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Salmon Avocado Salad

This salmon avocado salad is a healthy salad recipe that’s big on nutrients and flavor. A moist, pan seared salmon is layered on top of spinach, avocado, tomatoes, and red onions. Then drizzled with a homemade lemon vinaigrette. It’s light yet filling, and simple enough to be made in under 20 minutes. 

Lately, many of you have been asking for more salmon recipes. And If quick dinners are your thing, you’ll be happy to hear this salmon avocado salad comes together in a flash. 

It’s layered with fresh and savory flavors, making it the perfect summer salad. But keep reading for a few tips on how to shop for salmon, sear it perfectly, and store it. Let’s dive in. 

What Type Of Salmon To Buy

For this recipe, you’ll need fresh salmon filets. But for the best quality, here’s a few things to consider.

Wild vs. Farmed Salmon

Typically, you want to look for wild Sockeye, Coho or King salmon. Wild-caught simply means that they’re caught in their natural environment. Which makes them have a healthier fatty acid profile due to their diet filled with natural organisms.

Meanwhile, farmed salmon can be a gamble due to the many issues associated with the fish farming industry. From the fish being raised in enclosed tanks to being fed with unnatural ingredients – let’s just say it’s not good for us or the environment. 

You can read more about wild versus farmed salmon, as I have a more in-depth post.

Fresh vs. Frozen Salmon

Similar to how I shop for shrimp, frozen wild Alaskan salmon might be the better option. Often the “fresh” salmon at your grocery store is not as favorable a variety and you don’t know how long it’s been sitting out. Unless you know for a fact that your local fish market serves fresh catches of the day, go the safe route and buy frozen salmon fillets. 

Salmon placed on top of salad recipe with avocado and other ingredients.

Salmon Avocado Salad Ingredients

What I love most about this salad is how simple and easy to find the ingredients are. Here’s what’s in it:

  • Salmon: You can’t beat wild Alaskan salmon for the best flavor and most nutrients.
  • Baby Spinach: I’m always a fan of spinach but any greens will work.
  • Tomatoes: You can use any vine-ripened tomatoes or cherry tomatoes as well.
  • Avocado: For that dose of healthy fat and creamy texture.
  • Cucumber: A small cucumber adds that crisp and refreshing flavor.
  • Red Onion: Can’t beat red onion in salads for that sweet, but punchy taste.

And what about dressings? I’m using my lemon vinaigrette. But you could also use a Dijon vinaigrette or Champagne vinaigrette. Feel free to switch it up!

Single salmon fillet on top of salad with avocado and salt pinch bowl off to the side.

How to Cook Salmon

Remember that salmon cooks quickly, and overcooked fish is never ideal. It turns dry and bland. So pan seared salmon is an easy method for a perfectly cooked and moist fillet. 

  1. Prep. Heat some olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. 
  2. Dry. Pat your salmon fillets dry with a paper towel. This will ensure you get that golden brown crust.
  3. Season. Sprinkle some salt and pepper on top. Then place the fillets skin side up on the pan. 
  4. Sear. Let it sear for about 4-5 minutes, top side down first. 
  5. Flip. Gently flip the salmon over and let it cook for another 2-3 minutes, depending on thickness. Remember that salmon will continue cooking even when removed from the heat, so a little softness in the middle is fine. 

Assembling the Salmon Avocado Salad

As you’re searing the salmon, prep the rest of the ingredients. Chop up the tomatoes, avocado, cucumber, and red onion. Then whisk together the dressing. Voila – your prep work is done!

Now comes the easy part. Divide the spinach into two large salad bowls. Then layer on the rest of the ingredients, add the salmon, and drizzle the dressing. Now tell me that wasn’t easy?

Salmon fillet broken up with fork on top of salad recipe.

More Easy Salmon Recipes

You know I’m a big fan of salmon and eat it weekly. So here’s a few more salmon recipes to add to your weekly menu. 

Salmon fillet broken up with fork on top of salad with avocado slices.
5 from 4 votes

Salmon Avocado Salad

Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 10 mins
Total Time: 20 mins
Servings: 2 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan
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This salmon avocado salad is a healthy salad recipe that's big on nutrients and flavor. It comes together easily with just a handful of ingredients!

Ingredients

Salmon Avocado Salad

  • 4 cups baby spinach
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1 cucumber, peeled and sliced
  • 1/4 cup red onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 salmon filets
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Dressing

Instructions

  • Heat olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Season the salmon filets with salt and pepper. Add the salmon filets top side down and cook for 4-5 minutes.
  • Flip the salmon and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes or until the salmon is mostly opaque, with just a smidge of softness still in the middle.
  • Divide all of the other salad ingredients between two bowls, then place the cooked salmon on top.
  • Mix the dressing ingredients together in a small bowl and drizzle on top.

Lisa's Tips

  • You can use the leftover dressing on future salads or as a marinade for meat. It's great on chicken as well!
  • To make this Whole30 just leave the sweetener out of the dressing.

Nutrition

Calories: 732kcal, Carbohydrates: 21g, Protein: 40g, Fat: 56g, Saturated Fat: 9g, Cholesterol: 94mg, Sodium: 140mg, Potassium: 2180mg, Fiber: 11g, Sugar: 8g, Vitamin A: 6974IU, Vitamin C: 50mg, Calcium: 125mg, Iron: 4mg
Course: Salad
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Salmon Avocado Salad, Salmon Salad
©Downshiftology. Content and photographs are copyright protected. Sharing of this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. Copying and/or pasting full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited.
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Recipe originally posted Aug 2014, but updated with new photos and information. 

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20 comments on “Salmon Avocado Salad”

  1. If Salmon is frozen, do you recommend letting it thaw before cooking? 

  2. The only really hard part about this recipe is the instruction to !Divide all of the other salad ingredients between two bowls! ;-)

    • Hi Michelle- Just take the salad ingredients and split them between two bowls. It doesn’t have to be perfect :)

  3. Classic Dish for work-out meal plan :) It’s a coincidence that I’m about to cook it today. Let’s try with your lemon vinaigrette recipe!!

  4. What a gorgeous summer meal. I haven’t had salmon in a while since lockdown but I’m craving it now! I’d love this for dinner tonight..perfect dish!

  5. So simple but so delicious! Your photos are lovely too!

  6. This salmon avocado salad is so delicious! I love that this meal helps you get your greens and your protein and tastes amazing!

  7. What a healthy and delicious salad that is good all day, every day! I love all the fresh flavors and nutrients that packed within this salad.

  8. This looks absolutely fantastic! Adding this to my weekly dinner rotation soon. :)

  9. Please share the recommended portion size for each salmon serving? Is the nutritional information per serve? Thanks.

  10. Hello!
    Is the calorie count for the whole dish (2 servings) or just 1 serving ? I have been wondering for many of the wonderful recipes you post :-)

    Thanks!