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If you’ve been to an Italian restaurant, chances are that you’ve seen chicken piccata on the menu.  Perhaps you’ve even tried it.  Chicken piccata has always been a favorite of mine, both for ordering when out in a restaurant or cooking at home.  However, one day I had some salmon in the fridge that I needed to use, and I just wasn’t in the mood for the salmon and quinoa that I had planned.

That’s when I got the idea to experiment.  I knew my family loved salmon.  I also knew they loved chicken piccata.  So, I decided to combine two of my favorites into one new recipe: salmon piccata.  

Boy, was that a good experiment.  Dinner that night was absolutely to die for.  Nearly everyone in the family headed back into the kitchen to grab a second helping.  

Since that initial experiment, my salmon and piccata recipe has found its way into our normal dinner rotation.  I’d love to share this quick and easy recipe that you can easily throw together for a quick weeknight dinner or dress up for a special occasion.

What is Piccata

Piccata means to be pounded flat in Italian.  In culinary terms, it refers to a particular way to cook meat or fish.  Piccata recipes feature a delicious lemon and butter sauce with different spices.  Capers are also regularly added to piccata dishes.

In Italy, veal is the meat most commonly used when making piccata.  However, piccata dishes can be made with other types of meat.  While chicken is most commonly used in the United States, fish such as swordfish or salmon may also be used for a piccata dish.

Why You Should Try Salmon Piccata

Even though piccata is traditionally served with chicken, I think it perfectly compliments a nice piece of salmon.  The salmon piccata sauce in my recipe combines lemon juice, white wine, chicken broth, and some seasonings.  These flavors will really pop and intensify when served alongside fish.

Lemon wedges are often served with salmon because of how powerful the flavor combination is.  In my opinion, this salmon piccata recipe just takes that flavor combination up a level or two.

Salmon Piccata: Quick and Easy Recipe

Health Benefits of Eating Salmon

I personally love the way salmon tastes! In addition to its deliciousness, salmon is also really good for you.  Both farmed and wild-caught salmon are an excellent source of protein, B vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids, phosphorus, selenium, and other key nutrients.  Let’s take a look at the various benefits some of these nutrients can deliver to your body.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

A serving of salmon provides over 2 grams of long-chain Omega-3 fatty acids, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA).  Our bodies are not able to make these fats on their own, so it is important to eat foods that are high in them.  In fact, salmon is among the best options when you’re looking to add EPA and DHA to your diet.

Some of the benefits of DHA and EPA include decreased blood pressure, reduced inflammation, improved cellular functioning, and a reduced risk of cancer.  Eating fish, such as salmon, to get your daily dose of DHA and EPA has been shown to be more effective than supplementing your diet with fish oil vitamins.  Aim to eat about two servings of salmon each week to benefit from the impressive benefits of DHAs and EPAs.

Protein

Our bodies also need protein.  Protein is important for bone health, developing and maintaining muscle mass, and helping our bodies heal.  Health professionals recommend getting between 20 and 30 grams of protein each meal, and salmon can satisfy that recommendation with its 22 to 25 grams of protein per serving.

B Vitamins

B vitamins are also important to keep our bodies functioning properly.  For example, they are needed to help convert food to energy, allow the brain and nervous system to work well together, and repair and create DNA.  Various B vitamins are found in each serving of salmon, including vitamin B12, vitamin B6, niacin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, and thiamine.

Selenium

Selenium is a trace mineral, and our bodies don’t need much of it.  However, if you don’t consume enough selenium in your diet, it can lead to bone health problems, thyroid issues, and possibly increase your risk of developing some types of cancer.  A serving of salmon provides over half of the daily recommended value of selenium to help reduce your risk of these potential health concerns.

Potassium

Wild salmon, in particular, is also an excellent source of potassium.  Potassium is an important nutrient for regulating blood pressure and minimizing the risk of stroke.  Additionally, potassium can also help prevent our bodies from retaining too much water.

Salmon Piccata: Quick and Easy Recipe

What do you need to make salmon piccata?

Salmon piccata is one of those gourmet salmon recipes that isn’t too complicated to make.  You’ll only need a few basic tools and cooking equipment and some key ingredients.  

Let’s take a look at what you need to make my scrumptious salmon piccata recipe.

Tools

  • Shallow bowl or flat dish
  • Measuring spoon
  • Large skillet
  • Garlic press
  • Knife
  • Spoon
  • Whisk

Ingredients

  • 4 salmon filets
  • Flour
  • Olive oil
  • Butter
  • Garlic cloves, pressed or minced
  • Dry white wine
  • Chicken broth
  • Lemon juice
  • Heavy cream
  • Parsley
  • Capers
  • Salt

That’s all you’ll need.  I’ll go into more details for the specific steps to follow to make this recipe below, but it really is pretty simple!

