Teriyaki sauce is so wonderfully flavorful, and it goes perfectly with bold-flavored fish such as salmon.
This easy recipe is oven-baked and it's ready in just 25 minutes! Even the leftovers are great, especially when flaked cold over a salad.
I love teriyaki sauce. It's so very flavorful. I just don't like how overwhelmingly sweet it can be sometimes. So I developed this tasty recipe that uses just a bit of honey. It's really good!
I use this sauce when making teriyaki chicken wings and teriyaki chicken drumsticks, and I also use it on salmon. Savory-sweet and intensely flavored, this is one of my favorite ways of preparing this flavorful fish.
Here's an overview of what you'll need to make oven-baked teriyaki salmon. The exact measurements are included in the recipe card below.
For the glaze:
Soy sauce: I use reduced-sodium soy sauce in most of my recipes. You can use a gluten-free alternative.
Cornstarch: Acts as a thickener for the sauce. I only use 1 teaspoon.
Dry white wine: Classic teriyaki recipes typically call for using sake, but I don't usually have that on hand, and white wine works perfectly well.
Honey: Just one tablespoon to add a bit of sweetness.
Minced garlic and minced ginger: You can mince them by hand for the optimal flavor, or use the stuff that comes in a jar. Just don't use the powders - they're not as potent or as tasty.
For the fish:
Salmon fillets: I like to use skin-on fillets because I think the skin is delicious. But you can use skinless fillets too.
Oil spray: I usually use avocado oil - it's a good oil with a neutral flavor. You can brush the fish pieces with oil instead of spraying them.
Sesame seeds: Used purely for garnish, but they do make the dish look aesthetically pleasing. Sometimes I also sprinkle the finished dish with chopped green onions or with a bit of parsley.
It's surprisingly easy to make teriyaki salmon. Scroll down to the recipe card for detailed instructions. Here are the basic steps:
First, bake the salmon fillets until they are cooked through. You can also broil the salmon instead of baking it. Broiling is simply a faster method, but both methods work.
While the fish is in the oven, prepare the teriyaki sauce: Mix its ingredients in a small saucepan, then heat the mixture over low heat, whisking often, until it thickens. This happens fast - just a few minutes.
To finish the dish, brush the cooked fillets with the teriyaki sauce, sprinkle them with sesame seeds, and serve.
The sauce tends to thicken fast and without warning, and if you don't watch it closely, it can thicken too much. So keep an eye on it while you heat it up and remove it from the heat as soon as it thickens.
Frequently asked questions
It's a rich and sticky salty-sweet sauce that originated in Japan. Traditionally, its main ingredients include soy sauce, sake, sugar, and ginger. It's used as a marinade or glaze for many dishes, including meat, poultry, fish, and even vegetables.
The white stuff coming out of the salmon is albumin, a protein that remains liquid in the raw fish, but coagulates when the fish is heated.
It's fine to eat it - it's just not aesthetically pleasing. The best way to minimize it is to cook the fish gently and avoid overcooking it.
I don't. I like to keep things quick and simple, so I bake it, make the sauce separately, then brush the sauce on the cooked salmon. It's very tasty!
It's really your choice! Both are excellent methods. I usually bake it, but broiling is faster and saves you from the need to preheat the oven. It's truly up to you. Here's a recipe for broiled salmon.
You can keep the leftovers in the fridge, in an airtight container, for up to 3 days. Reheat them gently, covered, in the microwave on 50% power.
Leftovers do tend to dry out when reheated. So I prefer to crumble them up and use them as a salad topping the next day for my lunch. Delicious!
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Easy Teriyaki Salmon
- 2 tablespoons light soy sauce (or use a gluten-free alternative)
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons dry white wine (or sake)
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger root
- 4 (6 oz) wild salmon fillets
- Olive oil spray
- 1 teaspoon sesame seeds for garnish
Cook the salmon:
- Preheat your oven to 425 degrees F and position a rack in the middle of the oven.
- Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and spray it with oil. Place the salmon pieces on the foil and lightly spray them with oil. Bake until cooked to 145°F, 12-15 minutes.
Make the sauce:
- While the salmon is in the oven, in a small saucepan, whisk together the soy sauce and cornstarch. Add the white wine, honey, minced garlic and minced ginger, whisking to combine.
- Heat the glaze over medium-low heat, whisking often, for 3-4 minutes, until it thickens into a syrup. Remove from heat.
Finish the dish:
- Remove the cooked salmon fillets to a serving platter. Brush them with the teriyaki glaze, sprinkle with sesame seeds, and serve.