Cooking fish in parchment paper is incredibly simple, and yet fairly terrifying for a novice cook. Since the seafood is encased in paper, there's really no good way to check if it's done. The good news: if you use a large, center-cut salmon filet, about 8 or 9 ounces, and cook it for 15 minutes at 400 degrees F, you're going to be very, very close.

Recipe Summary

prep:
10 mins
cook:
40 mins
additional:
5 mins
total:
55 mins
Servings:
2
Yield:
2 servings
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Ingredients

2
Original recipe yields 2 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
parchment paper

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).

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  • Take two pieces of parchment paper, fold in half, and cut a half-circle starting at each crease. They should look similar to a heart-shape when unfolded. Coat each piece of parchment with olive oil on both sides.

  • Place potatoes in a saucepan and cover with salted water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until tender, about 20 minutes. Drain.

  • Bring a pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add asparagus, and cook uncovered until slightly tender, about 5 minutes. Drain in a colander, then immediately immerse in ice water for several minutes until cold to stop the cooking process. Once the asparagus is cold, drain well, and set aside.

  • Place 1 salmon fillet, half the asparagus, and half the potatoes in the middle of one side of a prepared parchment paper. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil. Fold other half of circle over and seal parchment edge by making overlapping folds around the edge. At the end, fold the last crease in the opposite direction of the rest to ensure it seals. Repeat with the second piece of prepared parchment and remaining ingredients. Place pouches on a baking sheet.

  • Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to sit for 5 minutes before cutting open parchment. The salmon is done when it flakes easily with a fork.

Chef's Note:

I served mine with a very light mustard aioli, which was simply mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, lemon juice, and a touch of garlic.

Nutrition Facts

873 calories; protein 62.7g 125% DV; carbohydrates 114.7g 37% DV; fat 18.5g 29% DV; cholesterol 100mg 33% DV; sodium 133mg 5% DV. Full Nutrition
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Reviews (97)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
01/23/2013
I reviewed this about 6 months ago. Tried it again tonight with the following changes. Marinated the salmon for 2 hours in a bourbon glaze. Next I did not boil and blanch the asparagus, just placed it next to the salmon and it turned out great. Omitted the potatoes and had a healthy one pot meal. Served the glaze on the side. (Note: using a tablet, can't figure out how to edit my earlier review.) Read More
(87)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 3 stars
06/09/2020
I can see the appeal of cooking fish this way but even with added spices I thought it was a little drab. I prefer to pan fry or grill my salmon. The other thing I didn't care for was that my potatoes were basted in salmon juice so everything just tasted the same. I didn't have asparagus so only did the potatoes. I might try this method again but without adding the potatoes. Read More
127 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 108
  • 4 star values: 13
  • 3 star values: 3
  • 2 star values: 3
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 5 stars
01/22/2013
I reviewed this about 6 months ago. Tried it again tonight with the following changes. Marinated the salmon for 2 hours in a bourbon glaze. Next I did not boil and blanch the asparagus, just placed it next to the salmon and it turned out great. Omitted the potatoes and had a healthy one pot meal. Served the glaze on the side. (Note: using a tablet, can't figure out how to edit my earlier review.) Read More
(87)
Rating: 5 stars
08/18/2012
I've made this recipe several times for family & friends and everyone loves it. It's so healthy and easy to do! I always follow a new recipe exactly the first time or two, but the last few times I've made this, I've changed the vegetables: green beans, mushrooms, zucchini, onions or whatever I have. I haven't pre-cooked these vegetables and they cook just fine in the packages. I also added capers for an added zing. Read More
(53)
Rating: 5 stars
07/08/2012
This was so simple and easy absolutely delicious! Read More
(47)
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Rating: 5 stars
03/11/2014
Living in Alaska, I've made salmon in 30 different ways, so i was looking for something exciting, new and easy after woking an 11 hour day. I have to say, Chef John nails it! Steaming a fillet for 15 minutes in parchment works like a charm. I coated with avocado oil, used coarse sea salt, a heavy amount of pepper, some old bay, and slices of lemon on some sockeye and threw it in. Then i prepared a homemade caesar salad. The timing couldn't have been better. A gourmet meal in under 30 minutes from start to finish. Add a glass or two of vino, and viola...the perfect meal after a long monday. Thanks Chef John! Read More
(37)
Rating: 5 stars
12/14/2013
It was so much fun seeing the parchment paper puff up! I discovered the second round that you REALLY need to crease the edges to make it air-tight. Also you need to overlap each edge almost so that you are re-folding each edge. Use a spoon to crease the edges. My salmon pieces were much larger than Chef John s so I needed to cook them for 30 minutes. The tiny potatoes and the asparagus were just fine with the extra time. Husband loved it! Read More
(10)
Rating: 5 stars
04/05/2014
I don't like red-meat fish. this looked easy and the wife loves salmon, so I made this. I did add some diced zukes and halved some cherry tomatos. added fresh dill to fish, oregano to maters, and rosemary to taters. sprinkled more evoo and salt / pepper. I ate all of mine...a huge plate. this is a keeper! Read More
(7)
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Rating: 5 stars
07/06/2013
Too many potatoes to fit in parchment! Doubled the asparagus & sprinkled salmon with dill sea salt & lemon pepper. Will add cut up grape tomatoes next time. Turned out perfect. I'm cooking my salmon in parchment from now on! This was a complete meal. Loved it! Read More
(7)
Rating: 5 stars
11/05/2014
I am kicking myself for not taking a photo, but when I made this I was really hungry and just wanted to eat :) The video helps a lot and it loops so you can prep with out having to pause it. This technique is my new and only was for cooking salmon now. I have got to be one of the worst people when it comes to cooking fish other then an easy white fish. My husband was actually astonished at how easy and delicious this meal was. I had mine with fresh broccoli and green beans and dropped them in boiling water for 2 min then pulled them out and immediately put them into icy water. Then followed the recipe as told to. I added a little Goya adobo (a Hispanics must in the kitchen), and a little blackened old bay. I then topped it with a little basil, dill and finally a few thinly sliced lemon rounds and a squeeze of juice. I didn't have the stuff to make mustard aioli, so I made my own using 1/2 cup Greek yogurt, 1 Tblspn tzatziki spice mix, 2 large cloves garlic, 1/2 tblspn lemon zest and juice, and then just processed it together. I let it chill in the fridge for a little while and gently dripped some on top after cutting open the parchment packs. Delicious meal! I think next I will try it with a stuffed salmon. :) Thank you Chef John, you have restored my husbands faith in my seafood cooking abilities! Read More
(6)
Rating: 5 stars
04/07/2013
Ridiculously easy - absolutely loved this. Will definitely make this one again and again. Read More
(5)
Rating: 3 stars
06/09/2020
I can see the appeal of cooking fish this way but even with added spices I thought it was a little drab. I prefer to pan fry or grill my salmon. The other thing I didn't care for was that my potatoes were basted in salmon juice so everything just tasted the same. I didn't have asparagus so only did the potatoes. I might try this method again but without adding the potatoes. Read More
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