This Honey Glazed Salmon is a quick and easy, delicious salmon recipe that is loaded with sweet and savory flavors of honey and orange. Honey glazed salmon has a shiny finished look that will quickly impress your dinner guests. It’s a really easy dish to make with just enough complexity to make it a stand out meal. Enjoy the sticky candy-like coating over that savory flakey salmon fillet with little to no added effort and feel like a pro.
The secret is in the blend of ingredients I use for this special glaze. If you are new to glazing proteins, don’t worry. It isn’t complicated and it pays dividends. Here are some brief tips on glazing and other important cooking techniques to help guide you as you prepare this incredibly tasty dish.
How to Make a Honey Glaze
The delicious sweet and salty glaze recipe that I use for my honey glazed salmon is not your typical honey glaze. Usually, the glaze will call for brown sugar. I don’t use brown sugar or any kind of sugar.
The added sweetness to my glaze comes from orange juice. The natural viscosity of the orange juice combines with all the other ingredients and helps to create the perfect glaze and the citric acid in the orange brings added depth of flavor. For this glaze, a great alternative to orange juice is lemon juice.
A Honey glaze is easy to make. Just take the suggested ingredients and mix them together in a bowl. The liquid mixture coats the salmon while cooking and becomes a sticky, sweet glaze that enhances the look, aroma, and taste of the salmon.
The secret to properly glazing a salmon, or any other protein is to let it mostly cook without the glaze. You add the glaze near the end as it is finishing. This helps to prevent burning the glaze as the sugar content can easily blacken and char. It’s easy to keep an eye on the salmon as you cook in a skillet, but baked recipes require more attention near the end of the cooking time.
Why Honey Glaze a Salmon
A glaze is a really exciting and visually appealing way to impart extra flavor to a protein. Glazes impact the taste, aroma, visual appearance, and texture of the meat. Honey glaze makes an ideal counterpart to salmon because it compliments the natural flavor of the salmon.
At the same time, it adds complexity to the dish by creating a whole different way to enjoy salmon. A well-glazed salmon is shiny with a thin veneer of sweetness that you taste before biting into the salmon. The experience of eating a glazed salmon is enhanced.
One common problem with cooking salmon is that it can dry out. Glazing a salmon not only traps in moisture, but it also adds moisture to balance out any dryness in the meat. This in combination with the sophistication of texture and flavor is a great reason to honey glaze a salmon.
The Art (and Purpose) of Mincing
Cooking with garlic is as nuanced as cooking can be. How the garlic imparts flavor to your dish is very dependent on how you handle it. You can crush it, you can mash it, and you can finely chop it to accomplish different purposes and goals.
If you only lightly crush the garlic, the flavor will be more subtle and sweeter. The finer you cut it, the more influence garlic begins to have over the dish. Finally, mashed garlic has the most bearing on how the finished product will taste.
The strength of the garlic is coupled with more pungency as well. The reason for this is that an enzyme in the garlic gets activated when it is exposed to air. The more exposure the garlic gets (ie. from mincing) the more that enzyme affects the overall impact of garlic on your dish.
There is an art to preparing garlic and especially mincing it. First, you need to remove the papery skin. Loosen it by placing your knife flat against the garlic, pressing it to the countertop. Then whack the broad side of the knife with the heel of your hand. After removing the skin, slice off the root end before you begin mincing.
There are three stages to mincing garlic. First, crush the garlic using the same technique as you did with removing the skin. Next, roughly chop the garlic into pieces. Once the crushed garlic is chopped turn your knife 90 degrees to chop front to back. Do this by using both hands to rock the blade side to side as you slowly mince the garlic into very fine slivers.
What’s the Difference Between Basting and Poaching Salmon
When it comes to cooking the salmon you can keep it moist by using a technique called basting. Basting and poaching salmon are two different methods to achieve a similar result. When you poach a protein, it is submerged in liquid. The salmon is more evenly cooked, but you must have a certain level of skill to time it right.
This cooking method better utilizes basting as a strategy for keeping the salmon from drying out. To baste, carefully tilt the pan to let the juices pool on the bottom edge. Then spoon the liquid up onto the top of the salmon repeatedly, washing it with flavor. This method works best when you use real butter in your skillet instead of oil.
Once you add the glaze, you will similarly spoon more glaze over the salmon as it finishes cooking.
What You Should Serve with Honey Glazed Salmon
Cabbage, rice, and green vegetables are all excellent sides to add to salmon for a complete meal. The glaze from the salmon makes rice sticky and adds flavor to it, so it can be one cohesive dish, but grilled zucchini or asparagus are also fantastic choices.
You can also grill cabbage or make it into a slaw that you can serve as a side, or a bed for the honey glazed salmon to rest on. To complement the citrus element, you can also serve the salmon with a pineapple slaw. Carrots, Couscous, and any kind of prepared potato also complement salmon nicely. Mashed potatoes are usually a favorite side dish when I make this Honey Glazed Salmon.
Ingredients to Make Honey Glazed Salmon
- Soy sauce
- Orange juice
- Garlic, minced
- Vegetable oil
How to Make Honey Glazed Salmon
- In a small bowl, whisk together honey and soy sauce. Add in the minced garlic and orange juice. Stir and set aside.
- Pat dry salmon fillets with a paper towel and season with salt and pepper on both sides of fillets.
- Heat oil in a large, nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Place salmon in the pan and pan fry fillets for 2-3 minutes on per side, occasionally pressing down gently on fillets.
- Add prepared glaze over salmon and reduce heat.
- Simmer until salmon is cooked through (120 degrees – 130 degrees is medium rare, 135 degrees – 145 degrees is well done.)
- Make sure to spoon some glaze over the salmon as it cooks.
Try This Delicious Salmon Recipe Today
Here are a few more recipes that can be found on the blog:
- Grilled Cajun Lemon Shrimp
- Shrimp Sausage Rice Skillet
- Cajun Shrimp Fettuccine Alfredo
- Chicken Spinach Shrimp Alfredo Lasagna
- 4 salmon fillets, skin on
- ½ cup honey
- 6 tbsp soy sauce
- 3 tbsp orange juice
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
In a small bowl, whisk together the honey and soy sauce. Add in the minced garlic and orange juice. Stir and set aside.
Pat dry salmon fillets with a paper towel and season with salt and pepper on both sides of fillet.
Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Place salmon in the pan and pan fry fillets for 2-3 minutes per side, occasionally pressing down gently on fillets.
Add prepared glaze over salmon and reduce heat.
Simmer until salmon is cooked through (120°-130° is medium rare, 135°-145° is well done) and glaze thickens.
Make sure to spoon some glaze over the salmon as it cooks.
Recipe inspired from thekitchn.com
Here are a few pics that are the perfect size for pinning to Pinterest.
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