~ This luxuriously creamy Salmon Pasta recipe can be ready in way under 30 minutes! Impressive enough to wow guests, yet quick enough for busy weeknights! Asian Salmon meets an easy Peanut Sauce in a nutrient-rich dinner you’ll make again and again! ~
This Recipe Is: • Ready in 30 Minutes or Less • Includes Make-Ahead Steps •
It was a problem …
After Gretchen and I photographed our Asian Salmon Burgers with Avocado and Hoisin Sauce (one of our top recipes last year!), I was left with an entire second batch of unused ingredients. They were beautiful. But what to do with them? (My favorite kind of problem!)
I stared down into the bowl …
… chunks of perfectly fresh salmon …
…. vibrant, green cilantro and scallions …
… all studded with Asian flavors and pretty bits of ginger and garlic.
I could’ve made another batch of salmon burgers. That would have been the obvious thing to do. We adore those burgers.
My mind wandered and my eyes glazed over. (I may have murmured, “Get in my BELLY!”) And suddenly, I had a vision of what else those ingredients could become … Mmmmmmm …
Asian Salmon Pasta!
I’m a sucker for peanut sauces, and as I dreamed of salmon pasta, I remembered a delicious peanut sauce I’d loved years ago from Cooking Light. Right!
With a few adjustments to the sauce from their April 2001 recipe for Fettuccine and Tofu with Finger-Licking Peanut Sauce (here), and after just a couple of moments in the pan … my vision for this pasta was a reality, and even better than I’d imagined!
This Asian Salmon Pasta is crazy good. I can’t say that loudly enough. CRAAAAAAZY GOOOOOOD!
Rich and creamy and super-flavorful. You really don’t even have to like salmon to love this. Seriously.
It’s a major hit at my house every time I make it, even with Amy (who’s definitely my “oh-no-it’s-fish” kiddo). Yeah – it’s that good. Even the skeptics are converted (ahem … Amy).
Plus, it’s loaded with whole grains, high-quality proteins, and hearty-healthy omega-3s. Which kind of turns “Get in my BELLY” into “Get in my ARTERIES” … but we just don’t say that, because that’s weird.
Love Salmon? This is your new, slap-me-a-high-five favorite. Trust me!
Not so sure about salmon (or have your own “oh-no-it’s-fish” kid)? Make this anyway. Only takes about 20 minutes, so it’s worth a shot, right? And after you make this the first time, there’ll be high-fives all around. Yep – you’ll be bookmarking this one! Perfect way to get the family eating more heart-healthy salmon!
It’s just that ridiculously good. And hey – good for you, too!
‘Cause that’s how we do things here at THK!
Get Your Family Loving Fish with Even More Delicious, Healthy Fish Recipes …
- 33 Easy Fish Recipes to Love All Year Long
- Easy Honey-Glazed Salmon
- Broiled Fish Matecumbe
- Caprese Grilled Fish
- And check out our awesome recipe boards on Pinterest. We’ve even got a board for you fish lovers …
- 1/2 cup nonfat milk
- 1/4 cup natural, creamy peanut butter
- 1/4 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce (such as Kikkoman Light)
- 3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
- 1 1/2 - 2 teaspoons chili garlic paste (see note)
- 16 ounces whole wheat spaghetti or linguine
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- 1 pound boneless, skinless salmon filets, cut into 1-inch chunks
- 1/3 cup thinly sliced green onions
- 4 teaspoons minced garlic
- 4 teaspoons minced, peeled fresh ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
Easy Peanut Sauce
Salmon and Pasta
- In a medium bowl, combine milk, peanut butter, soy sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, and chile paste, whisking until smooth. Set aside.
- Cook pasta according to package directions; drain.
- While pasta cooks, in a large nonstick skillet, briefly heat oil over medium-high heat. Add salmon, green onions, garlic, ginger, pepper, and salt, and cook for about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add peanut sauce to skillet and cook for about 3 minutes more, stirring occasionally, until salmon is cooked through but still tender and flaky and the sauce has thickened slightly.
- Serve salmon mixture over pasta, sprinkled with cilantro.
Chili garlic paste: For some reason, any time I see this ingredient listed and I need to pick up some for a recipe, I always feel like it's a confusing ingredient to shop for in American grocery stores, probably mostly because every brand seems to call it something slightly different. It's sort of a cousin to sambal oelek and the ever-popular sriracha. Over the various times I've made this recipe, I've purchased both Annie Chun's Go-Chu-Jang (Korean Sweet and Spicy Sauce) and Dynasty's Thai Chili Garlic Paste (links provided so you can see what the various brand labels look like). Different brands may taste just slightly different (and spell it differently – sometimes spelled as chile instead of chili). Basically, though, they all offer a bit of heat and the flavors of peppers and garlic. If you're concerned about the heat (which may vary by brand), you could always cut the chili paste back slightly the first time you make this recipe, but my family finds 1½ - 2 teaspoons to be a great amount – flavorful, yet not too spicy.
Make-ahead tips: If you'd like to help this recipe come together even faster at mealtime, you could mix up the peanut sauce up to a day ahead and store it, covered, in the refrigerator. You could also mince the ginger and garlic, slice the green onions, and cube the salmon earlier in the day, storing the fish separately from the ginger, garlic and onions, covered, in the refrigerator.
The Easy Peanut Sauce for this recipe was adapted from the sauce in Cooking Light‘s recipe for Fettuccine and Tofu with Finger-Licking Peanut Sauce, which appeared in the magazine’s April 2001 issue.