Get ready for a flavorful feast with this perfect Pan-Fried Teriyaki Salmon. This dish combines the rich flavors of salmon with the sweet and savory goodness of homemade teriyaki sauce. By preparing it in a cast-iron skillet, you'll get the perfect sear and enhance all the flavors going into this wonderful dish.
What Ingredients do I need for Pan-fried Teriyaki Salmon?
- Salmon fillets: These cuts of salmon are typically boneless and may come with or without the skin. Salmon has a rich flavor and is a good source of Omega-3 fatty acids.
- Light olive oil: Light olive oil is a refined version of regular olive oil, with a milder flavor and color. It is often used for high-heat cooking methods due to its higher smoke point. While it lacks some of the health benefits of extra virgin olive oil, it is valued for its versatility in cooking.
- Sesame oil: This aromatic oil is made from sesame seeds and typically comes either toasted or untoasted. For this recipe, I recommended using toasted sesame seeds, which have a stronger, nuttier flavor.
- Low-sodium soy sauce: Made from fermented soybeans, wheat, and some salt, this sauce adds a savory, umami flavor to dishes. Using the reduced-salt version provides great taste without excess salt.
- Brown sugar: Made from either sugar cane or sugar beets, brown sugar has a moist texture and a rich, caramel-like flavor due to the presence of molasses. In recipes like Pan-Fried Teriyaki Salmon, brown sugar is used to add sweetness to the teriyaki sauce, balancing the salty soy sauce and enhancing the overall flavor profile.
- Minced garlic: Finely chopped or crushed into garlic will provide a pungent flavor that adds depth and aroma to this salmon.
- Ginger paste: Ground fresh ginger provides a spicy, citrusy flavor without the fibrous texture of fresh ginger. It is a great time-saving option and will add a zesty kick to this meal.
- Corn starch: Often used as a thickening agent in cooking and baking, when mixed with a sauce, the cornstarch provides a glossy, cohesive texture that clings to the salmon. It helps create the perfect glaze and consistency in the dish.
What are the Steps?
Step 1: Prepare the Teriyaki Sauce
In a small bowl, whisk together the low-sodium soy sauce, brown sugar, minced garlic, ginger paste, and cornstarch. This will be the flavorful teriyaki sauce that takes Pan-Fried Teriyaki Salmon to a new level.
Step 2: Marinate the Salmon
Place your salmon fillets in a shallow dish or a resealable plastic bag. Pour half of the teriyaki sauce over the salmon, ensuring they are well coated. Reserve the other half for later. Seal the bag or cover the dish and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. This allows the salmon to absorb the delicious teriyaki flavors.
Step 4: Pan-Fry the Salmon
When the salmon is finished marinating, preheat your cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Cast iron is an excellent pan for creating the perfect sear for Pan-Fried Teriyaki Salmon. Add 1-2 tablespoons of light olive oil to the preheated skillet. Swirl it around to coat the bottom evenly.
Carefully place the marinated salmon fillets into the skillet, skinless side down. Discard the used marinade.
Cook the salmon for about 3-4 minutes on each side, or until it easily flakes with a fork and has a beautiful golden crust. The exact cooking time may vary depending on the thickness of your fillets.
Step 5: Glaze with Teriyaki Sauce
Once your salmon is almost done cooking, pour the reserved teriyaki sauce over the salmon in the skillet. Allow it to simmer for a couple of minutes, creating a glossy, caramelized glaze over the Pan-Fried Teriyaki Salmon. Ensure the sauce is heated through.
Use a meat thermometer to test that the salmon is cooked to 145°. It should flake nicely, and be mostly opaque throughout. Carefully transfer your Pan-Fried Teriyaki Salmon to a serving platter. Spoon some of the remaining teriyaki sauce from the skillet over the top for extra flavor. If desired, you can garnish the salmon with chopped green onions, sesame seeds, or a sprinkle of fresh cilantro. You could serve this dish alongside Bulgur Pilaf, a hearty, healthy grain that would compliment the meal.
Pan-fried Teriyaki Salmon
- 4 salmon filets (4-6 oz each) skinless
- 2 tablespoon sesame oil
- ½ cup low-sodium soy sauce
- 3 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon ginger paste
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- Make the teriyaki sauce by combining the low-sodium soy sauce, brown sugar, minced garlic, ginger paste, and cornstarch in a bowl.
- Coat the salmon with half the sauce and refrigerate for 30 minutes to absorb the teriyaki flavors.
- Heat a cast-iron skillet, add light olive oil, and cook the salmon for 3-4 minutes on each side until golden and flaky.
- Pour the remaining sauce over the cooked salmon and simmer to create a caramelized glaze.
- Check the salmon's temperature is cooked to 145° F. It should flake nicely, and be mostly opaque throughout. Then, transfer it to a serving platter. Drizzle with extra sauce and garnish with green onions, sesame seeds, or cilantro if desired.