I am officially ruined. Thanks to this 5-star, menu-quality Honey Garlic Salmon, I can never order salmon from a restaurant again.

Saucy honey garlic salmon on a plate

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Crispy on top, succulent inside, and bathed in a smoky-sweet honey garlic sauce, this baked salmon recipe outshines much of the salmon I’ve ordered out.

Do I sound insufferable? Learning to cook perfect salmon at home will do that to you (for an excellent overview to baking salmon, check out my Salmon Temperature Guide and How to Cook Salmon).

Even if you’ve never cooked salmon before, I promise you can make this recipe (and my Pesto Salmon) with rip-roaring success.

Once you’ve tasted it, I bet you’ll think twice about ordering baked salmon from someone else’s menu too!

If you are new to the salmon game, start with this million-dollar Baked Salmon in Foil.

Then, when you are ready to WOW, come back to this honey garlic salmon, or try one of these.

Easy honey garlic salmon fillets in a skillet

It sears on the stove, then finishes in the oven. The presentation is spectacular.

The glaze is deep and sassy with smoked paprika, honey, and a heap of fresh garlic, and this recipe makes plenty of it.

You’ll love having the extra glaze for spooning over the fish. I especially enjoy it over rice or cauliflower rice.

Ready to feel like a total salmon master with the best salmon recipe? OWN IT.

Let’s make some honey garlic salmon!

How to Cook Honey Garlic Salmon

This is a great recipe for weeknights, because the prep time is short.

The secrets to the perfect salmon sear are 1. Get that skillet nice and HOT (don’t rush it add the salmon when the skillet’s only at medium heat) and 2. Don’t disturb the fish while it cooks.

  • See this Pan Seared Salmon for more tips and watch the recipe video below for an easy visual.

The Ingredients

  • Salmon. With a tender, flaky texture and delicious flavor, salmon fillets are an excellent lean, low-carb protein option. Plus, the glaze will make them appealing to the fish skeptics at your table. They’re also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, potassium, and B vitamins.
  • Honey. Honey adds scrumptious natural sweetness to the glaze and helps it caramelize to perfection. (I also love it in this Honey Glazed Salmon with soy sauce.)
  • Lemon Juice. For acidity and brightness.
  • Minced Garlic + Spices. Minced cloves garlic, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, and salt add wonderful flavor to the glaze. The smoked paprika adds a nice smokiness, and the cayenne brings just a touch of heat. For even more of a kick, add red pepper flakes or sriracha.
  • Parsley or Green Onion. I love to finish off this salmon dish with a shower of freshness. Both parsley and green onion are tasty choices.

The Directions

  1. Let the salmon filets come to room temperature, and pat it dry.
Honey garlic sauce in a bowl
  1. Whisk the honey garlic glaze ingredients together in a small bowl.
Four raw fish fillets
  1. Season the salmon with salt and pepper. Heat a sturdy, ovenproof skillet on the stove top over medium-high heat to high heat, then add the salmon skin side down. Sprinkle the fish with salt.
Four fish fillets in a skillet
  1. Once browned, flip each fillet over. Turn off the heat.
Sauce being poured over salmon fillets
  1. Baste the salmon fillets with the honey garlic mixture. Move the skillet to the oven, and bake for 4 to 5 minutes.
  2. Serve with parsley or green onion and lemon. ENJOY!
A plate of salmon, green beans, and lemon

Storage Tips

  • To Store. Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 2 days.
  • To Reheat. Honey garlic salmon can be very gently reheated in a skillet over medium-low heat.

Meal Plan Tip

Whisk the glaze ingredients together up to 1 day in advance, storing the mixture in the refrigerator until you’re ready to cook.

Honey garlic salmon fillets with lemon
Four fillets of easy honey garlic salmon

What to Serve with Honey Garlic Salmon

Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe

The Best Cast Iron Skillet

This heavy-duty cast iron skillet will last you a lifetime. Use it on the stovetop or in the oven.

Saucy honey garlic salmon on a plate

Did you make this recipe?

Let me know what you thought!

Leave a rating below in the comments and let me know how you liked the recipe.

