Sous vide Salmon Recipe

sous vide salmon

Our family loves to eat salmon, and we recently discovered a grocer that has the best fresh salmon.  We have tried different types of salmon, various ways of preparing it, and have finally decided that our favorite way of doing salmon is by sous vide.

We discovered that grilling it makes it dry.  Pan-frying it overcooks the outside, but the inside can remain undercooked.   Sous vide is a method of cooking that evenly cooks the salmon, and does not dry it up, making it even juicier and tastier with the nutrients and flavors locked in.

Not all salmon are created equal

Using sous vide, we further discovered that the Coho salmon is firmer and sears deliciously.  The more delicate Norwegian fillet is supple and has a richer taste.  The secret when cooking salmon is the brining that happens before the sous vide.

King is the priciest variety, and is worth the price for its rich, buttery taste.  Pink salmon is mild and best when cooked fresh.  It does not freeze well.

The art of brining

brining salmon

Brining has to be done before the sous vide so that the flavors are locked in when your salmon takes a water bath.  There are two methods for brining:

  1. Wet brine. The salmon is submerged in a mixture of water, salt and sugar for as long as 24 hours.  You may add other spices you want.
  2. Dry brine. This is also called curing.  It’s putting the mix of salt and sugar all over the salmon.

When you brine the salmon, aside from the flavors, the moisture of the fish is also locked in.  And there would be no white albumin that forms on the skin of the fish when cooked.

Tips on buying salmon

Whether you are getting it from the grocer or from a fishmonger, here are some buying tips for you:

  1. Buy it fresh. It should not have any smell, except the smell of the salty ocean where the salmon is from;
  2. Buy the moist one, not dry. Avoid the ones with brown spots as these are bruised parts of the fish;
  3. Color should be vibrant and glistens, not dull. It can be deep red or coral or bright pink;
  4. It is okay to buy farmed salmon, or those not caught from the wild;
  5. Buy fresh, and have your fish guy fillet it before you bring it home. Less messy for you.

Salmon sous vide style

Sous Vide Salmon Recipe

The end result of this Greek-inspired recipe is buttery-soft, melt-in-your-mouth, cooked rare salmon.


Cucumber, 2 pcs, peeled, (1 pc) sliced crosswise a quarter inch thick and (1 pc) cut into half, seed removed, and cut julienne style

White pepper, freshly-ground

Black pepper, freshly-ground

Dill, coarsely-chopped, ½ cup

Non-fat Greek yoghurt (plain), 8 oz.

Extra-virgin olive oil, 2 tbsp.

Juice of lemon, 1 pc

Salmon fillets, skinless and chilled, 4 pcs (6 oz. each)


  1. Pre-heat the water bath. If you want pinkish rare salmon, set at 122 degrees Fahrenheit.  If you want more cooked, set at 160.
  2. Pre-heat a grill pan.
  3. Put salt and black pepper on the sliced cucumber.
  4. Grill the sliced cucumber for about 2 minutes then transfer to a plate.
  5. Sprinkle salt and white pepper on the salmon, then vacuum and seal it on a vacuum-sealing system.
  6. Submerge the bags in a water bath at the desired temperature (see no 1) for 12 minutes. It is easier to use a sous vide bath for this step.
  7. In a blender, mix the yogurt with the dill, salt and black pepper.
  8. In another container, mix together the julienned cucumber with the lemon juice and olive oil. Salt to taste.
  9. Remove the salmon fillets from the water bath and put on plate. Garnish with the grilled and julienned cucumber and serve with the dill sauce.

This salmon with cucumber is so easy to make, and the different flavors give this meal an interesting mix.  You may eat with rice or couscous, a North African version of rice.

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