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With just 5 simple ingredients and 5 minutes of prep, you can prepare a healthy baked orange salmon for the perfect easy dinner! This entire meal is ready from start to finish in less than 20 minutes, making it an ideal family-friendly seafood supper for busy weeknights. Serve the orange glazed salmon with a side of rice pilaf, a loaf of crusty bread, a simple House salad, or tender green beans.

Overhead shot of a piece of orange salmon served over rice.

Orange Glazed Salmon

If you think that your kids don’t like seafood, please try this orange salmon recipe! It’s seriously good, and it’s about to change your mind (or your kids’ minds) about how tasty fish can be — even when the weather is cool and you can’t grill outside.

The subtle, sweet, fresh orange glaze provides a nice, bright balance for the buttery, savory salmon. The sugars in the maple syrup and in the orange juice also caramelize on the outside of the fish, giving it that flavorful, crispy texture that everyone loves. Best of all, it’s a nourishing meal that’s ready for the table in less than 30 minutes!

Overhead shot of hands eating an orange salmon fillet with fresh herbs on top.

Ingredients

This is just a quick overview of the ingredients that you’ll need for the best orange salmon recipe. As always, specific measurements and complete cooking instructions are included in the printable recipe box at the bottom of the post.

  • Fresh orange zest and fresh orange juice: the zest of fresh oranges packs a lot of bright orange flavor, while the juice thins the glaze and adds a touch of acidity.
  • Maple syrup: a sweet component for the glaze. You can substitute with honey if you prefer.
  • Dijon mustard: acts as an emulsifier to bring the glaze together, thickens the glaze, and gives the salmon a zesty, savory, tangy flavor.
  • Salmon: use as many fillets as you need. For instance, cut the recipe in half and prepare just two salmon fillets if you’re feeding a smaller family.
Whisking orange sauce for salmon in a small saucepan.

How to Make Orange Sauce for Salmon

This orange glaze comes together quickly and easily on the stovetop!

  1. Whisk together orange zest, orange juice, and maple syrup.
  2. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, and cook the glaze until it thickens slightly (about 3-4 minutes).
  3. Remove the saucepan from the heat and whisk in the Dijon mustard until the sauce is nice and smooth.
Brushing salmon fillets with orange glaze before baking.

How to Bake Salmon

Once the glaze is ready, the rest of the process is really simple…

  1. Season the salmon with salt and black pepper.
  2. Place the salmon (skin-side down) on a foil-lined baking pan or rimmed baking sheet.
  3. Brush some of the glaze on top of each fillet.
  4. Bake the salmon in a 425°F oven for 10 minutes.
  5. Brush with additional glaze, and then turn the oven to “BROIL” on high.
  6. Place the salmon about 4-6 inches from the broiler, and broil for 2-3 more minutes, or until crispy on the outside and cooked through on the inside.
Side shot of orange glazed salmon on a blue and white plate.

What temp should salmon be cooked to?

You know the salmon is done when it flakes easily with a fork. If you’re using an instant read thermometer, the USDA recommends a minimum internal temperature of 145°F, which should be measured at the thickest part of the fillet.

What to Serve with Orange Salmon

Pair the baked orange salmon recipe with almost any of your favorite sides! Here are some easy ideas to get you started:

Square overhead shot of a plate of orange salmon with rice and green beans.

Storage

Leftover orange salmon will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. 

Baked salmon can also be frozen for 4-6 months, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Thaw cooked salmon in the refrigerator or immersed in cold water. Use cooked, thawed salmon in salads or as a substitution for canned salmon in casseroles, pasta dishes, sandwiches, or wraps.

Overhead shot of baked salmon with fresh orange glaze over rice.

Recipe Variations

  • Season the salmon with even more herbs and spices. For instance, add a dash of garlic powder or onion powder, try our favorite all-purpose seasoning blend, or use parsley, rosemary, thyme, or basil.
  • Substitute honey for the maple syrup.
  • For even more flavorful “kick,” add fresh ginger to the orange glaze.
  • Cooking Just for Two? Cut the recipe in half and bake according to the recipe instructions.
  • For a larger group, bake even more salmon fillets. You should still have plenty of extra glaze for at least a double recipe.
Close overhead shot of a slice of orange glazed salmon with rice and lemon wedges.

Tips for the Best Orange Salmon Recipe

  • If you’re starting with frozen salmon, let the salmon thaw in the refrigerator overnight before using in this recipe.
  • Zest the orange first, and then cut it in half and squeeze out the juice. When zesting, be careful that you only scrape off the outer layer of the peel (this is where all of the flavorful essential oils are found). Do not get any of the white pith, which has a bitter taste.
  • Want to Prep Ahead? Make the glaze in advance and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • You probably won’t need to use all of the glaze. Discard any excess.
  • Broil the salmon during the final few minutes so that the fish gets that flavorful, crispy, caramelized exterior.
Overhead image of hands eating a piece of orange salmon with a fork.

More Easy Salmon Recipes to Try

Overhead shot of a piece of orange salmon served over rice.

