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Can you grill salmon?

Can you grill salmon
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Barbecues are the perfect way to make the most of long summer days. If you’re looking to change up your menu, you may be wondering: “can you grill salmon?” A grilled fillet of salmon is a fantastic, flavorful choice for a barbecue. If you or your guests are watching what you eat then you’ll be pleased to know that salmon is packed with nutrients, so you can still enjoy the party guilt-free.

Grilling salmon is a great way to bring out its flavor. Nervous about barbecuing fish? We’ve got you covered. We’ve asked the experts for their top tips so you can serve up salmon like a pro and avoid beginner mistakes. 

Want to take your barbecue to the next level? Check out our guide to the best gas grills (opens in new tab) and the best infrared grills (opens in new tab) to help you cook up a storm. For now, let’s dig into all you need to know about grilling salmon. 

Can you grill salmon?

What the expert says…

Salmon has a delicate flavor, so keep it simple and your guests will come back for more. “Season with simple ingredients as salmon can be overpowered easily. Lemon, dill, and butter is a perfect combo,” recommends Tregaye Fraser, HUNGRY Virtual Xperience (opens in new tab) Celebrity Chef.

So, can you grill salmon? “Grilling salmon is a quick and easy way to add flavor and get a meal on the table with less fuss,” says Tracy Justynski, professional chef and expert on SKILLR (opens in new tab).

Preparing your salmon correctly makes grilling a cinch. “My top tip for grilling salmon on a gas grill would be to make sure the salmon is oiled up and seasoned well so that it doesn't stick.” Leave the skin on to further reduce the chance of the salmon sticking to the grill.

First time grilling salmon? Remember, less is more when it comes to grilling. The trick is to allow the fish to cook sufficiently and resist the temptation to interfere. “Don’t flip the salmon until it's ready. I think that's the most common mistake for grilling salmon. The protein will release on its own when it's ready to. You have to let it be and have patience.” Wait for the salmon to start turning opaque before attempting to move it. 

As an added bonus, grilling salmon can save on cleaning time. “Not only does the char and caramelization add complex savory, smoky elements, it also requires no pan to clean. You just burn off the remnants and brush, and you're done. It eliminates scrubbing oily burnt pans when grilling salmon on a gas grill,” says Tracy. 

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Louise Bond is a UK-based writer specializing in health and wellbeing. She has over eight years of experience in management within health and care and brings this passion and expertise to her writing. Louise has been published in The Guardian, Live Science, Fit & Well, Tom’s Guide, Planet Mindful, Breathe, and Psychreg. She is at her happiest when she is out in nature, whether that’s on an invigorating hike or pottering in the garden.

With contributions from