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BEST Salmon in the Air Fryer • Two Purple Figs


If you’re looking for a super healthy meal you can easily cook in your air fryer then you don’t need to look any further than this delicious air fryer salmon. A super versatile fish, a few simple spices, an air fryer and you’ll be making this super delicious salmon recipe on the regular.

Air fryer Salmon on a wooden board surrounded by lime wedges, jalapenos, mango salsa

Why Salmon in Air Fryer

There is always a good reason to use your air fryer, but it’s a particularly great way to cook salmon. It cooks your salmon fillets beautifully so that you keep nice moist fish but you also get a really nice crispy skin.

It’s full of flavor and texture and makes a great meal that’s easy to make on those busy days. I’ve been experimenting so much with my air fryer and I can’t stop using it! Starting with Air Fryer Lamb Chops with Poblano Sauce that completely rocked my lamb chops!

Then I moved on to Air Fryer Chicken Legs which have cooked so perfectly, and my Air Fryer Baked Potato which is a staple now for baked potatoes at home. Air Fryer Fish Tacos came in to the rescue when I needed a breaded crunchy fish without frying. Give them a try and let me know!

 

A hand squeezing a lime over air fryer salmon

Salmon was no exception, it cooked absolutely perfectly in the air fryer. In fact it’s similar to broiling, if you’re familiar with that. The crisp is undeniable, the succulent texture as well, and finally, the ease! The convenience is REAL, so let’s make it!

Make Air fryer Salmon

Make sure you’re using a dry spice rub here because air fryers don’t like moist and wet marinades. So feel free to add or remove a certain spice to suit your taste. 

How to cook Salmon in the air fryer

Salmon spice blend on a cutting board such as salt, peper, chilli powder, garlic powder, oregano

Start up with the spice rub: 

  • salt and pepper
  • garlic powder
  • chilli powder
  • light brown sugar
  • oregano
  • Olive oil 

the spice blend ready in a bowl for the salmon recipe

Air Fryer Salmon with Skin

You can make this air fryer salmon with skin or without if it’s your taste. Also feel free to choose between wild or farm raised, Pacific or Atlantic.

Like so many air fryer recipes, the key is to always pat the salmon down with paper towels right at the beginning to get rid of any excess moisture. Doing this allows the spices to stick to the salmon rather than just coming off. You also need to make sure you pat the skin as this ensures it will crisp up.

a hand patting down the salmon fillets with a paper towel before seasoning

Once your salmon has been patted down in a small bowl combine the spices as seasonings. Mix them really well and then add the seasonings to the salmon fillets along with olive oil (your all-important saturated fat that helps to crisp everything up) and rub them into the fillets well, including the skin.

spice blend over the salmon fillets to season

How long to cook salmon in the air fryer

Preheat the air fryer to 400 degrees F and then place the salmon fillet into the air fryer based skin side down and air fry. The thickness of your pieces of salmon will determine how long you will need to cook them for but on average your piece of fish should be perfectly cooked in about 12 minutes.

olive oil being poured over the seasoned salmon fillets for a crisp salmon in the air fryer When you cook your salmon you want to ensure that the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees f and you want to make sure the thickest part reaches this temperature too as these take the longest to cook.

Salmon fillets in the air fryer ready to cook

Don’t leave your salmon fillets on too long to overcook as over cooked salmon becomes dry very quickly.

crispy salmon in the air fryer ready and cooked

Serving air fryer salmon fillets

Air fryer salmon fillets are great paired with refreshing ingredients. I absolutely love to make a colorful and tasty avocado and mango salsa to go on top of the cooked salmon fillets as well as fresh cilantro fresh jalapeños.  A few wedges of lime to squeeze over and a little olive oil drizzled, go perfectly to finish off this wonderful fish.

You may also serve air fryer salmon with rice, pasta, bread, salad or soup.

Air fryer salmon recipes (variations on spicing the salmon and serving it)

What is so great about both cooking with salmon and the air fryer is both of their versatility. Salmon has a very light and delicate flavor which means it’s great at pairing with almost anything and so you can adapt this recipe to how you like it.

