This Pan-seared Salmon in a Creamy Butter Sauce is out-of-this-world delicious! The juicy salmon fillets are tender on the outside and served with the vibrant and creamy butter sauce which is seriously scrumptious. And the best part about this great recipe? It’s so easy to make!
The Most delicious Salmon recipe you’ve ever tasted
Fresh salmon is full of healthy nutrients and takes only minutes to cook, making it the perfect weeknight meal. It’s a great source of vitamin D when the days are not sunny and the rain is pouring buckets.
We love cooking salmon in our house. And our absolute favorite way to have it is by searing it in hot oil in a skillet. This Pan-seared Salmon recipe is the perfect way to get your family to eat quick healthy meals during the week.
The restaurant-worthy dish that you can make in the comfort of your own home is perfect for a luxurious and indulgent weeknight dinner. The creamy garlic butter sauce is a must-try! It’s a delicious combination of Parmesan cheese, cream, garlic, butter, baby spinach, and fresh herbs. I promise you it’s sooo good!
But this recipe isn’t just a Plain-Jane seared salmon. Oh no, it’s much more than that. It is fine-dining quality salmon with minimal effort. This Creamy Garlic Butter Salmon recipe was given to me by my sister. You see, her husband does a ton of fishing and catches quite a bit of salmon. So if there’s anyone who knows a good salmon recipe or two, it’s her.
Since she’s given me this recipe, it’s been an absolute seafood staple in my own home. My husband asks for it often. I crave it constantly. And it’s the recipe that has really got my children to love fish. Hooray!
So what makes this recipe so different? It’s the million-dollar sauce. This creamy garlic sauce is amazingly delicious. It’s lick-the-plate good and simply the best way to enjoy the salmon. It’s forget-the-salmon-I’ll-just-have-the-sauce good.
This rich and luscious sauce has sensational flavor and truly enhances the natural flavors of the tender salmon fillets.
Key Ingredients for the Salmon and Creamy Garlic Salmon Recipe
For the Salmon you need:
Fresh salmon filets: This is the main ingredient for this recipe. Choose salmon which is firm to the touch with a shiny appearance. Skin-on salmon fillets are recommended for this recipe.
Fresh lemon juice: It has a bright flavor which makes it the perfect complement to serve the juicy salmon.
Extra virgin Olive oil: Helps to brown the salmon and prevent sticking in the hot pan.
Along with these, you’ll need sea salt and black pepper to season the fish.
For the Creamy Garlic Butter Sauce you need:
Unsalted butter: This is the base of this creamy and simple sauce.
Garlic: Fresh garlic works best for the best flavor but garlic powder can be used as a substitute.
Cherry Tomatoes: They’re packed with bright, tomato flavor and add just enough sweetness to this recipe.
Baby Spinach: Add some texture, substance, and a mild flavor to the cream sauce.
Half & Half: The equal parts of whole milk and heavy cream make the sauce so very smooth.
Parmesan Cheese: Use freshly grated Parmesan cheese for a creamy and salty touch of cheese.
Fresh Parsley and dill: Fresh herbs add flavors and a colorful garnish to the sauce.
Salt & black pepper: for taste and flavor.
Find the full printable recipe with specific measurements below.
How to make Pan-Seared Salmon in a Creamy Butter Sauce
Step 1: Season the salmon
- Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Season salmon with salt and pepper.
2: Sear the fresh salmon
- The first side to sear is the skin side for about 4 minutes. Once the first side is done use a fish spatula or regular spatula to gently turn the fish and sear the flesh side for 4 minutes as well.
3: Finish and set salmon aside
- Once the salmon has a golden brown color remove it from the skillet and keep it warm, loosely covered with aluminum foil.
4: Prepare the butter sauce
- Switch to medium heat then add butter to the skillet and let it melt. Add garlic to the melted butter and stir for 1-2 minutes until fragrant and golden.
5: Add tomatoes and season
- Add the cherry tomatoes and a pinch of salt and pepper then cook for 2-3 minutes.
6: Add spinach
- Add the baby spinach and cook until the spinach wilts.
7: Stir in heavy cream, cheese and fresh herbs
- Stir in half & half, parmesan cheese, chopped parsley and dill. Cook for another 4 minutes.
8: Add salmon back
- Add salmon back into the skillet. Bring to a gentle simmer for another 5 minutes or until salmon is cooked through.
