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, then oven-roasted to perk up the flavors. The inside is incredibly 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-and-sour syrup. Tender baked vegetables are also added for more fiber and fresh flavors.
In this lemon pepper salmon recipe, the citrus flavor is complemented by the pepper. The browned butter is mixed into the lemony sauce and adds a nice kick of flavor to the salmon without making it too greasy.
If preferred, you can add some lemon zest to maximize the citrus flavor. Also, consider adding a drop of honey if you want to balance the acidity and tartness of the lemon.
If you enjoy bold and tangy flavors, you may also want to try Lemon Dill Salmon. For those craving something a bit more herby and savory, Pesto Salmon is the way to go.
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 the bowl with enough water to cover the fillets, and wait for at least 30 minutes until they’re defrosted.
How to Tell If Salmon Is Done?
No matter if 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.
Since salmon cooks quickly, baking it in the oven helps retain the heat but still maintains the short cook time. The oven-baking method ensures the salmon is cooked evenly from the inside out while adding little or no fat to it, especially when the top of the fillets are brushed with the sauce.
If you want to make sure the salmon is cooked through, pierce it with a fork to check if it flakes easily and the inside flesh is 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 which degree of doneness you want your salmon cooked to and adjust the cooking time accordingly.
How to Make
Step 1: Season the salmon
Season the 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 on 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 waiting, make the sauce.
Step 4: Make the sauce (1)
Add white wine and unsalted butter to a heated non-stick skillet over medium-low heat. Wait until the butter completely melts and 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. Pour the sauce over, 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℉ for 15 minutes each time, making it 30 minutes of baking time in total.
Cooking time always varies depending on the thickness of the fish fillets. For large, thick ones, you will probably need to add another 10-15 minutes to the cooking time.
To be safe, always put the baking sheet on the middle rack to avoid 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 vibrant and nutritious meal. To create a filling meal with lemon pepper salmon for your family, consider our below combinations.
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 an herby, savory Italian sauce and then mixed with Parmesan cheese, cashews, black olives, cherry tomatoes, basil, and spinach.
Everything comes 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.
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 it’s prepped clean without scales remaining. In other words, the choice is completely yours; you can bake salmon with skin either on or off.
As salmon skin helps lock in moisture, if you wish to keep the skin on, it's important to choose wild-caught salmon rather than farm-raised. Farm-raised salmon is comparatively more watery, so 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 during 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 warm 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 affect its texture significantly. One day prior to serving, thaw it in the refrigerator overnight before reheating it the next day.
Check out our easy salmon recipes for more delicious salmon ideas.
Lemon Pepper Salmon Recipe
This lemon pepper salmon recipe features flaky, juicy salmon and a buttery, tangy, sweet-and-sour sauce to give your body fuel and nourishment for a self-motivated day. Don't forget to add some freshly baked vegetables to pair with the salmon!
- cook TIME 45 mins
- prep TIME 5 mins
- total TIME 50 mins
- COURSE Main Course
- CUISINE American
- SERVINGS servings
- CALORIES 498 kcal
- 26 ozboneless salmon
- 0.5 tspsalt (divided)
- 10 ozbroccoli
- 2 tbspolive oil
- 2 tbspheavy cream
- 1 tbspparsley
- 0.3 tspground black pepper
- 3 tbspunsalted butter
- 1 tbspwhite wine
- 2 ozlemon (sliced)
- 1 tbsplemon juice
- 12 ozbaby potatoes
- 2 tbspwhole milk
Preheat the oven to 360℉.
Season the 26 oz boneless salmon with 1 tbsp lemon juice, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and 1/4 tsp ground black pepper. Set aside.
Toss the 12 oz baby potatoes and 10 oz broccoli with 2 tbsp olive oil. Transfer to a lined baking sheet, put it on the middle rack of the oven, and bake for 15 minutes
Add the seasoned salmon to the baking sheet together with the vegetables, put 2 oz lemon slices on top of the fish, and continue to bake for another 15 minutes. While waiting, make the sauce.
Add 1 tbsp white wine and 3 tbsp unsalted butter to a heated non-stick skillet over medium-low heat. Wait until the butter completely melts and turn off the heat.
Pour in 2 tbsp heavy cream, 2 tbsp whole milk, and 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and stir continuously until well combined and thickened.
Remove the salmon from the oven and transfer to serving plates. Pour the lemon butter sauce over. Garnish with parsley and serve hot.