Salmon is a flavorful fish that is full of heart-healthy fat and other good-for-you nutrients. It’s also a high-protein food that is easy to make and can be combined with many different flavors. This makes it the perfect food for meal prepping. Wondering how to make salmon part of your meal prep rotation? Here are answers to common questions about meal prepping with salmon, as well as salmon meal prep recipes the whole family is sure to love.
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What are the health benefits of salmon?
One of the main reasons that meal prepping salmon is so popular is that it is loaded with healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Salmon has even been referred to as a superfood because of its abundance of good-for-you fat. Omega-3 fatty acids promote heart health by helping to reduce blood cholesterol levels and blood pressure. They may also lower the amount of inflammation in the body. In addition to improving heart health, omega-3 fatty acids may improve brain function, cell function, and mood.
Although most noted for its high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, salmon is also a good source of potassium, iron, vitamin B12, and vitamin D.
What are the benefits of meal prepping?
One of the best ways to ensure that you have tasty and healthy food ready to eat when you’re hungry is to meal prep. This involves setting aside time once each week, or every few days, to prepare meals or prep ingredients so that meals are easy to pull together. Meal prep has become so popular due to our increasingly busy lifestyles. It takes the hassle out of having to decide what to make for breakfast, lunch or dinner and then having to prepare a meal from scratch.
Not only does meal prepping save you time, but it’s a great way to help you eat healthier. When you have healthful food ready to grab, you’re less likely to eat food that’s not as good for you. Meal prepping lowers your reliance on fast food, take-out, convenience, and restaurant foods. That helps reduce the amount of calories, fat, and sodium in your diet and can also save you loads of money.
Why is salmon good for meal prep?
Salmon is a healthy source of protein that is ideal for meal prepping. It is easy to prepare and goes well with many different flavors, so you won’t get bored of eating the same thing over and over. Meal prep recipes with salmon can be refrigerated for 4 to 5 days or they can be frozen if you need them to last longer. Salmon can easily be reheated and also tastes good cold.
What are some essential tools needed for salmon meal prep?
When it comes to needed tools to meal prep salmon, you likely already have everything in your kitchen. Here are a few basics you’ll need to get the job done:
- To prep – All you’ll need is a knife and cutting board to cut the salmon into serving sizes or bite-size pieces. In some cases, the salmon you buy at the store will already be portioned out so you won’t even need to cut it yourself.
- To cook – There are many ways you can cook salmon. Some popular options include grilling, air frying, baking, broiling, pan searing, or poaching. You won’t need any special equipment to cook salmon to perfection.
- To store – To store salmon once prepped, it is suggested you put it in airtight meal prep containers. These can be glass or plastic and can be any size that’s suited to your meal prepping needs.
What are some basic salmon meal prep techniques?
When it comes to choosing the best salmon for meal prep, use high-quality fish for the best taste. Salmon can be bought fresh or frozen, wild-caught or farm-raised, and there are many different varieties to choose from. You may see sockeye, coho, chinook, or other types of salmon in the store. Whatever salmon you prefer, choose fish with a mild fresh smell and firm flesh that springs back when you press on it. Salmon should not smell fishy or have an ammonia-like smell. You can also buy canned salmon, which may be appropriate for some recipes. Smoked salmon is another option, although you will use this type of salmon differently than you would a fresh or frozen filet.
Depending on the salmon recipe you are following, there are plenty of ways to season the fish. Salmon is a hearty fish that holds up well to a variety of different marinades. It can handle dry seasonings like a champ, too. Whether you’re looking for a taste that is light and fresh or one that packs a bit of a punch, salmon pairs nicely with almost all flavors.
There’s no shortage of ways you can cook salmon for meal prep either. Grilled salmon is classic and can easily be reheated when you’re ready to eat it. Baking or broiling will also leave you with a flavorful piece of fish that can be enjoyed right out of the oven or at a later date. Poaching salmon leaves the fish moist and is a great option if you plan on incorporating salmon into salads or sandwiches. Air frying has become a popular way to cook salmon, leaving the inside tender while the exterior has a bit of a crisp.
