Chimichurri Salmon is made with cilantro and is loaded with fresh ingredients. Easy to make, it's perfect for a busy weeknight, and is definitely beautiful and impressive enough for a weekend dinner party.
You can whip Baked Cilantro Chimichurri Salmon up in about 15 minutes. Start to finish.
Serve it over rice and sautéed vegetables and you’ll be a star. Really, it’s an incredibly delicious, healthy and gorgeous dish.
- salmon fillets - Always buy the freshest fish possible. Select salmon with firm flesh and a fresh aroma. If you have a specialty fish market near you, that's probably your best bet. And don't hesitate to ask the fish monger to skin and portion your fish for you. In my experience, they will almost always be happy to do this.
- Cilantro Chimichurri - The recipe is here.
- kosher salt
- black pepper - Preferably freshly ground.
- olive oil
Substitutions and Variations
- You can use any chimichurri sauce you like, whether it's made with cilantro or not. This one I suggest however, is my favorite for this recipe.
- You can certainly try this recipe with another fish -- I also like the chimichurri with Dover Sole and Cod, and it's especially delicious with shrimp and scallops.
- If you're not a cilantro fan, there are a few substitutions you can use: traditional chimichurri with parsley, your favorite pesto or a green salsa.
- This recipe calls for 6 (8-ounce) salmon fillets. This is 3-pounds. You don't have to cut it into portions -- this recipe can also be made in larger or smaller fillets, even one very large fillet.
- Try to purchase evenly sized salmon fillets. This way, they’ll all be finished cooking at the same time.
- You can make the chimichurri up to 10 days ahead of time! Whether you make it ahead or not, you can save the fifteen minutes and buy jarred chimichurri. (It's unlikely you’ll find in the store with cilantro.)
- You can leave the skin on or off. It’s will slide right off after it’s baked.
- The baking time is in the instructions below, but FYI, typically, a good rule of thumb is about 10 minutes per inch of thickness.
How to Make it
- Preheat the oven to 375°F, and drizzle a 9 x 13 x 2-inch baking pan lightly with olive oil, or line it with parchment paper.
- Evenly divide the Chimichurri among the salmon fillets. Spread it thinly over the entire top surface.
- Place the salmon in the baking pan and bake in the preheated 375°F for about 10 to 12 minutes, depending on its thickness. If you're not sure it's done, just cut into the thickest part with a very sharp knife. The Chimichurri Salmon should flake apart.
How can you tell when salmon is done cooking?
- For most fish, and definitely salmon, it’s done when it’s still slightly translucent in the center. If you take it out of the oven at this stage, it’s likely to be perfect. A moment more and it could be on the dry side.
- It should flake apart when poked with a fork. If it doesn’t, it’s either still too raw, or it's overcooked.
- Please take a look at the image below of the bite of salmon on the fork. Notice how it changes color? It’s more opaque on the edges and more of a bright orange towards the center, where it’s less cooked.
- Chimichurri Salmon is absolutely fantastic served over Coconut Cilantro Rice. It’s subtly sweet and perfect to soak up any of the sauce that escapes the salmon. I serve it with this almost every time I make it.
- Along with the rice, almost any sautéed green vegetable is great.
- These three together make for a perfect bowl.
Other Delicious Salmon Recipes
- Avocado Salmon Bowl
- Olive Oil Poached Salmon
- Cabbage Wrapped Salmon
- Blackened Mexican Salmon
- Salmon Burgers with Lemon and Dill
Can you make it ahead?
Only the sauce can be made ahead (up to 10 days!). The salmon is definitely at its best right out of the oven.
I hope you love Chimichurri Salmon as mush as my family and I do.
Baked Chimichurri Salmon Recipe
- olive oil for the pan
- ⅓ cup Cilantro Chimichurri (click here for the recipe)
- 6 approximately (5-ounce) salmon fillets (skin on or off)
- Set oven and prepare pan. Preheat the oven to 375°F, and drizzle a 9 x 13 x 2-inch baking pan lightly with olive oil, or line it with parchment paper.
- Assemble. Evenly divide the Cilantro Chimichurri among the salmon fillets. Spread it thinly over the entire top surface.
- Bake. Place the salmon in the baking pan and bake in the preheated 375°F for about 10 to 12 minutes, depending on its thickness. It should still be slightly translucent in the center. If you're not sure it's done, just cut into the thickest part with a very sharp knife. It should almost flake apart.
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