by Olena

Baked Salmon in Foil

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Olena Osipov
4.9 from 12 votes

Baked Salmon in Foil with 10 minute prep comes out juicy and flaky with finger licking garlic butter and fresh herb seasoning. It is the most impressive baked salmon recipe I ever made!

In the summer, try grilled salmon and cedar plank salmon. So good!

Baked Salmon in Foil

Baked Salmon Recipe

Baked salmon in foil is juicy, flaky and quick. It’s perfect weeknight dinner friend. Simply the best!

Stop wondering what to do with salmon fillet every time you buy one. I have to admit, I used to, for years. Now any time we get fresh fish, and living by Pacific ocean it happens often, I spend 10 minutes and throw this fancy looking restaurant-quality meal on the table.

This was also the salmon recipe I made at a food blogger’s retreat, served with arugula salad and everyone asked me for my “secret ingredients”. And as you know, being from Ukraine, it is fresh herbs and garlic.

I promise, everyone who tries this baked salmon in foil will be begging for the recipe!

Why Bake Salmon Wrapped in Foil?

  • Foil wrapped salmon retains its moisture and cooks faster: In fact, I think it’s one of the best ways to cook salmon in the oven.
  • Hands off method: Unlike with honey garlic salmon cooked in a skillet, you do not have to “babysit” salmon in foil.

Tip: If you notice, I also wrap salmon in parchment paper before I wrap it in foil. This small extra step prevents harmful chemicals from the foil leaching into fish.

What Is the Best Salmon to Buy?

We are comparing farmed salmon vs. wild-caught salmon.

  • Farm raised salmon (Atlantic): Contains more contaminants found in the water and its food. Slightly more Omega-3s, much more Omega-6 fatty acids and 3 times the amount of saturated fat than wild salmon. Also 46% more calories, mostly from fat, but it tends to come out more juicy.
  • Wild caught salmon (Sockeye, coho and spring): Contains more minerals and 3 times less Omega-6 fatty acids, which are known to cause inflammation. It tends to cost significantly more and come out more dry because it’s lean fish, so important no to overcook it.

How to Make Baked Salmon

There is a full recipe card below.

  • Prep: Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with 2 overlapping pieces of aluminum foil. Then place a piece of unbleached parchment paper on top.
  • Wrap salmon: Place the salmon fillet skin side down on the parchment paper and rub with oil, salt and pepper (the rest of the seasoning magic will come afterwards). Then wrap fillet first in paper, followed by tin foil.
  • Bake for 20 minutes: One big rule of baking salmon in foil is not to overcook it, especially wild salmon. 1.5-2 lbs salmon fillet you see in my photos took 20 minutes.
  • Prep seasoning: You want to start prepping seasoning 5 minutes before salmon is ready, so butter doesn’t solidify. Just melt butter, then add freshly grated garlic and a squeeze of lemon juice. I like to season salmon after baking because you need less butter and it’s healthier choice.
  • Season baked salmon: Wearing oven mitts, open the foil packet and make sure salmon is ready. Inserted in the thickest part thermometer should read 145 degrees F or close to it. Brush salmon with melted butter and sprinkle with fresh parsley or dill.

FAQs

Should I remove salmon skin off or keep it on?

Even if you’re not a fan of salmon skin, I highly recommend to buy a salmon fillet with skin on. It prevents fish from drying out while cooking. You can always remove skin easily after cooking.

Can I skip parchment paper?

Sure. Spray foil with cooking spray, wrap salmon fillet tightly in foil and keep same cooking time.

How do I know salmon is ready?

If salmon flakes with a fork easily, it’s ready. Also cooked salmon internal temperature is 145 degrees F, check the thickest part though. If thermometer reads around 137-140 degrees F, wrap it up, and let rest for 5-10 minutes or pop under the broiler.

Can you bake frozen salmon in foil?

Yes. I would add 10 minutes extra to cooking time.

Can I use trout?

Yes. Trout cooks quicker though. Check out this garlic butter trout baked in foil.

More Tips for Best Salmon

  • If you have large fillet or farmed salmon: Even if it is wild salmon fillet but large or extra thick farmed salmon piece, you probably will have to add 5-10 minutes to the cook time. I had thin 1.5 lbs sockeye salmon.
  • Wear oven mitts when opening foil: Tin foil gets very hot, so wear oven mitts when removing baking tray from the oven and touching the foil.
  • My salmon looks too pink: Some wild salmon varieties like coho has very deep pink color. It might appear uncooked but best way is to check with thermometer. As long as it is not translucent pink and flakes easily with a fork.

Fun Variations of Baked Salmon

  • Baked salmon in pesto: Once salmon is ready, open the foil and brush 1/4 cup store-bought or homemade pesto on top. Or just bake with it. I am a fan of pesto on salmon after.
  • Baked salmon in foil with lemon and rosemary: Cut lemon in half, slice one half into thin slices and juice the other half. Spread lemon slices inside the foil, lay seasoned fillet as per recipe on top, drizzle with lemon juice, add minced garlic and add 3-4 rosemary sprigs on top. I find lemon slices placed directly on top of fish make it taste bitter.
  • White wine and cheese: Place seasoned salmon on foil, fold up sides, pour 1/4 cup white wine at the bottom, sprinkle some grated garlic and 1 cup your favorite melting cheese on top. Smoked gouda would go so well!

Cook’s Tip: I am personally not a fan of sad looking baked fresh herbs like dill and parsley. I think they yield so much more flavor sprinkled after. But you can bake salmon in foil with them if it’s your jam.

What to Serve Baked Salmon With?

Ah, the best part – eating. Salmon fillet is the most versatile entree.

