Elevate your salmon cooking techniques with this sweet and savory Miso Salmon! Succulent salmon pieces baked with a Japanese-inspired miso honey glaze, it’s easy to make and will infuse your dinner with excitment.
Why You’ll Love This Honey Miso Salmon
- Umami-Madness. Miso is an umami-rich ingredient that is common in Asian cooking and (blessedly) now widely available in the U.S. Like other umami-boost ingredients, such as soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, anchovy, and Parmesan, miso is known for imparting an intense savoriness to recipes.
- Glazed to Perfection. With honey, miso, and ginger, miso glaze tastes sweet, salty, zingy, and savory. For a sweeter version, check out Honey Glazed Salmon.
- Ridiculously Easy. Just brush on the glaze, then bake. It’s simple, oh-so-scrumptious, and a method I often use for salmon recipes.
- Use Up That Miso. Miso can last a long time in your fridge (like months). This recipe is a great way to use it or an excuse to try it out! Try Miso Ramen next!
Still skeptical? The Cheesecake Factory miso salmon is one of their most popular entrées, and that establishment does not mess with its own popularity.
About This Miso Salmon Recipe
First things first—what is miso, and what does it taste like.
- Miso is a fermented paste made from soybeans and koji, which is a type of mold (don’t freak out, it’s safe and does not taste spoiled).
- Its texture is thick and similar to that of peanut butter.
- Miso tastes intensely savory, toasty, a little funky (in a good way). It has a salty-sweet richness.
- The best way to think about miso is as a seasoning—it adds a little magic to everything you cook with it.
While miso’s intense flavor could overwhelm more delicate fish (like whitefish, snapper, or sole), hearty fish like salmon shine with miso glaze.
Finding and Storing Miso
I hope this baked salmon inspires you to add miso to your grocery cart!
- Miso can be found in the refrigerated section of most major grocery stores (our local Kroger carries it). Asian markets are also great to seek out and support.
- Miso lasts 3 or more months in the refrigerator after opening, so you don’t need to worry about it going bad before you have a chance to use it all.
- Miso gives you big bang for your buck. Just 1 tablespoon can transform a recipe from drab to FAB.
How to Make Miso Salmon
- Salmon. I adore this delicious and nutritious fish. Salmon can stand up to bold flavors like miso.
- Miso. This umami-tastic ingredient adds such deep and complex flavor that you’ll feel like a gourmet chef.
- Honey. A touch of sweetness complements the umami flavors in this dish. The honey also caramelizes during baking, giving the marinade a glaze-like finish (like in this Balsamic Glazed Salmon).
- Rice Vinegar. Adds a sweet acidity.
- Soy SauceSoy sauce and miso are a perfect match. Swap the soy sauce for tamari or coconut aminos if you prefer. I prefer a low-sodium option for less salt.
- Ginger. Ginger gives the dish warmth and adds mild zip.
- Red Pepper Flakes. An optional addition. We love that it adds a little kick!
- Pat the Salmon Dry. Place in a dish.
- Make the Miso Marinade. Whisk the ingredients together.
- Brush Half the Glaze over the Salmon. Let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes or refrigerate for up to 12 hours.
- Bake for 7 minutes. 400 degrees F is the perfect temperature for baking salmon.
- Brush with More Glaze. This doubles down on the honey miso flavor.
- Keep Baking Until Cooked. About 6 to 8 minutes more. Garnish with sesame seeds. DIG IN!
- To Store. Refrigerate baked miso salmon in an airtight storage container for up to 2 days.
- To Reheat. Gently rewarm leftovers in a baking dish (or baking sheet) in the oven at 350 degrees F or in the microwave.
- To Freeze. Freeze salmon in an airtight, freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
Meal Prep Tip
Up to 12 hours in advance, prepare the recipe through Step 2. Cover and refrigerate the marinated salmon until you’re ready to finish the recipe.
Use leftover salmon to make a healthy and hearty bowl. Try swapping the teriyaki salmon in this Teriyaki Salmon Bowl for your leftover miso salmon.
What to Serve with Miso Salmon
- Rice. A bed of rice goes well with miso salmon. We love to use Instant Pot Brown Rice, but you can use any kind you have on hand. For an extra special twist, try Homemade Fried Rice. Quinoa would be tasty too.