Salmon Piccata: Quick and Easy Recipe

What can you serve with salmon piccata?

There are many different side dishes that can nicely compliment this salmon piccata recipe.  Pasta and rice are traditionally served with piccata dishes in the United States, but some other sides that go well with salmon include:

  • Italian bread
  • Asparagus
  • Roasted potatoes
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Caesar salad
  • Couscous

Can you make this recipe using frozen salmon?

I would recommend thawing the salmon before cooking it for this recipe.  You don’t want the filets still frozen when you try to sear them on the hot pan; it won’t work right and will leave a lot of watery liquid behind in the pan.

If you have frozen salmon that you want to use to make this recipe, move it to the fridge the day before you plan to use it.  This should give it plenty of time to thaw and be ready to cook.

If you need your salmon to thaw more quickly, you can also thaw it in cold water.  Fill a pot with cold water and submerge the salmon filets for 1 to 2 hours.  

Always thaw fish and meat using cold water.  Never use hot water to thaw salmon filets; it can cause more bacteria to grow, which could lead to food poisoning.  Plus, it may partially cook the fish and interfere with the final taste and texture of the recipe.

How to store leftovers

While I think this salmon piccata tastes best when it is fresh, you can store any leftovers that aren’t eaten.  Place the leftovers in an airtight container and refrigerate them for up to 3 or 4 days.

When you’re ready to eat the leftovers, I’d recommend reheating them in the oven.  Microwaving the leftover salmon can interfere with its texture, and the meal might not taste as good as it did when it was fresh.  Preheat your oven to 325 °F.  Place the salmon in an oven-safe dish, cover it with foil, and heat it for 10 to 20 minutes, or until warm.

Salmon Piccata: Quick and Easy Recipe

Salmon Piccata Recipe

This salmon piccata with capers recipe is certain to become a new favorite in your home.  Read on to learn how to make this gourmet salmon dish.

Total Recipe Time:  30 to 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 salmon filets (approximately 1 to 1 ½ pounds total)
  • ¼ cup flour, divided
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoon butter
  • 3 garlic cloves, pressed or minced
  • ¼ cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 4 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ⅓ cup heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons parsley
  • 3 tablespoons capers
  • Salt

Directions

  1. Measure out 2 tablespoons of flour and place it in a shallow bowl or flat dish.  
  2. Season the salmon filets with salt, then dredge them in the flour.  Leave the salmon on the side for a few minutes.
  3. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Once hot, sear each salmon filet for approximately 3 to 5 minutes per side.  Each side should be a nice golden color.  Once seared, remove the salmon from the pan and cover it with foil.
  4. Add the butter to the same skillet that was just used to cook the salmon.  Melt it over medium heat, and add in the pressed or minced garlic.  Cook for approximately 2 minutes, or until the garlic becomes fragrant.
  5. Mix in the final 2 tablespoons of flour and allow it to cook with the butter and garlic for about 2 more minutes.
  6. Pour in the wine slowly, whisking after each addition.  Whisk the mixture thoroughly and ensure that nothing is stuck to the bottom of the pan.
  7. Whisk in the chicken broth, lemon juice, heavy cream, and capers.  Allow the mixture to cook for an additional 5 minutes.
  8. If desired, add a bit more salt or pepper to the mixture.
  9. Add the salmon back into the pan with the sauce.  Drizzle some piccata sauce over each piece of salmon, and let everything cook together for an additional 4 to 5 minutes.
  10. Remove the salmon from the pan and add a parsley garnish.
  11. Serve and enjoy!

Salmon Piccata – You’ll Want to Give it a Try

Is your mouth watering yet?  It should be!  This recipe is so delicious that I’m sure it will be a big hit in your house.  Are you ready to run to the store and grab all the ingredients you’ll need?  Why not whip up this tasty salmon piccata recipe for dinner tonight?

Salmon Piccata: Quick and Easy Recipe

FAQs

What is piccata sauce made of?

There are different variations of piccata sauce, but the most important components are lemon and butter.  White wine, capers, and other seasonings are also often added to piccata sauce.

How does Gordon Ramsay bake salmon?

One of Gordon Ramsay’s popular salmon recipes combines herbs with caramelized lemons.  The salmon is baked on top of a bed of sage, lemongrass, rosemary, and garlic.  Then, caramelized lemons and the lemon sauce are added to the salmon before it is wrapped in foil and baked in the oven.

How can I make my salmon taste better?

If you want to make your salmon taste better, try one of the gourmet salmon dishes that incorporates herbs, marinades, glazes, or breadcrumbs.