Tuna salad is synonymous with a quick and healthy lunch. But why let tuna have all the fun? Turn your fresh fillet of salmon into a vibrant and delicious salmon salad. Instead of using canned salmon, use fresh salmon that’s quickly broiled then flaked into large, moist chunks and mixed with a simple lemony greek yogurt dressing. Round out the simple salad with some crunchy cucumbers and fresh herbs.
Healthy Salmon Salad for Lunch or Dinner
Featuring fresh, flaky salmon, this salmon salad recipe is delicious and hearty enough for dinner while being easy enough for a weekday lunch (especially if you’ve got a few mouths to feed).
Fresh broiled salmon is the base of the salad—so to keep things moving along, prep the other ingredients while the salmon cooks (takes just 10 minutes). If you’re efficient with your time, you can get this dished up in about 30 minutes (including the cooling time of the salmon).
Ingredients in Salmon Salad
Salmon: this salad highlights the versatility of fresh salmon! You’ll need a 1-pound fillet of center cut salmon. We recommend using farm-raised salmon as it’s thicker and more moist than wild-caught.
Greek yogurt: plain whole milk Greek yogurt is the base for the dressing. It’s a great way to build a creamy dressing while also increasing the overall protein content. You can use 2% Greek yogurt, but it won’t be quite as creamy.
Herbs: fresh dill and scallions (green onions) are a great combo for this salad. Both pair wonderfully with salmon and the scallions add a mild onion note without overpowering the other flavors.
Lemon: one lemon is all you’ll need for this recipe. The juice is whisked into the greek yogurt to create a bright and tangy dressing. Feel free to grate some lemon zest over the salad right before serving.
Cucumber: Persian cucumbers, or mini cucumbers, are ideal for this salad because of their low water content and crispness. If you can’t find Persian cucumbers, you can substitute them with an English cucumber. If you go that route, be sure to scrape out the seeds from the center for the cucumber—otherwise your salad may become too watered down.
How to Make Salmon Salad
- Broil the Salmon
- Make the Dressing
- Flake the Salmon
- Mix the Salad Together
Preheat broiler to high with rack set 6-inches from element. Arrange salmon fillet skin-side down on baking sheet; pat dry and season with salt and pepper.Broil the salmon fillet until mostly opaque but center still looks undercooked, tops are charred, and an instant-read thermometer inserted in the centers registers 125ºF (48–52ºC), 10–12 minutes.
While the salmon cools, make the dressing. In a large bowl, combine the greek yogurt, scallions, dill and lemon juice. Season the dressing with salt and pepper. You can also add some fresh lemon zest if you want it even zestier!
Flake the salmon into large chunks and allow it to completely cool! We like to do this on a baking sheet—the more surface area is exposed to the air, the quicker it cools.
Add the salmon to the bowl with the dressing along with the cucumbers. Gently mix the salad to combine without breaking the salmon into tiny pieces. Give the salad a taste and adjust with additional salt and pepper as needed.
Fresh or Canned Salmon
For this salmon salad, we really think fresh is best. It’s got the most flavor and it adds a nice texture to the salad. If you have canned salmon on hand and want to use that up, go ahead. (Though we do have a great recipe for salmon patties that uses canned salmon. So do our Salmon Croquettes.)
Just know the salad will be more inline with a tuna salad if made with canned salmon. To use canned salmon, you’ll need a total of one pound. And be sure to drain the salmon and pick through it to remove any skin and bones.
- Instead of whole milk greek yogurt, you can substitute with 2% Greek yogurt. It won’t be as creamy, but it will work.
- For a more mild onion flavor, use chopped chives instead of scallions.
- If you don’t have a lemon on hand, you can use a tablespoon or so of white wine vinegar.
How to Serve Salmon Salad
There are a variety of ways you can serve salmon salad! Here are some of our favorites:
- Serve as lettuce wraps with bibb lettuce leaves or iceberg lettuce leaves.
- Enjoy with some crunchy crackers for a snack-like lunch.
- Scoop the salad onto a piece of toasted sourdough or whole-wheat bread for an open-faced sandwich.
Prep Ahead and Storage Tips
- We do not recommend making this salad ahead of time, but you can make the dressing and broil the salmon ahead of time. Store the creamy dressing in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The salmon can be broiled, cooled and stored in an airtight container for 1 day.
- If you do have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Drain off any watery liquid then give it a good stir and serve.
What Goes with Salmon Salad
- Make this a meal and serve this salmon salad with a hunk of Healthy Cornbread! We’ve also got a Gluten-Free Cornbread Recipe if you need it to be GF.
- Polenta Fries would also be a fun side dish!
- Our Nut and Seed Bread pairs wonderfully with this salad and keeps well in the freezer for months.
- Or try your hand at making Homemade Naan. It’s easier than it looks and so much better than store-bought.
More Salmon Recipes to Try
Looking for more ideas on how to use your next fillet of salmon? We’ve got you covered with salmon recipes! Here are some of our favorites:
- Try our go-to salmon recipe for pan-seared salmon. It’s absolutely foolproof and makes the best salmon!
- Our Blackened Salmon is the star of our Salmon Tacos—the perfect al fresco meal!
- For something sweet, savory and grilled, try our Balsamic Glazed Salmon. Keep it simple and pair it with some grilled asparagus.
- For a special occasion, make our Lemon Butter Salmon featuring pan-seared salmon, a lemony butter sauce, and buttery peas.
- If you’re looking for another salmon salad recipe, try out Salmon Caesar Salad!
- Looking for another quick salmon recipe? try this 5-ingredient, 20-minute Lemon Dill Salmon!
More Fish Salads to Try
If you like this recipe, then be sure to check out our Healthy Tuna Salad—Mediterranean-Style! It’s loaded with flavor and features a light vinaigrette instead of a mayo-based dressing.
And for something a bit more elegant, check out our Creamy Crab Salad. It is truly a delight and highlights the sweet flavor of crab.
Salmon Salad Recipe
- 1 pound center-cut skin on salmon fillet
- Kosher salt and cracked black pepper
- 3/4 cup whole milk greek yogurt
- 4 scallions, thinly sliced
- ¼ cup chopped fresh dill
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 4 Persian cucumbers, diced
- Bibb lettuce leaves, iceberg lettuce, toasted bread and/or crackers for serving, optional
- Heat broiler to high with rack set 6-inches from element.
- Arrange 1-pound salmon fillet skin-side down on baking sheet. Pat salmon dry with paper towels then season with ½ teaspoon kosher salt and ¼ teaspoon black pepper.
- Broil salmon until mostly opaque but center still looks undercooked, tops are charred, and an instant-read thermometer inserted in the centers registers 125ºF (48–52ºC), 10–12 minutes.
- Let salmon cool, then flake into large chunks.
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together ¾ cup Greek yogurt, 4 sliced scallions, ¼ cup chopped dill, juice of 1 lemon, and ½ teaspoon salt. Season with black pepper.
- Add cooled and flaked salmon, 4 diced Persian cucumbers and gently mix to combine. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.