March 18, 2022

The Best Creamy Salmon Pasta Recipe

Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 24 mins
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This Creamy Salmon Pasta Recipe is loaded with flavor. With perfectly roasted salmon and a creamy garlic sauce, this simple recipe will make you feel like a 5-star chef! 

This pasta dish is perfect for a date night meal but is quick enough to make any day of the week! Enjoy with pappardelle or linguini and you've got a delicious meal on the table in 30 minutes!

salmon pasta on a plate with bread and sliced lemons

When I need to cook an easy and quick dinner, I always think of one thing - pasta! Specifically salmon and pasta recipes. Pasta is so versatile and works well with any kind of add-ins. For this salmon pasta recipe, it's creamy, easy to make, and absolutely delicious.

The salmon is cooked with lemon, seasonings, and red pepper flakes for a nice hint of spice and the garlic cream sauce is truly heavenly. It combines garlic, parmesan, fresh herbs, and heavy for a delightful experience for your tastebuds!

salmon pasta on a plate with lemon and a spoon next to the plate with fresh thyme

what kind of salmon should i use?

For this recipe, I prefer fresh, wild-caught, skinless salmon. I do recommend wild-caught as the flavor is better for this salmon pasta. You’re always welcome to use frozen salmon; just make sure to thaw it before cooking. For more information on how to choose the perfect salmon, check out this guide!

In addition, if you are having difficulty finding salmon at your local grocery store, you can try steelhead trout. It very closely resembles salmon and can be cooked the exact same way!

pasta on a plate on top of a green wooden surface

how do i store creamy salmon pasta?

You can store this easy salmon pasta in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

how do i reheat creamy salmon pasta?

To reheat the salmon pasta, place leftovers in a pan on the stove and saute on medium heat until warm. I recommend adding a splash of cream, broth, or water to help thin the cold sauce.

can i freeze creamy salmon pasta?

I do not recommend freezing this salmon pasta recipe due to the cream-based sauce. The cream and the water will separate and will not reheat very well.

pasta dish with bread and lemons

how do you make creamy salmon pasta?

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Then prep the salmon by making slits across the fish and squeezing lemon juice and honey on top (this will cut the fish taste).
  2. Season the salmon and drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 25 minutes.
  3. While the salmon is baking, make the cream sauce by combining garlic and thyme in a large pot and sautéing in olive oil and butter. Then add heavy cream and seasonings and allow it to simmer for 5-8 minutes, until it becomes slightly thickened. Remove from the heat and add lemon juice and parmesan. Stir and set aside.
  4. Whether you're using pappardelle, linguini, or fettuccini, cook according to package instructions and drain. Add to cream sauce and toss together.
  5. Once salmon is finish cooking, cut into pieces and add to the pasta and sauce.

can i swap out salmon for another protein?

Of course! You can swap the salmon out for shrimp, chicken, or even Italian sausage! You could also leave out the protein and add vegetables or eat the pasta with a side salad - yum!

how do i know when salmon is done cooking?

It is critical to make sure that your salmon is cooked thoroughly. I recommend using a meat thermometer. The FDA recommends cooking salmon to the internal temperature of 145° F.

If you don't have a meat thermometer, you can tell that the salmon is done when it begins to become flaky and is no longer translucent when you cut into it.

dried pappardelle bunches on a marble surface

tips for making salmon pasta

  • If your salmon has pin bones, be sure to remove it prior to cooking! This will prevent accidentally poking yourself while chewing!
  • Be sure to not overcook the salmon. You will know when it's done when it begins to become flaky and the middle is no longer translucent.
  • Salt your pasta water by adding 2 tablespoons per pound of pasta. This simple step adds so much flavor to the pasta!
  • Try to avoid farm raised salmon if you can! Wild caught salmon that's never ben frozen is best and gives the freshest taste for this recipe!
  • I recommend using thicker, long noodles so that it holds the sauce well. Fettuccine, pappardelle (as pictured above), or linguine are all excellent options! However, you can use spaghetti too if that's what you have!
  • If you love a crispier salmon, broil the salmon for 2-4 minutes after it's fully cooked for a nice crispy top!
a fork with pasta wrapped around it on a plate of salmon pasta

