This grilled honey glazed salmon recipe is packed with flavor and makes an easy impressive main dish. Don’t have a grill? It’s easy to broil too!
HOW DO YOU MAKE HONEY GLAZE FOR BAKED SALMON?
A friend of mine texted the other day and asked, “How do you make honey glaze for baked salmon?” She had heard about this amazing thing called honey glazed salmon and wanted to try it. Let’s start by talking about what a salmon glaze is.
WHAT IS SALMON GLAZE?
When it comes to food, a glaze is a shiny coating on the food. That means salmon glaze is simply salmon that is coated in a shiny syrup. You need a sugary syrup to get that shiny glazed coating.
Some people call this honey soy glazed salmon, or honey brown sugar glazed salmon. It’s basically a homemade teriyaki glaze for salmon, which I call honey glazed salmon because the honey gives the glaze that distinctive flavor and color.
HOW DO YOU MAKE A SALMON GLAZE?
- In a medium saucepan, mix honey, brown sugar, soy sauce, pineapple juice, lemon juice, white vinegar, olive oil, black pepper, cayenne pepper, paprika, garlic powder, and salt. (Get the exact amounts in the printable recipe)
- Heat over medium low, stirring occasionally, until the sauce begins to bubble.
- Reduce heat to low and simmer (uncovered) for 15 minutes until thickened and syrupy. Watch to make sure it does not boil over or burn!
- Pour over cooked salmon fillet for the perfect honey glazed salmon.
Love salmon? Check out our LEMON PEPPER SALMON RECIPE
TROUBLESHOOTING SALMON GLAZE
If you have never made a glaze before, there’s no need to feel intimidated. It can be a little tricky, so here are some common issues and how to avoid them or fix them.
- SALMON GLAZE BOILING OVER
- A few things can keep your glaze from boiling over. One is having a bigger pot you simmer the glaze in. I use a medium saucepan, but you could use a large one or even a small stock pot.
- The other option is to turn your burner down to low. It may take a little longer than 15 minutes of simmering to get as thick as you want it. But you don’t have to clean up a sticky mess on your stove before you enjoy your honey glazed salmon.
- But the easiest way to keep the salmon glaze from boiling over is simply to keep an eye on the honey glaze. If your glaze starts bubbling really hard and expanding, pull the pan off the burner and turn the temperature down a little. Then put the pan back on the burner.
- You want the sauce to be at a gentle boil, so if it is sputtering or boiling hard, turn the burner down a bit.
- HONEY SALMON GLAZE NOT THICKENING UP
- If it seems like your salmon glaze isn’t thickening, you may be tempted to turn the heat up. DON’T DO IT! Sugar syrups and glazes can be deceptive.
- The volume of the bubbling syrup is less than it appears.
- After 15 minutes, pull the pan off of the burner and let it stop bubbling. Use a spoon to stir the sauce for a minute or so. The sauce should be like molasses, and start to coat the spoon.
- As the sauce cools, it will thicken even more. When you pour it over your salmon, it will turn into a nice glaze that coats the salmon.
- HONEY SALMON GLAZE TOO THICK
- I once took my glaze off the burner and started stirring, only to discover it reduced far more than I thought. Soon it turned so thick that I had made a soy honey caramel. It was actually quite tasty, but not good for making honey glazed salmon.
- If your sauce is too thick, stir in some very hot water about a tablespoon at a time. This will thin the sauce until you get a honey salmon glaze that’s easy to pour.
HOW TO GRILL SALMON
My favorite way to cook honey glazed salmon is on the grill. The smokiness adds another degree of complexity to the flavor of the glazed salmon.
PREHEAT YOUR GRILL
Start by preheating your grill to medium. If using a gas grill, simply turn it to medium heat and leave the lid closed. The grill should be ready in 5 minutes.
For a charcoal grill, I like to heat the coals in a charcoal chimney. Stuff some newspaper loosely inside the bottom of the charcoal chimney and pour coals on top of it. Fill it to the top with your charcoal.
Take the grate off of the grill, and place the chimney inside. Light the newspaper, and let the coals sit there for 10 minutes until they are covered in ash. This is a good time to prep the glaze for your honey glazed salmon.
Use protective gloves or hot pads to grab the charcoal chimney by the handles and dump the coals into the grill. You grill grate should still be off of the grill at this point. You don’t want to dump the coals on top of it!
Place the grate back on the grill. Make sure to keep your vents in the lid slightly open so the fire gets the oxygen it needs while you grill your honey glazed salmon.
Love to grill? Try our ROMAINE HEARTS GRILLED CHICKEN CAESAR SALAD recipe!
HOW TO KEEP SALMON FROM STICKING TO THE GRILL
Whether using a gas grill or a charcoal grill, sticking can be an issue, especially with a delicate protein like fish.
So how do you keep salmon from sticking to the grill?
The first key is a clean grill grate. Dirty grates cause food to stick. It’s important to clean your grill grates right after cooking. I also give them a quick once over before heating the grill to make sure they are clean.
Once the grill is hot, I soak a paper towel in vegetable oil or avocado oil and use tongs to rub oil all over the areas of the grate I will be using. Do this right before you’re ready to put your salmon on.
You should also put oil on your salmon before grilling to help prevent sticking.
If you’re still concerned about your honey glazed salmon sticking to the grill, just grill it skin side down the whole time. You won’t get the grill marks, but if anything sticks it will be the salmon skin and not the meat.
HOW TO MAKE HONEY GLAZED SALMON
- Start by preheating your grill or broiler. (see instructions above for grilling)
- Mix your honey glaze on the stove and let it simmer for 15 minutes. (get the full instructions in the printable recipe)
- Trim 2 pounds of skin on salmon into 4 salmon fillets. Make sure your fillets have an even thickness by trimming off any super thin parts. Otherwise parts of your honey glazed salmon will be dry and overcooked. I HATE wasting good salmon!
- Rub each fillet with a bit of avocado oil and sprinkle lightly with salt.
- Place on the grill skin side up for 4 minutes, then flip and grill skin side down for 4 minutes. If you’re worried about the salmon sticking, just grill skin side down for 8 minutes instead of flipping.
- Remove the salmon to a plate and tent with foil for a few minutes.
- Pour the honey glaze over the salmon and serve!
HOW TO BROIL HONEY GLAZED SALMON IN THE OVEN
If, like my friend who called, you don’t have a grill, you can still make honey glazed salmon in the oven.
- Follow the instructions above, preheating your oven to broil before you start the marinade.
- Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.
- Place the seasoned salmon on the baking sheet, skin side down.
- Broil salmon in the oven for 8 minutes.
- Remove salmon to a plate and tent with foil.
- Pour your honey salmon glaze over once the glaze is done cooking.
Did you know you can COOK WHOLE SALMON IN THE OVEN? Check out our easy recipe!
PIN TO SAVE HONEY GLAZED SALMON FOR LATER
Don’t lose the recipe! Just pin the recipe to save it for later. Once you’ve made honey glazed salmon at home, snap a picture and leave it in the comments of the pin. We love seeing what you’ve cooked!
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