Instant Pot Salmon Recipe
- 2 (5- to 7-ounce) fresh or frozen salmon fillets, 1 inch thick in the thickest part (can be skin on or off)
- 1 cup water
- 1/4 teaspoon table salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- optional nonstick oil spray
- Stir all sauce ingredients together with a spoon in a small bowl until well-mixed. Set aside at room temperature to let the flavors develop while you prepare the salmon.
Pour water into the pressure cooker pot (I use a 6-quart Instant Pot). Place a steam rack inside the pot; I use the trivet that came with my Instant Pot, with its handles resting on the sides of the pot. If you are using skin-off salmon, spray the trivet with a nonstick oil spray to help release the salmon after cooking; this is usually not necessary for skin-on salmon which releases easily.
- Place salmon fillets side-by-side on top of the trivet; if skin-on, place them skin side facing down. Evenly season the tops of fillets with salt and pepper.
- Secure and seal the lid; make sure the knob is not set to venting. Select the steam mode at high pressure. For Fresh Salmon: Set the cooking time to 3 minutes. For Frozen Salmon: Set the cooking time to 8 minutes.
- After pressure cooking (as soon as the timer beeps), immediately do a quick pressure release to stop the cooking process to avoid overcooking the fish.
- Uncover, and use a spatula and/or tongs to carefully transfer the salmon to serving plates. Cooked salmon is soft and flaky, and may fall apart or stick to the trivet if you’re not careful.
- Give the chili lime sauce a quick stir, and spoon it over salmon fillets. Serve immediately while warm, since the salmon will cool quickly.
|Makes 2 Servings|
|Amount Per Serving (1 fillet with sauce):|
|Total Fat 18g||28%|
|Saturated Fat 4g||22%|
|Net Carb 2.5g|
|Total Carb 3g||1%|
|Dietary Fiber 0.5g||1%|
❗️ Tips For Success
- Select salmon cut from the center rather than from the tail. This is important because you’ll have more evenly sized fillets, which will cook uniformly. Also, the pressure cooking time listed in the recipe is designed for center-cut fillets, which are about 1 inch thick in the thickest part, whereas the tail is much thinner. If you use a tail piece, you may have trouble fitting both on the trivet without overlapping each other.
- Keep the skin on the salmon because it’ll make it easier to transfer the cooked salmon from the Instant Pot onto serving plates; the skin helps hold the flaky salmon together. It will also make the salmon less likely to stick to the trivet. Don’t worry about removing the skin later — once cooked, the skin falls off effortlessly.
- Thawed salmon is better than frozen. I personally prefer salmon cooked from fresh rather than from frozen; it yields a better texture and tenderness. If you have the time, I recommend defrosting your frozen salmon overnight in the refrigerator, rather than cooking directly from frozen.
- Pat dry your fresh herbs after rinsing. The chili lime sauce uses fresh cilantro leaves that are finely chopped. After rinsing the cilantro and pulling off the leaves, thoroughly pat them dry with paper towels. This makes it a lot easier to quickly chop them into fine pieces.
- Familiarize yourself with basic Instant Pot functions. This recipe uses the steam setting and the quick release method for pressure release, which means you turn the knob from sealing to venting. This step needs to be performed immediately after pressure cooking to avoid overcooking the salmon.
🔔 Why You Should Make This
- Simple & No Fuss. Compared to pan-seared salmon, you don’t need to use a thermometer to check if it’s done, or have to watch over it while it’s cooking. A pressure cooker is a hands-off experience, which is great for beginners learning to cook seafood. This is a basic formula that anyone can follow.
- Perfectly Cooked Every Time. One of my favorite aspects of using a pressure cooker is its consistency and predictability, which can’t be said for other cooking methods that require more trial-and-error. The salmon comes out perfectly cooked every time.
- Minimal Cleanup. The only items to clean up are the pressure cooker’s stainless steel insert and trivet. Steaming leaves behind little residue, so they’re a breeze to clean, especially compared to cleaning up oil splatters when preparing pan-seared salmon.