FISHMONGER. The seafood sections of the supermarkets typically are staffed with fishmongers. They are experts, and they can offer excellent advice on what types of salmon are available and which is best for the method you plan to use to prepare it.
- The fishmonger can remove the skin, if desired, and any remaining tiny bones, at the time of purchase.
- Bring the salmon to room temperature. I remove the salmon fillets from the refrigerator and set them out on the counter about 15-30 minutes before I’m ready to bake them.
- Line baking pan with foil before baking. Spray the foil with nonstick cooking spray to help prevent sticking. It also makes clean up significantly faster and easier!
- Skin or No Skin. You can bake salmon either way.
- WITH SKIN, TO EAT: Salmon skin is safe to eat, and does contain nutrients, but if you’re going to eat it, you want it crispy. When baking, you’ll need to add 1-2 minutes under a broiler to crisp up the skin so it’s not soft and rubbery.
- WITH SKIN, NOT EATING: After the salmon is baked, the skin can easily be removed. Leaving the skin on while baking can help lock in extra moisture. To remove the skin after baking, run your fish spatula right above the skin, and it should lift right off of the salmon fillet.
- NO SKIN: If you do not care to deal with the skin, you can have the fishmonger at the seafood counter remove the skin when you purchase it.
- Seasoning the salmon. Remove the salmon from its packaging. Use paper towels to gently blot the salmon fillets, removing excess moisture. Gently pat both sides (top and bottom) of the salmon with your desired seasonings. As shown in this recipe, I prefer to use salt (kosher, if you have it), pepper (Freshly ground if you have a grinder), minced garlic, honey, melted butter, oregano, and thyme.
- Bake. Bake in the oven until the internal temperature of the salmon reaches 145°F, as recommended by the FDA. I am terrified of food poisoning, so I ALWAYS use a food thermometer to test the internal temperature of food before serving. They’re quite inexpensive and provide excellent peace of mind that food has reached a safe temperature for consumption.
How to Make Salmon in your Air Fryer:
I received a NuWave Air Fryer as a gift last year, and I’ve been experimenting with preparing various foods in it. When I fried salmon in it, I seasoned it following this recipe, then placed the salmon fillets in the wire basket it came with. Mine had the skin removed, but if yours still has the skin, place it skin side down. I set the temperature of my Air Fryer at 450˚F for 7 minutes. This can vary, depending on the make and model of your air fryer and how thick your salmon fillets are. You do not need to preheat an air fryer.
What side dishes pair best with Oven Baked Salmon:
- 2 lemons, sliced thin
- 6 small salmon fillets (about 1/2 lb each)
- Salt & Pepper
- 6 tbsp. butter, melted
- 3 tbsp. honey
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp. Oregano
- 1 tsp. Thyme
Preheat oven to 350°.
Line pan with foil.
Spray foil lined pan with non-stick cooking spray
Lay lemon slices in bottom of pan
Sprinkle top and bottom of the salmon with salt and pepper
Then lay each section of Salmon to top of the lemon slices.
In a small mixing bowl, use a small whisk to combine the melted butter, honey, minced garlic, oregano and thyme.
Pour the garlic butter mixture over the salmon slices.
Place in preheated oven.
Bake until the salmon is cooked through, about 15 minutes.
Use a food thermometer to ensure the salmon has reached a safe consumption temperature of 145 degrees.
If eating the skin, you need to change the oven setting from bake to broil.
Broil for 2 minutes or until skin has reached desired level of crispiness.
How to store leftover salmon in the refrigerator:
To store leftover salmon in the refrigerator, place it in an airtight container. It can be safely stored in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.
How to store leftover salmon in the freezer:
To freeze leftover salmon, place it in an airtight container and LABEL with the date and name of contents. It can be safely stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. To thaw, place in the refrigerator the day before you plan to use, so it can safely unthaw in a cooled environment.
How to Reheat Leftover Salmon:
To reheat in a skillet: Use a non-stick skillet on medium heat. Add a dash of olive oil to help prevent sticking and provide a touch of moisture, so it doesn’t dry out. Cover with a lid so the salmon can steam for about 3-5 minutes, just until heated through. This is our preferred way to reheat oven baked salmon.
To reheat in the microwave: Warm on medium low power, just until warmed all the way through. Overheating can cause it to become rubbery.