Spicing variations

Salmon is great with both spice and the lack of it and other spices and marinades that pair nicely with salmon include:

  • Smoked paprika rub
  • honey, soy, and ginger marinade (optionally you can add some fresh crushed chili to this too) – though beware the honey catch a little in the air fryer so keep an eye.
  • Dill is a great addition to salmon and very freshening, especially if you include it in a dill and cucumber dip on the side.
  • Many other spice and herb combinations go really well with air-fried salmon, and getting creative can be a lot of fun and really tasty.

A hand holding a bowl of avocado salmon salsa to serve with the air fryer salmon

Serving variations

While I love my avocado and mango salsa there are so many other things you can serve with your salmon fillets.

Any fresh salad goes nicely, but if you want something a bit more substantial sides made with sweet potatoes like sweet potatoes fries or even mashed sweet potatoes with butter are a filling addition as well as being super healthy also.

a hand pouring olive oil over the air fryer salmon for a finishing touch

This really is the best salmon recipe out there, as it’s both crispy, moist and bursting with fresh flavors, not to mention how easy it is making salmon this way. Whether you are new to air frying or a seasoned air fryer, I’m sure this recipe will become one of your favorites for making delicious salmon.

If you don’t have an air fryer and looking for great tasting and unique salmon, try this Baked Salmon With Greek Dressing,  Grilled Salmon (stove or bbq grill),  Sockeye Salmon With Lemon Butter Sauce (stove top salmon and sauce), Blood Orange Salmon Salad With Orange Dill Dressing for the perfect lunch or dinner!

A fork breaking up a piece of salmon cooked in the air fryer showing the succulent texture

Air Fryer Salmon recipe TIPS & FAQ’s

  1. Choose your favorite type of salmon.
  2. Adjust the spice to be as simple as salt and pepper only, or go with your favorite flavors. Make sure it’s as dry as possible because that works best for air fryers.
  3. No need to wait for marinades, just spice and go.
  4. Olive oil is key to crisping the salon. I use my all time favorite Moroccan brand olive oil (mina) which you can read all about it in this Olive Oil Cake.
  5. Any type of air fryer works for this recipe!
  6. Make sure you check your salmon after air frying for 8 minutes as it may be done. This depends on the thickness of your fillets.
  7. My 1 inch thick fillets were done in exactly 11 minutes of air frying, with 8 minutes at 400 degrees F and then I flipped them. Cooked an extra 3 minutes at 400 degrees F and it was perfectly done. 
  8. Serve these with rice, pasta, potatoes, salad, soup, bread and keep leftovers for a lunch bowl next day. You can get an idea for leftover salmon bowls at this Grilled Salmon post.

What type of salmon should I cook with?

I always try to recommend cooking with wild-caught salmon but this isn’t feasible or possible so every kind of salmon you have available to you will work just fine with this recipe.

Many people like to buy frozen salmon instead of fresh salmon. You can also use frozen salmon for this recipe, however, you need to make sure if it’s fully defrosted before you start to cook with it.

Can I remove the Skin?

This recipe is great with the skin left on but, it’s true some people prefer to remove it. While you can remove the skin, I wouldn’t do so until after you have cooked your salmon on the air fryer. Once the fish is cooked the skill will peel off easily.

two pieces of air fryer salmon on a board surrounded by lime wedges, avocado slices, mango, avocado salsa,

More Salmon Recipes and Stories

Salmon Recipes

Grilled Salmon

SOCKEYE SALMON

Baked Salmon With Greek Dressing

Sushi Burrito, Sushi Rice & Spicy Salmon Sushi

Smoked Salmon Platter

Seared Salmon with Blue Cheese

Smoked Salmon Salad With Blue Cheese Dressing

Air fryer Salmon on a wooden board surrounded by lime wedges, jalapenos, mango salsa

Air Fryer Salmon

Delicious air fryer salmon is a succulent Salmon recipe. Super easy salmon in the air fryer is the best dinner you can make in minutes!

