Brown Sugar Soy Sauce Salmon

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This tender brown sugar soy sauce salmon is baked in the oven with a delicious sweet and tangy sauce for a dinner that’s impressive to serve to guests. enjoy slices of fresh salmon drizzled with a simple sauce made from just a few ingredients. You’ll treasure every tender bite.

If you love easy fish dinners like sweet and sour pineapple fish and salmon loaf that won’t break the bank, this salmon recipe is sure to impress.

Brown sugar soy sauce salmon in a white baking dish with sauce.

Salmon with Soy Sauce and Brown Sugar

This recipe for tender flaky salmon covered in a delicious sweet and tangy sauce is irresistibly delicious and so easy to make. Salmon that’s wrapped in foil and baked in the oven ensures it’s perfectly cooked without drying it out. The sauce is drizzled overtop to create a greater depth of flavor so that every bite is mouthwatering.

The best part of this recipe, just like our sweet and sour chicken legs is that the sauce can also be used on sides like rice or quinoa.

Recipe ingredients including a raw salmon fillet, bowl with butter, bowls with soy sauce, brown sugar. lemon, garlic, salt and pepper.

Recipe Ingredients You’ll Need

The secret to the perfect salmon is in choosing a fresh salmon fillet that has even thickness. The best-baked salmon needs to sit at room temperature and then be baked with just a few simple ingredients that won’t overpower the fish. Below you’ll find details on the ingredients you need for this easy recipe:

  • Salmon: This recipe works well with a large salmon fillet that is approximately 1 1/2 to 2 lbs. Choose a salmon fillet that looks fresh, is bright pink in color, and has an even thickness throughout.
  • Soy Sauce: Soy sauce is naturally salty tasting, so there’s no need to add more salt to the sauce. This pairs perfectly with brown sugar to create that sweet and salty flavor.
  • Brown Sugar: Brown sugar will sweeten and caramelize the fish while baking.
  • Butter: Helps to keep the fish moist and adds flavor. I like to use salted butter, but unsalted butter will also work. If you don’t want to use butter, you can replace it with olive oil.
  • Lemon Juice: The acidity from lemon helps to bring out extra flavor in fish.
  • Olive Oil: A little bit of olive oil brushed onto the fillet will help to keep it moist and tender while baking.
  • Salt and Pepper: Used to season the fish before the sauce. Add as much or as little as you’d like.

Pro Tip: Let the salmon sit at room temperature for 10-20 minutes before cooking. This will ensure the salmon cooks quicker and more evenly.

Variations

Feel free to change up the sauce ingredients for a different flavor. This recipe can also be made with any style of fish. Here are a few ideas:

  • Lemon – Drizzle freshly squeezed lemon juice onto the baked salmon for added flavor. Lemon zest can also be added to the sauce for a more citrus taste.
  • Add Spice – Add 1 or 2 tsp of dijon mustard for a spicier kick. A pinch of cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes will also work well. Or you can drizzle a bit of hot sauce once everything is baked.
  • Different Fish – This recipe can also be used with any white fish including cod, halibut, and tilapia.
Four images showing steps to make recipe. First is raw salmon fillet. Second is brown sauce in a white pot. Third is raw salmon covered with brown sauce in a white dish. Fourth is baked salmon in sauce in the baking dish.

How To Make Brown Sugar Soy Sauce Salmon

This tender and fresh salmon recipe is so easy to make! Just season the salmon, mix the sauce then drizzle on top, and bake! Here’s an overview with full instructions at the bottom of this post:

  1. Prep – Preheat the oven to 375°F and lightly coat a 9×13 baking dish with olive oil.
  2. Season – Add the salmon to the baking dish with the skin side facing down. Brush the top of the fillet with a bit of olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Make Sauce – Add the soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic, lemon juice, and salted butter to a small pot over medium-high heat. Heat through until the butter is melted and the sugar is dissolved, stirring frequently.
  4. Add To Fish – Pour the sauce overtop of the fish in the baking dish. Cover with aluminum foil and bake until the fish is fully cooked. See baking times below.
  5. Serve – Add the salmon fillet to a serving plate and drizzle the sauce overtop. Use extra sauce to drizzle on sides like rice, pasta, mashed potatoes or roasted vegetables.

Pro Tip: The fish will continue to cook once you remove it from the oven, so it’s better to undercook just slightly then to overcook. You can check it again after a few minutes.