Ready to get started on meal prepping salmon? Here are some salmon recipes to try.
Salmon Meal Prep Ideas for Brunch and Lunch
Salmon is not only a popular dinner staple, but it’s a healthy option for breakfast, brunch, and lunch, too. Start your day with flavorful protein-packed smoked salmon or enjoy a light midday meal of salmon in salads, sandwiches, or even tacos.
Salmon Tacos with Red Cabbage Slaw – Kick your favorite fish taco recipe up a notch by using salmon as the main ingredient. This recipe combines an interesting mix of coffee, brown sugar, cumin, cilantro, and chili powder to flavor the fish. Once cooked, top salmon with cabbage, cilantro, and a zesty yogurt sauce. For meal prep, keep the ingredients stored separately and assemble the tacos when you’re ready to eat.
Salmon Meal Prep Ideas for Dinner
Whether you’re looking for a satisfying but quick weekday meal or a special date night dish, add salmon to the menu. This versatile fish can be dressed up or down depending on your mood. You can make it sweet or spicy and pair it with healthy grains, vegetables, fruit, and more. The sky is the limit when it comes to the flavor combinations you can achieve when salmon is what’s for dinner.
Salmon with Salsa Verde – In this easy salmon meal prep dish, salmon fillets sit atop a homemade salsa verde that’s made in a blender. The tasty sauce goes well with other types of protein and veggies, so you may want to make a double batch and use it in other meal prep dishes throughout the week.
More FAQs About Salmon Meal Prep
Have more questions about how to meal prep with salmon? Read on for answers to some frequently asked questions.
How do I know if the salmon is fresh?
When buying salmon, look for vibrant, moist flesh and a fresh but mild ocean-like scent. Avoid fish with a strong fishy odor or dull, discolored flesh.
Can I use frozen salmon for meal prep?
It’s easy to use previously frozen salmon in meal prep recipes. Just thaw it in the refrigerator before cooking for the best results.
Should I marinate salmon overnight for better flavor?
Marinating salmon enhances its flavor. Use a mixture of herbs, spices, and acids like lemon juice for a tasty marinade. It is best, however, to only marinate salmon for a couple of hours rather than overnight. Otherwise, the marinade may make the fish mushy, especially if it is acidic.
Are there any alternatives to baking and grilling for cooking salmon?
There are so many ways to cook salmon, and each results in unique flavors and textures. In addition to baking and grilling, you can pan-sear, poach, broil, or air-fry salmon.
Can I meal prep salmon for the entire week?
There’s no reason not to meal prep salmon for all or most of the week. It can be combined with different flavors and side dishes so you don’t get bored of eating the same thing day after day. As long as you store it properly, you’ll have a tasty and healthy meal on hand when you’re hungry.
What is the best way to store cooked salmon?
If you’re meal prepping salmon, you’ll want to keep it in the refrigerator so it’s ready to grab when you need it. As long as it is stored in airtight containers, it should last about 4 to 5 days.
Can I freeze salmon meals?
If you don’t plan on eating your meal prepped salmon within a few days, it may be best to put it in the freezer. When stored in freezer-safe containers or bags, salmon can last for 2 to 3 months in the freezer.
Are there any special considerations when reheating salmon?
When reheating salmon, use methods like microwaving at a low power setting or warming it in the oven on low heat to avoid overcooking. This helps maintain the salmon's texture and flavor. If the salmon is frozen, thaw before reheating for best results.
What sides pair well with salmon in meal prep?
For a healthy meal, pair salmon with whole grains and/or vegetables. Here are some side dish recipe suggestions to round out your meal:
Zucchini Quinoa Pilaf – This refreshing side dish pairs the fresh taste of zucchini, parsley, mint, and tarragon with lemon, olive oil, and quinoa. It nicely balances the richness of salmon, creating the perfect duo.
The versatility of salmon can’t be beaten for meal prep. It is easy to prepare and pairs well with a wide variety of flavors. It also holds up well to store in the fridge or freezer. And it’s one of the healthiest sources of protein you can eat. Give one of these salmon meal prep recipes a try or check out more salmon recipes.