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Baked Citrus Salmon With Herb And Lemon Drizzle

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This citrus salmon is a delicious recipe made with lemon, orange, olive oil, seasonings, and herbs. It’s a citrus-infused salmon fillet that is bursting with fresh flavors. It’s the ultimate easy delicious dinner recipe.

Baked salmon with sliced red onions on top, with broccoli and rice on the side.

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If you love the zesty flavor of citrus, this might be the best salmon you have ever eaten. Lemon and orange slices help to decorate the salmon but also infuse it with amazing flavor.

Want more delicious lemon recipes to try out?  Still have some lemons left? There are loads of tasty dishes you can make with them, including watermelon lemonade which pairs well with this recipe. Or for a great appetizer, make some rosemary lemon chicken thighs.

You have to try out my bacon wrapped salmon, and my pistachio crusted salmon. Both are delicious sources of omega-3 and protein.

  • Simple and Quick to Prepare: Even on your busiest nights, this recipe is straightforward and can be whipped up in under 30 minutes, making it perfect for a nutritious family dinner.
  • Uses Fresh Ingredients: Utilizing fresh citrus fruits like lemons and oranges infuses the salmon with vibrant flavors and maximizes nutritional benefits.
  • Customizable: The recipe allows for flexibility with herbs and seasonings, so you can adjust it to fit your taste preferences or dietary requirements.
  • Health Benefits: Rich in omega-3 fatty acids and packed with protein, this citrus salmon promotes heart health, supports muscle repair, and contributes to a well-rounded diet.

What’s in This Citrus Salmon Recipe?

Salmon, salt, pepper, olive oil, red onion, parsley, orange, lemon, garlic, paprika, and cilantro on a countertop.
  • Salmon – You can use whole salmon or individual salmon filets.
  • Salt and Pepper – Season to taste your fish.
  • Paprika – I like classic paprika or smoked paprika.
  • Lemon and Orange  You will slice the oranges and lemons into wedges.
  • Olive Oil—You will use olive oil to create a non-stick surface and to lock in the flavor.
  • Red Onion – You will also use sliced onions to help flavor the salmon.
  • Herbs – For the herbs, I used cilantro and parsley for this recipe.

The complete list of ingredients, quantities, and instructions can be found in the printable recipe card below.

Substitutions and Variations

  • You can make a citrusy sauce and fresh herbs to drizzle over the salmon.
  • Add a little butter to make a buttery salmon. Drizzle with melted butter.
  • Swap with sesame oil instead of olive oil.
  • Check to ensure the fish flakes.
  • Swap lemon with lime juice.
  • Cara Cara oranges or even blood oranges work great.
  • Top with fresh dill instead of cilantro and parsley.

How to Make Citrus Herb Salmon (step-by-step directions)

Collage of creating citrus salmon.
  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees F and prepare your baking pan by lining it with a baking mat or parchment paper.
  2. Season the salmon filet with salt, pepper, and paprika. Place salmon skin-side down on the prepared baking pan, then set it aside. (Photo 1)
  3. Zest and juice the lemon and orange. Mix the juices with olive oil in a small bowl. Pour half of this oil mixture over the salmon. (Photos 2, 3 & 4)
Collage of topping citrus salmon.
  1. Sprinkle zest over the salmon filet before baking as instructed. (Photo 5)
  2. Mix the red onions with the remaining citrus juice. After baking the salmon for 30 minutes, pour the onion mixture over the top of the salmon. (Photos 6 & 7)
  3. Combine the remaining oil with parsley and cilantro. Drizzle this herb oil mixture over the top of the baked salmon. (Photo 8)

Recipe Tips

  • Ensure Even Cooking: To cook the salmon evenly, make sure it is at room temperature before you start cooking. Taking the salmon out of the fridge 15-20 minutes before cooking can help achieve this.
  • Do Not Overcook: Salmon is best enjoyed when moist and tender. Keep an eye on the cooking time and temperature to avoid overcooking. Salmon will continue to cook slightly after being removed from the oven due to residual heat.
  • Use Fresh Herbs: For the best flavor, use fresh herbs rather than dried ones. They add a vibrant flavor and color that enhances the overall dish.
  • Adjust Seasoning: Taste your citrus juice and olive oil mixture before adding it to the salmon. Depending on the sweetness or tartness of your fruits, you may want to adjust the seasonings to your personal preferences.
  • Broil for a Crisp Finish: If you prefer a slightly crispy top on your flakey salmon, consider broiling it for the last 2-3 minutes of cooking. Keep a close eye on it to prevent burning.

Alternative Cooking Methods

For those who prefer different cooking methods, this citrus salmon recipe is versatile enough to be adapted beyond traditional baking. 

  • Instant Pot: To prepare in an Instant Pot, use the sauté function to sear the salmon fillets briefly on both sides with the citrus juice and olive oil mixture. Then switch to the steam function, add a trivet with water below, and cook under high pressure for 3-5 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fillets. Quick release the pressure to prevent overcooking.
  • Slow Cooker: Although not as common, this recipe can also be adapted for a slow cooker. Layer the bottom of the cooker with slices of lemon and orange, and add a small amount of water or white wine for moisture. Place the seasoned salmon on top of the citrus slices. Cook on low for 1 to 2 hours or until the salmon is cooked and flakes easily. Be mindful that slow cookers can vary in temperature, so the first attempt might require adjustments.
Citrus salmon sitting on a gray plate.

Storing Tips 

Store any leftover salmon in an airtight container and refrigerate for 1-3 days. Then you can reheat the salmon in the microwave or a preheated oven until warm. Just place the skin side down.

