Baked Lemon Pepper Salmon — Juicy baked salmon at home in 20 minutes that’s so EASY and tastes BETTER than from a fancy restaurant!! The lemons, lemon pepper, and Dijon add so much rich FLAVOR to this FOOLPROOF sheet pan salmon!!
Oven Baked Lemon Pepper Salmon Recipe
This sheet pan baked salmon recipe is juicy, tender, and full of rich lemon flavor from a trifecta of lemon: lemons nestled underneath, a lemon juice-Dijon mixture spread on top, and a generous sprinkling of lemon pepper.
Fish, especially salmon, pairs so perfectly with lemon and this recipe is no exception.
In the final moments before it gets broiled, it’s drizzled with a touch of honey to balance the tartness of the lemon. The Dijon adds a luxurious note that makes this salmon taste restaurant worthy.
Lemon Pepper Salmon Ingredients
Never tried lemon pepper on salmon before? You’re going to love this recipe!
For this juicy lemon-infused salmon recipe, you just need a handful of common ingredients:
- Skin-on salmon fillet
- Olive oil
- Whole lemon + lemon juice
- Dijon mustard
- Kosher salt
- Lemon pepper
- Fresh parsley
How to Make Lemon Pepper Salmon
The interior of this lemon pepper salmon is so tender and juicy while the edges have the slightest bit of crispiness which is such perfect contrast. Here’s how the sheet pan salmon is made:
- First, line your baking sheet with foil. It’s not imperative but I strongly recommend it for easier cleanup. Fold up the edges up a bit so the the juices don’t run off.
- Place the salmon on the baking sheet, nestle the lemon slices underneath, and drizzle with olive oil.
- In a small bowl, stir together the lemon juice and Dijon mustard, and spoon it over the salmon.
- Season the salmon generously with salt and that flavorful lemon pepper.
- Bake the salmon for about 12 to 15 minutes, or until nearly done.
- Switch your oven over to broiler mode, drizzle the salmon with a touch of honey, and let the broiler crisp up the top and edges of the salmon.
Note that baking time can vary dramatically based on the thickness of the salmon. Although it was large in it’s footprint and weight (2 pounds), this particular piece of salmon was on the thinner side and was ready to be broiled at 13 minutes.
What to Serve with the Salmon
Serve this baked lemon pepper salmon with steamed or roasted broccoli, a salad, or even a simple buttered pasta for a full meal!
How to Tell When Baked Salmon Is Done
For larger filets, I recommend baking for 12 to 15 minutes or until salmon looks almost done, but not quite — provided you’re going to hit it with the broiler momentarily.
This may be hard to distinguish for a beginning cook, and sauces obscure the top surface of the fish, but the interior of the salmon will be light pink and opaque when done.
It will flake easily with a fork when it’s done.
Because all pieces of salmon vary in their thickness, cooking times will vary. Thick pieces will require a bit more time, thin and long pieces will need less.
If in doubt, I recommend pulling it when you first think it’s done and flaking it with a fork and if it’s still a little underdone, you can always return it to the oven. You can’t undo things if you accidentally overcook it and dry or overcooked fish is so unappetizing.
Do I Have the Broil the Lemon Pepper Salmon?
No, just note that the edges of the salmon won’t be as crispy if you don’t broil it.
If you’re not broiling it, make sure the salmon is cooked through when you’re baking it (obviously — but I am just pointing this out, you would be surprised the questions I get).
Can I Make This With Smaller Pieces of Salmon?
Yes, but the bake times will vary depending on the dimensions of your salmon, as well as how thick your salmon fillets are.
If you use individual pieces of salmon instead of one large salmon fillet, my best advice is to cook the salmon until it’s done. I’d start checking by 8 to 10 minutes, and keep an eye on it from there.
Tips for Broiling the Lemon Pepper Salmon
Anytime you’re broiling something you should keep a very close eye on your food because it can burn very quickly under the broiler.
Remember that you don’t have to broil on the top rack (you can use the second rack), and while it will take slightly longer, there’s less chance of it burning.
Regardless, don’t walk away while the broiler is on. Watch your salmon like a hawk and be ready to take it out at a moment’s notice.
Pin This Recipe
- 2 pound skin-on salmon fillet
- 2 lemons, sliced into thin rounds
- 3 to 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 3 rounded tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground lemon pepper, or to taste
- 2 to 3 tablespoons honey
- fresh parsley, optional for garnishing
- Preheat oven to 375F (use convection if you have it), line a baking sheet with aluminum foil for easier cleanup (highly recommended), place the salmon skin-side down on the baking sheet, and nestle the lemon slices underneath it, evenly spaced.
- Evenly drizzle with olive oil; set aside.
- To a small bowl, add the lemon juice, Dijon, stir to combine, then slowly spoon the mixture over the salmon. Evenly season with salt and lemon pepper.
- Bake at 375F for about 12 to 15 minutes, or until salmon is nearly done.
- Remove the baking sheet from the oven, evenly drizzle the salmon with honey, turn broiler to High, and broil for 3 to 5 minutes to finish cooking.
- Alternatively, if you're not comfortable broiling, simply continue baking the salmon for a few extra minutes, or until done; don't overcook or the salmon will be dry and the broccoli will burn.
- Optionally garnish with parsley and serve immediately.
Note - Keep a very watchful eye on the salmon if you broil it because the honey in the sauce will be prone to burning and it can go from fine looking to burnt in less than 1 minute so don't leave the kitchen and watch it the whole time.
Checking for doneness: Read blog post for suggestions about how to know when salmon is done. All pieces vary in their thickness and therefore all cooking times will vary. You need to be the judge of when it's done and not go by solely what the clock says.
Storage: Salmon is best fresh but will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 329Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 16gCholesterol: 71mgSodium: 600mgCarbohydrates: 9gFiber: 1gSugar: 7gProtein: 26g
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