This stuffed salmon recipe features a creamy cheese and spinach filling enveloped in perfectly cooked fish. It’s quick to make and easy to customize!
I love serving fancy-looking restaurant-worthy dishes for my family. But even then I like to keep my recipes easy and quick.
This cheese and spinach-stuffed salmon is one of my go-to’s when I need to put together a presentable dinner in no time.
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Why this recipe works
Like my stuffed chicken breast recipe, this salmon version is one of my family’s favorite meals. It is fancy enough for an elegant weekend meal but also quick to make when you need dinner on the table quickly!
- It’s easy but impressive. Salmon stuffed with spinach and cheese looks like a lot of work. But it takes under 25 minutes to make.
- Pan-fry it or oven-bake it. If you prefer baking your food instead of standing by the stove, bake the stuffed salmon. All you need to do is to adjust the baking time (we often do this with lemon pepper salmon).
- It’s low carb. Both salmon and the cheesy spinach filling are low in carbs which makes this dish a great option if you are looking for a low carb dinner idea.
Every bite of this stuffed salmon recipe features perfectly cooked flaky fish with a creamy cheesy spinach filling. It’s no wonder my family requested it every week! Here is everything you’ll need.
- Salmon fillets. Use skinless fillets for this recipe. Try to get even-sized thick fillets.
- Olive oil. To rub over the salmon fillets before cooking them.
- Butter. I like to sear my salmon in butter as it creates a richer flavor with nutty undertones.
- Salt and pepper. To taste.
- Lemon juice. Finishing the salmon off with a splash of lemon juice gives it a refreshing citrusy kick.
For the spinach filling.
- Spinach. I use baby spinach for this recipe. You can use regular spinach if you like.
- Cream cheese. To provide a creamy base for the filling.
- Parmesan cheese. Grated parmesan provides a richer cheesy flavor.
- Italian seasoning. This aromatic blend of dried herbs pairs well with all components of this dish, enhancing its earthy flavor.
- Salt and pepper. To taste.
How to make spinach stuffed salmon
Making stuffed salmon recipes is actually very easy. It doesn’t call for much cooking skills and technique. Here’s how you make it in three easy steps.
Step 1 – Prepare the salmon fillets
Pat dry the salmon fillets and rub some olive oil on them. Season with salt and pepper on both sides. Make slits in the fillets lengthwise. The cuts should be deep enough to fit some filling but not as deep as to cause the salmon to break.
Step 2 – Make the filling
For the filling, saute the spinach with a splash of water. Drain and add to a mixing bowl. Add the cream cheese, parmesan cheese, and Italian seasoning. Season with salt and pepper and mix well.
Step 3 – Stuff and cook
Divide the filling into 4 parts and start stuffing the fillets. Use a toothpick to secure the ends if needed.
Add butter to a non-stick pan. Once the butter is hot, add the stuffed fillets and cook them on medium heat for 6 to 7 minutes per side.
Drizzle the spinach-stuffed salmon with lemon juice and remove from the heat. Serve with your favorite side dish.
Can I make this in the air fryer?
Just like regular salmon, you can totally make this dish in the air fryer. Air fryer stuffed salmon will yield a tender and crispy exterior on the fish. Also, air frying the salmon will cut down on the added oil.
To air fry, add the stuffed salmon to a greased air fryer basket. Air fry at 200C/400F for 11 minutes.
- Use center-cut salmon fillets. The centerpieces of salmon are thicker and work well for stuffing.
- Check the internal temperature. If you are not sure if you have cooked the salmon to perfection, insert an instant-read thermometer into the fillet. The salmon is ready when the thermometer reads 145F degrees.
- Make it more cheesy. Add shredded mozzarella to the cream cheese filling for a richer texture and flavor. You can also add feta cheese.
- Prepare the filling ahead of time. You can prepare the cheese filling up to 2 days in advance and store it in the fridge. Having the filling ready will make the dinner preparation even faster.
What to serve with salmon
This dish is quite wholesome in and of itself. But if you are looking for a light side dish to go with it, you can choose from mashed, roasted, or scalloped potatoes. Salmon also goes well with asparagus and sauteed Brussels sprouts. If you want something fresh, a green salad is always a good choice.
- To store. Transfer leftover stuffed salmon to an airtight container and store it in the fridge for up to 3 days.
- To reheat. The best way to reheat cheese-stuffed salmon is in the fridge. Loosely cover the fish with foil and reheat it in the oven preheated to 300F degrees.
- To freeze. You can also freeze leftovers too. Once the salmon cools, transfer it into an airtight container or bag and freeze it for up to 3 months. Defrost the salmon in the fridge before you reheat it.
Frequently asked questions
This spinach-stuffed salmon tastes delicious when seasoned with salt and black pepper, as it lets the filling shine. But you can always add more spices if you want to. Garlic powder, paprika, mustard powder, onion powder, and chili powder are great spices to pair with salmon.
If you have decided to cook this spinach and cheese-stuffed salmon in the oven, bake it for 20 minutes or until the internal temperature of the fish is 145F.
Salmon and most seafood go perfectly with dry white wine. Serve it with a glass of Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, or another crisp white wine of your choice.
- Pat dry the salmon fillets then drizzle the olive oil over them. Season both sides with salt and pepper.
- Cut slits in the salmon lengthways, ensuring you don’t cut too deeply so that the salmon breaks.
- In a small saucepan, saute the spinach with 1 tablespoon of water until wilted.
- Drain the spinach then add it to a bowl. Add the cream cheese, parmesan cheese, and Italian seasoning, and mix well.
- Stuff the salmon fillets with the spinach filling and if needed, use a toothpick to seal the ends.
- Add the butter to a non-stick skillet and place over medium heat. Once hot, add the salmon fillets and cook for 12-15 minutes, flipping halfway through. Once the salmon is almost done, add the lemon juice, then remove off the heat.
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