Storing and Reheating

Storing: If you have leftovers, refrigerate them in an airtight container and enjoy within 3 days. Cold salmon tastes amazing, in salads and on a piece of toasted sourdough bread.

Reheating: You have to be careful reheating salmon to avoid over drying. Preheat ceramic non-stick skillet on low-medium heat, add salmon and a splash of water, cover and simmer on low for 5 minutes. Check if it is heated through and if not, cover and let fish sit for a few more minutes.

Freezing: You can freeze leftovers for up to 3 months in an airtight container. Thaw in the fridge overnight, flake with a fork, and add to Italian pasta salad or use in recipes calling for canned salmon like salmon cakes and canned salmon salad.

More Salmon Recipes

Baked Salmon Recipe
Baked Salmon in Foil

Baked Salmon in Foil {Ukrainian Recipe}

Baked Salmon in Foil with 10 minute prep comes out juicy and flaky with finger licking garlic butter and fresh herb seasoning. It is the most impressive baked salmon recipe I ever made!
4.92 from 12 votes
Print Save Rate
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American Ukrainian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 5 servings
Calories: 261kcal
Author: Olena Osipov

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 lbs whole salmon fillet boneless (skin on or off)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1-2 large garlic cloves grated
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp fresh dill or parsley finely chopped

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line large baking sheet with 2 overlapping each other pieces of aluminum foil wider than the baking sheet. On top, place a piece of unbleached parchment paper the length of a salmon fillet.
  • Place salmon fillet skin side down (if any) on top of parchment paper. Rub with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper.
    Baked Salmon in Foil
  • Now you have to seal salmon completely in foil to ensure proper cooking. First enclose salmon in parchment paper – this ensures no harmful chemicals from aluminum are leaching into your food. Then fold the sides of the foil over the salmon to cover and seal it completely.
    Baked Salmon in Foil
  • Bake for 20 minutes.
  • While salmon is baking and 5 minutes before salmon is ready, in a small saucepan melt butter on low heat. Add garlic and lemon juice, stir and set aside.
    Baked Salmon in Foil
  • Remove salmon from the oven. Carefully open the packet wearing oven mitts. If salmon flakes with a fork easily and thermometer inserted in the thickest part reads close to 145 degrees F, it's ready. If temperature is around 137-140 degrees F, wrap it up, and let rest for 5-10 minutes or pop under the broiler.
    Baked Salmon in Foil
  • Brush baked salmon fillet with garlic butter and sprinkle with parsley. Cut into 5-6 pieces and serve with mashed potatoes and cucumber and tomato salad. See blog post for more ideas.
    Baked Salmon in Foil

Storing: If you have leftovers, refrigerate them in an airtight container and enjoy within 3 days. Cold salmon tastes amazing, in salads and on a piece of toasted sourdough bread.

    Reheating: You have to be careful reheating salmon to avoid over drying. Preheat ceramic non-stick skillet on low-medium heat, add salmon and a splash of water, cover and simmer on low for 5 minutes. Check if it is heated through and if not, cover and let fish sit for a few more minutes.

      Freezing: You can freeze leftovers for up to 3 months in an airtight container. Thaw in the fridge overnight. See blog post for ideas.

        Video

        Notes

        • Salmon skin on or off? Even if you’re not a fan of salmon skin, I highly recommend to buy a salmon fillet with skin on. It prevents fish from drying out while cooking. You can always remove skin easily after cooking.
        • Can I skip parchment paper? Sure. Spray foil with cooking spray, wrap salmon fillet tightly in foil and keep same cooking time.
        • If you have large fillet or farmed salmon: Even if it is wild salmon fillet but large or extra thick farmed salmon piece, you probably will have to add 5-10 minutes to the cook time. I had thin 1.5 lbs sockeye salmon.
        • Wear oven mitts when opening foil: Tin foil gets very hot, so wear oven mitts when removing baking tray from the oven and touching the foil.
        • My salmon looks too pink: Some wild salmon varieties like coho has very deep pink color. It might appear uncooked but best way is to check with thermometer. As long as it is not translucent pink and flakes easily with a fork.
        Variations
        • Baked salmon in pesto: Once salmon is ready, open the foil and brush 1/4 cup store-bought or homemade pesto on top. Or just bake with it. I am a fan of pesto on salmon after.
        • Baked salmon in foil with lemon and rosemary: Cut lemon in half, slice one half into thin slices and juice the other half. Spread lemon slices inside the foil, lay seasoned fillet as per recipe on top, drizzle with lemon juice, add minced garlic and add 3-4 rosemary sprigs on top. I find lemon slices placed directly on top of fish make it taste bitter.
        • White wine and cheese: Place seasoned salmon on foil, fold up sides, pour 1/4 cup white wine at the bottom, sprinkle some grated garlic and 1 cup your favorite melting cheese on top. Smoked gouda would go so well!
        • Last Tip: I am personally not a fan of sad looking baked fresh herbs like dill and parsley. I think they yield so much more flavor sprinkled after. But you can bake salmon in foil with them if it’s your jam.

        Nutrition

        Calories: 261kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 87mg | Sodium: 334mg | Potassium: 675mg | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 324IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 18mg | Iron: 1mg
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        olena osipov in the studio

        Hello and welcome to iFOODreal.

        My name is Olena Osipov. I'm a mom to 2 boys, a wife to Alex and we reside on magical Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada. This is our healthy family recipes blog. Originally from Ukraine, I grew up on real food. As an adult, I struggled with diets for years because none worked long-term. Now for over 10 years, I cook easy healthy meals for my family. I can help you with “What’s for dinner?” too.

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