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HOW TO Cook Salmon on the Grill

Grilled salmon is a sumptuous meal, especially if cooked with the best flavors. With a mixture of herbs and spices, you can make an irresistible meal for the whole family. Here, we have a salmon recipe for the grill that you can check for your next grilling sessions.

 Take note that even if you have the best fish to grill, it can flake easily if not cooked properly. So to make it easier for you, we’ve prepared this BBQ salmon recipe as well as a special grilled salmon marinade.

AuthorBill M.CategoryDifficultyIntermediate

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size 5

Servings 5


Amount Per Serving
Calories 248
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 2g4%
Saturated Fat 2g10%
Cholesterol 62mg21%
Sodium 592mg25%
Total Carbohydrate 4g2%
Protein 23g46%

Calcium 1.8%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Yields5 Servings
Prep Time30 minsCook Time10 minsTotal Time40 mins

How to choose the right salmon

Before you head to the market to get your salmon, make sure that you know these tips first. If you’re purchasing whole fish, check the eyes. It should have a clear appearance without a cloudy or sunken look. Also, look for a shiny skin that’s slippery to touch. Most of all, the gills should be bright red – an indication that the fish is still fresh.

How to choose the right salmon

Center cuts are the best since it has a thick chunk and excellent consistency. However, it may cost a little more than usual.

In case you want to skip the hassle of filleting, you can buy ready-to-cook salmon fillets. The key here is to poke the flesh. It should spring back and it shouldn’t catch your fingerprints. When it comes to the appearance, the flesh should be bright orange with a tinge of red.

Take note that salmons have different types too like Coho, Sockeye, King Salmon, and so forth. It all boils down to your preference for the red fish grill as long as it’s fresh.

Ingredients

 5 ounces of salmon fillet or meat
 1 ½ tablespoon of honey
 4 tablespoons of olive oil
 1 teaspoon of lemon zest
 1 ½ tablespoon of soy sauce
 2 teaspoons of thyme leaves
 2 tsp of chopped parsley
 ½ tsp of minced garlic
 ¼ tsp of pepper
 ½ tsp of salt
 a dash of cayenne (optional)

Equipment:

  1. Grill
  2. Oven
  3. Resealable bag / bowl

Feel free to explore other herbs and spices that you want for the marinade. You can experiment with the flavors to suit your taste on grilling salmon on BBQ.

Prepare salmon for grilling

If you purchased a whole fish, slice it and get the center. Make sure that you leave the skin side. It will prevent the barbecue salmon from flaking while reducing sticking. Also, pull out pin bones using fish pliers. If you don’t know how to do so, ask the fish store to do it for you.

How to Cook Salmon on the Grill

Don’t pre-heat your grill just yet! If you want a flavorful meal, you need to marinade the salmon fillets first. A basic marinade is made of olive oil, soy sauce, honey, lemon zest, and the other herbs listed above. Pat the salmon slices dry using paper towels before seasoning.

Take note that you should only use lemon zest and not the juice as it can cook the salmon while marinating. The zest just adds a little flavor without affecting the consistency of the salmon.

Marinade this for 30 minutes or so depending on how much you want the flavors to stick. Make sure to flip the salmon so the other side will also be marinated.

You can use a resealable bag to marinade the salmon so you can shake it easily. Don’t freeze the salmon as the temperature will affect its taste.
How to Cook Smoking Salmon on the Grill

How to cook

Once you marinated the salmon fillets, here are the following steps for cooking you should follow. This will reduce the flaking of the fish while maintaining crisp seared sides.

1

Fish out the salmon fillets out of the marinade. Don’t forget to set aside a tablespoon or two of the marinade for later.

2

Scrape the excess herbs and leaves from the salmon before grilling. This is to avoid burns, especially with garlic bits. It will leave a bad taste on the salmon.

3

Preheat your grill, be it electric or charcoal. Grilling salmon on gas grill is also possible. Set it in medium heat to avoid burning the fillets while leaving the inside raw. Also, brush the grates with some oil to prevent the salmon from sticking.

4

Cook the salmon fillets for 5 minutes on each side. Flip it repeatedly until the flesh has an opaque color. If your grill doesn’t reach a high temperature, apply oil multiple times to prevent the salmon from sticking into the grates. The best way to grill salmon is to not keep touching it.

5

Preheat the oven while you’re searing the salmon fillets. Set the oven in 425 degrees and prepare a pan with a spritz of a cooking spray. This will prevent the salmon from sticking into the pan.

6

Once the salmon has an opaque color from searing, transfer it to the pan you just prepared. Bake it for another 15 minutes until you see golden brown color. Salmon slices are cooked once it reaches an internal temperature of 145F. You can use a food thermometer if you’re afraid of burning the salmon.

7

After baking, get the marinade you set aside earlier. Brush it over the baked and grilled salmon fillets for an added savory taste. Grilled salmon doesn’t need to rest and you can eat it right away. Serve grilled salmon with lemon for the best taste.

