This cedar plank salmon is one of the easiest salmon recipes I’ve made! It gets its sweet and smoky flavor from a delicious rub of brown sugar, smoked paprika, salt, and fresh ground pepper…
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Another salmon recipe??? Yes! Maybe I’m just making up for lost time, but I’m really enjoying testing out new fresh fish recipes after finally getting out of my comfort zone in the kitchen.
This sweet and smoky grilled cedar plank salmon is BY FAR the easiest salmon recipe I’ve tried yet. Smother fresh salmon fillets in a simple rub made from brown sugar, smoked paprika, salt, and fresh ground pepper. Then grill it on a cedar plank and serve. It’s delicious and sure to impress guests!
Of course, I recommend starting with Alaska salmon — because all Alaska salmon is wild caught, never farmed. Why is this so important to me? Wild-caught salmon is higher in omega-3s, lower in fat, and contains less toxins than farmed fish. So I always #AskForAlaska at the grocery store if I don’t see it clearly labeled.
Like I did today when I didn’t see it in the fresh fish case… Alaska salmon season is winding down, so it’s becoming harder to find it on display. But my fishmonger was kind enough to point me in the direction of some bagged frozen Alaska Salmon, which actually turned out to be even more convenient because it had all of the pin bones already removed. Not a huge deal, but definitely a nice perk!
How To Grill Cedar Plank Salmon
So you don’t HAVE to grill this salmon recipe on a cedar plank, but it’s certainly a fun and novel way to cook fish. My kids were so intrigued! It does add a distinct cedar-y flavor to your salmon, so this is the perfect time of year to try it. I’ve seen cedar planks for grilling on clearance at nearly every store I’ve visited lately, so pick them up for cheap and give it a try. If it’s not for you, just use a large piece of foil next time and decrease the grilling time slightly.
If you do go the cedar plank route, you’ll want to soak your cedar plank in water for at least an hour before grilling to prevent it from going up in flames. Then wipe it down, and brush the side that you’re going to place the salmon on with a little olive oil.
Brown Sugar Rub For Grilled Salmon
Four simple ingredients make up this brown sugar rub for grilled salmon: brown sugar for sweetness, smoked paprika for a bit of smoky spice, salt, and freshly ground black pepper. Simply stir them together well with a fork, and it’s ready to go.
P.S. It’s pretty tasty on grilled chicken thighs, as well. Grill them right alongside your salmon for non-fish lovers!
Lay your salmon fillet(s) skin side down on the oiled face of the cedar plank. Brush the fillet(s) with olive oil and press the brown sugar rub all over the top. Lay the plank directly on the grill, and cook over medium-high heat for about 15 minutes, until the salmon is cooked through and flakes easily. Serve it right on the cedar plank or transfer to a platter!
Sweet & Smoky Grilled Cedar Plank Salmon
Yield 4 servings
This cedar plank salmon is one of the easiest salmon recipes I've made! It gets its sweet and smoky flavor from a delicious rub of brown sugar, smoked paprika, salt, and fresh ground pepper...
- 1-lb. Alaska salmon fillet or 4 (4-oz.) Alask salmon fillets
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1-2 cedar planks for grilling, soaked in water for 1 hour
- Depending on the size of your salmon fillet(s), soak one or two cedar planks for grilling in water for one hour. Dry the plank(s) with a paper towel, and brush one side with olive oil.
- In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, smoked paprika, salt, and freshly ground black pepper with a fork.
- Lay the salmon fillet(s) on the oiled face of the cedar plank(s) and brush them with olive oil. Press the brown sugar rub all over the salmon.
- Place the cedar plank(s) directly on a hot grill, and cook over medium-high heat for 15-20 minutes, until the salmon is cooked through and flakes easily.
- Serve warm on the cedar plank or cut into desired portions.
If you love this salmon recipe, I think you’ll also enjoy my grilled salmon in foil (grilled lemony garlic butter salmon in foil packets with green beans) and my sheet pan salmon (parsley & garlic-rubbed sheet pan salmon with asparagus and potatoes). Use Alaska salmon with these recipes, as well, for best results! 1