How To Perfectly Grill Salmon On The Bbq
If you love having backyard barbeques with friends and family, then a meal of grilled salmon should be on your list. Its healthy, nutritious, versatile, and super easy to make!
In this article, well cover everything you need to know about cooking salmon on your Napoleon grill. From the best salmon cuts for grilling, the most creative ways to season your fish, how to get an accurate salmon cooking temperature, to why you should leave the salmon skin on, and more!
How To Prevent Sticking And Falling Apart
The grill should be preheated to high heat, have clean grates, and you should apply oil to the grates before adding the fish. This will help create a nonstick surface. Make sure the surface of the salmon is dry before adding the seasonings and brush oil on both sides for extra insurance.
The key is to not move the fish once youve placed it on the hot grill grate. A crust should form, creating the characteristic dark char, and that is when the fish will naturally release from the grates. I find that the fish needs to be about 70% done cooking before you flip the salmon. If needed, carefully use a spatula to help unstick any stubborn areas when attempting to turn over.
How Do I Prepare Salmon For The Grill
Briefly brining your salmon before grilling it ensures that the fish is moist and flavorful, and it prevents the fillets from getting those funny little bubbles of white protein . For four fillets, you need two cups of water, one tablespoon of salt, and 10 minutes of brining you can easily do this while the grill preheats.
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How To Season Salmon:
There are many options for seasoning salmon to perfection! In this recipe, we use Italian seasoning and sea salt. A combination of garlic powder, onion powder, and paprika is also magnificent! Simply sprinkle your favorite seasonings liberally over the fish and youre good to go. Lemon pepper? Excellent option as well.
Easy Herbed Grilled Salmon
- 4 4 to 6 oz salmon fillets, skin removed
- 3 TBS extra virgin olive oil
- 3 TBS chopped fresh herbs
- 1-1/2 TBS fresh lemon juice
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
1. In a small bowl, whisk together the EVOO, herbs, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and pepper.
2. Rinse the salmon under cold water and pat it dry with paper towels. Place the fillets on a large plate and coat both sides with the oil and herb mixture. Set the salmon aside while you preheat your George Foreman contact grill.
3. Preheat the grill for approximately 5 minutes with the top closed. Place the salmon on the grill, close the top, and cook for 3 to 5 minutes. The internal temperature of the fish should be 145°F.
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Essential Tools We Recommend
For starters, youll need to decide the right type of grill for your cooking stylegas or charcoal. You cant go wrong with the Napoleon 18-inch Charcoal Kettle grill if cooking over briquettes or lump charcoal is in your future. If you decided to go for gas grills, look to the Weber Spirit II E-310. Short on patio space? Go portable with the Weber Q 1200 portable gas grill.
Prep The Fresh Salmon
Remove the salmon from the refrigerator and place the steaks on paper towels. Use another paper towel to dry the top of each steak off. Then, brush each steak with a bit of olive oil or unsalted butter to keep it from sticking on the grill. Now is the time to toss some salt, pepper, and your other choices of seasoning onto both sides of each salmon steak.
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How To Cook The Perfect Salmon In The Oven
I absolutely love cooking salmon in the oven so that its moist, flavorful and stays together well. Heres exactly how to bake this lemon garlic salmon so it comes out perfectly every time:
As a rule of thumb, its best to undercook rather than overcook your salmon so that it does not dry out.
Can You Cook Salmon From Frozen
Luckily, it is perfectly safe to cook salmon from a frozen state and, let me assuage any worries right now, it can taste as delicious as properly thawed and cooked salmon too. Ive found the secret is to use the power of a hot oven, a little foil, and a flavorful sauce to get you from frozen to dinner in 30 minutes.
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Grilling Salmon On A Gas Grill
Cooking salmon on a gas grill is absolutely the best choice. We all like a nice smoky flavor to our meat, but lets face it: over charcoal or wood, the flavor of the salmon is going to get overwhelmed, unless you use a marinade so strong that youre likely not tasting the fish anyway . Heres a basic rundown of what to do to get the most out of grilled salmon-
First off, you want to be sure of your fish. If you didnt catch the salmon yourself, you want to look for firm filets with deep color. They should look a little wet, and the cut edges should be smooth. Pale or ragged looking salmon is old salmon- move on. If you buy packaged fish, there shouldnt be any liquid visible Also, keep in mind that this is a mild fish. It wont smell all that strong if its fresh. Whole salmon should have bright red gills, clear eyes, and glossy skin.
