Learn to make sweet and savory honey garlic salmon in under 10 minutes. Perfectly seasoned and grilled to perfection, it’s a simple yet elegant dinner idea.
Why you’ll love this honey garlic salmon recipe
- Quick. Salmon filets are quick to cook. Like my air fryer salmon, this recipe also takes only 3-4 minutes of searing per side.
- Healthy and filling. Salmon is high in protein and low in carbs, making it a healthy and filling meal.
- It is so versatile. Because it is sweet and savory, it goes with various Asian sides, like Asian cucumber salad and asparagus stir-fry.
- Minimal ingredients. If you like my keto salmon, I am sure you’ll love this simple honey-garlic recipe made with a handful of ingredients.
- Balanced flavors. I love this dish for its balanced flavors! And because it is so irresistible, you’ll go in for seconds and thirds (like lemon pepper salmon and blackened salmon).
Build a smashing flavor profile using just ten common kitchen ingredients. Here’s the complete list of what you’ll need:
- Salmon. Cut the salmon into filets and debone the salmon using tweezers.
- Salt and pepper. To season.
- Paprika and cayenne pepper. For the heat. These peppers have a sweet-smoky heat that pairs wonderfully with the honey garlic flavor profile.
- Olive oil. You can use olive or any neutral oil of your choice.
- Honey. Use good quality organic honey for the best results. You can also use sugar-free alternatives for a low-carb meal.
- Garlic cloves. Use freshly minced garlic cloves for this recipe.
- Soy sauce. For a deep umami flavor.
- Lemon juice. It helps to brighten up the flavors beautifully.
How to make honey garlic salmon
- Prep the fish. Dry the salmon with a clean paper towel and season generously with salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, and paprika.
- Make the sauce. Combine lemon juice, soy sauce, minced garlic, and honey in a bowl.
- Cook the salmon. Cook salmon for 3-4 minutes per side in a hot non-stick frying pan with olive oil.
- Cook with sauce, garnish, and serve. Add sauce to the pan and sear the salmon in the sauce. Once the sauce thickens, remove the salmon from the pan, garnish with toppings.
What to serve with this dish
- Potatoes. Potatoes are always a simple yet delicious side dish. Try a baked potato or some crispy French fries.
- Vegetables. Whip up some air fried vegetables for a quick side. Broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots are all great options.
- Salads. You can never go wrong with a 7-layer salad, wedge salad, or a zesty Asian cucumber salad.
- Starches and bread. Make a hybrid meal with some French bread, coconut rice, or pasta.
- Cook with browned butter. Add browned butter with olive oil for a rich buttery taste.
- Chili variations. Add grated ginger and red pepper flakes for a warm heat. You could also use sriracha sauce instead of paprika and cayenne peppers.
- Add different herbs. Make a glaze with rosemary, sherry wine, and balsamic vinegar for a sweet-savory Italian-style salmon.
- Sauce variations. Make a honey-mustard, BBQ, katsu, or creamy-lemon glaze instead of honey-garlic sauce.
To store. Cover and keep the leftover or batch-prepped salmon in the fridge for 2-3 days.
To freeze. Freezing compromises the structure of salmon and makes it rubbery. So I advise against freezing.
To reheat. Reheat the salmon briefly in the microwave to enjoy it warm.
Recommended tools to make this recipe
- Non-stick cooking pan. The only way to ensure that you don’t get salmon-flipping nightmares!
- Cast iron skillet. If you have one of these (you should!), this makes the skin extra crispy!
- Tongs. To flip the salmon.
Recipe tips and tricks
- Avoid using frozen salmon. Frozen filets tend to be uneven, thin, and fragile. So, I highly recommend using fresh salmon for this recipe.
- Check the expiry date. Salmon goes bad quickly. So, you cannot prep ahead of time for this recipe. Buy fresh salmon up to one day in advance.
- Get your oil really hot. When you put your salmon in the pan, your pan and oil must be sizzling hot. This step will prevent the fish from sticking to the base.
- Start with uniform salmon filets. To ensure all filets are cooked evenly, start with salmon filets that are similar in weight and size.
- Tricks to flip the fish. Don’t flip the salmon too soon. After 3-4 minutes, gently nudge the salmon. If it moves, it is ready for a flip. Else, wait for a few seconds.
More seafood recipes to try:
Honey Garlic Salmon
- Slice the salmon into 4 fillets and remove the bones with tweezers.
- Pat dry the salmon with a paper towel. Season with salt, pepper, paprika, and cayenne on both sides.
- In a small bowl, combine the garlic, honey, soy sauce, and lemon juice, and set aside.
- Heat the non-stick frying pan with olive oil and cook the salmon for 3-4 minutes per side.
- Pour the sauce in the pan and cook until the sauce starts getting thicker, searing the salmon on all sides.
Frequently asked questions
For this recipe, you can use skinless or skin-on salmon filets.
Bake the salmon in the oven at 400F for 8-10 minutes and baste with sauce during the last 2-3 minutes.
Although I prefer using fresh salmon, you can use frozen salmon too. Ensure that you thaw and dry it before cooking.
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