Thai Salmon with easy homemade Thai sweet chili sauce cooked until caramelized on top and juicy inside. The best salmon recipe ever!

Just one of my very popular Thai inspired recipes including Thai chicken curryThai chicken salad, and Thai meatballs!

Thai salmon garnished with green onions on baking sheet and spoon with sauce nearby.

This broiled Thai salmon is the best way to get a perfect caramelization on your salmon. The sugar from the maple syrup in the homemade Thai sweet chili sauce caramelizes to form a mouthwatering texture.

It’s a perfect balance of sweet and subtle heat, which is great for kids. And anyone who is picky with their spices.

It’s one of those sauces that makes you keep eating when you’re full just to keep tasting the sauce. It’s the best! That and the sauce on my baked teriyaki salmon, which my kids can’t get enough of!

We all need a ‘pop in the oven’ recipe for busy weeknights. This sweet chili salmon is that dinner! Only quicker is my favorite 15 minute shrimp tacos recipe.

In the summer, we take this Thai salmon to the grill for a beautiful cedar plank salmon. It gives it an extra smoky flavor which is unbelievable as healthy grill recipes go.

I’ve also shared flavor packed honey garlic glazed salmon and air fryer salmon. All these salmon recipes result in amazing flavors your whole family will love.

Need more dinner time inspiration? Browse 65 healthy dinner ideas!

Ingredients You Will Need

Salmon, green onions, maple syrup, red pepper flakes, rice vinegar and salt.
  • Salmon fillets: Skin on or off, your choice. I buy wild salmon like sockeye, coho, spring, or even pink salmon. It’s more expensive, but I like to avoid farmed or Atlantic salmon.
  • Thai sweet chili sauce: This sauce is super simple to make at home. It’s also a healthier version than store bought. However, I have to admit that Thai Kitchen sweet chili sauce ingredients have improved greatly since I first published this recipe in 2014. So, if you don’t have the extra 15 minutes to make it from scratch, buy it!
  • Seasonings and garnishes: Salt, green onions, cooking spray (I use Misto).

How to Cook Thai Salmon

I much prefer broiling this Thai salmon over baking it because it is a delicate meat. Unless it is baked salmon in foil. Wild salmon is less fatty (and healthier) than farmed, so it can easily be overcooked.

To broil it, I like to use slices of salmon vs. the whole fillet for maximum flavour penetration. Then a blast of heat on the outside is enough. You want the fish to retain its natural juices and moisture.

  • Prep: In a large baking dish, add salmon in a single layer. Sprinkle each fillet with a pinch of salt and top with 1 tbsp of sweet chili sauce. Then using your fingers or a brush, rub to coat evenly on top.
  • Marinate: Cover and let your fish marinate in the fridge for at least 2 hours or overnight is best. This is a great make ahead dish, you can just pop in the oven the next day!
Coated in sweet chili sauce salmon fillets on white plate.
  • Set broiler: Turn oven’s broiler on High and position top oven rack 5″ – 6″ below the heat source. Line a large baking sheet with foil or silicone mat. Spray with cooking spray and place salmon fillets skin side down (if any). Coat with any remaining marinade from the dish.
  • Broil to caramelize: Once in the oven, broil for 8 minutes, rotating baking sheet once. Remove from the oven and brush top of each salmon fillet with 2 tsp of sauce. Return to oven and broil for 5 minutes or until salmon has caramelized. Doesn’t it look gorgeous?!
A slice of sweet chili salmon garnished with green onion and fork taking a piece out of it.

If using parchment paper be sure to cut it to the exact size of the bottom of the sheet. Don’t allow any part of it to hang over the sides as that will be prone to burning.

How to Make Thai Sweet Chili Sauce

  • Combine: Combine maple syrup, water, white or rice vinegar, cornstarch, garlic clove, salt, and red chili pepper flakes in a sauce pot on the stove.
  • Cook: Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 7-10 minutes or until thickened.
  • Store: You can refrigerate the sauce for weeks and use it with chicken recipes and for dipping anything and everything. One of our favorites is slow cooker Thai chicken thighs!

What Is the Best Temperature to Broil At?

As we know, ovens vary. Some ovens have different temperature options for the broiler and some do not. You can broil using the default temperature of your brand of oven broil setting.

