Perfectly cooked pan fried salmon served with a vibrant sun dried tomato couscous & a zingy avocado yoghurt.
This post contains affiliate links. I may earn a small commission if you make a purchase using these links, at no extra cost you. For more information, click here.
A super simple yet impressive main course!
Here, we’re serving perfectly cooked, pan fried salmon fillets with sun dried tomato & couscous salad and a fresh & zingy, avocado yoghurt. There’s crispy salmon skin, moist & tender meat, a flavourful salad and a punchy avocado yoghurt. What’s not to like?
The full, printable recipe card for this dish can be found at the bottom of this post!
- Salmon – You’ll need four 125g – 150g salmon fillets for this recipe. Make sure that the skin has been left on but any scales or bones have been removed. If you haven’t got any salmon or you’d prefer something else, feel free to use a different fish instead.
- Sun Dried Tomatoes – We’re using both the tomatoes & the oil for the couscous. If you’d prefer you can use regular tomatoes & olive oil instead.
- Couscous – Regular dried couscous is what we’re using for our salad. This needs to soak in boiling water for 10 minutes before serving.
- Couscous Veg – Feel free to use whatever veg you like in the couscous. I went with red onion & cucumber (technically a fruit but you know what I mean!) but peppers, spring onions and carrots would work as well.
- Avocado – Make sure to use a large avocado that is nice & ripe.
How To Pan Fry Salmon
Frying salmon in a pan has to be one of the best cooking methods! Do this properly & you’ll have super crispy skin & perfectly cooked meat. Here’s how!
- Place a large frying pan over a medium heat then add in a tbsp of vegetable oil.
- Dry the salmon’s skin with kitchen paper then season the fish all over with salt & pepper.
- Let the pan heat up for 2 minutes, or until the oil is shimmering then add in your salmon, placing it skin side down in the pan.
- As soon as the fish hits the pan, press it down firmly for 10-15 seconds, using a fish spatula. This stops the fish from curling up & helps crisp up the skin.
- Let the salmon cook undisturbed for 4-5 minutes, until the skin is crisp then add a knob of butter into the pan & flip the fish over.
- Continue cooking the salmon for another 3-4 minutes (or until the salmon is just cooked), basting regularly with the butter then transfer to a plate & leave to rest for a couple of minutes before serving. You’ll know when the salmon is cooked because it will flake easily when pressed with a fork. If you take the internal temperature with a digital food probe it should be 50°c-60°c (122°f/140°f), depending on how well cooked you like your fish.
Salmon at 50°c/122°f will be more of a medium cook & 60°c/140°f will be more well done (but not dry!).
The Easiest Way To Make Couscous
We’re using regular dried couscous which doesn’t actually need cooking, just a short, 10 minute soak in boiling water.
To prepare the couscous, place equal quantities of dried couscous & boiling water (200g of each) into a bowl, along with a pinch of salt & a tablespoon of sundried tomato oil (or olive oil). Give everything a quick stir then cover the bowl with clingfilm & leave to soak for 10 minutes. Then once soaked, fluff the couscous up with a fork & mix in sundried tomatoes (+oil), diced onion, sliced cucumber, fresh herbs, salt & pepper.
This is probably one of the easiest salad going but also one of the tastiest!
Fresh, creamy & zingy! To make this avocado yoghurt we use a food processor to blitz together avocado and Greek yoghurt with lime juice, olive oil, coriander & mint. This one’s sort of like a guacamole flavoured yoghurt & it works great with the salmon & couscous!
Avocados have a tendency to discolour pretty quickly! Because of this, the avocado yoghurt should be served within an hour of being made. Covering the yoghurt’s surface with clingfilm helps delay any discolouration.
Frequently Asked Questions
First, make sure that you’re frying pan is hot & that there is a thin layer of oil completely coating the bottom. When you add the salmon to the pan, place it skin side down then press the fish down firmly for 10-15 seconds. This stops the salmon curling up!
Lastly, let the salmon cook undisturbed for at least 4 minutes before flipping over. Flip too soon & the skin will stick to the pan.
Depending on the thickness of your salmon fillets, they will take between 8-10 minutes to pan fry, in total.
You’ll know when your pan fried salmon is cooked because it will flake easily when pressed lightly with a fork. If you take the internal temperature with a digital food probe, it should be between 50°c-60°c (122°f/140°f), depending on how well cooked you like your fish.
Regular dried couscous is so small, it doesn’t actually need cooking! A 10 minute soak in boiling water is all it needs. If you were to use giant couscous instead, you’d need to cook this on the stove in water/stock.