8

If you prefer to use wooden skewers on tiny salmon slices, make sure that you soak it in water first.

Smoking salmon on the grill

If you want the classic smoky taste, there’s a different way of grilling your fish. Instead of going into mid-heat of around 425F, we will tone it down to 150F.

Also, you would have to use a pellet grill so you can use the flavored wood of your choice. Still, the best for seafood is Mulberry since it has a milder flavor that’s similar to apple wood. It’s perfect for most red fish grilling recipes.

The preparation and the marinating process are the same. Once you have the grill pre-heated, you would have to leave the salmon slices smoking inside the smoker grill for two hours. Make sure that you have a lid on to trap the smoke for even cooking.

After an hour and a half, open the lid and glaze the salmons with the marinade you set aside earlier. This will keep the smoked salmon moist and far from flaking.

This will take a lot of patience but worth it if you like the smoky grilled redfish recipes. It’s also best to grill large amounts of salmon to make the most out of the waiting time.

Grilled Salmon Recipe

Additional instructions

Do you want to master your salmon grilling skills? Here are some added hacks you should know:

*For crispy skin, grill the salmon with the skin side in contact with the grates. If you’re not a fan of crispy skin, grill it with the skin side on top.

*Avoid touching and prematurely flipping the salmon. The fillets or even cooking salmon steaks on BBQ will release itself from the grill once it’s ready.

*So when should you flip the salmon fillets? It’s best to turn it to the other side when the first side is 60% cooked.

*Use a flat spatula to flip the salmon. This will prevent flaking, especially if you grip the tongs too much.

*Beware of over-cooking. When white beads start to appear on the sides and surface of the salmon, it means that you’re cooking it too much. The rule of thumb is that you shouldn’t grill salmons beyond 10 minutes.

Grilled Salmon

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Do you have questions about grilling salmon? Here are some of the questions we received from our readers together with our answers:

Q: Can I grill frozen salmon?

A: Yes, but it will not taste the same as grilling fresh salmon.

Q: My grilled salmon keeps on flaking, what should I do?

A: One trick here is to keep the skin on while grilling. If you don’t want to eat the skin, you can peel it off using a flat spatula after cooking. Also, avoid drying the salmon too much. You can use a glaze to fix this problem.

Q: What is the best grilled salmon temperature? Low heat or high heat?

A: Well, if you want the typical grilled salmon steaks or fillets, you can stick to medium-heat. For smoking, you should cook the salmon in low heat of around 150F for an extended period.

Q: How long to cook salmon on the grill?

A: The rule of thumb is around 5 minutes for each side without going beyond 10 minutes for mid-heat cooking. For smoked salmon, you can go as long as two hours in low heat.

Conclusion

Grilling salmons is a flavorful way to enjoy a fish meal. It’s also easy to prepare and with a little more practice, you can master your BBQ salmon recipe. Soon enough, you can grill just about any fish.

Ingredients

 5 ounces of salmon fillet or meat
 1 ½ tablespoon of honey
 4 tablespoons of olive oil
 1 teaspoon of lemon zest
 1 ½ tablespoon of soy sauce
 2 teaspoons of thyme leaves
 2 tsp of chopped parsley
 ½ tsp of minced garlic
 ¼ tsp of pepper
 ½ tsp of salt
 a dash of cayenne (optional)

Directions

1

Fish out the salmon fillets out of the marinade. Don’t forget to set aside a tablespoon or two of the marinade for later.

2

Scrape the excess herbs and leaves from the salmon before grilling. This is to avoid burns, especially with garlic bits. It will leave a bad taste on the salmon.

3

Preheat your grill, be it electric or charcoal. Grilling salmon on gas grill is also possible. Set it in medium heat to avoid burning the fillets while leaving the inside raw. Also, brush the grates with some oil to prevent the salmon from sticking.

4

Cook the salmon fillets for 5 minutes on each side. Flip it repeatedly until the flesh has an opaque color. If your grill doesn’t reach a high temperature, apply oil multiple times to prevent the salmon from sticking into the grates. The best way to grill salmon is to not keep touching it.

5

Preheat the oven while you’re searing the salmon fillets. Set the oven in 425 degrees and prepare a pan with a spritz of a cooking spray. This will prevent the salmon from sticking into the pan.

6

Once the salmon has an opaque color from searing, transfer it to the pan you just prepared. Bake it for another 15 minutes until you see golden brown color. Salmon slices are cooked once it reaches an internal temperature of 145F. You can use a food thermometer if you’re afraid of burning the salmon.

7

After baking, get the marinade you set aside earlier. Brush it over the baked and grilled salmon fillets for an added savory taste. Grilled salmon doesn’t need to rest and you can eat it right away. Serve grilled salmon with lemon for the best taste.

8

If you prefer to use wooden skewers on tiny salmon slices, make sure that you soak it in water first.

HOW TO Cook Salmon on the Grill

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