How To Cook Salmon On Grill?

We’ve already heard of grilled burgers and meat, but did you know that you can also cook salmon on grill? 

If you’ve never tasted it and want to try it, you may have tons of questions about how to do it.


As you may already know, if you aren’t completely new to cooking, cooking fish isn’t always the same as cooking meat.

However, salmon is an easy fish to cook, so learning how to grill it not only will allow you to taste something new but you can also move your first steps into fish cooking. 

Read: How To Cook Burger On Grill?

Also Read: 3 Ways To Clean A Grill?

How To Cook Salmon On Grill?

1. Select the Perfect salmon

Select the salmon

Just like it happens with meat, the secret to cooking the perfect salmon on the grill starts from the selection of the salmon.

If you want to grill your salmon, you want to choose salmon fillets or steaks.

The difference between the two is that the filet would be thinner and it would cook more quickly, while the steak would be thicker.

Furthermore, you should buy on-steak salmon because the skin will protect the fish meat until you cook it.

2. Prepare the Grill

Prepare the Grill

When you cook salmon on grill, it’s important that you prevent your fish from sticking on the grate.

With meat, this isn’t important because, if you pull away a meat steak, for example, even if it is stuck on the grill, it will come away without destroying itself. If you do the same with salmon, you end up with nothing to eat. 

So, how to prevent salmon from sticking to the grill? You need to oil the grate. How? Before the grill gets too hot (or before turning it on), you can put some oil on a towel and run the grill with it.

This will also eliminate any odor from the previous cooking, so it won’t end up on your salmon.

3. Prepare the Salmon

Prepare the Salmon

In a bowl, prepare a mixture with these ingredients:

  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 teaspoons of lemon zest
  • Salt and pepper
  • ½ rosemary.

15 minutes before grilling, you can rub this mixture over the salmon fillets or steak. Let it stay for 15 minutes, and then grill.

4. Grill the Salmon

Grill the Salmon

When the grill is hot, place the salmon directly on the grates. Make sure the skin side faces down. Use the cover of the grill to cover.

Wait about 4 minutes, and then flip the fillets. Wait 4 more minutes and take away the salmon from the grill.

Before serving, let the fish rest for 5 minutes (this is a tip that’s good for meat grilling, too!). 1

Read: How Long To Grill Corn In Foil?

How to Grill a Salmon Using a Foil?

How to Grill a Salmon Using a Foil

Here is another way to ensure you have an evenly grilled salmon in less time.

  • Marinate: The first step is obviously marinating your salmon. Let your salmon marinate for an hour at least so that it soaks in all the flavor of the marinate.
  • Prepping the Grill: Preheat your grill to around 375 to 400 degrees F on medium heat, and ensure your grill is clean.
  • Foil it up: Spread a foil wrap and spray it with cooking oil. Now put the marinated salmon on it and wrap the foil up on the sides. Now take a fork and create a hole in the top for the steam to escape.
  • Grill it: Now place the foiled salmon on the grill, close the lid and leave it for 14-20 minutes. Ideally, your salmon should be cooked perfectly in 15 minutes.
  • Time to check: Now remove the foil from the grill and leave it for a few minutes. Check your salmon; if it still needs some cooking, then fold the foil up again and leave it on the grill for a few more minutes. 2

Best Practices For Grilling Salmon

  • The correct temperature: Maintaining the correct temperature is important to grill the perfect Salmon. Make sure the temperature of your grill is 450°-500° F.
  • Grilling the right way: If you do not want your fish to stick to the grate, then you should cook the skin side of the Salmon first for 6-8 minutes.
  • Oiling correctly: Instead of oiling the grates, you should oil your fish; this will reduce the chances of your fish sticking to the grates.

Tips From Reddit Users

Grilling Salmon
by u/TpyoWritr in AskCulinary

How Long Should You Cook the Salmon on the Grill?

As we’ve mentioned, the ideal cook goes for a total of 8 minutes, 4 minutes per side. Just like meat, you want to flip the salmon only once.

This is even more important with fish meat because if you manipulate fish meat too much, it disintegrates, and you end up with nothing to eat.

Read: How To Cook Chicken On Grill?

How to Tell If The Salmon Is Cooked?

How to Tell If The Salmon Is Cooked

Being able to tell if Salmon is cooked or not comes with experience. And if you don’t know how to determine whether the Salmon is cooked or not yet, then here are some tips for you:

  • Texture: You can tell if the Salmon is cooked or not by looking at its texture. A cooked Salmon is soft pink and opaque instead of bright pink. Also, you will be able to flake the Salmon using a fork when it is cooked.
  • Time: A Salmon takes approx 15 minutes to cook completely. You may end up burning or undercooking the Salmon if you go too far or too less than 15 minutes.
  • Temperature: This is a technical method of testing. If you have a meat thermometer, then an internal temperature of 145 degrees should suffice for proper cooking, followed by resting time. 3

Wrapping Up

Cooking or grilling Salmon perfectly is no less than an art, and there are two most popular ways to grill Salmon, as we shared above.

We hope you found this guide on how to cook Salmon on the grill useful and benefited from other tips that we shared.


Which sauces go with Salmon?

Here are some of the sauces that compliments Salmon like a charm:

  • Hollandaise
  • Tartar sauce
  • Tomato avacado salsa
  • Cucumber dill sauce
  • Basil pesto
  • Fruit salsa

How can I store left over Salmon?

If you have some leftover Salmon then you can store in an air tight container for up to three days, and have it in your breakfast, lunch, whatever you like.

Which side of the Salmon should you grill first?

You should grill the Salmon with the skin side down first.

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