Air Fryer Salmon
Dec 28, 2023
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This air fryer salmon is the secret to getting a healthy dinner on the table in under 15 minutes. It’s extra moist with a gorgeous outer crust, and the spiced Dijon mustard topping makes it taste like a million bucks.
While I love my baked salmon or pan seared salmon (they’re classics for a reason), this air fryer salmon really hits the spot if you’re looking for the easiest salmon recipe possible. And honestly, it’s foolproof – you’ll cook up the most perfect salmon filet, ever. That means moist and succulent insides, with an outside crust that’s actually crispy (like my air fryer chicken wings).
The only nuance with cooking salmon in the air fryer is that you can only cook two salmon filets at a time (at least in my air fryer, yours may be different). Otherwise, it’s really a hands-off recipe once you add the seasoning on top (and by the way, those also don’t require any measuring or prepping, you can just eyeball it). So all in all, it’s an incredibly easy recipe that’s on repeat in my kitchen!
Air Fryer Salmon Ingredients
If you’re a big fan of my Dijon baked salmon, you’ll go head over heels for this recipe. Each filet is lathered with Dijon mustard, and complemented with spices like paprika and garlic powder for a spiced touch. It’s not hot or spicy, just incredibly flavorful.
- Salmon: Choose your favorite type of salmon – king, coho, or sockeye. You could also use steelhead trout! And keep reading for tips on fresh versus frozen salmon.
- Dijon Mustard: The mustard keeps the top moist and adds that special oomph in flavor. You could also use stone ground mustard for added texture!
- Spices: I’m using a blend of sweet paprika (though you could also use smoked paprika), garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
Find the printable recipe with measurements below.
Fresh versus Frozen Salmon
There’s always the debate between fresh and frozen salmon. Honestly, they’re both great options!
- Fresh salmon: From my experience, I’ve found that salmon (and other types of seafood) are best bought from a local fishmonger. But I know not everyone has access to a local fish shop. If that’s the case with you, don’t fret, frozen salmon is also great.
- Frozen salmon: If you’re unsure about the fish “on ice” at the market, frozen salmon is the next best thing. Frozen salmon is typically flash frozen on the boat right after it’s been caught, which helps to preserve it’s freshness.
How To Cook Salmon In Air Fryer
The steps in this salmon recipe are pretty straightforward. But I did want to make a note about the spices. Although there’s measurements written out for each one, I’ve found that shaking them straight from the spice bottle had the best results for an evenly coated crust. Sprinkling with a measuring spoon more often created clumps on top – which you don’t want.
Prep the salmon. Set the air fryer to 400℉ (200℃), then pat your salmon filets dry with a paper towel. Don’t skip this step as this will help the seasoning to stick better!
Add the mustard. Evenly spread half a tablespoon of mustard onto each salmon filet. A brush or the back of a spoon is an easy way to schmear it into one thin layer.
Add the seasonings. Sprinkle each spice onto the salmon filet. Just eyeball it to match the measurements in the recipe, but it doesn’t have to be exact. I normally start with salt and pepper, then coat generously with garlic powder and paprika. Finish with a quick spray of olive oil on top to keep the salmon filet moist.
Air fry. Add two salmon filets to the air fryer and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until flaky with a fork. Then repeat with the remaining two salmon filets.
No, you just need to season the top side. And side note – I’m heavy handed on the seasonings. For me, the more flavor the better!
Nope, there’s no need to. Just lay the salmon in the air fryer skin side down. Once it cooks, it’s super easy to just peel off the skin if you’d like to do so before serving.
Yes, the size and thickness of your salmon filet will impact cook time. And all air fryers cook a bit differently when it comes to temperature. So make sure to check on the salmon at around 8 minutes to prevent it from overcooking or burning on top. It’s always best to slightly undercook the salmon and add more time as needed, than to accidentally overcook it.
No, the vast majority of my air fryer recipes don’t require any preheating (I find it’s often unnecessary).
How To Store Leftover Salmon
If you store it correctly, salmon can be a great meal prep item for the week. And yes, you can even freeze it for later! Here’s a few ways to store salmon.
- For storing: If you’ve got a few filets leftover, they’ll keep for up to 3 days in the fridge in a sealed container.
- How to freeze: Make sure your salmon is completely cool before freezing. Then top it on parchment paper in a storage container to prevent it from sticking to the sides. Reheating salmon can be tricky since it’s already cooked. So the key here is to reheat it low and slow, either in the air fryer, microwave or oven, to prevent it from drying out.
The Best Salmon Recipes
Are you a big salmon fanatic like I am? Well, I’ve got quite the list of salmon recipes for you to try.
- Salmon Patties – A reader favorite recipe!
- Air Fryer Salmon Bites – Little bites of salmon with garlic lemon butter.
- Slow Roasted Salmon with Fennel and Orange – It’s bright and citrusy.
- Grilled Salmon Steaks with Mustard Chive Sauce – The perfect grilled salmon recipe.
- Smoked Salmon Frittata – Give breakfast a healthy, tasty spin.
- Smoked Salmon Deviled Eggs – One of the prettiest appetizers.
I hope you enjoy this air fryer salmon recipe! It’s one of my personal favorite recipes when I want to get dinner on the table fast. If you give it a try, I’d love to hear what you think of it in a comment below! Your review helps others in the community.
Air Fryer Salmon (in 15-Minutes!)
- Add the mustard. On each salmon filet, spread one teaspoon of mustard evenly in a thin layer.
- Add the seasonings. Sprinkle each of the individual spices straight onto the salmon filet. It doesn't have to be an exact measurement. I start with salt and pepper, then coat generously with garlic powder and paprika. Finish with a quick spray of olive oil on top to keep the salmon filet moist.
- Air fry. Add two salmon filets to the air fryer and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until flaky with a fork. Then repeat with the remaining two salmon filets.
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Recipe originally posted June 2022, but updated to include new photos and information for your benefit!