Asian Grilled Salmon with Nutty Bulgur

This is by far the most succulent grilled salmon I have ever had! I am always at the lookout for less than 30 minutes meals with simple ingredients and great flavors and this Asian grilled salmon delivers just that. You just need to marinade the salmon for 10 minutes and grill it on each side from 3 to 5 minutes, et voila! You have a perfectly tasty, cooked omega-3 on a plate.  It even converted my husband who normally prefers smoked or raw salmon over cooked.

Usually Asian salmon recipes contain brown sugar or honey but not this one. The recipe is from Ina Garten and I don’t change a thing to it except use less oil, skinless salmon and an indoor grill pan. Once, I added dried ginger but I don’t think it needed it. Feel free to experiment with dried or fresh ginger.

I served it with steamed broccoli and coarse bulgur wheat for a rounded meal.  I was out of quinoa and wasn’t in the mood for brown rice, so I thought of bulgur and it matched the salmon perfectly. Bulgur is high in protein and fiber and is low in fat and calories. A half cup cooked serving contains 75 calories, 3 grams protein, and 4 grams of fiber. Compare that to a half cup brown rice with 110 calories, 2 grams of protein, and 2 grams of fiber and you have a winner!

asian salmon with nutty bulgur

Asian Grilled Salmon – slightly adapted from Ina Garten , The Barefoot Contessa

Ingredients (4 servings)

  • 4 salmon fillets (125 grams each), skinless
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons reduced sodium soy sauce
  • 4 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic ( 1 small clove)

Combine all ingredients of the marinade together. Reserve half of it on the side. Drizzle the other half on the salmon and let marinade for 10 minutes. Heat an indoor grill pan on medium high heat. Place the salmon and grill it for 3 to 5 minutes depending on the thickness. With a spatula carefully turn it over and continue grilling for 2 to 4 minutes. My fillets needed 5 minutes total as they were on the skinnier side. Cover with foil and leave to rest a little bit. Transfer to a plate and serve with the reserved marinade.

Nutty Bulgur ( 4 servings)


  • 3/4 cup uncooked coarse bulgur wheat, rinsed
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • lemon zest, from 1 lemon
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1/4 cup almonds, toasted (can use slivered)
  • 2 tablespoons raisins, or more
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt and black pepper to taste

Toast almonds in a dry pan and coarsely chop them. Then, you can drizzle a bit of oil and saute the onion in it. I don’t. I just add the onion, bulgur, raisins*, lemon zest, salt and water and bring to a boil. Cover, turn down the heat and let simmer until the water is absorbed from 10 to 15 minutes.  Once the bulgur is done; add the almonds, lemon juice and oil. Fluff with a fork and adjust the seasoning.

* You can soak the raisins on the side in hot water till they plump up and add them at the end with the almonds.


** For a gluten-free version: use gluten-free soy sauce, quinoa, brown rice, millet or any other gluten-free grain.

**If you are not in the mood for broccoli, roast some asparagus or steam some bok choy.

Bon appetit!

5 thoughts on “Asian Grilled Salmon with Nutty Bulgur

  1. I haven’t bought salmon in a while just because chicken is so much cheaper BUT this looks super easy and delicious! I love recipes that don’t require me hitting the grocery store!

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