This Blackened Salmon Salad is the ideal recipe if you love eating a big salad with protein for dinner! This fresh, colorful, and vibrant salad is loaded with nutritious vegetables and tender seasoned salmon and it is ready in only 30 minutes! 

a large bowl of salad with mango, black beans, red cabbage and more, with a filet of blackened salmon on top

Why We Love This Recipe For Blackened Salmon Salad

The base of this salad is a combination of crunchy cabbage and lettuce with hearty black beans, sweet mango and bell pepper. Plus we’ve added in creamy avocado and fresh herbs. Top it off with the Cajun spiced salmon and drizzle the simple homemade citrus dressing on top for the final touch!

This blackened salmon salad is going to be the new star of your weeknight dinner table. Or you can make it for a healthy lunch!

Recipe Highlights

  • This salmon salad is high in protein ~ 42 grams of protein per portion!
  • It is ready in 30 minutes and can be prepped ahead
  • Rich in healthy fats including Omega 3 Fatty acids
  • Made with a variety of nutrient-dense veggies
  • It is high in fiber too!

Key Ingredients for this Salad with Salmon

oil, salt, lime, orange juice, garlic, orange, and cilantro laid out on a marble surface to make the dressing for salmon salad

For the Dressing

  • Garlic: Finely minced.
  • Citrus: Orange and lime juice.
  • Honey
  • Salt
  • Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • Cilantro: Fresh and chopped.
salmon, black beans, oil, cabbage, cajun seasoning, onion, salt, mango, bell pepper, avocado, dressing, romaine, mint, and cilantro all laid out mise en place for the blackened salmon salad recipe

For the Salmon and Salad

  • Cajun Spice Blackening Seasoning: The salmon in this recipe is coated in blackening seasoning, a spice blend that you can find at most supermarkets, and then seared. It’s loaded with not-too-spicy heat, ground-dried chilies and peppers, thyme, and other spices. If you don’t have a jar of it, you could make it from scratch.  
  • Salmon: This recipe calls for center-cut boneless salmon with the skin removed – Learn more about how to skin salmon here – and then cut it into four portions. We love to source our protein sources sustainably, and you can too! Take a look at the Monterey Bay Seafood Watch to learn the do’s and don’t’s of sourcing seafood.
  • Coarse Kosher Salt
  • Avocado Oil: Or organic canola.
  • Romaine lettuce: Finely shredded. Can also use mixed spring greens.
  • Mango: Large, ripe, peeled, and cut into small bite-sized chunks.
  • Black Beans: Drained and rinsed.
  • Veggies: Finely chopped red bell peppers, shredded red cabbage, red onion, avocado.
  • Garnish: Torn mint leaves and cilantro leaves (optional).

How To Make This Salmon Salad

citrus dressing mixed in a clear bowl

Step 1: Whisk Dressing

Whisk the garlic, lime, orange juice, honey, and salt in a medium-sized bowl. Whisk in the olive oil gradually in a steady stream. Stir in the cilantro.

pan searing salmon

Step 2: Prep and Season Salmon

Lay the salmon filets on a plate and pat them dry with a paper towel. Sprinkle the blackening seasoning and salt all over so it’s coating the salmon.

Step 3: Pan-Sear Salmon

Heat a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Brush it with oil. When it just barely starts to smoke, lay the salmon in the hot skillet and let it sear undisturbed until the bottom has a blackened crust and the salmon is turning opaque about ¼ inch up the sides. The first side will take about 4 to 6 minutes.

Carefully flip the salmon over and turn off the heat allowing it to continue cooking from the carryover heat of the skillet. This will take about 2 to 4 minutes. 

combining the salad contents

Step 4: Mix Salad

Combine the lettuce, mango, black beans, red pepper, cabbage, and onion in a large bowl. 

Step 5: Add Dressing

Drizzle dressing over the salad and toss to coat. 

adding the salmon to the salad

Step 6: Plate

Divide salad among four large plates. 

Step 7: Add Salmon and Garnish

Top with a salmon portion, avocado, mint leaves, and cilantro leaves. Serve immediately. Enjoy!

close up shot of the cajun blackened salmon on top of the salad with mango and beans

FAQs and Expert tips

Make Ahead

  • You can make the dressing up to 5 days ahead of serving. Allow the dressing to come to room temperature if it solidifies, and then shake/stir it to make sure it’s completely mixed before dressing the salad.
  • You can make and assemble the salad. Remove the salmon skin and cut it into portions ahead of time, but wait to cook the salmon until just before serving.

