The first dinner Ben cooked for me was a frozen Stouffer’s lasagna. The second (and third and fourth) were Balsamic Glazed Salmon. I married a man who is nothing if not perceptive.

balsamic glazed salmon on a white dinner plate, next to fresh spinach leaves

It is an established fact in our household that if I didn’t cook, we would return to Ben’s bachelor diet of frozen pizzas and microwavable taco packets.

Until that second dinner, I never would have suspected that, beneath the stash of frozen pot pies and instant noodles lay a man capable of cooking a meal that has become one of my absolute favorite dinners and is beautiful too.

Balsamic glazed salmon is an incredibly delicious, easy fish dinner. This glazed salmon recipe is perfect for busy weeknights, because it cooks up in only 20 minutes!

Perfect Balsamic Glazed Salmon. Easy, impressive and ready in 20 minutes!
salmon filet coated with a balsamic glaze on a white dinner plate with fresh spinach

Instead of going out on Valentine’s Day, every year Ben pours me a glass of wine and cooks me a special dinner. Because I love it so much (and raved incessantly when he first made it), Balsamic Glazed Salmon has become our tradition.

One year, he attempted to switch it up and printed me a menu with two salmon options. I stuck with the balsamic glazed, but here’s the original Instagram shot for posterity. (I would, however, have trouble deciding between this dish and Bourbon Glazed Salmon.)

homemade romantic dinner menu next to a glass of white wine

I could go on and on about just how easy and fabulous this Balsamic Glazed Salmon is, but I think that message would be best delivered by the chef himself.

Without further ado, I present the man across the table, sports analogy-enthusiast, and Balsamic Glazed Salmon Master, my sweet husband Ben.

Balsamic Glazed Salmon: A Guest Post from Ben

Being married to a food blogger gives a man a unique relationship with his spouse’s line of work. I’ve selflessly swallowed my share of recipe fails, spent many Saturday mornings holding wooden spoons for photos, and am only allowed to eat the “ugly cookies” from the first batch (or so she thinks).

2 dinner plates of Balsamic Glazed Salmon with spinach

I’m also incredibly fortunate to have a partner who is constantly coming up with new, creative dishes for us to enjoy…and who makes sure I (despite kicking and screaming) eat my Brussels sprouts.

Because Erin does 99.98% of the cooking (thanks, cereal, for that 0.02%), I aim to repay my colossal debt on special occasions. What better way to humble your man pride on Valentine’s Day than by sporting an apron and attempting to own that stove like Calvin Johnson owns the deep ball.

Men, with a recipe like Balsamic Glazed Salmon you are guaranteed to score high relationship points without the fear of pulling a butt fumble.

two white dinner plates with balsamic glazed salmon and glasses of red wine

Easy Salmon Dinner—Dressed to Impress

Seriously, this easy salmon recipe is the secret to impressing the ladies. Why?  Because, ladies, this Balsamic Glazed Salmon is so gourmet it’s even out of Emeril Lagasse’s league. (Sssshh! Guys, trust me: (a) there’s no need to Wikipedia Emeril Lagasse and (b) making Balsamic Glazed Salmon is actually easier than T.J. Oshie scoring in a shootout).

Here’s what you need to make Balsamic Glazed Salmon: two pans; something to stir the ingredients in said pans (Erin tells me it’s called a “whisk”, but I’m pretty sure she made that up); and a confident attitude.

This salmon is nearly impossible to mess up, but it looks and tastes like a fancy restaurant entrée. Present it with professional flare, then watch your date swoon.

All you need to do now is make sure not to chew with your mouth open nor slurp your wine, and you can congratulate yourself on a perfectly executed date night dinner. Score!

dinner serving of Balsamic Glazed Salmon, spinach, and a glass of red wine

For dessert, I’m grateful that boxed brownies come with such clear instructions (and that Erin loves them almost as much as I do).

More Easy, Impressive, and Romantic Dinner Recipe Ideas

white dinner plate with Balsamic Glazed Salmon and fresh spinach

Balsamic Glazed Salmon

4.8 from 20 votes
An easy recipe for perfect balsamic glazed salmon that’s ready in only 20 minutes. Looks impressive, tastes delicious, and is so simple to make!

Prep: 2 mins
Cook: 18 mins
Total: 20 mins

Servings: 2 servings


  • 2 salmon fillets (5 ounces each)
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves  garlic minced
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons  Dijon mustard
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • Chopped fresh parsley for garnish


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, then coat with non-stick cooking spray.
  • In a small skillet, heat the olive oil over medium. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant and beginning to brown, about 2 minutes, watching carefully so that it does not burn. Add the balsamic vinegar, honey, mustard, salt and pepper. Whisk and simmer until the mixture thickens, about 4 minutes.
  • Place salmon skin-side down on the prepared baking sheet. Brush liberally with the glaze. Bake for 5 minutes, brush again with the glaze, then bake 5 to 10 additional minutes, until the fish flakes easily with a fork and is cooked through. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve. Bask in applause from your Valentine.

