Baked Salmon with Sweet Spiced Rub

Baked Salmon with Sweet Spiced Rub

This Baked Salmon with Sweet Spiced Rub is so incredibly good. Super easy to make and ready from start to finish in less than 20-minutes!

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I absolutely love salmon. It’s an easy protein that’s healthy and low in fat. Salmon also cooks fast so it’s great for busy nights or last minute company. And when prepared right, it’s flakey and tender, and practically melts-in-your-mouth. I always feel like I’m eating something really special when I have salmon.

This Baked Salmon with Sweet Spiced Rub is one of the best and most flavorful salmon recipes I’ve ever had. My bestie shared the rub spice with me. It’s the perfect balance of sweet and spicy, and creates a beautiful salty crust over the salmon when it bakes. I love how fast it is to prepare and it only takes about 12-minutes to cook. My favorite way to serve this salmon is over buttered rice with a side green salad. Simple, healthy, and delicious!

What type of Salmon Should I Use?

I’m not a salmon connoisseur but I do know that wild caught varieties are best. I usually try to look for wild Alaskan or wild Pacific. Avoid farm raised and Atlantic (farm raised) salmon if possible. These varieties are fed an artificial diet which means they have less nutrients, they’re more fatty, and often times more watery. It’s definitely worth the few extra bucks for a quality piece of fish.

What is a rub?

A rub is made up of spices, dried herbs, and usually white or brown sugar. It typically gets worked into the meat infusing lots of flavor that forms a crispy crust when cooked.

Ingredients For Baked Salmon with Sweet Spiced Rub:

  • 4 (4oz) salmon fillets (thawed if frozen)
  • Olive oil
  • Lemon slices (optional)
  • Fresh parsley (optional)

Sweet Spiced Rub:

  • Salt & pepper
  • Brown sugar
  • Paprika
  • Garlic powder
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Onion powder
  • Chili powder
  • Ground cumin


Customize the Spices:

The great thing about dry rubs is you can use what you have on hand. Customize the flavors to your liking. If you like it more herby, add dried thyme, oregano, or Italian seasoning. For a smokier flavor, mix in smoked paprika, or chipotle powder.

Add Citrus:

While not necessary, a fresh squeeze of lemon or lime juice adds a fresh and bright flavor to the fish. Placing lemon slices on top of the fish while it bakes is also a nice touch.

How To Make Baked Salmon with Sweet Spiced Rub:

Step 1. Preheat oven to 400℉ and drizzle olive oil on medium size sheet pan.

Step 2. Combine all the seasonings in a small bowl.

Step 3. Pat salmon dry with paper towels then place skin side down on oiled sheet pan. Drizzle the top with olive oil, then divide seasoning among the four pieces. Use the back of a spoon to rub the mixture over the top of the flesh side of the fish.

Step 4. Bake for 12-15 minutes then top with fresh parsley and lemon slices.

What is the best temperature to cook salmon to?

If using farm raised salmon, the internal temperature should be cooked to 125℉. Wild caught is leaner and can dry out much easier so 120℉ is ideal. Basically, fish should easily flake with a fork and the flesh should be soft and tender. Cooking time will also depend on how thick the fillet is.



Tips:

  • If using frozen salmon- The best way to thaw salmon is in the refrigerator overnight. You can also place sealed fillets in a large bowl of cold water until thawed. Do not leave salmon unthawed in refrigerator for more than 2 days.
  • Be careful not to overcook salmon- Salmon doesn’t take long to cook and can go from perfect to dry in a matter of minutes. It should easily flake with a fork. As a rule, I start checking salmon at 10-minutes.
  • Freezing leftover cooked salmon- Place cooled and cooked salmon in a sealed, freezer safe bag, and freeze up to 3 months. This is great for making salmon cakes, soups, or casseroles using the leftover salmon.
  • Prepare salmon in advance- For an even faster dinner prepare salmon in the morning. Coat fillets with oil and work in the rub. Seal and place in the refrigerator until ready to bake.


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I appreciate your comments and reviews! Be sure to leave a comment or rating below for suggestions, questions, or if you make the recipe. I’d love to know how it turned out for you!

Baked Salmon with Sweet Spiced Rub

This flavor packed Baked Salmon with Sweet Spiced Rub is so incredibly good. Super easy to make and ready from start to finish in less than 20-minutes!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 17 minutes
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Servings 4
Calories 269 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 sheet pan

Ingredients
  

  • 4 (4oz) wild caught salmon fillets, thawed if frozen
  • olive oil
  • lemon slices optional
  • fresh chopped parsley optional

Spice rub

  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tbsp packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/8-1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1/8 tsp ground cumin

Instructions
 

Preheat oven to 400°F and brush olive oil on a medium size sheet pan.

  • Combine all the spices in a small bowl.
  • Pat salmon dry with paper towels then place skin side down on prepared sheet pan. Drizzle the top of each fillet with olive oil, then divide dry rub among the four pieces of salmon. Use the back of a spoon to rub the mixture over the top of the fish.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 12-15 minutes. I usually start checking at 10-minutes. Salmon is cooked when it easily flakes with a fork. Top with fresh parsley and lemon slices.

Notes

Tips:
  • If using frozen salmon- The best way to thaw salmon is in the refrigerator overnight. You can also place sealed fillets in a large bowl of cold water until thawed. Do not leave salmon unthawed in refrigerator for more than 2 days.
  • Be careful not to overcook salmon- Salmon doesn’t take long to cook and can go from perfect to dry in a matter of minutes. It should easily flake with a fork. As a rule, I start checking salmon at 10-minutes.
  • Freezing leftover cooked salmon- Place cooled and cooked salmon in a sealed, freezer safe bag, and freeze up to 3 months. This is great for making salmon cakes, soups, or casseroles using the leftover salmon.
  • Prepare salmon in advance- For an even faster dinner prepare salmon in the morning. Coat fillets with oil and work in the rub. Seal and place in the refrigerator until ready to bake.
Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy only and should be understood as an estimate rather than a guarantee. The Menu Maid makes no guarantees to the accuracy of this information.
Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1 salmon fillet
Servings: 4
Amount per serving  
Calories 269
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 17g 22%
Saturated Fat 3g 15%
Cholesterol 70mg 23%
Sodium 57mg 2%
Total Carbohydrate 2.2g 1%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Total Sugars 2.2g  
Protein 24g  
Vitamin D 0mcg 0%
Calcium 29mg 2%
Iron 1mg 3%
Potassium 3mg 0%
Keyword Baked salmon, Dry rub, Easy recipe, Salmon, Salmon recipe

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