This simple lemon pepper salmon recipe features baked potatoes and an amazing lemon butter sauce. Another exquisite choice to satisfy your salmon obsession.
Fish— especially salmon— goes very well with lemon, and today’s dish is no exception.
Salmon is delicately spiced with lemon juice, butter, salt, and pepper, and then oven-roasted to perk up all flavors. The inside is so tender and juicy, while the edges give just the slightest bit of crispiness, creating a perfect texture contrast.
Is Lemon Pepper Salmon Healthy?
Yes, it is.
This lemon pepper salmon is packed with healthy fats and protein, especially Omega-3 fatty acids. The flaky and juicy salmon is basted with a buttery, tangy, sweet-sour syrup. Tender baked vegetables are also added for more fiber and fresh flavors.
In this lemon pepper salmon recipe, the citrus flavor is truly elevated with pepper. The browned butter is mixed through the lemony sauce and adds a nice kick of flavor to the salmon without making it too greasy.
If prefer, you can add some lemon zest to maximize the citrus flavor. Also, consider adding a drop of honey if you wish to balance the acidity and tartness of the lemon.
Ways to Cook Frozen Salmon
For this lemon pepper salmon, you can use either fresh or frozen salmon.
To prepare frozen salmon, simply wrap the frozen fish fillets tightly in cling film and put them in a large mixing bowl. Fill water to the bowl just enough to cover the fillets and let them sit like that until completely thawed.
How to Tell If Salmon Is Done?
No matter raw or cooked, salmon always delivers a beautiful and mild taste without a fishy smell. This time, we want to give it a richer taste with an extra layer of smokiness.
As salmon cooks fast, cooking salmon in the oven helps retain the heat and shortens the cooking time. The oven-baking method ensures that the salmon is cooked evenly from the inside out— especially when the top of the fillets are brushed with the sauce.
If you want to make sure that the salmon is cooked through, pierce it with a fork to check if it flakes easily and the inside flesh turned opaque and slightly pink.
To make it easier, simply invest in an instant thermometer. As long as the thickest part of the salmon reaches 145℉, you’re good to go.
Note that when the flakes are easily separated but the meat is translucent, it means the salmon is rare but edible. So, what you need to do is decide to which degree of doneness you want your salmon to be cooked and adjust the cooking time correspondingly.
How to Make Lemon Pepper Salmon
Step 1: Season the salmon
Season salmon with lemon juice, salt, and ground black pepper. Set aside.
Step 2: Bake the vegetables
Toss baby potatoes and broccoli with olive oil. Transfer to a lined baking sheet put in the middle rack of the oven, and bake for 15 minutes at 360℉.
Step 3: Bake the salmon
Add the seasoned salmon to the baking sheet together with the vegetables, put lemon slices on top of the fish, and continue to bake for another 15 minutes. While in waiting, make the sauce.
Step 4: Make the sauce (1)
Heat butter in a non-stick skillet over medium-low heat until melted. Add white wine and lemon juice for about a minute. Turn off the heat.
Step 5: Make the sauce (2)
Pour in heavy cream, whole milk, and salt. Stir continuously until everything’s well combined and thickened.
Step 6: Serve
Remove the salmon from the oven. Garnish with parsley and serve hot.
How Long to Bake Salmon Fillets?
In this lemon pepper salmon recipe, we baked the salmon twice at 360℉, each took 15 minutes— making it 30 minutes of baking time in total.
Cooking time always varies depending on the thickness of the fish fillets. For large and thick ones, you will probably need to add some more 10-15 minutes to the cooking time.
To place it safe, always put the baking sheet in the middle rack for less chance of burned or unevenly cooked salmon. If in doubt, simply pause the bake and check the salmon with a fork as instructed in the above section.
What to Serve with Salmon Lemon Pepper?
This meal is perfect for feeding your family a festive and nutritious meal. To create a perfectly fulfilling meal with lemon pepper salmon for your family, consider our below combination.
1. Pesto Pasta Salad
For a refreshing and hearty side dish, try pairing lemon pepper salmon with this pesto pasta salad. Al dente pasta is tossed with a herby and savory Italian sauce and then mixed with parmesan cheese, cashew, black olives, cherry tomatoes, basil, and spinach.
Everything puts together in 25 minutes. It’s simply bursting with great flavors and textures!
2. Lemon Water
After all those big flavors, why don’t we wrap it up with invigorating lemon water? We highly recommend taking small sips of this lemon water to reset your taste buds when enjoying your meal.
It’s an easy dose of vitamin C to keep you hydrated and stimulate digestion. Try and give us your thoughts!
How to Make Lemon Pepper Salmon
- 26 oz boneless salmon
- 1/2 tsp salt divided
- 10 oz broccoli
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp heavy cream
- 1 tbsp parsley
- 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
- 3 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 tbsp white wine
- 2 oz lemon sliced
- 1 tbsp lemon juice divided
- 12 oz baby potatoes
- 2 tbsp whole milk
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- Preheat the oven to 360℉.
- Season salmon with 2 teaspoons of lemon juice, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and ground black pepper. Set aside.
- Toss baby potatoes and broccoli with olive oil. Transfer to a lined baking sheet, put in the middle rack of the oven, and bake for 15 minutes
- Add the seasoned salmon to the baking sheet together with the vegetables, put lemon slices on top of the fish, and continue to bake for another 15 minutes. While in waiting, make the sauce.
- Heat butter in a non-stick skillet over medium-low heat until melted. Add white wine and 1 teaspoon of lemon juice for about a minute. Turn off the heat.
- Pour in heavy cream, whole milk, and 1/4 teaspoon of salt, stir continuously until well combined and thickened.
- Remove the salmon from the oven. Garnish with parsley and serve hot.
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1. Is Salmon Skin Edible?
Yes, salmon skin is edible.
For salmon dishes, there is absolutely no need to remove the skin— as long as the skin is prepped clean without scales remain. In other words, the choice is completely yours, you can bake salmon either with skin on or off.
As salmon skin helps lock moisture, if you wish to keep the skin on, it’s important to go for wild-caught salmon rather than a farm-raised one. Farm-raised salmon is comparatively more watery, thus keeping the skin on could make the whole dish mushier than it should be.
In reality, after the salmon is cooked, the skin peels off very easily. So if you prefer a baked salmon without skin, simply discard it before serving. Otherwise, select skinless salmon at the grocery store or remove it right in prepping.
2. How Many Calories Are in Lemon Pepper Salmon?
This lemon pepper salmon has 480 calories per serving.
3. How Long Does Lemon Pepper Salmon Last?
Cooked lemon pepper salmon can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3-5 days in the fridge. You can reheat it in the microwave in individual portions after letting it come to room temperature.
In addition, you can also mix the cold salmon with some mayo, herbs, and spices, and enjoy it as a cold seafood salad.
4. Can You Freeze Lemon Pepper Salmon?
Yes, you can.
This lemon pepper salmon can freeze for up to two months— though, obviously, freezing salmon will significantly affect its texture. One day prior to serving, thaw it in the refrigerator overnight before reheating it the next day.