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Erin Clarke

Hi, I'm Erin Clarke, and I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food that's affordable, easy-to-make, and best of all DELISH. I'm the author and recipe developer here at and of The Well Plated Cookbook. I adore both sweets and veggies, and I am on a mission to save you time and dishes. WELCOME!

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    1. Hi Fern! I’m glad you enjoyed it! Nutrition info is something I began adding to blog posts in 2016, but unfortunately it’s too time consuming to go back and add it to previous recipes. If you’re interested in the nutrition estimates, you can calculate it for free using an online calculator like My Fitness Pal. I hope that can be a helpful resource for you!

    1. Hi Josie, I’m sorry to hear this wasn’t to your taste. As you can see from other commenters, many others have loved the recipe, but I know everyone has different tastes. I know it’s disappointing to try a new recipe and not love it, so I truly wish you would have enjoyed this!

  1. I had frozen Alaska sockeye salmon that my husband caught out of the Kenai River.  I wish I could say it was great but it wasn’t! It may have been related to the window of “not done to over done.

    1. Beth, I’m sorry this didn’t hit the spot for you! Overcooking definitely can be the end of any salmon recipe :( If you try it again, I’d suggest cooking for less time. A lot of readers have enjoyed this, so I think that will make an enormous difference. That said, I know it’s a bummer to try a recipe and not have it come out, so I wish this would have been perfect for you.

  2. This is the BEST balsamic glaze salmon and it is easy! I made it and loved it (Didn’t print nor save… so I lost the recipe)
    I am so excited I found it again. It will be on an upcoming evening menu.5 stars

    1. Hi Todd! I haven’t seen that recipe before! I certainly didn’t invent the idea of making salmon with balsamic, so it’s certainly possible that you would find similar ones online. The one on my site is our version (and the one my husband Ben makes for me). I hope you enjoy it if you try it!

  3. I’ve made this recipe twice so far and I didn’t change a thing (which never happens!). It’s perfect thank you! 5 stars

    1. I’m so happy to hear that this recipe was a hit, Melissa! Thank you for taking the time to share this kind review!

  4. This was an epic fail for me. I followed the glaze instructions exactly, but the glaze turned into a rock solid blob—there’s no way I could have brushed it on the fish, and it was a nightmare trying to clean the glaze off of my silicone brush. I used a nonstick Scanpan. Does the glaze have to be made in a pan that does not have a nonstick coating?

    1. Stacey, oh no! What happened here is that the glaze cooked too long and reduced too much, which would turn it into the blob you described; your pan may have been too hot also. Cooking times in recipes are a great guide, but they can vary depending upon how hot your stove is, how large your pan is, etc. Next time, I’d suggest watching for the consistency of the glaze, vs. an exact number of minutes. I hope that helps troubleshoot!!

  5. Just tried this recipe , the taste can’t be beat !! I had tried another recipe that did not call for the marinade to be heated and thickened up like your recipe and it was not good at all .

    Glad I found this post !!5 stars

    1. I’m so pleased to hear that this recipe was a hit, Mike! Thank you for sharing this kind review!

  6. This was DELICIOUS! We wished we had more! We had frozen in the bag sweet potato cubes and that was great too. A very easy meal. We are copying the recipe for in Florida and for back in Indiana. Loved it!5 stars

    1. I’m so pleased that you enjoyed this recipe, Bonnie! Thank you for sharing this kind review!

  7. This was really delicious. The only change I made was that I pan-seared the salmon (4 mins. each side) and then sautéed the garlic in that pan for two minutes before I dumped the sauce in that pan and it reduced in about two minutes and poured that over the fish.  The sauce ingredients really worked well together.5 stars

  8. I will be making this tomorrow night (Monday nights are Salmon nights!), but in the pictures, it looks like you just put fresh Spinach leaves on the plate, along with chopped ones on top of the Salmon for garnish….am I correct? Or is the spinach suppose to be like a salad?

    1. Hi Leslie! I actually used chopped fresh parsley on top of the salmon (it’s delicious!). I hope you enjoy the recipe!

  9. Excellent – very tasty, moist and flavorful – used sockeye- sauce was excellent, easy, aromatic – simple prep- it’s a keeper with my wife and I. Topped with some green scallions – 👍👍👍👍👍5 stars

  10. I fixed this for my husband and myself tonight. My husband does not like sauces or spices. He likes things plain, so I was really worried that he would hate it. He loved it! We both did. I served it with steamed white rice (his favorite) and a sweet kale salad with poppyseed dressing. It was a success!! Thanks for the recipe.5 stars

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