Cooking Pan Fried Salmon On An Aga
With all of my recipes, I include cooking instructions for conventional ovens, fan ovens & also Agas. Here’s how to cook this recipe in an Aga…
To pan fry the salmon on an Aga, use the boiling plate. If your pan gets too hot at any point, move over to the simmering plate.
Please note that these are affiliate links & I may make a small commission if you make a purchase using these links, at no extra cost to you. For more information, click here.
More Main Course Recipes To Try!
- Classic Fish Pie
- Slow Cooked Spaghetti Bolognese
- Honey Sesame Fried Chicken Tenders
- Shepherd’s Pie With Cheesy Garlic Mash
- Twice Baked Rarebit Potatoes
- Guinness Braised Short Rib Stew With Dumplings
- Cheesy Butternut Orzo
- Tomato & Ricotta Pappardelle With Pangrattato
- Toad In The Hole With Caramelised Onion Gravy
- Roasted Tomato Risotto & Burrata
If you have enjoyed this pan fried salmon recipe, it would mean a lot if you could leave a review & rating!
Pan Fried Salmon With Sun Dried Tomato Couscous & Avocado Yoghurt
- Food Processor
- Large Mixing Bowl
- Large Frying Pan
- Digital Food Probe
- Fish Spatula
- 4 Salmon Fillets See Notes
- 1 tbsp Vegetable Oil
- 20 g Butter
- 1 Large Avocado
- 50 g Greek Yoghurt
- 20 g Olive Oil
- 1 Lime Zest & Juice
- 1½ tbsp Coriander Leaves
- 1 tsp Mint Leaves
- 200 g Dried Couscous
- 200 g Boiling Water
- 8-10 Sun Dried Tomatoes
- 3 tbsp Sun Dried Tomato Oil
- 1 Red Onion
- ½ Cucumber
- 1 tbsp Coriander Leaves
- 1 tsp Mint Leaves Torn
- 4 Lime Wedges
- Halve the avocado, remove the stone then scoop out the flesh & place into a food processor.
- To the avocado, add the Greek yoghurt, olive oil, lime, coriander & mint. Season with salt & pepper then blitz until smooth & creamy.
- Transfer the yoghurt to a bowl, cover the surface with clingfilm then refrigerate until needed.Covering the yoghurt's surface stops the avocado from browning quickly. It will start to discolour after a couple of hours so it's best to serve it as soon as possible!
- Place the dried couscous into a large mixing bowl & add in 1 tbsp of sun dried tomato oil, a pinch of salt & the boiling water. Give it a stir then cover the bowl with clingfilm & leave to soak for 10 minutes.
- Whilst the couscous is soaking, roughly chop the sundried tomatoes, peel & finely dice the red onion & half the cucumber lengthways, scoop out the seeds then slice thinly.
- Once soaked, fluff the couscous up with a fork then add in the tomatoes, onion, cucumber, coriander, torn mint leaves & 2 tbsp of sun dried tomato oil.
- Season the couscous with salt & pepper then give it a good mix. Set aside until needed.
Pan Fried Salmon
- Place the salmon fillets onto a plate & dry the skin with a piece of kitchen paper. Season each fillet all over, with table salt & freshly cracked black pepper.
- Next, add the veg oil to a large frying pan then set over a medium heat. Let the pan heat up for a minute or two (until the oil is shimmering) then add in the salmon fillets, skin side down. As you add in each piece of fish, press down firmly with a spatula for 10-15 seconds (this stops the salmon from curling up & helps crisp the skin up). You might need to cook the salmon in two batches, depending on the size of your frying pan. Make sure to add in more oil, if necessary.
- Cook the salmon for 4-5 minutes, until the skin is crisp & golden then add in the butter & flip the fish over. Turn the heat down to medium-low.
- Continue cooking the salmon for another 3-4 minutes, basting the fish regularly with the butter. Once cooked, transfer to a plate & leave to rest for 2 minutes.You'll know when the salmon is cooked because it will flake easily, when pressed gently with a fork. The key to perfectly cooked salmon is to pan fry it until it just cooked then let it rest for a couple of minutes before serving.If you take the salmon's internal temperature with a digital food probe it should be 50°c-60°c (122°f/140°f), depending on how well cooked you like your fish.
- Take four plates & spoon a quarter of the avocado yoghurt into the centre of each. Use the back of a spoon to spread the yoghurt out into a medium sized circle.
- Next, spoon a generous amount of couscous onto each plate (place it onto one side of the yoghurt) then place the salmon on the yoghurt next to it.
- Add a lime wedge to each plate then serve immediately.