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a fork with pasta wrapped around it on a plate of salmon pasta

The Best Creamy Salmon Pasta Recipe

This Creamy Salmon Pasta Recipe is loaded with flavor. With perfectly roasted salmon and a creamy garlic sauce, this simple recipe will make you feel like a 5-star chef! 
Serving: 8 servings
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 24 mins
Calories: 493kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ lbs salmon
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp parsley
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp red pepper flakes
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 lb pappardelle or linguine

Creamy Garlic Sauce

  • 2 tbsps 2 tbsp butter
  • Olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, diced
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup freshly grated parmesan

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place salmon on a baking sheet or 9x13 baking dish and make small slits in the salmon. Squeeze ½ lemon juice on top and then add a drizzle of honey. Combine parsley, onion powder, smoked paprika, red pepper flakes in a small bowl. Spoon together and pour on top of salmon. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle olive oil on top and bake for 25 minutes.
  • While salmon is baking, add olive oil and butter to a skillet over medium heat. Add diced garlic and thyme and cook for 2-3 minutes, until fragrant. Reduce heat to low and add heavy cream and cayenne pepper and red pepper flakes. Cook until warm and remove from heat, about 5 minutes. Squeeze the other half of the lemon into the sauce and then add grated parmesan and stir. Set aside.
  • Cook noodles as per package instructions. Drain noodles add them to the garlic sauce. Toss around so that all noodles are coated. Add salmon to the pasta. Garnish with additional red pepper flakes and grated parmesan on top.

Nutrition

Calories: 493kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 138mg | Sodium: 133mg | Potassium: 624mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 765IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 97mg | Iron: 2mg
Course: Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine: American

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  1. 5 stars
    Honestly I don’t really comment on a lot of recipes but this one was just SO good I had to say something! The baked salmon was so flaky and the sauce was just so creamy and flavorful. I had some leftovers and am now at work having the best lunch ever. Def making this recipe again and again!!!

  2. 5 stars
    This was DELISH! The pasta sauce is *chef’s kiss* and pairs perfectly with pappardelle. Adding the salmon is a game changer. Such an easy meal to make on a weeknight but it tastes special enough for an occasion!

  3. 5 stars
    Made this last night and it was truly delicious! Loved how easy it is to make too. That cream sauce was sooo good.

  4. 5 stars
    I always have salmon in my freezer and I was so bored of just plain. broiled fish, I was excited to try this recipe. It did not disappoint! It was easy to make and the sauce was creamy and flavorful with just a hint of sweetness. Will definitely make this again!

  5. 5 stars
    I’ve been eating a lot of salmon lately so was so excited to try this recipe. The salmon and pasta paired together perfectly and creamy sauce was mouthwatering!

  6. 5 stars
    I made your recipe exactly and it is perfect. Love the wide flat noodles with the salmon--perfect vehicle for all that flavor!

  7. 5 stars
    My noisy neighbors moved out and I needed something yummy to celebrate their exit. This was the PERFECT recipe to kick off the peace I shall not be experiencing! The salmon was not only so so flavorful but paired well with the pasta. I had it with some sauvignon blanc and my tummy was so so happy! Thank you for sharing the recipe! It made for a perfect celebration meal!

  8. 5 stars
    I'd been tiring of making salmon the same old way so this recipe was a welcome change. It also tasted amazing!

  9. 5 stars
    This recipe was absolutely amazing! It has just the right amount of spice with a very subtle hint of sweetness from the honey. As a salmon lover, I could eat this for dinner every day!

  10. 5 stars
    It was super simple and easy I had it up and ready like 30-40 minutes. Perfect for a quick night dinner