9: Squeeze lemon juice and serve
- Squeeze lemon wedge onto salmon then garnish with more herbs (if desired) when serving.
How to store leftover salmon with lemon butter cream sauce
- Cooked salmon can be kept for 3 to 4 days in the fridge in an airtight container. Gently reheat in the oven or microwave.
- Freezing this recipe is not recommended due to the dairy ingredients which separate when frozen.
- Sear the skin side first because the skin is tougher so it’s easier to slide a fish spatula under the salmon skin-side than under its delicate flesh side.
- Let salmon rest at room temperature for about 15 minutes before cooking, so it cooks evenly.
- Pat dry with a paper towel to allow the edges to crisp evenly while cooking.
- Use a cast iron skillet if you have one because it has high heat retention and perfectly sears the salmon.
- You can add red pepper flakes if you prefer for that extra kick.
- Don’t overcook it! Salmon should still look slightly pink in the center.
- Don’t move your salmon around in the pan. Rather leaving it to sear undisturbed to achieve that perfect golden brown crust.
- Before making the sauce, you can spoon the melted butter on top of the salmon for a bonus buttery flavor.
- Have ingredients prepped before you start cooking because this recipe moves fast
- When you stir in the half and half, simmer it over low heat so the sauce doesn’t curdle.
I have served this dish with couscous, pearl couscous, mashed potatoes, pasta, rice, and sometimes just on its own. You can also serve it with garlic bread or crusty bread to soak up all that creamy sauce. Other low-carb (or Keto) options to serve with this recipe are steamed or roasted veggies, zucchini noodles, or cauliflower rice.
Skin-on salmon fillets are recommended for this recipe. The skin is tasty and it provides a safety layer between the fish and the hot pan, helping the flesh stay tender and moist. The skin also protects the salmon flesh from overcooking.
To get flaky salmon notice the color along the sides of the salmon fillets slowly begin to change to a paler color. Once the color has moved up to the canter, it’s time to flip. Because the size and thickness of your salmon varies, another way to get flaky salmon is to use an instant-read thermometer and cook to an internal temperature of 145°F.
I don’t recommend it because store-bought pre-shredded won’t melt properly in the sauce. Grate it yourself at home.
Other Fish recipes to try out
- This Easy and Simple Crab Salad Appetizer Snack is low in calories and great for game day, the holidays, or a quick lunch.
- The Fish Tacos with an Easy Spicy Dipping Sauce are perfect for Taco Tuesday or a summer picnic.
- The One Pan Oven Baked Fish with Vegetables and Spices is the ideal recipe for a nutritious warm dinner meal.
More Tasty Seafood Recipes to Make
If you tried this Seared Salmon in a Creamy Butter Sauce or any other recipe on my website, please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how you enjoyed it in the📝 comments below. I love hearing from you!
Seared Salmon in a Creamy Butter Sauce
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 6 oz salmon filet
- sea salt, to taste
- ground black pepper, to taste
- ½ lemon, sliced in wedges for serving
For the butter sauce:
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 2 cups baby spinach
- sea salt, to taste
- black pepper, to taste
- ½ cup half & half
- ¼ cup parmesan cheese, shredded
- ¼ cup fresh parsley, and dill, chopped
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Season the salmon with salt and pepper. Sear salmon on both sides, about 4 minutes each side. It should have a golden color. Remove the salmon from the skillet.2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, 6 oz salmon filet, sea salt,, black pepper,
Reduce the heat to medium and add butter. As soon as the butter has melted, add garlic, stir for one minute, and then add the tomatoes.2 Tbsp unsalted butter, 3 cloves garlic,, 1 cup cherry tomatoes,
Add a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook for 2 minutes, then add spinach. Cook until spinach wilts.sea salt,, ground black pepper,, 2 cups baby spinach
Stir in half & half, parmesan cheese, and herbs. Cook for another 4 minutes.½ cup half & half, ¼ cup parmesan cheese,, ¼ cup fresh parsley,
Add salmon back into the skillet. On low heat, simmer for another 5 minutes or until salmon is cooked through.
Squeeze lemon wedge onto salmon.½ lemon,
- Garnish with more herbs (if desired) when serving.
- Wild or farmed salmon will work for this recipe.
- For extra flavor season the salmon with seafood seasoning.