Most are set at 500-550 degrees F. If your broiler is set at 450 degrees F maximum, this Thai salmon recipe will work just as well. You might just have to broil a little longer. So, keep an eye out!

How Do You Know When Salmon Is Done?

The best way to check is with a fork. If Thai salmon flakes easily when poked and its flesh is opaque, it is ready to eat.

I would check as soon as cooking time has elapsed as per the recipe and a nice caramelized crust has formed on top. You’ll know whether or not to keep it in a bit longer. Watch for burning!

FAQs

Can I eat the salmon skin?

Whether you eat the skin is a personal preference. The skin does have massive amounts of nutrients in it.

It also helps keep the moisture in the salmon itself throughout the cooking process. If you don’t like skin or the “fishy” taste, remove it after cooking.

Will the parchment paper burn at a high temp?

There are different types that are suitable for varying degrees. Normally, it’s only good for up to 450 degrees F.

If you are worried, better safe than sorry, so just avoid it. Use a silicone baking mat or foil instead. I have been broiling sweet chili salmon on a sheet lined with parchment paper for years without an issue.

Can I marinate sweet chili salmon overnight?

Yes! In fact, a full 24 hours will give you awesome flavor! Because there is no citrus in the sauce we don’t need to worry about it starting to cook the fish.

Can I grill this Thai salmon recipe?

You can and you should! You can cook fillets directly on the grill by following this grilled salmon recipe or follow cedar plank salmon instructions.

Can I adjust the heat of the Thai sauce?

When making this sauce homemade it’s much easier to adjust the spice. Add as little or as much of the red pepper flakes as to your liking. More flakes equal more heat!

How to Serve

Serve Thai salmon with Instant Pot mashed potatoes, cauliflower mashed potatoes or cauliflower fried rice. This will give you a completely satisfying meal.

For a lighter option, especially during the warmer months, serve with a side of zesty arugula salad, healthy spinach salad, creamy healthy broccoli salad, or a garden salad.

Try with air fryer broccoli.

For a burst of flavour, sprinkle a bit of lime juice on your sweet chili salmon just before serving. Next level awesome!

How to Store Leftovers

Refrigerate salmon in an airtight container up to 3 days. Leftover sauce will stay great stored separately in the refrigerator for a few weeks!

Reheating Sweet Chili Salmon

To be honest, cold Thai salmon is actually pretty good! Especially on top of a salad. If you do want to reheat it, try not to overdo it. It will quickly dry out. Try the microwave for a minute.

More Salmon Recipes to Try

You may also love to browse all my healthy grill recipes!

Four pieces of Thai sweet chili salmon on parchment paper lined baking tray and spoon with sauce.
Thai sweet chili salmon with sweet chili sauce on parchment lined baking sheet.

Broiled Thai Sweet Chili Salmon

Thai Salmon with easy homemade Thai sweet chili sauce cooked until caramelized on top and juicy inside. The best salmon recipe ever!
4.92 from 36 votes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 287
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 13 minutes
Total Time 28 minutes

Ingredients 
 

  • 6 x 6 oz wild salmon fillets skin on or off
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tbsp Thai sweet chili sauce divided
  • 2 – 3 tbsp green onions finely chopped
  • Cooking spray I use Misto

Instructions 

  • Make Thai sweet chili sauce or use store-bought (I like Thai Kitchen brand).
  • In a large baking dish, add salmon in a single layer. Each fillet: sprinkle with a pinch of salt and top with 1 tbsp of Thai sweet chili sauce. Brush or rub with your fingers to coat fish with sauce evenly on top, bottom and sides. Cover and let marinate in the fridge for at least 2 hours or overnight is the best (up to 24 hours).
  • Turn on oven's broiler on High and position top oven rack 5" – 6" below the heat source. Line large baking sheet with foil or silicone mat, spray with cooking spray and place salmon fillets skin side down (if any). Coat with remaining marinade from the dish (if any).
  • Broil for 8 minutes, rotating baking sheet once. Remove from the oven and brush top of each fillet with 2 tsp of Thai sweet chili sauce. Return to the oven and broil for another 5 minutes or until salmon has caramelized.
  • Serve hot garnished with green onions, extra sauce (if desired) and brown rice or quinoa + any salad.

