Learn the best way to grill salmon, with butter, garlic, and simple seasonings. This is a delicious and easy recipe to make on your grill, and perfect for sharing with your friends at your next bbq.
Grilling salmon gives it a subtle smoky flavor that is so delicious! Grab a cold drink and head outside to make dinner on the grill. It only takes a few minutes to grill Salmon, so you’ll have more time to enjoy the nice weather!
You should also try making my Cedar Plank Salmon. Grilling fish on a cedar wood plank is a classic preparation that is extra flavorful.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Easy Grilled Fish – Salmon is actually one of the easiest fish to grill since it’s less fragile than others. It holds together well and isn’t overpowered by the smoky grill flavor.
- Simple, Savory Flavors – No sweet BBQ sauce is needed to make salmon on the grill! We’re adding traditional garlic, lemon, and butter to make this the easiest and best bbq salmon recipe you’ve ever had.
- Tips and Tricks – If you’ve ever tried to make grilled fish and had trouble, I’m here to tell you to try again! I’ll share my best tips so that you can make the perfect grilled salmon.
Ingredients For Making Grilled Salmon Fillets
Here’s what you need to make this bbq salmon recipe!
- Salmon Fillets: You can see that I got my salmon fillets frozen. I find that this is the most cost-effective way to buy salmon! Be sure to thaw them before grilling. You can certainly use fresh salmon fillets too. Either way, you want to use salmon fillets that still have the skin attached.
- Butter: Use melted unsalted butter to make a buttery sauce for grilled salmon. We will season it ourselves.
- Garlic: Garlic tastes amazing with salmon! Mince two cloves to add to the fish fillets.
- Lemon: Lemon juice is mixed with garlic and butter to make the most scrumptious grilled salmon. Use juice that is freshly squeezed from an actual lemon, not the bottled stuff.
- You will also need: Salt, pepper, oil for preparing the grill grates, and some fresh parsley for garnish.
Complete list of ingredients and amounts can be found in the recipe card below.
A garnish of fresh parsley makes any meal look amazing! Keep some in the fridge, or grow a little on your windowsill so you always have it around.
How To Make Grilled Salmon
- Prep the Grill: Preheat the grill to get it to a temperature between 400 – 450°F (about 200-230°C). Clean the grill grates, then grease them with oil so that the fish won’t stick.
- Season the Salmon: In a small bowl, combine melted butter, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Drizzle the butter mixture over the salmon fillets and brush to cover the fish.
- Grill: Place the salmon fillets on the grill, skin side down over direct high heat. Cover the grill, and cook for 6-7 minutes. The color of the salmon will become light as it cooks, and the salmon should be easy to flip without sticking. If it sticks, let it cook a bit longer until it doesn’t stick any more!
- Flip: Carefully flip the salmon fillets over and cook for 2-4 more minutes, or until the internal temperature of the fish is 130°F/54°C. If needed, grill the sides of the fillets for 1-2 minutes as well.
- Rest: Transfer the salmon to a plate and allow it to rest for 2-5 minutes before serving, garnished with chopped parsley and lemon wedges.
Resting is important! Pulling the salmon off the grill when it’s almost done, and letting it naturally get to the higher temperature is the key to tender salmon that isn’t dried out.
- Add herbs or other seasonings. This recipe is fairly simple, without a whole lot of spice. You can try adding your favorite salmon seasonings to give grilled salmon a new twist. My Salmon Seasoning recipe is definitely worth a try!
- Try a sauce. After grilling, top your salmon with this creamy salmon sauce!
- Don’t overcook. Keep an eye on your grilled salmon so that it doesn’t overcook and get dried out. Use an instant-read thermometer. The salmon is done when the internal temperature reaches 125-135°F (52-57°C).
- Use a fish spatula. When handling delicate fish filets, a fish spatula will be your best tool! It allows you to get all the under the fillet so that it won’t break apart when you move it.
- Check for pin bones. Even very well butchered fish fillets will have a bone or two in them sometimes. Feel for sharp bones with your hands, and use a pair of tweezers to easily pull them out before you start cooking.
Cooked salmon will stay fresh in the fridge if stored in an airtight container, for 3-4 days.
To reheat grilled salmon, warm it up slowly at a low temperature. In the oven or on the grill, heat at 275°F/135°C oven for about 15 minutes.
What To Serve With Grilled Salmon
Grilled Salmon is ready to eat with any of your favorite side dishes. Since it’s likely that you’ll be grilling fish in the warmer months, try some of my favorite summer side dishes:
When grilling salmon, it’s best to leave the skin on. The skin protects the meat of the fish from drying out, so you get a moist, tender, flaky grilled salmon. The skin is also very helpful in keeping the fish together so that it won’t fall apart as it cooks.
It should only take about 10-15 minutes to properly grill salmon fillets. Larger cuts may take a bit longer.
This is normal, don’t worry! It’s a protein called albumin that is found in salmon and becomes semi-solid when cooked. Often when you see this, the salmon is fully cooked or very close.
Grilled Salmon is delicious! Save this recipe by pinning it so you’ll have it the next time you feel like making dinner on the grill, and quickly.
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- ¼ cup (57 grams) unsalted butter melted, ½ stick
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 6 6-ounce (6 170 gram) salmon fillets skin on
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
- Oil for grill grates
- lemon wedges for serving
- Preheat the grill to medium-high heat 400-450°F/200-230°C, and clean and oil the grill grates.
- In a small bowl, combine garlic, butter, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
- Drizzle the butter mixture over the salmon fillets, and brush to cover the salmon.
- Place the salmon fillets on the grill, skin side down over direct high heat. Cover with the lid, and cook for about 6-7 minutes. The color of the salmon will become light as it cooks, and the salmon should be easy to flip without sticking to the grill grates (that’s how you know that it’s ready to be flipped).
- Flip the salmon, and cook for 2-4 more minutes or until the internal temp is 130°F/54°C. If needed cook on the sides as well.
- Transfer to a plate, and allow to rest for a couple of minutes before serving. Garnish with chopped parsley, and serve with lemon wedges.
- If your salmon fillets are frozen, thaw them before cooking.
- Check the fillets for any pin bones, and remove them with tweezers.
- To Store: Cooked salmon will stay fresh in the fridge if stored in an airtight container, for 3-4 days.
- To reheat grilled salmon, warm it up slowly at a low temperature. In the oven or on the grill, heat at 275°F/135°C oven for about 15 minutes.
- Keep an eye on your grilled salmon so that it doesn’t overcook and get dried out. Use an instant-read thermometer. The salmon is done when the internal temperature reaches 125-135°F/52-57°C.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.
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