This pan-seared salmon has crispy skin and golden on the outside yet flakey and juicy on the inside with a garlic butter sauce topped with slices of fresh lemon.

If you like salmon recipes, try our Grilled Salmon or the Cheesy Ranch Salmon.

Close up of pan seared salmon topped with greens and lemon.

Pan-Seared Salmon Recipe-

Pan-searing the salmon is such a quick and delicious method to prepare salmon. The ingredients in the recipe are so simple and will pair with just about any side making the salmon a go-to really for just about any occasion.

Ingredients for Salmon Pan-Seared:

  • Salmon: Make sure your salmon is fresh or completely thawed before starting. Frozen salmon will not work in this recipe.
  • Seasoning: Just classic seasoning of salt and pepper is all you need.
  • Butter + Oil: The oil will give the salmon skin its crispiness and the butter will make up the sauce.
  • Garlic: Freshly minced garlic adds so much flavor.
  • Lemon: Fresh lemon slices give the lemon butter sauce a slightly acidic kick, enhancing the fish.
  • Herbs: Pair this salmon with your herbs to garnish, we like cilantro or parsley.
Ingredients needed to make pan seared salmon recipe. Salmon, seasoning, greens, lemon, butter, oil.

How to Make Pan-Seared Salmon-

This recipe comes together so quickly so you want to make sure your sides will be ready as salmon is best enjoyed fresh.

  1. Cut salmon- Cut your salmon fillets, we cut them into four.
  2. Season fish- With a paper towel pat dry the room temperature salmon and season the salmon with salt and pepper on all sides.
  3. Heat pan- Add the olive oil to the skillet and get it hot oven on medium-high heat. A cast-iron skillet that’s good quality works great.
  4. Sear salmon- Place salmon flesh side down and pan-sear salmon for 3-4 minutes undisturbed.
  5. Add garlic butter- Flip salmon, cook another 2 minutes and add the butter with garlic.
  6. Add lemon- Cook salmon for another 1-2 minutes. Add salmon slices over top of the salmon and pour the butter garlic sauce over the salmon.
  7. Garnish with fresh herbs and enjoy.
Pan seared salmon topped with seasoning, greens, and lemon all inside a pan.

Serve with-

You can serve the easy salmon dish in so many different ways for a quick and easy dinner or hearty lunch.

  • Entree- Serve as a main entree with Mashed Potatoes, Baked Rice, or even simple white Rice.
  • Salad- Substitute chicken in our popular Cobb Salad with the salmon.
  • Bowl- Enjoy it as a hearty salmon bowl with rice and veggies like spinach and tomatoes
  • Vegetable- With a side of vegetables like Baked Asparagus, or Roasted Broccoli.
  • Sandwich- As a sandwich with fresh Bagels, drizzled with fresh lemon juice, and red onion, topped with capers.
  • Meal planning- This recipe is great if you meal plan and prep several days of meals
Close up of salmon with butter sauce inside of searing pan.


  • Fridge- Store leftovers in the refrigerator in an airtight container.
  • Freeze- The salmon may be easily frozen in a freezer-safe container for 2-3 months.
  • Reheat- Reheat the leftover salmon over low heat until reheated.

More Seafood Recipes:

If you love this salmon recipe, here are more popular seafood recipes to try:

Pan-Seared Salmon Recipe

This is an incredible recipe for Pan Seared Salmon. Fresh salmon seasoned and pan seared in a garlic butter sauce and topped with lemon slices.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course entree
Cuisine American
Servings 2 servings
Calories 604 kcal


  • 1 pound fresh salmon fillet
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 1 fresh lemon cut in half and cut half the lemon into slices
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 Tbsp fresh herbs


  • Pat salmon down with a paper towel and cut the salmon in four parts.
  • Season salmon on both sides with salt and pepper.
  • High oil over high/med heat.
  • Flip salmon and add in butter, galic and add slices to top of the salmon.
  • Squeeze fresh lemon over salmon and pour the butter over tops of the salmon.
  • Garnish with fresh herbs and enjoy.


Calories: 604kcalCarbohydrates: 4gProtein: 47gFat: 44gSaturated Fat: 15gPolyunsaturated Fat: 8gMonounsaturated Fat: 18gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 170mgSodium: 685mgPotassium: 1194mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 620IUVitamin C: 8mgCalcium: 57mgIron: 2mg
(The nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.)
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