Salmon is nutritious, delicious, and the perfect easy meal on a warm summer night.
I've included three of my favorite salmon recipes below — versatile grilled salmon packets for the grill, sweet and spicy pan-seared salmon cooked on the stovetop, and a salmon salad perfect for a delicious light summer lunch or dinner. The best part of the salmon salad? You can use leftovers from the first two recipes to make it!
All three of these recipes are kid-approved too! I have found that getting my girls involved in menu planning and nightly meal prep means they are way more likely to try new things — like salmon — and actually find out they like them!
At Macaroni KID, we skip the fluff and get straight to the good stuff. No need to scroll through pages of unnecessary content — our recipes are easy to find. Now let's get cooking!
Grilled Salmon Packets
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Grilled salmon packets are a flavorful and easy way to cook salmon while keeping it moist and tender. The packets help seal in the flavors and juices, resulting in a delicious and healthy dish. They're also very versatile — you can use any seasonings you like inside, from soy sauce to blackened seasoning! Here is a simple recipe for grilled salmon packets we love:
- 4 salmon fillets (6 ounces each)
- 4 Tbsp olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 lemon, thinly sliced
- 1 tsp dried dill (or 1 tablespoon fresh dill, chopped)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Optional: Additional fresh herbs, such as dill or parsley, for garnish
- Preheat your grill to medium-high heat.
- Tear off four large pieces of aluminum foil (or parchment paper), each big enough to wrap around a salmon fillet.
- Place a salmon fillet in the center of each foil piece.
- Drizzle 1 tablespoon of olive oil over each salmon fillet, ensuring it is evenly coated.
- Sprinkle minced garlic, dried dill (or fresh dill), salt, and pepper over each fillet. Place a few lemon slices on top of each salmon fillet.
- Fold the sides of the foil over the salmon to create a packet, making sure to seal the edges tightly.
- Place the salmon packets on the preheated grill and cook for about 10-15 minutes, or until the salmon is cooked through and flakes easily with a fork. Cooking time may vary depending on the thickness of the fillets.
- Carefully remove the salmon packets from the grill and let them rest for a minute or two.
- Open the packets carefully to avoid steam. Transfer the salmon fillets to serving plates, pouring any remaining juices from the foil over the fish.
- Garnish with fresh herbs, such as dill or parsley, if desired.
Serve the grilled salmon packets with your favorite side dishes, such as roasted vegetables, steamed rice, or a fresh salad.
Sweet & Spicy Pan-Seared Salmon
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Pan-seared salmon with a sweet and spicy glaze is a delicious and flavorful dish that combines the richness of salmon with a balance of sweet and spicy flavors. Here's the recipe:
- 4 salmon fillets (6 ounces each), skin-on
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 Tbsp honey
- 2 Tbsp soy sauce (or tamari for a gluten-free option)
- 1 Tbsp Sriracha sauce (adjust to taste for desired level of spiciness)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp grated fresh ginger
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Optional: Chopped fresh cilantro or green onions for garnish
A hot honey can also be used in place of the honey and Sriracha.
- Season the salmon fillets with salt and pepper.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the honey, soy sauce, Sriracha sauce, minced garlic, and grated ginger until well combined. Taste and adjust the amount of Sriracha sauce according to your desired level of spiciness.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
- Place the salmon fillets in the hot skillet, skin side down. Cook for about 4-5 minutes, or until the skin is crispy and the flesh starts to turn opaque around the edges.
- Carefully flip the salmon fillets using a spatula and reduce the heat to medium.
- Pour the sweet and spicy glaze over the salmon fillets (skin side), ensuring they are evenly coated.
- Let the glaze bubble and thicken slightly for about 1-2 minutes. The sauce reduces as it cooks.
- Continue cooking the salmon for 3-4 minutes, or until it reaches your preferred level of doneness. The salmon should be opaque and flake easily with a fork.
- Remove the salmon fillets from the skillet and transfer them to a serving plate. Serve skin side down and drizzle with the remaining glaze from the pan.
- Garnish with chopped fresh cilantro or green onions, if desired.
Serve the sweet and spicy pan-seared salmon with steamed rice, roasted vegetables, or a fresh salad for a complete and flavorful meal. Enjoy!
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Salmon salad is a healthy and delicious dish that combines flaky salmon with fresh ingredients and a flavorful dressing. Here's a recipe for a classic salmon salad that is the perfect light summer lunch or dinner. Bonus! You can use leftover salmon from the two other recipes included here.
Ingredients for the salad:
- 2 salmon fillets (6 ounces each), cooked and cooled
- 4 cups mixed salad greens
- 1 cucumber, sliced
- 1 bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1/4 cup sliced black olives
- Optional: Avocado slices, boiled eggs, nuts, or other vegetables of your choice
Ingredients for the dressing:
- 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tsp honey or maple syrup
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Prepare the salmon fillets by seasoning them with salt and pepper. (Use leftovers, or cook the salmon by grilling, baking, or pan-searing until it is cooked and flakes easily with a fork.) Let the salmon cool, then break it into large chunks.
- In a large salad bowl, combine the salad ingredients. Add any additional vegetables or toppings you desire, such as avocado slices, nuts, or boiled eggs.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the salad dressing ingredients.
- Drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss gently.
- Add the cooked and cooled salmon chunks to the salad, gently folding them in.
- Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
Brigette Schroeder is the publisher of Macaroni KID Yorkville - Geneva - St. Charles, Ill.