Simple salmon steak recipe with a tasty green onion vinaigrette for a quick weeknight dinner or date night entree.
Inspiration for this Salmon Steak Recipe
Believe it or not, before this recipe I had never eaten salmon steak. I was curious, but never pulled the trigger. They always seemed too thick which can be tricky cooking and the serving size thing always seemed awkward. But they display so well, I had to get them this day, especially when the quality salmon fillet options were few. Salmon is fatty in a good way, so it pairs extremely well together with an acidic sauce like Angie Stone over a funkful soulful Brand New Heavies track. The green onion vinaigrette, which I discovered at Glelina’s during a visit to LA is a perfect compliment to the salmon.
Sunday is my meal prep day. I know for some this is stressful, but I keep things pretty simple and low-key. Meal prep for me means two things – 1. Chop up my vegetables (onions, peppers, celery, etc.) and 2. Make the 2-3 sauces I’m featuring that particular week. Most of my weeknight meals include some version of a lean protein topped with a flavorful sauce and paired with easy, quick cook sides. If I’m having fish, then I buy Tuesday when the new fresh fish is delivered and typically cook the fish the same day. In most cases the sauces are low-involvement requiring only a few ingredients such as this green onion vinaigrette.
Salmon Steak v. Salmon Fillet
It seems odd but I often see the terms ‘steak’ and ‘fillet’ used interchangeably. In reality they are really different. Steaks are cut perpendicular to the spine which means you have to cut through the bone vs fillets which are absent of a bone since the cut is in parallel. Also notable is the horseshoe like shape of the steaks. Note this recipe works with either cut, but other fish as well.
Does salmon steak have bones?
Fillets have fewer of those smaller pin-like bones. When buying steaks I recommend having the store fishmonger remove the bone if you prefer a boneless steak. Removing the bone actually allows you to roll the steak into almost a ball for easier more even cooking. If you don’t have the luxury or prefer to do it yourself then see this video on how to remove the bones. Note I leave the big bone in tact and only remove the thin small ones.
How do you cook salmon steaks?
There are many ways to cook salmon steaks. Pretty much all the common ones (grill, pan-fry, broil, bake) are at your disposal. Pan-frying is definitely the fastest though all are pretty quick. Grilling provides the best combination of flavor and texture in my opinion, but you have to factor in the time required to fire up the grill, unless you’re using an indoor stovetop grill as I typically do.
Whatever cooking method you choose, I do recommend brining the fish first. It’s not required, but it does add some additional flavor. The brine is simple and sweet. Just drop the salmon steak into bowl of salted water for about 15 minutes if you have time. Brining helps season the fish further and minimizing any “fishiness” if present.
Grilled salmon steak
Grilling is my preferred method to cook salmon steaks. Depending on thickness you’ll need to adjust heat levels. Thinner steaks are perfect for searing whereas the thicker cuts will require longer cook times at lower temps. The lower temps are needed to ensure you don’t end up with an undercooked center. I prefer about 120-125 degrees for an internal temperature.
Broiling requires little effort. It’s just reverse grilling, i.e. the heat comes from up above vs. below like a grill. It’s like baking but with that browning. Broil at 450 degrees for about 8 minutes or so.
Baking is simple, but it’s my least preferred approach. There are little worries are achieving a steak that is cooked evenly, but the texture and color are suboptimal for me. If baking then cook for about 20 minutes at 350 degrees
What Sides Go With Salmon Steaks
Simple green salads like this pear and collards salad or a simple mustard greens salad go well with this dish. I also like corn or a black eyed pea salad as a good pairing. Slaws are also perfect as are broccoli or broccolini.
Grilled Salmon Steak Cooking Tips
- Don’t remove the big bone, but have the store remove the little ones
- Remove from heat source just shortly before its done cooking. Use edge of spatula to observe flesh near the bone. It should be just a tad underdone. It will continue to cook after you remove from the heat.
- Again, timing depends on how thick the fillet is and how well-done you like your fish.
- Dry the fish completely if grilling. Moisture can cause stickiness
making grilled salmon steak
If you make these delicious delicious salmon steak recipe please come back and leave me a comment below with your feedback. Definitely take a photo of the dish and be sure to tag #foodfidelity so that I can see them.
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For the Fish
- 2 salmon steaks 6 to 8 ounces each
- 1 tbsp olive oil
For the Sauce
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 green onions sliced thin
- 1 inch piece fresh ginger peeled and grated
- 2 garlic cloves minced or grated
- 1 lime juiced
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 tsp honey (maple, brown sugar, or any other sweetener work fine as alternatives)
- 1 tsp kosher or sea salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
Make the Sauce
- Combine the olive oil plus the green onions, ginger, garlic, lime juice, vinegar, honey, salt, and pepper in a bowl and mix well. Season to taste and set aside.
Grill the Fish
- Heat grill to high; lightly oil grates with remaining oil and paper towel. If using an indoor cooktop grill then oil the fish instead.
- Arrange salmon steaks on a baking sheet; season with salt and pepper.
- Grill salmon steaks until cooked through, 4 to 6 minutes per side depending on thickness of the salmon.
- Transfer salmon to plates; Serve topped with green onion vinaigrette.