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Simple Pan Seared Salmon in Creamy Dill Sauce

5 from 1 vote

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This is a great salmon recipe to add to your repertoire! Ready in under 30 minutes, this Pan Seared Salmon in Creamy Dill Sauce is fast enough for week nights, but fancy enough for date night.

salon in dill sauce on white plate with broccolini and lemon slice

Are you a salmon fan?

Well, if you didn’t love it before, this recipe just might change your mind!

Salmon has some amazing nutritional benefits and so it’s a great idea to add it to your menu rotation on a fairly regular basis.

For instance, just in case you didn’t knowsalmon is an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids and B vitamins, and is a high quality source of protein.

This Salmon in Creamy Dill Sauce starts with searing the outside in a frying pan and then finishing it off in the oven.

So you get a beautiful crispy outside, and a lovely not dry fish on the inside. Seasoned with just salt & pepper, the salmon flavor is the star of the show.

And the sauce! Oh my! Lovely and creamy and dill-y with just a kiss of lemon. Tastes like heaven!

This is one of my go-to recipes when I want something light.

all ingredients in bowls and plates on white counter

Pan Seared Salmon in Creamy Dill Sauce

Fish Ingredients

  • 4 boneless salmon filets, about 1 ½ to 2 pounds total
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Fresh dill for garnish

Sauce Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill weed, minced
  • 1 teaspoon prepared horseradish (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 450°F.

To make the creamy dill sauce

Grab a small bowl and toss all the ingredients for the sauce in there.

I know you’re not sure about that horseradish. And you can absolutely leave it out.

But there’s such a small amount that it’s just a very subtle thing. Trust me. It’s better with!

Now you’re just going to whisk together all the ingredients for the sauce. It comes together in just a minute.

ingredients for creamy dill sauce in a white bowl on counter with a whisk

Then you’re going to just cover that amazing sauce and toss it in the fridge until you’re ready to serve.

Cooking the salmon

Step 1: Pan Searing

All right, now we’re gonna work on the salmon.

Get your skillet, add the 2 Tbsp of olive oil and heat that up over medium high.

While that’s heating, you need to season the salmon on both sides with salt and pepper.

And then put the salmon in the hot skillet skin side up.

If you use skinless filets, it doesn’t really matter which side is down.

You need to sear the salmon for about two minutes or until it’s golden brown and then very, very, very gently flip the salmon.

It’s really important that you’re very careful with this because salmon like most fish, will come apart easily.

I used tongs to very gentle wiggle the salmon in the pan to be sure it was not sticking, then used a fish spatula to flip it.

So if you don’t have one of these amazing fish spatulas, I suggest you get one!

You can grab one of them here.

Now if you don’t have an oven safe skillet, just use a regular skillet to sear the salmon. Then you will just transfer the fillets to an oven safe baking dish.

So now that you have carefully flipped the salmon fillets with your awesome fish spatula, the skin side is down and they look beautiful.

salmon pan seared on both sides in skillet with wooden spatula

Step 2: Into the Oven

Next step is to put the skillet in the preheated oven and you’re going to bake the salmon for six to 10 minutes or so until the salmon is cooked through.

Now like I said before if you don’t have an oven safe skillet, then just transfer it to a glass dish, but make sure the skin side is down.

The time it takes to cook depends on how thick your filets are.

If you can flake the salmon easily with a fork, it’s done.

Or if you’d rather use a meat thermometer, the internal temperature should be 145°F.

Now all that’s left is to remove the pan from the oven and put those beautiful golden salmon filets on plates.

Go grab your sauce from the fridge and top them with a drizzle of sauce. Or go all out like I do and plop a big ole dollop of the that creamy dill sauce on top.

I like to garnish these guys with fresh dill and serve them with a nice green salad topped with a this lovely Lemon Vinaigrette from my friend Jenn over at VeggieInspired.com.

This baked salmon recipe also pairs really well with steamed broccoli. If you’re feeling adventurous, give broccolini a try!

salmon with dill sauce on white plate with broccolini and lemon slices

Recipe Notes

  • This recipe uses an oven safe skillet. If you don’t have one you’ll need a baking dish big enough for the salmon fillets to be in a single layer
  • Be very careful when you flip the salmon oven. It’s a very delicate fish and will fall apart easily

Helpful equipment

Fish Spatula

Oven proof skillet

Frequently Asked Questions About Salmon with Dill Sauce

How long does the baked salmon and dill sauce keep?

Cooked salmon only keeps in the refrigerator for about 3 to 4 days in an airtight container. The dill sauce keeps much longer, about 2 weeks or so and makes an excellent dip for raw vegetables.

Can I freeze my baked salmon?

You can absolutely freeze the salmon after baking. Place it in an airtight freezer container or zip top bag and freeze for 4 to 6 months.
However, the sauce doesn’t freeze well. It separates and gets all gloppy. So, if you are going to freeze the fish for later, I suggest only making a 1/2 or 1/4 recipe of the dill sauce and make some fresh when you reheat the salmon.

More dinner recipes you’ll love:

Pan Seared Salmon in Creamy Dill Sauce

This is a great salmon recipe to add to your repertoire! Ready in under 30 minutes, this Pan Seared Salmon in Creamy Dill Sauce is fast enough for week nights, but fancy enough for date night.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 7 mins
Cook Time 13 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 4 fillets
Calories 469 kcal

Ingredients
  

Fish Ingredients

  • 4 boneless salmon filets about 1 ½ to 2 pounds total
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Fresh dill for garnish

Sauce Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill weed minced
  • 1 teaspoon prepared horseradish optional
  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 450°F degrees.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the ingredients for the sauce. Cover and refrigerate until you’re ready to serve the salmon.
  • Heat the olive oil in an oven-safe skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Season the salmon filets on both sides with salt and pepper, then place in the hot skillet skin side up (or just cook on one side if your filets are skinless). Sear for about 2 minutes until golden brown. Be very gentle when flipping the salmon; it can tear easily.
  • TIP: If you do not have an oven-safe skillet, just use a regular skillet and then transfer the salmon filets to a glass baking dish for the oven baking portion of this recipe.
  • Flip the salmon filets in the pan so they are skin side down, then place the skillet in the oven and bake at 450F for 6-10 minutes until the salmon is cooked through (the length of cooking time depends on the thickness of the filets). When the salmon is finished cooking it will be fork-tender and the internal temperature should be 145F on a meat thermometer.
  • Remove the pan from the oven and transfer the salmon filets to plates to serve. Top with the prepared dill cream sauce and garnish with fresh dill.

Notes

Salmon is difficult to flip without tearing. I used tongs to very gentle wiggle the fish in the pan to be sure it was not sticking, then also used a thin spatula when flipping the fish.
These two tools together allowed me to flip it easily without the salmon falling apart. It’s also important to not flip it until it has a nice golden-brown sear.

Nutrition

Serving: 1filletCalories: 469kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 34gFat: 36gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 14gMonounsaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 111mgSodium: 287mgPotassium: 872mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 208IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 45mgIron: 2mg
Keyword salmon, dill sauce for salmon
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
By on January 19th, 2022

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