While I rarely repeat meals—with salmon variations ranging from Teriyaki Salmon to Blackened Salmon we have plenty to choose from even in the salmon family—this honey garlic glaze has become a regular.

Fortunately, when you cook it yourself, it can be the nightly special any time you feel like ordering it up.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Cook Salmon Directly From Frozen?

If you have individual salmon fillets, you can cook them directly from frozen either in the oven (see this Salmon Baking Guide for tips) or by making Air Fryer Salmon. For salmon you plan to sear or glaze like this recipe, you need to thaw the salmon first so the glaze adheres and the outside can crisp.

How Else Can I Add Flavor to Salmon?

Salmon goes well with a wide range of flavors, ranging from sweet and salty, to herby (rosemary, dill, and parsley all go well with salmon), to spicy. You can uses glazes like this recipe and Bourbon Glazed Salmon, try a rub like Spicy Salmon recipe, or use garlic and herbs like this Garlic Salmon.

What Can I Do With Leftover Salmon?

Leftover salmon is tasty served on a salad (like this Ramen Salad) or over Vegetable Lo Mein or Cauliflower Fried Rice.

Honey Garlic Salmon Recipe Video

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YouTube video

Saucy honey garlic salmon on a plate

Honey Garlic Salmon

5 from 13 votes
This glazed honey garlic salmon recipe has a perfect pan fried crust, then is baked to tender perfection. Quick, easy, and tastes impressive!

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Total: 20 mins

Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 4 (6-ounce) skin-on salmon fillets
  • ¼ cup honey
  • 3 tablespoons hot water
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 6 cloves minced garlic about 2 tablespoons
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 3/4 to 1 teaspoon kosher salt divided
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • Chopped fresh parsley or green onion for serving
  • Lemon wedges optional, for serving

Instructions
 

  • Place a rack in the center of your oven and preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  • Let the salmon rest at room temperature for 10 minutes. With paper towels, pat it dry on both sides.
  • In a small mixing bowl or liquid measuring cup, whisk together the honey, hot water, lemon juice, garlic, smoked paprika, ¼ teaspoon salt, and cayenne pepper. Keep near the stove.
  • Heat an ovenproof skillet (cast iron is ideal) just large enough to hold the salmon comfortably over medium high—you don't want the salmon to overlap, but you also don't want there to be too much extra room around the salmon or the sauce may burn.
  • Sprinkle the salmon with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon black pepper (wait to season the fish until just before adding it to the pan).
  • Once the skillet is hot, add the olive oil. Swirl to coat the pan, then add the salmon, skin-side up/flesh side down. When lowering the fish into the pan, move it in a direction away from you so that you aren’t splattered with oil. Sprinkle the skin side of the fish with a generous pinch of additional salt.
  • Cook the salmon for 4 minutes without disturbing it, until it is browned and releases easily from the pan. With a thin spatula (a fish spatula is perfect), carefully turn over each fillet. Turn off the heat.
  • Pour the honey mixture over the salmon fillets. With a spoon, baste the top of the fish with the sauce for 1 minute.
  • Transfer the skillet to the oven. Bake until the salmon flakes easily with a fork, about 4 to 5 more minutes for 1-inch fillets; if your salmon is thicker or thinner, you will need to adjust the cooking time accordingly. Salmon is done when it reaches 145 degrees F on an instant read thermometer and flakes easily with a fork. Do not overcook or the salmon will be dry (once I get close to 145 degrees F, I remove the salmon to a plate then cover it and let it rest a few minutes so the carryover cooking finishes the job).
  • Sprinkle the salmon with parsley or green onion and squeeze additional lemon over the top if you like. Enjoy hot with more pan sauce spooned over the top.

Notes

  • If your honey starts to get very dark, don’t panic! It is the sugar caramelizing and your fish should not taste burned. If this happens, it may be that your skillet is too large (so the honey cooks more quickly) or too hot. Take it as a learning for next time and enjoy your salmon.
  • TO STORE: Refrigerate leftover salmon in an airtight storage container for up to 2 days.
  • TO REHEAT: Honey garlic salmon can be very gently reheated in a skillet over medium-low heat.

