Sweet Chili Baked Salmon

Jeff's Sweet Chili Baked Salmon.

PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- Unable to channel your inner Giada De Laurentiis or Bobby Flay? With life's many curveballs and bumps along the way one may experience throughout a given day, sometimes cooking up a storm in the kitchen just isn't in the cards. To help save some time, here is a quick (and even quicker!), simple recipe for a zesty, baked salmon with sweet chili sauce. 

Ingredients

  • Fresh King or Farmed Salmon
  • 2 cups of chopped Thai chilis 
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 cup of rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup of red wine vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup of honey (or sugar)
  • 1 Tbsp of cinnamon 
  • 3 Tbsp of red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch + 1 Tbsp water
  • lemon pepper seasoning
  • salt
  • pepper
  • garlic and herbs seasoning
Sweet chili baked salmon

Prep

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. While you wait for the oven to heat up, season up that salmon! I always start with the basics, salt and pepper, before adding lemon pepper and then garlic herb seasoning to really enrich the flavor (this seasoning duo pairs excellently with the sauce). Once that salmon is evenly coated from tip-to-tip in seasoning, and the oven is preheated, go ahead and set that in for about 20 minutes. Personally, I like to line some asparagus along the sides and put half-slices of lemon around the fish. I usually squeeze half a lemon across the salmon as well, but this step is optional. While the fish bakes, it's time to make that sauce!

Sauce

There are two ways to go about getting the sweet chili sauce primed and ready to go. The steps below detail YOU making the sauce. But, if you got too much going on or just want to relax while your salmon bakes, a sauce shortcut would be to just buy your desired brand of sweet chili sauce from the store. For those cooking enthusiasts, however, see below!

  • Pour the water into a small sauce pot and set to a medium heat
  • Blend up the 2 cups of Thai chilis with the red wine vinegar and 2 peeled garlic cloves
  • Add the rice wine vinegar, honey, chili mix, cinnamon, and red pepper flakes to the water and stir
  • Stir the cornstarch up into the 1 Tbsp of water until it dissolves, then pour into the sauce pot with the sauce
  • Continue stirring and increase the heat until the sauce begins to simmer (the cornstarch should thicken the sauce and clear it up)
  • Once the sauce is clear and has that ooey-gooey stickiness to it, it's ready to go!

Finale

We're almost there! After the 20 minutes are up and your sauce is made, take the salmon out and cover it lovingly with sauce from end to end. Put the salmon back in for another 3-5 minutes to let the sauce and salmon become familiar, and then take it back out for serving. Plate the sweet chili baked salmon atop a bed of rice or serve alongside the asparagus/desired sides and enjoy!


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