Grilled salmon is ready in just 15 minutes. Simply brush with olive oil, sprinkle with spices, and grill. The skin is the best part!
Out of all my salmon recipes, this one is easily one of my favorites. I make it often - at least every other week. My kids don't really like salmon, but my husband and I love this fish.
When accompanied by an easy, make-ahead side dish such as broccoli salad, grilled salmon is one of the easiest dinners I make. And it's truly delicious!
Advantages of grilling
When using skin-on fillets (as you should!), nothing gets the skin crispier than grilling. And crispy salmon skin is wonderful - as you probably know, many Japanese restaurants serve salmon skin sushi rolls which are considered a delicacy.
In addition to making a truly crispy skin, grilling also keeps the fish exceptionally juicy. That is, as long as you don't overcook it (and we'll get to that soon).
The ingredients you'll need
The ingredients list for making grilled salmon is delightfully short! The exact measurements are listed in the recipe card below. Here's an overview of what you'll need:
Salmon fillets: I almost always opt for skin-on filets. The skin is actually my favorite part.
Olive oil: This is my favorite oil - it's so delicious. But if you're unsure about cooking with it, you can use avocado oil instead. It has a higher smoke point. Melted ghee is another tasty option.
To season: Kosher salt, black pepper, and garlic powder. If you opt for using fine salt, you should reduce the amount you use.
How to grill salmon with skin
It's so easy! Scroll down to the recipe card for the detailed instructions. Here are the basic steps:
1. You start by heating up your grill on medium and greasing it. You can use an outdoor grill, an indoor grill (including a dual-contact grill such as the one I use in the video below), or a grill pan. Grease the grill well to prevent the skin from sticking to it.
2. Next, brush the salmon fillets with olive oil on all sides and sprinkle them with the seasonings.
3. Place the fish fillets on the hot grill, skin side down. Cover and grill until the outside is crispy and the inside is fully cooked. This should take about five minutes per side. If using a dual-contact grill, it should take a total of five minutes.
How to make the skin crispy
To ensure the skin comes out crispy, place the fillets on the grill skin side down and allow them to cook, undisturbed, for the full five minutes. Then flip them carefully and finish cooking the other side.
Fish skin has a tendency to stick to cooking surfaces, so it's important to grease your grill well. And if using a grill pan or a dual-contact grill, make sure they're nonstick - truly nonstick with no scratches - and grease them before using.
What is a good seasoning for salmon?
I like to season this dish simply, with olive oil, kosher salt, black pepper, and garlic powder. Sage is also very good, but it will char on the grill. So in this particular recipe, I don't use it. But I do use it when making pan-fried salmon.
What to serve with grilled salmon?
Salmon is very versatile. You can serve it with any side dish you like. I often serve it, as mentioned above, with broccoli salad.
What about leftovers?
You can keep the leftovers in the fridge, in an airtight container, for up to 3 days. Reheat them very gently, covered, in the microwave on 50% power. You can also freeze the leftovers, wrapped in foil and sealed in freezer bags, for up to 3 months.
Sometimes, rather than reheat the leftovers and risk drying them out, I flake them and use them as a salad topping. They're very good as an added protein in this arugula salad.
More salmon recipes that you might enjoy
Baked salmon is really good. If you don't own a grill, it's a great option for making tasty, juicy salmon. And these pan-fried salmon steaks are amazing. They are my husband's favorite salmon dish, and for good reason.
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- Oil for the grill
- 4 (6 oz) salmon fillets, 1-inch thick, skin on
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon Diamond Crystal kosher salt (or ½ teaspoon fine salt)
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- Heat a grill, a nonstick grill pan or a nonstick dual-contact grill on medium. Grease it well.
- Brush each salmon fillet all over with olive oil and sprinkle it with kosher salt, black pepper and garlic powder.
- Place the salmon fillets on the grill, skin side down. Cover (you can loosely cover with foil if you don’t have a lid) and grill until the outside is crispy and the inside is fully cooked, about 5 minutes per side.
- If using a dual-contact grill (like I do in the video below), grill 1-inch-thick fillets for a total of about 5 minutes.