Healthy Blackened Salmon Recipe with Sweet Potato & Sauteed Spinach
How to Make Blackened Salmon on the Stove
For an elegant and easy dinner that you can cook in just 15 minutes, give this healthy blackened salmon skillet meal a try! A super simple blackened salmon recipe for the stovetop, plus a batch of skillet veggies that you can cook right alongside it.
Personally, I’d only ever come across blackened salmon on a restaurant menu, but I didn’t realize how easy it is to make at home. And honestly, it tastes just as good as restaurant salmon—especially served with a squeeze of blackened lemon! Irresistibly crispy, perfectly savory, with a subtle-yet-satisfying kick of heat.
And of course, I love any dinner that makes it easier for me to fit more fatty fish into my diet, especially salmon. Fatty fish, and salmon in particular, is one of the best dietary sources of ometa-3 fatty acids: a superfood nutrient with incredible anti-inflammatory power and brain benefits! The more omega-3s we can incorporate into our daily routine, the better,
Best of all, I can cook this healthy blackened salmon recipe AND a side of stovetop veggies all at the same time, all in just 15 minutes. Quick weeknight dinners, for the win! I’ll show you how to make blackened salmon on the stove and make it into an easy meal.
Healthy Blackened Salmon Dinner Components
I’ve designed this healthy blackened salmon dinner with 2 main components. On one pan, I cook my skillet veggies—sweet potato and sauteed spinach. And on the other pan, I cook my blackened salmon recipe while the veggies soften.
As is, this recipe can serve 2 people. But of course, adjust the ingredient amounts to suit your needs!
Skillet Veggies – Sweet Potato & Sauteed Spinach
First, since sweet potato is a starchy root vegetable that takes longer to cook, I start by getting that in a pan. And, to make this cooking process as quick and efficient as possible, I’m cooking my veggies over high heat. That being said, it’s important to choose an oil with a high smoke point, like avocado oil or light olive oil.
So, in a deep pan over medium-high to high heat, I add some of that high smoke point oil. Once warm, I add in my chopped sweet potato—or any starchy vegetable, like butternut squash—along with half of a lemon. Then, cover with a lid and just let it sit for about 3 minutes. You might be tempted to stir, but give that sweet potato time to start browning!
After a few minutes, uncover the pan and give it a stir. Season to taste with a bit of coconut aminos and salt, or any seasonings you like. Then, turn the heat down to medium, cover once more and just allow it to cook for another 5-7 minutes. (To make this quick dinner as efficient as possible, now is a great time to get that blackened salmon recipe started on another burner!)
Finally, once your sweet potato is tender and cooked to your liking, remove from the pan and set aside. Add a bit of oil back into that same pan and saute chopped garlic for about a minute. Next, add a generous helping of spinach with a pinch of salt, cover, and give it just 1-2 minutes to wilt down. Once tender and vibrant green, it’s ready to serve with your sweet potato!
Simple Blackened Salmon Recipe
While your skillet veggies are cooking, you’ve got just enough time to cook this blackened salmon recipe in a separate pan! Of course, if you’d rather cook one component at a time, that’s totally fine—do whatever is most comfortable for you. Personally, I’m just a fiend for a 15 minute dinner where I can get ALL of my components ready at the same time.
In terms of your fish, you can make this healthy blackened salmon recipe with whatever type or cut of salmon that you prefer. You can learn about some of the different salmon options in my Wild Caught Salmon vs Farm Raised blog post if you’re interested. Ultimately, the choice boils down to this: whatever best suits your lifestyle, nutritional preferences, environmental concerns, and budget.
As I was learning how to make blackened salmon for this recipe, I used MOWI Salmon: a clean, sustainable, farm raised salmon option that’s SO amazing to cook with. I swear, the texture always turns out amazing, and it’s conveniently available to order through Amazon!
The specific cuts I’m using for this blackened salmon recipe are smaller, thinner bistro cuts: 4 filets, about 2.5oz each. (MOWI’s “Escallopino cuts.”) I love that they’re quicker to cook and have more exposed flesh, so my filets can get perfectly crispy on BOTH sides! But, you can also make this healthy blackened salmon recipe with larger, standard salmon filets of 4-5oz each—whatever you can find.
As I was learning how to make blackened salmon, I honestly didn’t expect it to be so simple! To start, combine all of your blackened salmon seasonings and add them to a plate or a flat dish. Press each filet into the seasonings, flesh side down, until well coated (on both sides if needed). You’re welcome to use adjust the seasonings or use any blend that you enjoy!
Once your filets are seasoned, heat a cast iron skillet or heavy bottom pan over medium heat. Add a generous drizzle of a high smoke point oil, or melted butter if you’d like. Once the oil begins to smoke, I recommend turning OFF the heat for a moment.
Then, place your salmon filets onto the pan, flesh side down, and turn the heat back ON to medium. Allow those to cook for 2-3 minutes on one side, then flip and cook on the other side for another 3-5 minutes.
Once blackened and crisped to your liking, serve with your skillet veggies! Using your time and heat wisely, in just 15 minutes, you can have a deliciously nutritious dinner ready to enjoy.
2 cups sweet potato, chopped (or butternut squash) drizzle of oil salt, to taste ½ lemon 1 Tbsp coconut aminos 3 cloves garlic, chopped 3-4 cups spinach
To cook veggies, heat a deep pan over medium-high to high heat. Add oil to the pan—and be sure to use an oil with a higher smoke point, like avocado oil or light olive oil, since we’re cooking over high heat.
Add chopped sweet potato (or butternut squash), along with half of a lemon. Cover and allow to cook for 3 minutes.
Once browning on the bottom, uncover and season to taste with coconut aminos and salt. Turn heat down to medium-low, cover, and continue to cook for 5-7 minutes. (Now is a great time to start cooking your blackened salmon!)
Once cooked through, remove sweet potato from pan and set aside.
Add a drizzle of oil to warm pan and saute garlic for one minute. Once fragrant, add spinach and a pinch of salt. Cover and allow to wilt for 1-2 minutes.
Serve cooked sweet potato and spinach on a plate with blackened salmon! Squeeze juice from blackened lemon onto salmon and enjoy.
Blackened Salmon Filets
To cook salmon, start by mixing together all spices and place in a flat dish or on a plate. Press each salmon filet into spice mixture, one at a time, flesh side only.
Heat a cast iron or heavy bottom pan over medium heat. Add a high smoke point oil (like avocado oil or light olive oil), or melted butter. When it begins to smoke, shut off heat. Add each coated salmon filet to pan, flesh side down.
Turn heat back on and cook 2-3 minutes over medium heat. Flip salmon and cook on other side another 3-5 minutes, until crispy and easy to flake with a fork.
*I prepared this blackened salmon recipe using 4 thinner, smaller salmon cuts (~2.5oz each), known as “minute steaks.” They cook quickly, and they’re perfect for searing and blackening! You could also prepare this blackened salmon recipe using standard, larger filets (4-5oz each), you may just need to cook the filets for a bit longer.
Nutrition per 5oz serving salmon (2 small filets), yields 2 servings: 340 calories | 21g fat | 0g carbs | 0g fiber | 0g sugars | 37g protein (0g net carbs)
Nutrition provided below for entire meal: 5oz blackened salmon and ½ of skillet veggies.