Or you can eat the salmon cold; I love using the leftover salmon in a cold salad. I like the slice up the cold salmon for the salad.

Serving Suggestions

This flavorful Citrus Herb Salmon pairs beautifully with a variety of sides to create a well-balanced meal. Consider the following serving suggestions:

  • Quinoa Salad: A light and nutty quinoa salad tossed with fresh vegetables and a lemony dressing complements the citrus notes in the salmon.
  • Roasted Vegetables: Seasonal vegetables such as asparagus, broccoli, or roasted Brussels sprouts, roasted with olive oil and a sprinkle of salt, offer a hearty and healthy addition.
  • Rice Pilaf: A fragrant rice pilaf with a touch of garlic and onion can serve as a comforting base for the salmon, soaking up all the delicious juices. Another alternative could be cilantro lime rice.
  • Sweet Potato Mash: For a sweet and savory twist, sweet potato mash with a hint of maple syrup pairs excellently with the rich flavors of the salmon.
  • Garden Salad: A simple garden salad dressed with olive oil and balsamic vinegar adds a crisp and refreshing element to the meal.

Recipe FAQs

Can I grill the Citrus Herb Salmon instead of baking?

Yes, you can absolutely grill the salmon for a smoky flavor. Preheat your grill to medium-high heat. Place the salmon on foil or a grill mat to prevent sticking and grill for 6-8 minutes on each side or until the fish flakes easily with a fork. Be sure to apply the citrus and herb mixture before grilling.

Is this Citrus Herb Salmon recipe suitable for meal prep?

This recipe is excellent for meal prep. You can prepare the salmon ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator. The flavors will continue to marinate, enhancing the taste. When ready to eat, simply reheat gently or enjoy cold as suggested in salads or sandwiches.

Can I use frozen salmon for this recipe?

Yes, frozen salmon can be used for this recipe. Thaw the salmon overnight in the refrigerator before using it. Pat the salmon dry to remove any excess moisture before seasoning and baking to ensure the best texture.

How do I know if my salmon is fresh?

Fresh salmon should have a moist appearance with firm flesh. The color should be consistent and vibrant, ranging from deep pink to orange. There should be a mild, fresh sea smell; any strong fishy odor indicates it might not be fresh.

Can I use other types of fish for this recipe?

Absolutely. While this recipe is designed for salmon, it can easily be adapted for other types of fish, such as trout, halibut, or cod. Just adjust the cooking time based on the thickness and density of the fish you’re using.

Citrus Salmon topped with sliced red onions with broccoli and rice on the sides.

Need More Dinner Recipes? Try These:

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Plate of rice, broccoli, and Citrus Salmon.
5 from 1 vote

​Baked Citrus Salmon with Herb and Lemon Drizzle


Author: Kim Schob
Course: Main Dishes, Sea Food
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Citrus Salmon is a delicious salmon filet that is seasoned with lemon and orange and spices to create the ultimate salmon dinner.

Equipment

Ingredients 

  • 3 lb (1 ⅓ kg) Salmon can use individual filets
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • ½ teaspoon Pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Paprika
  • 1 Lemon
  • 1 Orange
  • cup (78 6/7 ml) Olive Oil or more as needed
  • ½ Red Onion sliced
  • 2 Tablespoons Cilantro leaves chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons Parsley leaves chopped

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 250℉ degrees and prepare your baking pan by lining it with a baking mat or parchment paper.
  • Season the salmon filet with salt, pepper, and paprika. Place salmon skin-side down on the prepared baking pan, then set it aside.
    3 lb Salmon,½ teaspoon Pepper,1 teaspoon Paprika,1 teaspoon Salt
  • Zest and juice the lemon and orange. Mix the juices with olive oil in a small bowl. Pour half of this oil mixture over the salmon.
    1 Lemon,1 Orange,⅓ cup Olive Oil
  • Sprinkle zest over the salmon filet before baking as instructed.
  • Mix the red onions with the remaining citrus juice. After baking the salmon for 30 minutes, pour the onion mixture over the top of the salmon.
    ½ Red Onion
  • Combine the remaining oil with parsley and cilantro. Drizzle this herb oil mixture over the top of the baked salmon.
    2 Tablespoons Cilantro leaves,2 Tablespoons Parsley leaves

Notes

  • Ensure Even Cooking: To cook the salmon evenly, make sure it is at room temperature before you start cooking. Taking the salmon out of the fridge 15-20 minutes before cooking can help achieve this.
  • Do Not Overcook: Salmon is best enjoyed when it is moist and tender. Keep an eye on the cooking time and temperature to avoid overcooking. Salmon will continue to cook slightly after being removed from the oven due to residual heat.
  • Use Fresh Herbs: For the best flavor, use fresh herbs rather than dried ones. They add a vibrant pop of flavor and color that enhances the overall dish.
  • Adjust Seasoning: Taste your citrus juice and olive oil mixture before adding it to the salmon. Depending on the sweetness or tartness of your fruits, you may want to adjust the seasonings to your personal preferences.
  • Broil for a Crisp Finish: If you prefer a slightly crispy top on your flakey salmon, consider broiling it for the last 2-3 minutes of cooking. Keep a close eye on it to prevent burning.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 336kcal (17%) Carbohydrates: 4g (1%) Protein: 34g (68%) Fat: 20g (31%) Saturated Fat: 3g (19%) Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g Monounsaturated Fat: 10g Cholesterol: 94mg (31%) Sodium: 367mg (16%) Potassium: 901mg (26%) Fiber: 1g (4%) Sugar: 2g (2%) Vitamin A: 219IU (4%) Vitamin C: 19mg (23%) Calcium: 34mg (3%) Iron: 2mg (11%)

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5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)

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