This Glazed Chipotle Orange Salmon is fast and easy to make! A perfect way to share things up for dinner and make something new, unexpected, and delicious.
This post contains affiliate links.
I am a huge fan of amazing sauces and love finding new and amazing recipes.
This Chipotle Orange Glazed Salmon checks all of those boxes, plus it is ready in just 20 minutes!
This fish recipe is one of our favorites because it has a sweet and spicy balance that pairs incredibly well with the fish.
The orange brings a great balance of sweet and tangy flavors to pair perfectly with the smoky and spicy chipotle peppers.
I also love to use this sauce for Chipotle Orange Glazed Shrimp!
What are Chipotle Peppers?
Chipotle peppers are jalapeno peppers that have been smoked and dried.
They have a wonderful, deep smoky flavor with a mild heat.
I like to buy my chipotle in adobo in a small jar, already diced, instead of the little cans with whole peppers.
I never go through those little cans quickly, and then you have to figure out how to store them. With the little jar, it is waiting and ready to go in your refrigerator!
This recipe results in a medium heat level, with the spice on the back end of the flavor (sweet, then spicy). Adjust the chipotle amount up or down to fit your preference.
Salmon skin is completely edible.
If you want to eat the skin, make sure the scales have been removed.
You can ask your fish monger to do this for you. If you need to do it at home, simply hold one end of the fish and use the dull top edge of a chef knife, scraping against the skin, in the opposite direction of the scales.
To cut salmon into smaller steaks, you might have to use kitchen shears to cut through the skin.
And if you are eating the skin, it is best to cook the fish on tin foil instead of a silicone mat. I am not a fan of using one-use products like tin foil if I can avoid it, but it is much better at transferring heat to the skin to crisp it up. If you use a silicone mat, it will not get as crisp.
Also make sure that bones are removed by running your finger across the flesh and feeling for any stiff bone pins. These should all have been removed, but just in case anything was missed.
Glaze or Sauce
This salmon recipe has a delicious sweet and spicy flavor with a thick and sticky texture.
But in order to get a glaze that is sticky, it requires sugar.
If you want to reduce your sugar intake, or just have a lighter sauce, you can make this shrimp with a sauce instead of a glaze.
To do this, simply skip the step about making the sugar water mixture in the pot. Whisk together the chipotle orange sauce ingredients, and you can cook it for a few minutes to thicken slightly.
If you end up wanting it a little thicker, you can continue to reduce the sauce (although you will end up with less sauce) or add some cornstarch to thicken it up.
A tablespoon of cornstarch mixed with a little water before adding to the sauce should do the trick. Then cook for a couple minutes to activate the cornstarch and thicken the sauce.
It is very easy to cook this fish in a skillet. Heat the skillet over medium high heat.
When the skillet is hot, add the oil. Swirl and warm the oil. Place the salmon steaks in the skillet, skin side up (flesh side down) and cook until well browned, 4 to 6 minutes. The oil will prevent it from sticking.
Flip the salmon and reduce heat to medium. Cook until the fish is translucent in the middle (check with a knife) and registers 125°F for medium rare, approximately 4-5 minutes.
Adding the Glaze
An important thing to know about any glaze is that it has a high sugar content, which means that it can burn easily when cooking.
To avoid a burned glaze, the salmon is first cooked by itself and the glaze is added when it is done cooking.
Even if you try to cook the glaze on the salmon for just a few minutes, it will burn.
So add the glaze onto the hot fish right before serving and you will get all the amazing benefits of the glaze without the char!
What to Serve with the Salmon
You have so many choices of what you can serve with the Glazed Chipotle Orange Salmon
Grains like a rice or quinoa works beautifully, and I love to use green vegetables as a side like asparagus, broccoli, or zucchini.
The salmon can also be served in tacos or on a bed of ramen noodles (with or without a broth).
- Whisk the orange marmalade, orange zest, orange juice vinegar, diced chipotles in adobo, and salt together in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Put the water and sugar in a medium pot over medium high heat. Cook, without stirring, until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is a light straw color. Approximately 5 minutes.
- Reduce heat to low and continue cooking the syrup until it is an amber color, approximately 1-2 minutes more. Swirl the pot occasionally. (If you have a thermometer, the sugar will read between 360 and 370°F).
- Remove the pot from the heat and whisk in the orange mixture. It will bubble and steam, and the sugar will harden.
- Put the pot back on the heat, change the heat to medium, and cook, whisking constantly, until the hard sugar has dissolved and the sauce is thicker, approximately 2-4 minutes.
- Remove the glaze from the heat and set aside.
- Heat a skillet over medium high heat.
- Pat the salmon dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper.
- When the skillet is hot, add the oil. Swirl and warm the oil. Place the salmon steaks in the skillet, skin side up (flesh side down) and cook until well browned, 4 to 6 minutes.
- Flip the salmon and reduce heat to medium. Cook until the fish is translucent in the middle (check with a knife) and registers 125°F for medium rare, approximately 4-5 minutes.
- Remove the skillet from the heat. Spoon some of the glaze over the salmon. Serve immediately with the rest of the glaze and other sides.