Salmon is a skin-on fish. You wont have any trouble removing the skin after grilling if you dont want to eat it. This is recommended even for those who prefer the foil-packet method to avoid clean-up. Cooked salmon flakes easily, and the skin will keep your fish from crumbling apart during handling.
To check if your salmon is done, take a knife and pierce the thickest part of the meat. If its opaque and flakes easily when you tug a little, then its good to go. Salmon will cook a little after you remove it from the grill, so be careful not to overdo it or youll be serving up crispy fish-flakes.
How Prep Salmon For The Grill
For even cooking, you’ll want to let the salmon come to room temperature for 20 minutes before grilling.
Set the salmon on a paper towel-lined pan and pat dry. A dry surface speeds up the searing process and prevents sticking. If it’s marinated, blot off as much marinade as possible before grilling.
Right before placing it on the grill, lightly rub the salmon with olive oil on both sides, and sprinkle with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. Always season fish just before grilling to avoid moisture loss and flare-ups.
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Let The Grilling Begin
As soon as you feel that the gas grill is ready, adjust the heating to a low-heat setting. To get the best grilled salmon, start placing the marinated fillets with the skin side up. Close the lid of the gas grill for cooking. The cooking time for each side of the fillet is mentioned above. Once you feel that one side of the fillet is cooked perfectly, remove the lid and flip the fillets with a thin spatula. Repeat the same procedure for the skin side.
If you want to add another layer of taste, rub both sides with olive oil or butter. Also, dont forget to place the salmon pieces at an equal distance so that they cook evenly. If set at the right heating temperature, a one-inch thick piece takes 10 minutes to cook thoroughly.
The appearance of white beads on the salmons surface and sides indicate that the fish is now overcooking. Remove the fish immediately upon noticing these signs.
Is Frozen Salmon Healthy
Freezing salmon does not change the nutrient content. Although many people believe that fresh salmon is better for you, there is no scientific evidence that freezing fish changes its nutritional status and some argue that frozen tastes even fresher, especially when frozen at the peak of freshness.
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What To Serve With Grilled Salmon
Do you have a favorite grilling recipe, or a tip youd like to add? Leave a comment in the section and share below.
This post is sponsored by Weber Grills. As always, thank you for reading and supporting companies I partner with, which allows me to create more unique content and recipes for you. There are affiliate links in this post of which I receive a small commission. All opinions are always my own.
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How Do You Keep Salmon From Drying Out On The Grill
Use salmon fillet with skin on and place it on the grates flesh side down. The piece of salmon will immediately cling to the grates. And it will continue to cling tighter until its cooked enough to release its grip. Once this happens, you should be able to slip a spatula underneath it easily and turn it over.
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When Do I Know My Salmon Is Ready To Come Off The Grill
Your salmon steaks should be pink and somewhat translucent before you attempt to take them off the grill. You can also put a spatula underneath one steak and lift it slightly. Is it holding itself together well? If so, its a sign that its ready to come off. If the fish is still falling apart, then its probably not cooked enough yet.
Salmon will continue cooking for a few minutes after you pull it from the grill, just like steak does. Youll want to take it off the grill before its completely done to avoid cooking it too much. The final cooked temperature of salmon and other fish, according to the United States Department of Agriculture , is 145 degrees Fahrenheit. So, you should remove the grilled salmon when it reaches about 125-130-degrees. Allow it to rest for another five minutes before rechecking the temperature with a digital meat thermometer to see if it reaches 145 degrees.
Types And Sources Of Salmon
Salmon is mainly a cold water fish that swims in the northern Atlantic and Pacific oceans and the rivers that feed these oceans. Salmon swim in saltwater and return to freshwater to spawn. This rigorous lifestyle makes the flesh of salmon meaty and slightly oily. The salt and fresh water habitats give salmon a uniquely flavored flesh that has a slight sweetness to it.
