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Salmon is a delicious fish to eat and is even recommended to appear in your diet at least once a week. While it is delicious and healthy, it can sometimes be a bit of a pain to cook. Unless you’re intending on pan frying your salmon where you can keep a close eye on it, it can be easy to accidentally overcook or undercook your salmon. It is easy to bake salmon fillets, we just need to talk about the cooking time when baked at 375 degrees.
Table of Contents
- Baking Salmon
- Salmon Nutrition
- Preparing And Cooking With Salmon
- Should You Bake Salmon?
- FAQs On Baking Salmon
Baked salmon is very popular for being easy to make, while also being a healthy and filling family dinner. The ingredients needed are nothing too fancy and it can be made by even the most beginner of cooks. While it is a very popular and inexpensive dish, salmon itself is rising in price and becoming more expensive.
Before baking salmon, you can minimize the likelihood of a messy cleanup by lining your baking tray with some aluminum foil. Line it so that there is a half inch extra on each side. For the time being, this can be folded over the edge but after cooking, this can be used to wrap the aluminum up and throw it away without getting any grease or fat from the salmon over your kitchen.
Time And Temperature
As salmon is one of the meats that can be eaten regardless of how cooked it is (similar to steak), the internal temperature does not need to reach a certain level before you can consider it safe to eat. The length of time you bake the salmon is up to you and is based on personal preference alone.
Your oven should be preheated to 375 degrees F, which is 191 degrees C. Due to how flakey salmon is when cooked, it does not hold heat very well unlike some more dense meats. Because of this, salmon does not experience carryover cooking. When your salmon reaches an internal temperature of 125 degrees F, it will be done to a medium rare level.
Depending on how much salmon you are baking, the cooking times will change at this temperature, As a baseline, 1 1/2 pound of salmon will cook to medium-rare in about 10-12 minutes at 375 degrees F. If your salmon is bigger than this, or you want to cook it to different doneness, then your cooking time will increase.
The general rule of thumb is that every half inch of thickness that the salmon has will need 5 minutes to cook. This means a 1-inch thick salmon will take ten minutes minimum. It should also be noted that due to the smaller size of the tail end of salmon, it is prone to cooking quicker and will always be more cooked than the rest of the salmon.
Broil After Baking
If you are wanting to add some extra depth and flavor to your salmon, you can opt to broil it once you have finished baking it. This will only flavor the surface but is still very worth doing. After baking, broil your salmon for 3 to 4 minutes. Keep an eye on your salmon during this to make sure it does not burn or overcook. This is where you can add lemon juice to it as citrus flavors work really well with fish in general.
If you choose not to broil your baked salmon, you may want to bake it for a couple more minutes to ensure it is properly cooked.
Telling If Your Salmon Is Done
When properly cooked, salmon should be very flakey and fragile. Unlike chicken, which you can pick up without it breaking, salmon will break if you pick it up without supporting it all evenly. If you want to check to see if your salmon is done, break apart the thickest bit of the fish with a fork and see if it flakes easily. The color of the fish should be opaque unless you have purposely undercooked it a bit.
If you have a food thermometer than can instantly measure the temperature of your food, insert the probe into the thickest part of the salmon fillets. The internal temperature for the salmon should be 125 degrees F for a medium-rare and 140 degrees F for a perfectly cooked salmon. If your temperature exceeds 145 degrees F then there is a chance that the baked salmon is overdone and will risk tasting dry.
To help counteract the dryness of this, you could try adding a garlic butter mixture directly into the aluminum foil with the salmon at the start of cooking. This will immensely flavor the whole salmon while also moisturizing it with melted butter. Any moderate temperature should pose no risk of dryness at all.
Salmon is incredibly delicious and globally loved but this adoration is not only due to the flavor of salmon. Whole salmon is considered one of the healthiest meats available. One of the huge nutrients in salmon is omega-3 fatty acids which help protect your heart from cholesterol build-up. You can eat salmon as much as you want but it is recommended that you eat it at least twice a week. As long as it is served with a balanced meal of carbs and fiber, salmon can be eaten all the time.
When consuming lots of salmon, you may notice a spike in your mercury intake. Although this may seem like an issue, you would have to eat salmon daily for years before this level of mercury is even close to being lethal.
Fatty acids are so critical as our body cannot make them, so the only way we can get them is from ingestion. These acids also help prevent cardiovascular disease, some types of cancer, dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease. On top of this already impressive list, salmon can also help ease the effects of rheumatoid arthritis.
Preparing And Cooking With Salmon
When cooking with fresh salmon, it is essential that some preparation goes into it. Buying a whole salmon is great if you know that it is fresh and recently caught. The best place to get salmon like this is a fishmonger. You can either ask them to prepare it for you or just buy the fillet and prepare it yourself.
The biggest part of preparation is checking for bones. In the center of the fillet, there may be some small bones that naturally appear. These are not a huge issue but can be annoying in your food. To get rid of them, simply run your hand up and down the fillet while checking for bones. If you find a bone, all you need to do is either pull it out with your finger or use tweezers.
The other main point of preparation is deciding if you should keep the salmon skin attached or not. While some people love the skin, it can be too unpleasant for other people. If you bake salmon at 375 Degrees, the skin will not be an issue but if the fish is undercooked, the skin may seem too thick and tough. A great way to counter this is to broil it after baking salmon. This will make the skin crispy and delicious.
Some people can choose to remove the skin, which can easily be done with a knife and a slight bit of knowledge. The skin is very rich in nutrients, which can play a part in if you decide to keep it on or not.
Should You Bake Salmon?
Baked salmon is a delicious and healthy meal that has a relatively low baking time and is insanely easy. It does not take long to bake salmon and can be done by anyone as it is so simple. If you want to bake salmon for your next meal, all you need to do is place salmon skin side down on some aluminum foil and bake it at 375 degrees for 12 minutes. It is so easy and can become a regularly eaten meal.
FAQs On Baking Salmon
What temperature should salmon be cooked at?
Salmon should be cooked at 375 degrees for it to gently cook and not dry out. You can choose to broil it for a couple of minutes afterward or just let it bake for a minute extra.
How long does it take to bake salmon?
When baked at 375 degrees F, salmon can take anywhere from 10-15 minutes depending on how you want it cooked. Small portions of salmon will cook faster, and cooking times will lengthen if the fish is very thick. Every half inch roughly adds 5 minutes to the cooking time.
How do you tell when the salmon is done?
Salmon is a very flakey and fragile fish when properly cooked. Find the thickest part of your fillet and use a fork to see how easily it flakes. This should flake easily and reveal an opaque pink color if cooked properly. The internal temperature should also be between 125-140 degrees F. Anything above this will risk the fish going dry.
Do you eat the skin on salmon?
The skin on salmon is the healthiest part, arguably. It contains the highest concentration of omega-3 fatty acids. While it may be very nutritious, the skin can be unpleasant for some people. Because of this, it is easily left up to personal preference on if you keep the skin attached or not. It can be easily removed from the fillet with a sharp knife.