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One of the easiest ways to prepare salmon is rubbing it with this flavorful spice mix and cooking it on the grill.  These spices create a deliciously crispy crust on the outside and moist, juicy fish on the inside. Super healthy, paleo, keto, dairy free and gluten free.

Blackened Salmon on The Grill on plate with grilled squash

We enjoy blackened salmon on the grill almost every week during the summer. It’s incredibly easy to prepare, lusciously moist and super healthy.  The recipe can be made for just  2 people and it’s just as easy to make a large grilled salmon for family and guests. Since I live at the beach we have lots of summer guest I love making this dish for them. It’s easy for me and everyone loves it.

If you don’t have a grill this recipe can be made in a cast iron or heavy saute pan. The original recipe created by Paul Prudhomme was made in a cast iron pan.

Spice makes food more interesting. I find when my food is interesting and flavorful I enjoy it more and feel incredibly satisfied!

A blackened spice mix can be purchased in many supermarkets. I  buy Paul Prudhomme’s Blackened Redfish seasoning.  It is all natural. Has no preservatives and no gluten.  It uses regular salt instead of sea salt, but other than that it’s great.  It’s super easy to use and can be used to flavor chicken, fish or vegetables with very little work.

Blackened Salmon on The Grill close up

Blackened Salmon Seasoning

Sometimes, when I have a lot of time, I make my own spice mix. It is a simple mixture of everyday spices that can be used on fish, shrimp, chicken or vegetables.  I’ll  make a large batch of the spice mix to keep on hand.

The best thing about making your own spice mix is you get to customize it.  I like it spicy so I put in one teaspoon of cayenne, but if you prefer mild use only 1/4 teaspoon.   I have included the basic recipe but if you want to change it up a bit, add cumin or chili powder or smoked paprika instead of plain paprika.   The basic recipe below makes enough for 2 pounds of fish or chicken.

Blackened Salmon on The Grill spice mix

How to Blacken Salmon on the Grill

When grilling salmon leave the skin on. If I’m making 1 pound of salmon I’ll leave the fillet whole and cook it in one piece. If I’m grilling larger amounts I’ll cut them into 1 pound pieces.  If the fillets are too big they’re hard to turn over.

Preheat your grill on high. Make sure your grates are clean.

Start by make sure your salmon is dry. I pat it with a clean kitchen towel.

Rub both sides of the salmon with a little olive oil.

Use a spoon to top each fillet with the spice mixture, then pat it with your fingers. You don’t have to put spice on the skin side.

Oil the grates, put the salmon fillets flesh (spice)-side down on the grill. Close the grill.

Grill for 3-4 minutes until the spices are just blackened and you can easily flip the fillet.  If your salmon is sticking, let it cook another minute.

Flip it over and cook on the other side, with the grill closed, another 3-4 minutes depending on how thick your fillet is. Check your grill to make sure you don’t have any flare ups.  Sometimes the fat from the salmon drips onto the grill making it flame up. If it does, sprinkle with a little water.

Salmon is best served medium rare.  You want it to be rare in the middle when you remove it from the grill.  It will continue to cook while it’s sitting on the plate.  Salmon takes about 8 minutes per inch.

I have included directions for making Blackened Salmon in a cast iron pan with the recipe below.

Blackened Salmon on The Grill raw salmon with spice mix

Tips for Making Blackened Salmon on the Grill

  • Keep the Salmon Cold. The oil will adhere better with cold fish, so keep the salmon in the refrigerator until you’re ready to start the recipe. You can put the spices on and then return it to the refrigerator if you’re not ready to put it on the grill.
  • Have a HOT Grill or Pan. You want the grill or pan to be extra hot so the fish blackens properly and doesn’t stick.
  • Oil Your Grill.  Use a rag or paper towel dipped in oil to oil your grill right before putting the fish on.
  • Don’t Move the Fish. Once you put the salmon on the don’t move it around. Let it cook for 3-4 minutes so it forms a nice spice crust and is easy to flip.
  • Watch for Flare Ups. If the grill flames up from dripping salmon fat, sprinkle with water to prevent the salmon from burning.
  • Don’t Overcook. Remove from the grill when it’s still a little rare in the middle.

Blackened Salmon on The Grill cutting with spatula

What to Serve with Blackened Salmon

3 Ingredient Grilled Zucchini or grilled patty pan squash (as in the photos).  Sautéed Patty Pan Squash with Tomatoes and Basil is a nice side dish too!

Roasted Jammy Tomatoes or grilled cherry tomatoes.  If you grill the cherry tomatoes, leave them whole while grilling, turn them until slightly charred and a little tender.

Fresh Corn Salad or Tomato Peach and Avocado Salad.

Blackened Salmon on The Grill on plate with patty pan squash

Blackened Salmon on the Grill is a deliciously healthy dish.  Keto, gluten free, dairy free, paleo and Whole30 compliant. Enjoy it all summer long on the grill. Make it in a cast iron pan in the winter.

Please let us know how you like this recipe in the comments! I appreciate your feedback so much. Let me know what you’re eating this summer, please. ♥

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Blackened Salmon on the Grill

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5 from 1 review

  • Author: Ingrid DeHart -
  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Yield: 2-4 1x


Blackened Salmon on the Grill is a healthy, easy to make dish with crispy spicy crust on the outside and moist, juicy fish on the inside.



Blackened Salmon on the Grill

Blackened Spice Mix*


Blackened Salmon On The Grill

  1. Leave skin on the salmon.
  2. Preheat grill on high.
  3. Pat the salmon dry.
  4. Rub both sides of the salmon with a little olive oil.
  5. Sprinkle with the spices and press to make sure it’s covered with the spices.
  6. Oil the grill.
  7. Place the salmon flesh side down first. Close the grill lid. Cook 3-4 minutes on the first side. (Try not to move it until you are going to flip it over).
  8. Using a metal spatula, carefully turn the fish over, so that the skin side is down, and reduce the heat to medium. If it’s sticking let it cook a little longer before flipping it. For charcoal grills, finish cooking over indirect heat furthest from the coals.
  9. Close the grill lid and finish cooking for another 3-5 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fillets.
  10. Salmon should be slightly rare in the center when done. Salmon should be just barely opaque. It usually takes about 8 minutes per inch.

Blackened Salmon In A Cast Iron Pan

  1. Remove skin from the salmon
  2. Pat the salmon dry.
  3. Rub both sides of the salmon with a little olive oil and  sprinkle both side of the salmon with the spice. Press to make sure both sides are covered evenly with the spices.
  4. Preheat a well-seasoned cast iron pan over high heat.
  5. Add ghee, once melted, place the salmon into the pan top side down.
  6. Turn heat down to medium and cook for about 3-4 minutes until the spices are crispy.
  7. Using a spatula flip the salmon, turn the heat to medium-low, cook 2 minutes on medium and then turn the heat down low.
  8. Cover and cook another 2 minutes.
  9. Check to see if the salmon is done. Salmon should be just barely opaque. It usually takes about 8 minutes per inch. If necessary cook on low until done.

Blackened Spice Mix

  1. Mix all ingredients together and store in a cool, dry place. Will stay fresh for three months if sealed well.
  2. This recipe makes enough for 3 pounds of salmon.
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 15 mins
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Cuisine: Paleo, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Healthy

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