Orange Salmon

5 from 8 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 12 minutes
Total: 17 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 280 kcal
Fresh, flavorful, and healthy baked Orange Salmon is an easy dinner recipe that's ready in less than 20 minutes!

Ingredients
  

  • Zest from 1 orange (about 1 tablespoon)
  • Juice from 1 orange (about ¼ cup)
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 6 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 4 salmon fillets (about 6 ounces each)
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper, to taste
  • Optional garnish: chopped fresh thyme, rosemary, or parsley

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with non-stick spray. Set aside.
  • In a small saucepan, whisk together the orange zest, orange juice, and maple syrup. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat and cook, stirring frequently, until slightly thickened (about 3-4 minutes).
  • Remove the saucepan from the heat. Whisk in the Dijon until smooth.
  • While the glaze is simmering, season the salmon with salt and pepper.
  • Place salmon skin-side down on the prepared baking sheet.
  • Brush some of the glaze onto each salmon fillet.
  • Cook on the top rack of the oven for 10 minutes.
  • Brush the salmon with additional glaze (you might not need all of the glaze, so discard any excess). Turn the oven setting to "BROIL" on high. Place the salmon about 4-6 inches from the broiler. Broil for 2-3 more minutes, or until the outside is crispy and the fish flakes easily with a fork.
  • Garnish with fresh herbs, if desired, and serve!

Notes

  • If you’re starting with frozen salmon, let the salmon thaw in the refrigerator overnight before using in this recipe.
  • Zest the orange first, and then cut it in half and squeeze out the juice. When zesting, be careful that you only scrape off the outer layer of the peel (this is where all of the flavorful essential oils are found). Do not get any of the white pith, which has a bitter taste.
  • Want to Prep Ahead? Make the glaze in advance and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • You probably won’t need to use all of the glaze. Discard any excess.
  • Broil the salmon during the final few minutes so that the fish gets that flavorful, crispy, caramelized exterior.
  • Season the salmon with even more herbs and spices. For instance, add a dash of garlic powder or onion powder, try our favorite all-purpose seasoning blend, or use parsley, rosemary, thyme, or basil.
  • Substitute honey for the maple syrup.
  • For even more flavorful “kick,” add fresh ginger to the glaze.
  • Cooking Just for Two? Cut the recipe in half and bake according to the recipe instructions.
  • For a larger group, bake even more salmon fillets. You should still have plenty of extra glaze for at least a double recipe.

Nutrition

Serving: 1filletCalories: 280kcalCarbohydrates: 8gProtein: 34gFat: 11gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 4gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 94mgSodium: 204mgPotassium: 887mgFiber: 1gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 92IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 39mgIron: 2mg
Keyword: baked salmon, Maple Salmon, orange glazed salmon, orange salmon
Course: Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Author: Blair Lonergan

This recipe was originally published in March, 2017. The photos were updated in February, 2022.

blair

Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

Read More

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Comments

  1. I love finding new ways to make salmon! I was out to dinner last night with my husband and the restaurant had an orange basil salmon, which intrigued me. But this orange maple version sounds a lot more flavorful. What a creative combo, Blair! Adding this to my list of salmon recipes to try!

    1. Thanks, Gayle! That orange basil salmon does sound interesting! I need to remember that combo when my basil is overflowing from the garden this summer!

  2. 5 stars
    Glad I found you… New entrepreneur with busy schedule but still wants to make healthy happy food for family…you do that for me. Thank you! xo

    1. Lisa! Hi! I’m so glad that you’ve found my blog — it’s great to “meet” you! I appreciate your kind words and I’m thrilled that these recipes have made mealtime a little bit easier for your family!

      1. 5 stars
        I made the Orange Maple baked salmon tonight. I don’t care for salmon but this was delicious! I did not have Dijon mustard so I substituted spicy brown mustard cutting back to a little less than 4 tablespoons. Could really taste the orange zest, tangy. I served it with fried rice and green beans. This recipe is a winner in our house! Five star rating

        1. Awesome! Thanks for taking the time to come back here and leave me a note, Leah. I’m so glad that you enjoyed it!

  3. 5 stars
    My husband loves salmon, I always a little imitated to cook it. Now this one I might give a shot. Thanks

    1. Awesome, Lynn! This recipe is so easy and definitely not intimidating. I hope that you’ll give it a try! 🙂

  4. If I win the $700 gift card giveaway, I’ll use the money to buy wonderful kitchen gadgets for my new home that I plan to buy sometime in the next 6 months! I’m especially interested in buying a food dehydrator and accessories for my Kitchenaid standing mixer. I also have a long list of cookbooks I want to buy.

  5. 5 stars
    I have always cooked salmon with maple, I am excited to try it with the orange added! The gift card giveaway is amazing! I would love to win and buy myself some new clothes!!

  6. 5 stars
    So good! I didn’t have Dijon mustard, so used half stone ground mustard and half honey mustard instead. Turned out great. Hubby and son loved it, too. Will definitely make again.