caramelised salmon

Back in the uni days my sister Elle used to buy a container of satay sauce from the Thai place down the road from Sydney Uni for just $2. She would eat it for days with some boiled rice. The perfect uni student meal which allowed all of her spare pennies to be put behind the bar.

This meal is as good as that satay sauce. No. It’s better. The sticky, caramelised sauce that covers the salmon beautifully is so good, you simply must cook extra rice to soak up every last bit. I actually think the sauce and rice is so good together that I’d happily eat it by itself too. You’ll end up carrying this dish to the centre of the table as your guests will literally be licking every last drop of the sauce off the bottom of the pan.

It’s a recipe by Bill Granger but with a few small changes. I love it because it’s so easy to make, especially because you cut the salmon fillets in to small pieces which allows them to cook evenly and quickly. Even thinking about this meal from last night makes me want to have it again for dinner tonight. It is so more-ish!

Serve it up with some Asian greens to ensure you get in your 5 a day and always make more than you think you’ll eat. I can quarantee you there’ll never be any leftovers!

caramelised salmon (serves 2)

2 x salmon fillets, (preferably with the skin off, or otherwise you can cook it with the skin on and discard it after cooking)
1/2 x a Spanish onion, finely sliced
2 x garlic cloves, finely sliced
2 x tablespoons of soy sauce
2 x tablespoons of brown sugar
1 x generous tablespoon of fish sauce
Freshly cracked pepper
Juice of 1 lemon
1 x tablespoon of vegetable oil, for frying the salmon
1 x spring onion, finely sliced, for serving
Extra lemon wedges, for serving
Steamed jasmine rice, for serving

  • Using a sharp knife, cut the salmon fillets in to large bite size chunks.
  • Add a little vegetable oil to a fry pan over a high heat and cook the salmon on one side for approximately 3 minutes before turning over and cooking on the other side for a minute or so. Reserve the salmon pieces on a clean plate.
  • Reduce the heat to medium and add a little bit more oil if needed. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring until soft. Stir through the soy sauce, sugar and fish sauce.
  • Working quickly here, add the salmon to the pan and coat it in the sauce. Season with a good amount of freshly cracked pepper and the lemon juice. You want the sauce to get nice and syrup-y but be careful not to burn.
  • Serve with the steamed rice and a little bit of the sauce drizzled over the top, some extra lemon wedges and some chopped spring onions.

Lo’s tips

  • The sticky sauce is extremely hot so don’t let any little people get too close to it.
  • You can buy salmon fillets that already have the skin off, or alternatively, you can pull the skin off after you’ve cooked the salmon pieces. Trying to take the skin off a raw piece of salmon won’t work.
  • You can also add some ginger and/or fresh chilli to the sauce if you like.
  • Frozen salmon fillets are great for this recipe and make it easy to cook when you walk in the door from work. You can buy individually wrapped salmon fillets and have them ready to go in the freezer. To defrost them, simply put them in the sink still in the plastic and let the hot tap run over them. Let them sit submerged in the hot water for 5 or so minutes until they’re defrosted.





If you make this salmon please leave your comments below, or send me a pic here as I would love to share it on the blog. xx


  1. Thanks for the amazing recipe Lo, it was DELISH! I will definitely cook this again as it was so easy and quick. The salmon melted in our mouths and the juice with the rice was to die for!! I cooked this for 4 people so doubled the recipe and worked well, next time I will just need to add more of the sauces to make more juice as I went a bit light on. Now I need to look on your page to find tomorrow nights dinner!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Lo I cooked this last night and was delicious !!! I used brown rice and it was great. I accidentally, was a bit heavy handed in the fish sauce which I’ll have to hold back on next time! Very easy quick, light and yummy!
    Dying to try the salmon in the broth dish next xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I used shallots instead of a Spanish onion, and I think I had the pan a bit hot so it didn’t caramalise as nicely as I would have liked. Regardless, it was absolutely delicious. I used brown rice, and this was such a quick and tasty meal. Lo you were right about the sauce being irresistible – I put my leftover rice back in the fry pan to soak up all the juices! I appreciated the tip of defrosting salmon by running it under hot water for a couple of minutes – worked a treat. Thanks Lo’s kitchen xx

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh drat! I’ve come home, poured myself a glass of my fav Oyster Bay Chardy, opened the plastic on the frozen salmon to let it defrost, and now I’m reading the recipe. Why didn’t I read everything first, including the tip about leaving the plastic on and defrosting the fillets under running water😩😩 At least I’ve now read all the comments and decided that I’ll use brown rice too👍 Wish me luck …

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I LOVE this recipe!! I have already commented about it but it deserves two. Matt just cooked it for dinner and gee it is delicious!! I think we have cooked it once a week since we you posted it!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. My rating as a cook has just increased in the family! I have now made two ‘best ever mum ‘ meals in a week and the salmon was one! We all loved the salmon – and how good is that sauce! It was all too simple, i can checking the recipe thinking i must be missing something. Thanks Lo.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. My rating as a cook has just increased in the family! I have now made two ‘best ever mum ‘ meals in a week and the salmon was one! We all loved the salmon – and how good is that sauce! It was all too simple, i kept checking the recipe thinking i must be missing something. Thanks Lo.

    Liked by 1 person

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