Video

Notes

  • Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Reheat in microwave.
  • Can I eat the skin? It also helps keep the moisture in the salmon itself throughout the cooking process. If you don’t like skin or the “fishy” taste, remove it after cooking.
  • Avoid parchment paper: If worried about burning, use a silicone baking mat or foil instead. 
  • Allow the sauce to cool: Before brushing the sauce onto the salmon pieces, allow it to come to room temperature first. 
  • Can I marinate salmon overnight? Yes! In fact, a full 24 hours will give you awesome flavour! 
  • Can I grill it? You can cook fillets directly on the grill by following this grilled salmon recipe or cedar plank salmon.

Nutrition

Serving: 1fillet | Calories: 287kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 34g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 94mg | Sodium: 288mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 10g
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Thai
Author: Olena Osipov
Did you make this recipe?Mention @ifoodreal or tag #ifoodreal!

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About Olena

Welcome! I grew up in Ukraine watching my grandma cook with simple ingredients. I have spent the last 11 years making it my mission to help you cook quick and easy meals for your family!

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I’ve been remiss not to comment on this amazing recipe sooner. I first made this dish several months ago and it has become an instant favorite for my family – that aren’t always salmon lovers. We love the Thai chili sauce and how easy and quick it is to get this on the table. I love to make it with Jasmin rice and a veggie stir fry. You nailed it with this recipe. Thank you very much for creating and sharing this yummy dish.

    1. I can’t put an oven T in this recipe because cooking method is by broiler which my gas stove offers only in 2 options: Low and High. You would have to trust your eyes and nose on this one, see you did it because it was tasty, so not a big issue.:)

      1. Tried this for dinner and really liked the flavor, however did have the same issue with the parchment paper burning. It didn’t catch on fire, but I feel like it would have had I not removed it when I did. It was smoking like crazy which is what made me open the door (my oven requires you to broil with the door closed). I then read the instructions on the parchment paper box and realized it said don’t use for broiling. I transferred the salmon to just a baking sheet sprayed with Pam and finished cooking. Definitely something to be aware of before you prepare this dish. Love the sauce though.

        1. I might know the solution to your problem. If you cut parchment paper just enough to fit into the sheet without flaps hanging even a bit, it shouldn’t burn – it’s the sides sticking out too much usually burn, not the part that is under food. I never had this issue, honestly. Or your broiler is too close to the rack. I always broil food on parchment paper without any issues. I use unbleached parchment paper (not wax paper) and it says nothing about not using under the broiler. I also broil with oven door a bit open – that is my gas stove requirements. Hope this helps! Also silicone baking mats are a great option too.:)

  2. Omega 6 is NOT unhealthy. It fights inflammation, helps nerve pain in people with fibromyalgia and lowers the risk of heart disease.

        1. Red pepper flakes come from hot chili peppers so have to be those…They add heat.

  3. 5 stars
    I’m finally making this! Started with the Thai Chili Sauce a day in advance to make it easier. That sauce is AMAZING! Thanks for sharing your wonderful recipes!

    1. No world is perfect. Our job is to do our own research and buy best available. That is called informed decision for your own sake.

    1. Yes, you have to otherwise it will be hard to clean the tray and possibly the fish will get stuck to it. I prefer unbleached parchment paper due to health reasons. Foil is made out of aluminum and when heated leaches toxins into your food.

  4. 4 stars
    Just tried the recipe and it tasted great, but we agree the salmon is overcooked and dry. I grill salmon outdoors year round and tried this for a change of pace. I would never grill it for as long as 13 minutes, so next time I’ll shave some off your times.

  5. Love it and I have been doing something similar. My kids like the “candy” salmon I BBQ. I cut the sweet Thai Chili sauce with some natural maple syrup for a little more sweetness. I am fortunate to bring home 70-lbs of fresh King and Coho salmon every year from my fishing trip to Alaska. We cook salmon several times a week and this is always a winner!

    1. You are very lucky! That salmon is like gold!!! Good for you! So, how do you BBQ it? I think there is a typo in your “recipe”. I would love to know.:)

    1. Yes, for sure. Originally this is a grilled recipe. Soak cedar plank in cold water and grill covered. Check on it. Grills vary. Pinch with a fork the middle to see how ready it is.

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