The most common types of salmon that you will find in your market are Atlantic and Pacific salmon that include Coho, Sockeye, King, and Chinook. Each has a slight difference in flesh density and color. King salmon fillets are orange colored and have a softer flesh. Sockeye has a deeper red flesh that is denser.
You can find either wild-caught or farm-raised salmon. Wild- caught salmon is preferable, yet it is more expensive than farm-raised. Much of the salmon on the market today is sourced from farms.
There is much debate as to whether farmed salmon is dangerous to consume. Some farms feed the salmon processed pellets of low quality fish meal and plant based nutrients in alarmingly crowded conditions. On these farms the fish do not have room to swim freely. Their flesh may not develop the rich orange or red flesh we associate with salmon. Therefore, some harvesters and processors will add food coloring to the flesh before it goes to market.
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Do You Have To Flip Salmon On The Grill
There is no need to flip. Unless you have a well seasoned cast iron grill or one of the really cheap portable grills with thin grates, the flesh of the salmon will most likely stick. To avoid the sticking panic cook salmon skin side down and dont flip. Grill approximately 8 minutes per inch of thickness.
Important Points To Remember
Remember, preparing the best grilled salmon is easier said than done. Slight carelessness can result in a salmon that is undercooked and not as good as the dish can be. Before you go about cooking a salmon, keep a few essential tips in mind.
- Avoid overcooking the salmon
- Frequent turning will tear the flesh
- Dont forget to purchase salmon with its skin on
Considering the factors mentioned above will help you in ensuring that the salmon is well-cooked and ready for consumption.
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How Long Do You Cook Costco Burgers On The Grill
Place the seasoned, frozen patties on the grill and cook for 3 to 5 minutes, flipping halfway through. Keep an eye on the situation while it sizzles and cooks. If a flare-up occurs, yell oh mom!! and take the burgers to a different location while you wait for things to calm down. Cooking time: 15 to 25 minutes total.
Tips For The Best Grilled Salmon Recipe
- Keep a close eye on the salmon while it cooks, since the total cooking time will vary depending on the size and thickness of your fillet, as well as the temperature of your grill. You’ll know that the fish is done when the flesh flakes easily with a fork. You don’t want to overcook it or the salmon will become dry.
- While the FDA recommends cooking fish to 145°F, for a flakier, more moist and tender salmon filet, many chefs find that it’s best enjoyed when it’s cooked to medium 125°F. We don’t usually use a thermometer, but instead look to see that the texture of the fillet flakes easily with a fork and the inside changes from translucent to opaque .
- Grilling the salmon over medium heat gives it that delicious, charred exterior while keeping the inside moist and tender.
- Leave the skin on the salmon when grilling. This adds flavor and moisture, and helps hold the fillets together. It will peel off easily before serving.
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How Thick A Salmon Should Be
One of the main ways to determine how long you should cook your salmon on the grill is to know the thickness. For thinner cuts, you might want to check it a few minutes before the timer.
Thinner cuts like the ones made with 1-inch thickness usually cook on or before the 10-minute mark. So make sure to check the salmon before the set time or the recipe that you are following.
Thicker salmon cuts usually cook somewhere between 14 to 15 minutes, with some even getting to 18 minutes of cooking. So make sure that you check it, but not too frequently.
Ensure to check the salmon whenever needed but do not frequently open the grill lid as it will quickly lose heat. Just time the cooking process and then check when you think it is done.
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Moisture Is The Enemy
Cover the salmon in paper towels to help remove excess moisture from the surface. If its not dry enough when it hits the grill, it will take more time to evaporate the water instead of instantly charring, which is what you want. I find that chill in the refrigerator when wrapped in paper towels keeps the fish together when cooking with more success than if at room temperature.
The Best Salmon For Grilling
This recipe for grilled salmon doesnt call for fancy marinades or mercurial methods. All thats needed is quality ingredients and a hot grill.
The main question is, which salmon is best?
I prefer wild-caught salmon because it has more flavor, but if youre dealing with eaters who are mild fish fans, a quality farm-raised salmon will have a more mellow flavor. Like any protein, higher fat fish yields a more buttery bite. Salmon caught in the wild have to work harder than farm-raised, so they tend to be leaner and more fish-like in taste.
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