Grilled Whole Salmon and Caper Dill Sauce

whole roasted salmon

I don’t think there’s a better weeknight protein than grilled salmon. Healthy, tasty, and easy, plus it makes great leftovers in a salad. I prefer to buy a side of salmon and grill it whole, as it’s usually a good bit cheaper and grills (or bakes) nicely, especially if you’re a fan of crispy salmon skin. Air fryer salmon is also a possibility here too! Pair with a simple salad or grilled veggies (Brussels sprouts and broccoli work great with this mustard forward sauce) and crush your weeknight meal.

Shop it:

1 side of salmon, 2-3 pounds, skin on
2 lemons*
4 tablespoons Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons fresh dill
2 tablespoons capers in brine
2 teaspoons caper brine
1/4 cup olive oil
Aluminum foil

Make it:

  • Turn grill to medium high heat or oven to 400 deg F.
  • Combine juice of 1 and 1/2 lemons, mustard, dill, capers, and brine. Slowly whisk in olive oil to emulsify. Season with pepper and a light amount of salt.
  • Cut remaining half lemon into small slices.
  • Inspect salmon for pin bones**
  • Tear sheet of aluminum foil big enough for the salmon, plus a few inches. Lightly oil and place salmon on foil, skin down. Season salmon with salt and pepper. Top with lemon slices.
  • Baking: Bake salmon for 20-25 minutes or until opaque, flaky, and at your desired doneness.***
  • Grilling: Place salmon on direct medium heat for 5 minutes. Remove from direct heat, either onto an upper rack or non direct heat side of a grill. Finish cooking until opaque, flaky, and at your desired doneness.***
  • Remove from heat, let rest for a few minutes. Serve warm, topped with caper dill sauce.

*Any light vinegar would work here too, but lemons and salmon are such a perfect pair.

**Don’t skip this step. Most places do a really nice job, but one can sneak through.

***Some people say salmon should be cooked to 145 deg F. A lot of people enjoy it medium rare at 125 deg F. The beauty of a side of grilled salmon is the tail will be well when the head is more on the rare side (which is what I tend to prefer).

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