When I started learning to cook I struggled with fish and chicken. In all honesty, I still struggle sometimes. But not with this recipe. This recipe is super simple and can easily be altered to suit your needs or tastes…except for the salmon part of course.
The major benefit of eating salmon is that it is one of the best sources for Omega-3 (EPA and DHA) that our body so desperately wants and needs. I personally choose to buy wild salmon over farmed. Science has demonstrated that wild salmon has higher natural levels of Omega-3 plus, farmed salmon can contain toxins. Omega-3 is a nutrient we need to consume through our diet because our body cannot create it. The benefits to Omega-3 are good healthy brain function, decreasing inflammation, lowering blood pressure, improving arterial cells, and even reducing the risk of cancer. Eating salmon allows your body to receive/metabolize the nutrients in a natural state with all the other benefits/components (protein, vitamins and minerals) of the food rather than taking a supplement.
In addition to all the above, I consider salmon the “happy fish.” This and other fatty fish have been known to help reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression. With all these positive benefits you can’t go wrong. However, as with anything, keep variety in mind. Anything in excess, even a healthy source of protein like salmon, could lead to other health issues. Personally, I try for about twice a week (plus or minus depending on what else is available).
In addition to buying wild, I like to buy the bag of individually packed frozen fillets from Costco. I simply defrost each fillet as needed. If we are using it for tacos, I defrost more than one. If I am using it as a topper to my salad at lunch I defrost it one at a time. I prefer the convenience of the frozen bag because I can consume them slowly over time, however, fresh is always best!
One last note. I like to use fresh lemons when available or lemon juice in a jar that doesn’t contain any additives or preservatives (they affect the taste). Plus, although I’ve measured the lemon juice for you, go with your instincts and cover the filet (it could be more or less).
I hope you enjoy it!
Quick and Easy Salmon
by: Christina Fit and Balanced
1 – Medium Filet of Salmon
1 TBSP – lemon juice (or juice of ½ a lemon, more if desired)
½ tsp – garlic powder
½ tsp – Italian seasoning
To taste – dried thyme
If you buy frozen, keep packaged and defrost salmon in bowl of cool water for about 15 minutes. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Place salmon on parchment paper. Cover salmon in lemon juice. Add seasoning and rub gently into salmon using back of spoon or hand. Fold over parchment paper around salmon diagonally then seal edges gently. There should be an air pocket inside. You want it to be loosely wrapped. Bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes. (I cook in my toaster oven!) I find 15 works best, but you can always add time, so checking it at 12 works well and adding time as needed is good. Salmon should flake at the twirl of your fork when done. Remove flesh from skin and eat up!
I have another version that replaces the seasoning above with my homemade taco seasoning. Either way, it’s delicious! Also, same cooking time for one filet or multiple amounts.
Christina Kawai is a Piyo Certified Live Instructor and Precision Nutrition Coach. She focuses on living a fulfilled and balanced life that includes time for fitness as well as for family, which includes her husband, two daughters, and dog. Christina does not let her polycystic kidney disease (PKD) hold her back from achieving her goals. According to Christina, “Balance is possible. We just have to be willing to create it for ourselves.”