How Long To Cook Salmon

The cooking time for salmon will vary depending on the thickness of the fillet. Measure the thickest part of your salmon. It will take approximately 10 minutes for every 1″ of thickness. The salmon displayed in this recipe was about 2″ thick and took about 23 minutes to bake. This time will vary so it’s best to check on it early to avoid overcooking.

Salmon Cooking Times:

TemperatureThicknessTime (covered with foil)
375°F1″approx 10-12 minutes
375°F1 1/2 “approx 15-17 minutes
375°F2″approx 20-22 minutes
375°F2 1/2″approx 25 minutes

How do I know when salmon is cooked?

Baked salmon will flake easily with a fork. Just place the fork in the salmon and try to remove a piece. If it flakes off easily, then it’s cooked. You can also use a meat thermometer to check the temperature. It should reach 145F internally.

What To Serve This Salmon With

This salmon pairs easily with most side dishes. Try roasted vegetables, pasta or cooked grains. Leftovers taste great added to salads. Here’s a few ideas to try:

Close up of baked salmon with soy sauce brown sugar topping, sliced green onions and lemon slices.

How To Store

Leftover salmon is great for adding to a variety of recipes. Serve on top of pasta dishes or in a healthy mason jar salad for lunch.

  • Refrigerate – Store the salmon in an airtight container, or tightly wrapped in plastic for 3-4 days.
  • Reheating – Salmon can be reheated in the microwave, in the oven or pan-fried to reheat. Be careful not to heat it too long as it can overcook the salmon.
  • Serve Cold – Leftover cooked salmon can also be served cold. This is especially great for when serving in salads.

Common Questions

How do you make salmon taste better?

Adding a sauce or glaze will definitely chang the flavor of salmon. Adding this sauce or our lemon dill sauce is an easy way to mask that flavor for anyone who doesn’t enjoy the natural fish taste.

Should I pan-fry or bake salmon?

Baking is an easier way to ensure perfectly cooked salmon. Frying salmon can easily overcook the fish but will also produce crispy skin.

How long to bake salmon in the oven?

Baking time will depend on the thickness of the salmon fillet. A good rule of thumb is to measure your fish at the thickest part. You’ll need about 10 minutes of cooking time for each inch. For thin fillets start checking a thin fillet after 10 minutes. Thicker fillets may take up to 20-25 minutes.

Close up of salmon with flaked edges and a fork.

We know you’re going to love making this perfect baked salmon recipe all year long. Baked salmon is perfect for easy healthy weeknight dinners or for serving to guests. Leftovers always make a great lunch. You can’t go wrong here!

More Salmon Recipes To Try

If you loved this salmon recipe, then here are more delicious salmon ideas to try:

Soy sauce brown sugar salmon on a plate with lemon slices and chopped green onion.

Brown Sugar Soy Sauce Salmon

This recipe for tender flaky salmon covered in a delicious sweet and tangy sauce is irresistibly delicious and so easy to make.
Print Pin Recipe
Prep Time: 12 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 32 minutes
Servings: 6 servings

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Let the salmon sit ar room temperature 10-15 minutes. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
    Add the salmon to a large dish or baking sheet skin side facing down. Brush the top with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
    Two images, first is raw salmon fillet. second is salmon and bowl with brush in a white baking dish.
  • Add the soy sauce, butter and brown sugar to a pot over medium high heat. Cook until the butter is melted and sugar has dissolved, about 2-3 minutes. Stir occassionally during the process to prevent sugar from burning.
    Two images of a white pot. First with brown liquid and a square of butter. Second with melted brown sugar soy sauce glaze.
  • Pour the sauce overtop of the salmon and cover the dish with foil.
    Two images: first is salmon covered in brown sauce in a baking dish. Second is foil covering a baking dish.
  • Bake 10-25 minutes (depending on size of salmon – see notes). Remove the foil and broil for the last 2-3 minutes if desired. This will help to carmelize and crispen the salmon (it's an optional step).
    Add salmon to a large serving plate. Sprinkle with fresh chopped green onion if desired. Serve and enjoy.
    Two images of baked salmon in brown sugar soy sauce glaze, one with green onion on top.

Recipe Notes:

Cooking Time: The cooking time for salmon will vary depending on the thickness of the fillet. Measure the thickest part of your salmon. It will take approximately 10 minutes for every 1″ of thickness. The salmon displayed in this recipe was about 2″ thick and took about 23 minutes to bake. This time will vary so it’s best to check on it early to avoid overcooking.

Nutrition

Calories: 315kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 83mg | Sodium: 1390mg | Potassium: 641mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 283IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 40mg | Iron: 2mg
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