Time to try pan fried wild salmon.  It is July at the time of this writing and wild salmon are finally in my market.  There’s nothing like a fresh, never frozen, wild salmon.  No matter if you like it grilled, pan fried, baked, broiled or poached, wild salmon is a delicious and healthy fish to include in your diet.

If your market doesn’t have fresh wild salmon, or maybe it’s just not the right time of year, check the freezer section and make sure the package says “wild”.  Or you can opt for a can of “wild” salmon.  In my article “Salmon|Wild vs. Farmed,” you can read about my opinion of farm raised salmon.  Or any fish for that matter.

For my pan fried recipe, rinse the salmon to get off any loose scales, but don’t remove the skin.  The skin holds a lot of the Omega-3 fatty acids that is essential for human growth and is great for your heart health.  You can take the time to scale the fish, but please don’t remove the skin so the fatty acids cook into the fish.  Once the fish is cooked, the skin is very easy to remove.


2 large salmon filets with skin still on
1 T. butter
2 T. olive oil
2 T. soy sauce (can be lower sodium)
Fresh ground pepper (optional)

In a frying pan large enough to fit your filets, melt your butter with your olive oil over a medium to med/high heat and add soy sauce.  Grind some fresh black pepper (optional) right into the pan.

Place your salmon in the pan skin side UP. The butter, olive oil, soy sauce and pepper will help brown your fish and add some light flavor. Salmon is already a very flavorful fish and a lot of spices are not necessary.

It should only take 3-5 minutes to brown the fish side of your salmon. Do not over cook or it will be dry. This fish is best served medium to medium rare.

Now flip your fish so skin side is down.  Finish cooking another 3-5 minutes depending on the size of your filets.  If you have used a pan that is NOT a non-stick type, the skin will stick to the pan a little and you may be able to gently slide a spatula between the skin and the fish and lift only the fish onto the plate.  But, if, like me, you have used a non-stick pan like the Ceramic Fry Pan, just flip the fish so skin side is up again and it should peel off easily.  Serve over rice or with a side of potatoes.

You may choose to just squeeze a little lemon right onto your fish and omit the lemon sauce I used.  Either way, your family or guests will love pan fried salmon.

Lemon Sauce Ingredients:

2 T. Corn Starch
1 cup water
1 T. butter
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 T. capers (optional)

For a lemon sauce, just mix the corn starch with water, set aside.  Melt the butter in a small sauce pan.  Over medium high heat, pour the corn starch mixture into the sauce pan with the melted butter.  Stir continuously until thick like a gravy.  Add salt and lemon juice and serve immediately.  Very easy to do and adds a little something special than just plain lemon juice.  Pour over your fish and sprinkle with a few capers (optional).

Some variations:

  • For a little sweetness, add 1 T. brown sugar to the frying pan and once blended with the oil, add fish.
  • For a little more tang, add 1 T. Dijon mustard to the frying pan and once blended with the oil, add fish.
  • For a little more spice, add some Cajun seasoning to the frying pan and once blended with the oil, add fish.
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