- Noodles. Vegetable Lo Mein or Asian Noodle Salad would be delicious with this dish.
- Salad. For a fresh, fiber-packed side dish, pair miso salmon with Ramen Salad or Asian Cucumber Salad (the sesame oil in this salad is delightful with miso).
- Veggies. In our house, veggies go with miso salmon every time. Try Roasted Cauliflower, Air Fryer Asparagus, Sautéed Mushrooms, Grilled Eggplant, Air Fryer Broccoli, peas, bok choy, or edamame.
Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe
- Baking Dish. Perfect for making miso salmon recipes.
- Instant Read Thermometer. The best way to know when your salmon is cooked through.
- Basting Brush. What I use to brush the marinade onto the salmon.
Recipe Tips and Tricks
- Use White Miso. It is milder in flavor than dark or red miso, which will overpower the fish.
- Seek Out Good Quality Salmon. Look for a wild-caught, high-quality variety if possible.
- Keep the Skin on the Salmon. This helps the salmon stay moist and deters overcooking.
- Don’t Overcook the Salmon. You’ll know salmon is done when it flakes easily with a fork and registers 140 degrees F on an instant read thermometer; when you let it rest, its temperature will rise to the FDA’s 145 degrees F.
- 4 (6-ounce) skin-on salmon fillets about 1-inch thick
- 1 tablespoon honey or pure maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon white or brown miso
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon minced ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes optional
- Chopped green onion or cilantro for serving
- Toasted sesame seeds optional, for serving
- Cooked brown rice optional, for serving
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a 9×13-inch casserole dish with parchment paper or foil. Pat the salmon fillets dry, then place in the dish skin-side down.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the maple syrup, miso, vinegar, soy sauce, ginger, and red pepper flakes.
- Spoon or carefully pour half of the mixture on top of the salmon, brushing to evenly coat the tops. Let sit at room temperature for at least 15 minutes, or marinate for up to 12 hours (if refrigerating, let the salmon stand at room temperature for 15 minutes prior to cooking).
- Bake the miso salmon for 7 minutes. Remove from the oven, and brush with the remaining marinade. Return the pan to the oven and continue cooking for 6 to 8 minutes more, or until the salmon is opaque and cooked through, and the fish registers 140°F on an instant read thermometer (fish is considered cooked at 145°F, but its temperature will rise as it rests; do not overcook or the fish will be dry). Let the salmon rest for 5 minutes, then serve warm with a sprinkle of chopped green onion or cilantro, sesame seeds, and rice as desired.
- TO STORE: Refrigerate salmon in an airtight storage container for up to 2 days.
- TO REHEAT: Gently rewarm leftovers in a baking dish in the oven at 350°F or in the microwave.
- TO FREEZE: Freeze salmon in an airtight, freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
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Frequently Asked Questions
There are well over 1,000 kinds of miso throughout the world, though the kinds you will find in the U.S. fall into two main categories: white/light miso or dark/red miso. White miso is mild and lightly sweet. Red miso has the strongest flavor and pungency (typically barley miso falls here). Yellow or brown miso is the middle ground between the white and red varieties. I lean towards the gentler flavor of white miso.
While I haven’t tried this myself, I think you could reduce the miso glaze a little on the stove, then spread it over this Pan Fried Salmon.
Miso paste is wonderful for stirring into soups (miso soup is a beloved classic!), mashed potatoes, salad dressings, stir fries, and adding to roasted veggies. Have fun playing around, just remember that a little goes a long way. If you want to make Broiled Salmon, know that miso tends to burn very quickly and easily, so proceed with caution.
Follow my recipe for Grilled Salmon or Grilled Salmon in Foil, spreading the miso glaze over the salmon prior to grilling; I also recommend marinating the salmon in the miso sauce first, as directed in the recipe below.
I haven’t tried this variation myself, but I think it would be delicious. Prep the salmon as directed in this recipe, then use my recipe for Air Fryer Salmon for cooking time and temperature.
Yes, this quick miso salmon is healthy. Salmon is packed with protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamins. Miso, a fermented food, has gut-friendly probiotic bacteria.