What herbs go with salmon? Salmon is one of the most widely enjoyed fish in the world. With its stunning colour, buttery texture, and versatile flavor, you can enjoy salmon with many herbs and seasonings. Salmon is often prepared as a fillet or “salmon steak”. Most cooks prefer a strong flavor on the salmon, and use herbs to complement the fish’s natural flavor.
Because salmon migrate huge distances in their lifetime, many cultures around the world prepare salmon differently. The choice of herbs also depends on the cooking methods. So, what herbs go with salmon? Here are ten of the best herbs to accompany your next salmon dish.
10 Best Herbs for salmon
|Herb||Flavor and Common Uses|
|Parsley||A great flavoring for baked salmon, pan-seared salmon or seafood sauces. It has a bright and fresh flavor.|
|Tarragon||Delicate texture. Anise flavor. Commonly used for salmon recipes with sauces.|
|Fennel||Sweet anise flavor. Fresh and bright taste. Great for baked salmon recipes.|
|Dill||Fresh flavor. Perfect for salmon recipes with butter sauce.|
|Coriander leaves||Fresh, clean flavor. It pairs with lime juice really well. Use for lime butter baked salmon or honey garlic lime salmon.|
|Rosemary||Strong pine aroma and flavor. A great flavoring for grilled salmon.|
|Thyme||Earthy aroma. Use in salmon soup and stews recipes .|
|Bay leaves||Earthy and woody aroma. Great for salmon risotto, soups or stews.|
|Basil||Pungent, licorice flavor. Great for pesto salmon recipes or to infuse butter (oil) for salmon dishes.|
|Sage||Musty flavor. Commonly used for stuffed salmon recipes or stews that call for salmon.|
Parsley has a fragrant, bright flavor. That makes it perfect for a firm, smooth seafood like salmon. This herb is commonly used as a garnish, but can also lend its character to salmon. You can use fresh parsley to sprinkle over your cooked salmon.
You can also use the dried flakes such as Simply Organic Parsley Flakes to rub your salmon before cooking for a subtler taste. These are flat leaves from flowering parsley plants. They hold the aroma of parsley, with just a hint of bitterness. Parsley is not bitter like coffee, but similar to lemon zest.
Tarragon is often associated with French cooking. Its flavor is more reminiscent of anise or licorice than many other herbs. Because it has such a bold flavor, you’re always best to season your salmon to taste. It is not often used with savory dishes such as salmon, but in a small amount it will really liven up your salmon dish.
The Spice Hunter’s French Tarragon Leaves are organic and natural. They have no added preservatives. French tarragon is the highest quality you can get. You’ll know the difference as soon as you taste it.
Try it with Baked Salmon with Lemon Butter Cream Sauce.
Fennel seeds are very aromatic. The sweet, perfumed flavor is often used to accompany sweeter meats like pork, or to balance out mushroom dishes. You should apply fennel to your salmon fillet before cooking with a dry rub or by crushing the fennel with some olive oil. This will give the salmon a rich flavor, perfectly complementing the fish’s natural taste.
Fresh fennel is not great as a garnish as its flavor can be overpowering, but the dried seeds such as Simply Organic fennel seeds are perfect for seasoning in the pan. Their flavor is close to cooked fennel and they’re as close to fresh as you can get.
Use it as a dry rub for Garlic Butter Baked Salmon.
Dill has a much lighter, classically “herby” taste when compared to the brighter, more distinctive herbs like parsley or coriander. Because of this, it is perfect for those with sensitive palates. Dill is a popular herb for seafood because of this. Most seafood has a rich flavor all its own that you don’t want to obscure with seasoning. Dill works well with salmon, and even better with a little bit of lemon juice or, if you’re feeling bold, lemon zest.
You can use Lifehouse Freeze-Dried Dill rather than fresh if you want. If you do use dried dill you won’t need to adjust your amounts. These freeze-dried leaves hold their flavor so you can easily substitute one for the other.
We love to use dill for our Lemon Butter Garlic Salmon.
Coriander leaves (cilantro)
Coriander is also known as cilantro. Like parsley, it is a divisive herb due to its strong flavor and bold, fresh palate. Unlike parsley, coriander performs best with other flavors. Because it has a strong citrus-like taste, you can pair coriander with chili, lime, or even honey. You can baste your salmon in a mixture of coriander, lime juice, and honey, or even marinate it overnight.
If you don’t have fresh coriander available, McCormick Gourmet Coriander Seeds do just fine. In fact, if you crush them with your mortar and pestle, you will unlock even more of the lemony taste that people love about coriander.
Rosemary is a delicious aromatic herb often used in Southern Europe. In Greece, the smell of roasting rosemary on lamb is synonymous with the springtime. However, it isn’t just for red meats. Because of its heavenly aroma, rosemary pairs extremely well with seafood. Fresh rosemary leaves are long and oily, and they have a stronger flavour than the dried sprigs.
Rosemary is delicious either fresh or dry. Simply Organic Whole Rosemary Leaves maintain the aroma and strong, earthy flavor of fresh rosemary despite being dried. You can crush the leaves or use them in a mixture with other herbs and spices. They work best with some olive oil and a dash of lemon juice or vinegar.
Thyme has a strong herby taste that only intensifies with cooking. You’ll recognise the taste and aroma of thyme in any slow-cooked dish as it permeates everything else in the pot. You only need to use a small amount of thyme. This is because its flavour gets stronger the longer it cooks for.
Spice Islands Organic Thyme is a great substitute for fresh thyme. The dried thyme packs a serious punch, which is perfect if you don’t have access to the fresh stuff. You can use dried thyme as a dry rub on your salmon. You could mix it with coarse salt and season your pan before throwing the salmon in. This way, the thyme will flavour the seared part of your fillet and not the softer flesh inside.
That’s right, bay leaves can be a secret hero in your salmon dish. You shouldn’t use them when pan frying salmon. You should avoid bay leaves being the key ingredient in a marinade, unless you have a lot of other spices in the mix.
Dried, organic bay leaves like Spice Hunter Organic bay leaves will last for months in your kitchen. These perform best when you wrap your salmon in foil with some vegetables to lock the moisture in. Moisture carries the flavor of bay leaves, which add depth of flavor to any dish. They will add a woody, earthy flavor to your salmon dish, and you only need one or two to make a world of difference.
Try to add it when cooking Salmon Risotto next time.
Basil is such a versatile herb! Its thick, green leaves are juicy and aromatic, making it perfect for seafood. A small amount of basil will highlight the deep, rich flavor of your salmon.
Try mixing dried basil (like HQOexpress Organic Basil with lemon or lime and two or three cloves of garlic. This sticky mixture works well for just about any cooking method, but performs best in a high-heat pan or wok. Dried basil’s flavor isn’t as strong as the fresh stuff, so you should always season to suit your own tastes.
We hope this list inspires you and brings out the best in your next salmon dish. Salmon is delicious any way you cook it. You can fry it, bake it, or even wrap it in foil and throw it on the barbecue Australian-style. Try some of the herbs for salmon above and taste the difference!
It has velvety green leaves and a musty flavor. Sage is great for salmon recipes with brown butter sauce, stuffed salmon or salmon stews.
Spice Hunter organic sage doesn’t contain preservatives. The packaging is really good.
You need just a small amount for any salmon dish.
The Best Herbs For Salmon Fillets
Salmon is a fantastic fish that pairs really well with so many herbs. The best herbs to use on salmon are parsley, dill, basil, tarragon, sage, rosemary, bay leaves, thyme, cilantro and fennel.
Be creative, experiment with herbs to make delicious salmon fillet dishes!