Leftovers and Storage

  • Store leftover salmon in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Serve cold salmon flaked over salad.
  • To reheat the salmon, place a single filet on a microwave-safe plate and place a paper towel over it to keep it from splattering. Microwave on 50% power for one minute. Test to see if it is heated through with a thermometer. Continue heating as necessary in 30-second intervals on 50% power until just warmed through. Avoid overheating as the natural oils will cook out of the salmon and it will become dry.
  • If there is any leftover salad that you’d like to save, do not dress it. Store the salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator and then dress it when you’re ready to enjoy.

Substitutions and Variations To Try

  • If you like spicy foods, add some cayenne pepper to your cajun seasoning!
  • If you do not like spice, top the salads with simple pan seared salmon instead.
  • You can customize this salad to your liking by adding different veggies and fruits.
  • Instead of red onions in your salad, swap them out for green onions!
  • Swap out mangoes for another seasonal fruit such as strawberries or peaches.
  • If you do not like fruit in savory dishes, omit the mango and add halved grape tomatoes instead.
  • Try a variety of different salad dressings – like our Greek yogurt ranch dressing – with this salad to see which flavor combination is your favorite.
  • Instead of salmon, serve this salad with cajun flank steak!

Serving Suggestions

Additional Salmon Recipes To Try

a large bowl of blackened salmon salad with the skillet with more salmon on it in the upper left corner and another bowl of salad to the right

Thanks so much for reading! If you are new here, you may want to sign up for my email newsletter to get a free weekly menu plan and the latest recipes right to your inbox. If you make this recipe, please come back and leave a star rating and review. I would love to hear what you thought!

Happy Cooking! ~Katie

Print
clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
a bowl of salad with mango, black beans, and red cabbage with blackened salmon on top

Blackened Salmon Salad


5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

5 from 6 reviews

Description

This Blackened Salmon Salad is the ideal recipe if you love eating a big salad with protein for dinner! This fresh, colorful and vibrant salad is backed with nutritious vegetables and tender seasoned salmon and it is ready in only 30 minutes! 


Ingredients

Scale

For The Dressing

1 small clove garlic, finely minced

3 tablespoons orange juice

2 tablespoons lime juice

1 tablespoon honey

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

For The Salmon

1 1/2 pounds center-cut boneless salmon, skin removed, cut into 4 portions

1 1/2 teaspoon Cajun Blackening Seasoning* see ingredient note

1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher salt (or 1/4 teaspoon granulated table salt)

2 teaspoons avocado oil or organic canola oil

For The Salad

6 cups finely shredded Romaine lettuce or mixed spring greens

1 large ripe mango, peeled and cut into small bite sized chunks

14 ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed

1 cup finely chopped red bell peppers

1 cup shredded red cabbage

1/2 cup finely diced red onion or green onions

Torn mint leaves and cilantro leaves for garnish, optional

1 ripe avocado


Instructions

  1. Whisk garlic, lime, orange juice, honey and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk in olive oil gradually in a steady stream. Stir in cilantro.
  2. Lay salmon on a plate and pat dry with a paper towel. Sprinkle all over with blackening seasoning and salt. 
  3. Heat a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Brush with oil. When it just barely starts to smoke, lay salmon in the hot skillet and let sear, undisturbed until the bottom has a blackened crust and the salmon is turning opaque about ¼ inch up the sides, about 4 to 6 minutes. Carefully flip over and turn off the heat and allow it to continue cooking from the carryover heat of the skillet about 2 to 4 minutes. 
  4. Combine lettuce, mango, black beans, red pepper, cabbge, and onion in a large bowl. 
  5. Drizzle dressing over the salad and toss to coat. 
  6. Divide salad among four large plates. 
  7. Top with a salmon portion, avocado, mint leaves and cilantro leaves. Serve immediately.

Notes

Make Ahead:

You can make the dressing up to 5 days ahead of serving. Allow the dressing to come to room temperature if it solidifies, and then shake/stir it to make sure it’s completely mixed before dressing the salad.

You can make and assemble the salad and portion out the salmon ahead of time, but wait to cook the salmon until just before serving.

Leftovers and Storage:

Store leftover salmon in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Serve cold salmon flaked over salad.

To reheat the salmon, place a single filet on a microwave-safe plate and place a paper towel over it to keep it from splattering. Microwave on 50% power for one minute. Test to see if it is heated through with a thermometer. Continue heating as necessary in 30-second intervals on 50% power until just warmed through. Avoid overheating as the natural oils will cook out of the salmon and it will become dry.

If there is leftover salad that you’d like to save, do not dress it. Store the salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator and then dress it when you’re ready to enjoy.

  • Active Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 8 mins
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American

Nutrition

  • Calories: 584
  • Sugar: 17 g
  • Fat: 31 g
  • Carbohydrates: 35 g
  • Fiber: 8 g
  • Protein: 42 g