This oven roasted salmon results in buttery, flaky fish that’s table ready in less than 30 minutes. It is hands down my family’s favorite keto salmon recipe. So nutritious and satisfying.
I am delighted to re-introduce you to one of my all time favorite easy keto meals. We make this roasted salmon recipe at least twice a month, and it’s a healthy dinner I can guarantee my whole family will eat willingly.
This little gem of a recipe has been hiding in my recipe archives for a very long time, not really getting the attention it deserves. I figured it was time to dust it off again and bring it back to the forefront.
And it’s actually a prize-winning recipe! It won second prize and $200 in a Taste of Home recipe contest.
Pair it with any one of these cauliflower rice recipes for a delicious and nutritious meal.
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Roasting salmon in the oven
Everything I know about roasted salmon I learned from Mark Bittman’s book, How to Cook Everything. You know I believe in giving credit where it’s due! It’s not a keto cookbook, by any means, but it is a great reference book.
Over the years, I modified his recipe in a number of ways, simplifying the process and roasting at a slightly lower temperature. Then I decided to add some sesame oil, sesame seeds, and some wasabi mayo – and it became an instant hit.
Baking and roasting are very closely related concepts, and they both use dry oven heat. But roasting typically refers to cooking over 400F, whereas baking temps are usually 375F and below. However, most people use these terms interchangeably.
Using high heat for this oven roasted salmon cooks it quickly and evenly, while keeping it moist and flaky.
What you need for this keto salmon recipe
This is an incredibly simple recipe with readily available ingredients. You can play with the flavor profile and add your favorite toppings.
- Salmon: It’s worth purchasing good wild-caught salmon for this recipe as it results in a buttery texture. It also has the best nutritional profile. You can use frozen salmon but be sure to thaw it completely and pat it dry before roasting.
- Butter: This is the magic sauce, in my opinion. The butter melts in the pan as the oven preheats, and it becomes slightly nutty and caramelized during the cooking process.
- Garlic powder: A light sprinkle of garlic brings out the best flavor.
- Salt: Add just a little sprinkle of salt before roasting, and season to taste after it’s done.
You could stop here and simply drizzle the melted butter over the fish before serving, and it would be fabulous. But my sushi inspired version is over the top delicious!
- Wasabi: You can purchase this as a ready made paste, or you can purchase wasabi powder that you mix with water to create a paste. I prefer the powder as it goes a lot further than pre-made pastes and has more heat.
- Mayonnaise: Mayo provides a great base for mixing in the wasabi, and it helps mellow it out as well. You don’t want it to completely overpower the flavor of the salmon!
- Sesame oil: Brush the salmon with some toasted sesame oil after cooking for extra flavor.
- Sesame seeds and green onion: These garnishes add both flavor and elegance to the final dish.
Tips for oven roasted salmon
Salmon is remarkably easy to cook, but it’s also easy to overcook if you’re not careful. Here are my best tips to getting it right:
- Pat the salmon dry. The residual moisture from the packaging can pool around the fish during cooking and doesn’t look as all that appetizing.
- Melt the butter as the oven preheats. This saves time and energy, and simplifies the whole process.
- Season just before cooking. Salt draws out moisture and we don’t want any dry fish. So sprinkle it on just before the salmon goes into the oven.
- Watch your timing. Salmon portions vary quite a bit in thickness and this affects cooking time. For thinner filets of an inch or less, check them at the early end of the cooking range. For thick filets, you may need the whole 13 minutes.
- Flake the fish. The best way to tell if salmon is done is to flake it with a thin-bladed knife. The fish should be opaque and the the flakes should separate easily. Check the thickest portion of the filet for doneness.
- Remove immediately. Once you see that perfect flakiness, get it out of the oven right away and brush it with the sesame oil.
- Serve. Oven roasted salmon should be served right away. Top each portion with some wasabi mayonnaise, a sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds, and some sliced green onion.
Frequently Asked Question
The best part about this oven roasted salmon is how versatile it is. You can do any flavor you like here. Try the spicy mayo I used for my Air Fryer Crab Cakes. Or try it with some pesto. It’s also great with a simple squeeze of lemon.
You bet. I recommend using avocado oil or plain (un-toasted) sesame oil in place of the butter.
This oven roasting method is perfect for any firm fish like sable fish, halibut, or trout.
If yours aren’t pre-toasted, it’s easy to do it yourself. Place them in a pan over medium heat and stir until they are golden brown. This should only take a few minutes so don’t walk away. Remove them from the pan immediately to keep them from overcooking.
I do not recommend it. As with most fish recipes, salmon is best served hot out of the oven. If you do have any leftovers, you can store them in a covered container in the fridge and reheat very gently. Consume within 3 days.
More delicious salmon recipes
- Garlic Butter Salmon
- Keto Smoked Salmon Chowder
- Pecan Crusted Salmon
- Salmon Avocado Salad
- Easy Grilled Salmon
- Salmon Patties
Oven Roasted Salmon Recipe
- Whisk the wasabi powder and the water together to form a paste. Let sit 5 minutes to develop the flavors
- Whisk together the mayonnaise and wasabi paste.
- Preheat the oven to 425F. Place the butter in a large glass or ceramic baking dish and set in the oven to melt.
- Once the oven is preheated and the butter is melted, place the salmon, skin-side down in the pan. Spoon some of the melted butter overtop and sprinkle with the garlic powder and the salt. Place the pan back in the oven.
- Bake 9 to 13 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fish. The salmon should be opaque and flake easily when done. Be sure to watch carefully to avoid over-cooking.
- Remove from the oven and brush the the toasted sesame oil. Sprinkle with the sesame seeds.
- Serve with wasabi mayo and green onions overtop each serving.