Nutrition

Serving: 1(of 4)Calories: 379kcalCarbohydrates: 20gProtein: 34gFat: 18gSaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 94mgPotassium: 889mgFiber: 1gSugar: 18gVitamin A: 404IUVitamin C: 6mgCalcium: 32mgIron: 2mg

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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 wellplated.com 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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36 Comments

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  1. Hello Erin,
    I have not tried this recipe yet but I have tried many others and your are by far my favourite chef. All of your recipes are so flavourful and tasty.

    I was wondering though, what is the sodium amount? Is there anyway you can provide that in the nutrition section?

    1. Thank you for your kind words, Joyce! I stopped including sodium info because it can vary so much depending upon what products you used, and I found a lot of conflicting info online, so ultimately I didn’t feel comfortable publishing it because sometimes it wasn’t even in the ballpark. If you’d like to calculate it yourself, there are lots of free tools online (myfitnesspal.com is popular). I hope that helps!

    1. Hi Marcia! If you click “jump to recipe” at the top of the post, it will take you directly to the recipe, which is above where you listed this comment and does include all ingredients and amounts.

  2. Such an incredibly easy and delicious recipe! We had it for dinner tonight. I ended up transferring it to a roasting tin lined with foil, since I wasn’t sure I could put my pan in the oven. I had preheated the tin with the oven, so that no heat would be lost in the transfer. My husband and 2 year old really liked it! Thanks for a great one that we will definitely make again!5 stars

  3. Way easier to prepare than I thought it would be. Super tasty and it made me look like a star cook! ? Thank you, Erin!5 stars

  4. WOW this recipe is so good! Even my toddler loved it. The sauce is the PERFECT amount of sweetness with a teensy bit of spice and it was seriously so yummy. It was also incredibly easy!5 stars

  5. Delicious and simple. I’d recommend this to anybody. Perfect week night dinner but tastes like something you’d get at a fancy restaurant. Amazing!5 stars

  6. Absolutely amazing! I’m new to eating Salmon and when I saw this recipe with honey & garlic I had to try it. The flavors of the sauce are so delicious and cooking it in the cast iron skillet first gave it a nice sear. Definitely a keeper! So good!5 stars

  7. From the recipe: “Add the salmon fillets skin-side down in skillet. Once browned, flip each fillet over. Baste the salmon fillets with the honey garlic mixture. Move the skillet to the oven.”

    If you flip them over and then baste, you’ll be basting the skin NOT the flesh/meat. Is that correct? The marinade sounds fantastic!

    1. Hi Doug! You’ll actually want to add the salmon to the pan skin-side up. Then, you’ll flip the pieces over and baste them. The full recipe ingredients and instructions can be found at the bottom of the post (if you click the “Jump to Recipe” button at the top of the page, it will take you directly there). I hope this helps!

  8. Erin this recipe is incredible. I made it for a date and she raves to everyone we meet about how good of a cook I am and brings up this dish in particular!

    One thing I wanted to ask: is there a way to turn extra honey glaze into a dipping sauce? Sometimes my salmon is a little dry (pulled mine at 130 and let it rest) and I thought a dipping sauce on the side might be a good addition.

    If not, no worries, I’ll be making this recipe for the rest of my life anyway.5 stars

    1. I’m SO happy that you enjoyed it, Kent! I think you could make a little extra glaze and turn it into a dipping sauce if you’d like.

  9. Absolutely love this recipe! I’ve been using Well-Plated for a while now and still have not found a recipe I don’t like! Thank you for creating these great and easy dishes! The only problematic issue I have is now my girlfriend thinks I can cook haha5 stars

  10. Excellent recipe! I doubled the sauce the second time making it since the sauce is so good. Served with Brussels sprouts and brown rice which were also great to top the sauce with. Thanks, Erin! And go Irish!!5 stars

  11. This was my first time making salmon and this recipe made it so easy!!! Not to mention it turned out AMAZING. I will definitely be adding this meal to the dinner rotation!5 stars

  12. Hi. I don’t have a cast iron frying pan. Can I use a frying pan and transfer it to another pan for the oven? Will it still taste as good?

    1. Hi Tracy! I’m sorry I have only tested this recipe as written so it would be hard for me to say. If you decide to experiment, let me know how it goes!