In a foil packet, this Baked Salmon in Foil combines bright notes of lemon, garlic, and sumptuous butter to create a dreamy dish that comes together right in your oven!
This is the ideal light Sunday supper that you can prepare and serve in no time! Baked salmon that is addicting, rich, and delicious for the entire family!
The dog days of summer necessitate a meal that is light, quick, and delicious.
We’re in the thick of salmon season, so now is the best time to get your hands on some fresh, wild-caught fish!
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WHY YOU’LL LOVE THIS RECIPE!
Just because this salmon is a great Sunday dinner option doesn’t mean it will take you hours to prepare!
This recipe takes only 25 minutes to prepare and is ideal for any day of the week. What’s not to love about this?
- It’s stunning! When the fresh salmon is baked with lemon slices and garlic sprigs, it creates a show-stopping dish when it comes out of the oven.
- It’s simple to clean! Because the salmon is baked in a foil packet, cleanup is a breeze.
- So delectable! Did I mention how delicious this dish is? The lemon enhances the salmon and garlic flavors, and the butter makes it irresistible.
WHAT IS BAKED SALMON IN FOIL?
Baked salmon in foil simply refers to wrapping a salmon fillet (or fillets) in tin foil and baking it in the oven.
The tinfoil boat traps steam for the salmon, allowing it to cook evenly throughout and infusing it with whatever ingredients you flavor it with.
VIDEO RECIPE: BAKED SALMON IN FOIL
WHY BAKE SALMON IN FOIL?
I’m rarely rewarded for so little effort as I am when I make easy baked salmon recipes like this baked salmon in foil.
It’s dead simple, but it’s so delicious and good for you.
- The foil seals in moisture, ensuring that your beautiful piece of salmon is flakey, moist, and tender every time. To make this recipe successfully, you don’t need to have ever cooked a piece of fish before.
- Flavors are incubated in foil. Whatever delicious ingredients you put in the foil with the fish infuse their way into every savory bite.
- Salmon – You can use fresh or frozen salmon; just make sure to thaw it first in the fridge or under cold water. It’s also your choice whether to use wild-caught or farm-raised salmon, though they cook slightly differently. (For more information, see Tips & Recipe Notes.)
- Olive oil is an excellent cooking oil, and I prefer extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). Because you won’t be using much of it, it can be replaced with whatever you have on hand.
- Lemon – Gives the salmon a bright, delicious flavor. Lemon slices infuse the fish with citrus notes.
- Unsalted butter – This helps to keep the salmon moist and juicy. Use your favorite brand, but European butter for a richer flavor.
- Garlic – Finely minced to evenly distribute that classic, savory flavor across the fish. You can also use store-bought minced garlic, but it won’t have the same fresh flavor.
- Salt and pepper – An absolute must for any dish! All of the amazing flavors are accentuated by salt and pepper!
HOW DO YOU BAKE SALMON IN FOIL?
- The first step is to acquire a baking sheet or tray with 1-inch high sides. Even if you wrap your salmon tightly in foil, you’ll need a baking sheet with sides in case there is any leakage.
- When wrapping my salmon, I use two sheets of foil to ensure that it completely wraps around the width of the fillet.
- When your sauce is finished, drizzle it over your fillet. Then, using a brush or spatula, coat the entire fillet with the sauce, allowing the beautiful flavors to cook right through the fish, resulting in an incredible sweet, garlicky, and salty flavor.
- Season your salmon with salt and pepper, then tightly wrap it, sealing the edges together to create a perfect seal to prevent any sauce from seeping through any gaps. You want your sauce to REMAIN IN YOUR FISH, don’t you?
HEALTH BENEFITS OF BAKED SALMON
- Salmon contains omega-3 fatty acids, which can help reduce inflammation, blood pressure, and disease risk factors.
- It’s high in protein, potassium, and selenium, a mineral that protects bone health, improves thyroid function, and lowers cancer risk.
- Salmon can also help lower the risk of heart disease, aid in weight management, and protect brain health.
HOW TO KNOW WHEN SALMON IS DONE BAKING?
The question that so many newcomers to fish cooking are afraid to ask! Here are some helpful hints for determining when your salmon is done.
- Check for doneness by inserting a sharp knife into the thickest part of your baked salmon piece. It’s done when it starts to flake but still has a little translucency in the middle, or when your salmon flakes easily with a fork.
- The best option is to use an instant read thermometer, such as this one. The FDA recommends that fish be cooked to an internal temperature of 145 degrees F.
- I’ve discovered that salmon and other fish continue to “cook” after they’ve been removed from the oven. I usually remove my salmon early (between 137 and 140 degrees F), cover it with foil, and rest it for about 5 minutes. The resting period allows the fish to warm up to 145 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Depending on the cut of salmon, it will most likely be pink when done, and some varieties, such as coho, are naturally a very deep, almost ruby pink. The key feature is that it is opaque and easily flakes. If it’s a translucent pink, it’s probably not finished. Testing with an instant read thermometer, once again, will eliminate any doubts.
STORING & REHEATING
- This delicious baked salmon will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days! To maximize the quality, make sure it’s completely cooled before storing it in an airtight container.
- Freezing is not recommended to maintain the best flavor and texture of the salmon. To avoid ice crystals, use a good quality freezer bag or an airtight container wrapped in plastic or foil. Cooked salmon can be stored in the freezer for up to 6 months. A slow defrost in your refrigerator overnight is your best bet when defrosting!
- Preheat your oven to 275°F (135°C) to bring this baked salmon back to life. If it’s still in its packet, make sure it’s loosely covered to keep it from drying out, or use a fresh piece of foil to cover it. Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 125°F (52°C) to 130°F (55° C). You can also use the microwave to reheat it in short bursts until it reaches the temperature you want. Before placing in the microwave, make sure to remove any foil!
TIPS FOR PERFECTLY BAKED SALMON
The most important rule to remember when baking salmon in foil is not to overcook the fish.
- Baking salmon in foil allows for some leeway because the foil seals in moisture, but you should pull it out when it is almost but not quite done at the thickest part.
- A quick broil under the oven broiler will finish the top of the fish and cook it through the rest of the way.
- If your salmon is almost done but not quite done and you are concerned about overcooking it, remove it from the oven, cover it with foil, and set it aside at room temperature for several minutes until it is done to your liking.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I grill the salmon?
Yes! Another excellent way to prepare this delicious salmon is to grill it in a foil packet. Also, preheat your grill to 400°F (204°C) and bake for 14-16 minutes. To get to your desired level of doneness, follow the same steps as above.
What other seasonings go with salmon?
I love the light, fresh flavors of this baked salmon, but you can add dill or rosemary springs for extra flavor, or even your favorite Cajun seasoning to spice things up! Whatever your preference, the foil packet adds a special touch to this salmon!
What else can I bake in foil?
The versatility of foil packet meals is incredible! For a more succulent finish, try this recipe with chicken or shrimp. You could try my foil packet potatoes or my delectable lemon asparagus orzo!