Much like other staples in our household, shredded chicken, Big F*ckin’ Salads, and hard cooked eggs, this 6-Minute Crispy Skin Cast Iron Salmon is a weekly mainstay! Here’s the best part, this Crispy Skin Cast Iron Salmon is ready in six minutes! You heard me – SIX!
If you dare tell me that you don’t have time to make dinner, we will fully get into it. I can promise you that. With delicious, nutrient-dense meals like this, ready in under 10 minutes, there are literally NO excuses. Grab the cast iron skillet, have some high quality, sustainably caught, skin-on salmon on hand, every week, choose some nice organic greens or another fiber-loaded green veggie and BOOM, in under 10 minutes you’ve got dinner. Easy.
Best part, wild caught salmon is an incredible source of quality omega-3 fatty acids. In our household we shoot to eat quality salmon or other omega-3 rich fatty fish, at least 3 times a week, I notice this makes a really big difference in my health, my skin looks better when I am on top of my omega-3 fats and I just feel better. And dang, it is truly so delicious!
As always, I am gonna preach what I always teach and that is quality matters. Seek out a sustainably fished, wild caught salmon. Not only is it better for your health, it’s better for the environment and the earth! Don’t skimp here. And the skin, lots of extra nutrients in there, so not only is it tasty AF, it’s giving you some good stuff, too.
Things I want you to know about my Crispy Skin Cast Iron Salmon:
- It’s basically the only way to eat salmon!
- If you’ve got the time, let the salmon filets rest in the fridge, uncovered, skin side up, to dry out the skin. 15 to 30 minutes ahead of cooking, an hour if you’ve got it. This makes a world of difference. Trust!
- Do not overcook your salmon, dry salmon sucks.
- Cast iron is where it’s at. The cast iron gets hot and stays hot, evenly. I like to turn the heat off for those last couple of minutes of cooking on the other side, so it’s not crazy hot, but there’s no need to move the pan to the oven or broiler.
- Serve your salmon, crispy skin side up. If you take it out of the pan and serve skin side down, you broke it, the skin will lose that amazing crisp.
6-Minute Crispy Skin Cast Iron Salmon
- 1-2 tablespoons ghee, avocado oil, olive oil, butter or other cooking fat*
- Two 6 to 8-ounce, skin-on wild-caught salmon fillets*
- Sea salt, I like the flakey stuff and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Thoroughly pat dry your salmon fillets with paper towels. Place on a plate, skin side up, uncovered and place into the refrigerator for 30 minutes to an hour, this allows the skin to dry out and to maximize skin crispiness.
- Just before you are ready to cook the salmon, remove from the fridge, give it another little pat with the paper towels.
- Season the skin side of the fish with sea salt and black pepper.
- Heat your oil or fat in a cast iron skillet over medium-high, get nice and hot and make sure the oil is shimmering. Once the pan is hot, reduce the heat to medium, carefully place the salmon into the pan skin side down. Season the non-skin side with sea salt and black pepper. Immediately press down each filet with a flat metal spatula to keep the sides from curling up. Hold for just a few seconds.
- Cook for 4 minutes, skin side down. I like to lift up the filets in the last minute or so, to let some of the oil run underneath it, to maximize crispiness.
- After 4 minutes, turn off the heat, flip over the filets and let them cook another 2 minutes on the other side until you reach your desired level of doneness. Do not overcook! *if your salmon filets are super thick, it may take another minute or two.
- Transfer the filets, skin side up to a plate for serving, season with more salt and pepper and any flavors you want, fresh herbs, lemon juice, garlic, etc. Enjoy immediately with a side of greens or on top of a Big F*ckin Salad.
We've been loving sockeye salmon lately, as it's in season. Any variety of skin-on salmon will work.
Photographed here are sock-eye salmon, center cut filets, any filet cuts will work in this method.
If your skin is sticking to the pan around 4 minutes, it may not be quite ready to flip yet, give it another minute.
If you want to check the temperature of your salmon: cook until salmon registers 110°F (43°C) in the very center for rare, 120°F (49°C) for medium-rare, or 130°F (54°C) for medium.