Blackened Salmon

Simple blackened salmon

The Spruce / Elaine Lemm

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 8 mins
Total: 18 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Yields: 4 fillets

Supper on the table in under 20 minutes is not a dream, it is a possibility. This blackened salmon recipe is just perfect for a quick family meal and not just super-quick, but nutritious, too. The addition of this Cajun-style adds a delicious lightly spiced flavor to the fish.

The spice mix here is simple and straightforward to make using a food processor, but can also be adjusted to your liking. Try this lightly-spicy version and adjust or add to it for future recipes. Salmon works so well with almost all spices and particularly loves warming spice too such as cumin or even a little smoked paprika. Take care to not overpower the delicate flavor of the salmon though.


  • For the Salmon:
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 4 (5-ounce) pieces skin-on salmon fillet
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable or rice bran oil
  • For the Spice Mix:
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon dried thyme leaves
  • 1/2 tablespoon dried basil
  • 1/2 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt flakes
  • 1 tablespoon soft brown sugar

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Lay the salmon fillets skin-side down into a shallow ceramic or glass baking dish. Pour over the lime juice in equal measures onto each fillet and put to one side for 5 minutes.

  3. Put all the spice mix ingredients into a food processor. Blitz to thoroughly blend of the spices. Spread the spices evenly onto a large plate or baking sheet.

  4. Lift the salmon fillets from the lime juice, then flesh side down into the spice mix, press very gently to encourage the spices to stick to the fish, turn each fillet onto the sides and press again, there is no need to cover the skin as this will be removed before serving.

  5. Once all 4 fillets are coated, put a large grill pan onto the stove and heat to medium-high heat. Add a little oil to the pan and once hot, place the fillets, skin side down into the pan and cook for 4 minutes then using a spatula, carefully flip the fillets over and cook for a further 4 minutes until just cooked through.

  6. Remove skin from the underside of the salmon, it will slip away very easily. Put the fish from the pan onto heated plates and serve immediately.

What Do You Serve With Blackened Salmon?

The blackened salmon works well with noodles, dirty rice, freshly cooked vegetables, or sweet potato fries.

Recipe Variation

  • Although salmon is a delicately flavored fish, it is also robust and with its slight oiliness is perfect for blackening. If you wish to switch out for another, choose a fish that can stand up equally. Avoid thin fillets such as sea bass or bream, choosing instead a thick piece of cod, haddock, or pollock.