Ingredients

Salmon

  • 2
    pieces
    salmon fillet
    with ot without skin

Dry Spice

  • 1/2
    teaspoon
    salt and pepper
    each
  • 1
    teaspoon
    light brown sugar
  • 1/2
    teaspoon
    garlic powder
  • 1
    teaspoon
    oregano
  • 1
    teaspoon
    chilli powder
  • 1
    tablespoon
    olive oil
    extra virgin

Avocado Salsa

  • 1
    avocado
    diced
  • 1/3
    cup
    mango
    diced
  • 1/4
    cup
    red onions
    finely diced
  • 3
    tablespoons
    cilantro
    minced
  • 1
    Jalapeño
    sliced
  • 2
    tablespoons
    lime juice
  • 1/2
    teaspoon
    salt
  • 2
    tablespoons
    olive oil
  • 1/2
    teaspoon
    honey

Instructions

  1. Prepare all your dry spice mix and add them to a small plate.

  2. Pat your salmon fillet dry using a kitchen towel

  3. sprinkle the dry spice rub over both sides of the salmon fillets

  4. Add the olive oil to salmon and toss it well into the fish.

  5. Place the salmon fillets in the sir fryer basked preheated to 400 degrees and set it for 8 minutes.

  6. Flip the salmon and air fry for another 3-4 minutes max (depending on the thickness of your salmon fillets).

  7. You may find that the salmon is perfectly cooked after the first 8 minutes of air frying with no need to flip or continuing to air fry. this will depend on the thickness of your salmon fillets.

  8. remove from the air fryer on to a serving plate.

  9. Mix all avocado salsa ingredients in a bowl and top the salmon fillets with that.

  10. Drizzle extra olive oil on top.

Recipe Notes

Air Fryer Salmon recipe TIPS & FAQ’s

  1. Choose your favorite type of salmon.
  2. Adjust the spice to be as simple as salt and pepper only, or go with your favorite flavors. Make sure it’s as dry as possible because that works best for air fryers.
  3. No need to wait for marinades, just spice and go.
  4. Olive oil is key to crisping the salon. I use my all time favorite Moroccan brand olive oil (mina) which you can read all about it in this Olive Oil Cake.
  5. Any type of air fryer works for this recipe!
  6. Make sure you check your salmon after air frying for 8 minutes as it may be done (depending on the thickness of your fillets).
  7. My 1 inch thick fillets were done in exactly 11 minutes of air frying, with 8 minutes at 400 degrees F and then I flipped them. Cooked an extra 3 minutes at 400 degrees F and it was perfectly done. 
  8. Serve these with rice, pasta, potatoes, salad, soup, bread and keep leftovers for a lunch bowl next day. You can get an idea for leftover salmon bowls at this Grilled Salmon post.

What type of salmon should I cook with?

I always try to recommend cooking with wild-caught salmon but this isn’t feasible or possible so every kind of salmon you have available to you will work just fine with this recipe.

Many people like to buy frozen salmon instead of fresh salmon. You can also use frozen salmon for this recipe, however, you need to make sure if it’s fully defrosted before you start to cook with it.

Can I remove the Skin?

This recipe is great with the skin left on but, it’s true some people prefer to remove it. While you can remove the skin, I wouldn’t do so until after you have cooked your salmon on the air fryer. Cooking the salmon with the skin touching the air fryer basket will protect the more delicate fish behind it from the harsh heat of being placed directly onto the air fryer basket. Once the fish is cooked the skill will peel off easily.

Nutrition Facts

Air Fryer Salmon

Amount Per Serving

Calories 400
Calories from Fat 324

% Daily Value*

Fat 36g55%

Saturated Fat 5g31%

Polyunsaturated Fat 4g

Monounsaturated Fat 25g

Cholesterol 1mg0%

Sodium 1190mg52%

Potassium 676mg19%

Carbohydrates 24g8%

Fiber 9g38%

Sugar 11g12%

Protein 3g6%

Vitamin A 1044IU21%

Vitamin C 40mg48%

Calcium 47mg5%

Iron 1mg6%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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