Blackened Salmon with Mango Salsa

 3 reviews

Super easy and flavorful healthy blackened salmon with fresh mango salsa ready in under 15 minutes! These salmon fillets are coated in a blend of spices, flakey, and pan seared or air fried to crispy perfection. Ideal for meal prep, family dinners, and Summer BBQs.

pan seared blackened salmon on rice with fresh mango salsa on top

Best pan seared blackened salmon

Quick and easy dinners are my thing! I simply cannot imagine being in the kitchen cooking dinner for more than 20 minutes after a long day of work. That’s one of the many reasons I love this blackened salmon recipe! It’s 5-star restaurant quality, tastes incredible, and only takes 12 minutes to make. So don’t worry if you’re a busy mom, working professional, or athlete; this dinner recipe is for you!

Salmon is such a simple source of high protein. It is rich in Omega 3 fatty acids, vitamin B12, healthy fats, and vitamin B6. One serving of this blackened salmon with mango salsa has a whopping 37 grams of protein! As an athlete, I love incorporating salmon into my diet at least once a week. It’s so delicious and good for you at the same time.

What are “blackening” spices?

Blackened seasoning is a blend of a few spices very similar to Cajun seasoning. Some are milder in heat, while others pack a punch! This healthy blackened salmon recipe calls for paprika, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper.

The term “blackening” also refers to how the salmon is cooked. Once you rub the salmon fillets with the flavorful blackening spices, you’ll simply pan-sear them to crispy perfection, and the spices will blacken under the high heat. Trust me, the salmon isn’t burned, it is supposed to look this way!

four pan seared blackened salmon fillets with easy fresh mango salsa

Ingredients in healthy blackened salmon recipe

This deliciously light and fresh salmon recipe calls for a handful of simple, good-for-you ingredients. This dinner recipe has two easy parts: cooking the flakey salmon fillets and making the fresh mango salsa. To make this blackened salmon dish you’ll need:

Blackened salmon:

  • Salmon fillets: you’ll be needing 4 salmon fillets for this recipe, about 6 oz each.
  • Blackening Spices: cumin, cayenne pepper, onion powder, garlic powder
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Olive oil or avocado oil

Simple mango Salsa:

  • Mangos: grab 2 ripe and sweet mangos.
  • Red bell pepper: you’ll only need 1 cup of chopped red bell pepper for this recipe.
  • Red onion: chop your red onion really fine to make 1/3 cups worth.
  • Fresh cilantro: this salsa recipe calls for 1/4 cup of fresh cilantro. Just cut off the thick stems and brought chop the leaves.
  • Jalapeño (optional)
  • Lime: you’ll need about 1 lime for the perfect tang to this mango salsa.
  • Salt & Pepper
healthy air fried blackened salmon with cilantro lime mango salsa

How to make healthy cajun salmon and fresh mango salsa

This healthy summer salmon recipe is so easy to make! You’ll only need two mixing bowls, a knife to cut the vegetables, and a cutting board. So don’t worry, clean-up is going to be super easy. We’ll start by preparing and cooking the salmon, followed by finely dicing the veggies and mango, and, finally, plate everything with some brown rice!

To start, combine the paprika, cumin, cayenne pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. 

Then, gently pat the salmon fillets dry with a paper towel and place them on a large plate, flesh-side up. Using your fingers, pat the seasoning mixture on each piece of salmon.

Now, in a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Once heated, place salmon, flesh-side down into the pan. Cook for 2 – 3 minutes, until crisp, and then flip salmon with a spatula and cook for another 5 – 6 minutes until the skin becomes crispy and salmon is desired doneness.

Alternatively, you can air fry this blackened salmon at 380°F for 8 – 10 minutes. Just place the seasoned salmon fillets in the air fryer basket skin side down and press start!

Meanwhile, make the mango salsa by mixing all the mango salsa ingredients together. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.

Top your pan-seared salmon with fresh mango salsa and serve immediately with a side of roasted vegetables and on a bed of rice. Enjoy your deliciously flakey healthy blackened salmon!

Can I air fry salmon?

Yes!! You can skip the pan and air fry this blacked salmon recipe. To make air fried blackened salmon, simply preheat your basket to 380°F, place the seasoned salmon fillets skin side down, and air fry for 8 – 10 minutes or until the salmon is done to your liking. It is that simple!

This is my favorite air fryer!

crispy pan seared blackened salmon with easy homemade mango salsa

Tips for the perfect crispy and flakey salmon

Here are my pro tips for making the BEST flakey and crispy blackened salmon:

  • Make sure to pat the salmon dry. This step is super important. Gently pat your salmon fillets dry, so the blackening seasoning sticks to the salmon and doesn’t cook off in the pan.
  • Use your fingers to press the blackening spices into the salmon fillets. To ensure that the seasoning adheres to the salmon, use your fingers to gently rub them in. I highly recommend doing this; it makes such a big difference!
  • Make sure the olive oil is hot before placing the salmon into the pan. I like to test if the oil is hot by adding a tiny drop of water into the pan; if it crackles, then the oil is ready! Hot oil will make sure the salmon is crispy and not soggy!
  • If air frying salmon, make sure the air fryer is preheated! This will maximize crispiness.

How to tell if salmon is fully cooked

There are two ways to tell if salmon is fully cooked! You can use a thermometer or you can test it with a fork. The salmon is done once the thickest part of the fillet reaches the internal temperature of 145°F. If you are doing a fork test, the salmon is fully cooked if it flakes apart easily when you put on it with a fork. If you want super well-done salmon, I recommend adding 1 or 2 minutes onto the cook times in this recipe.

How to store, meal prep, and reheat salmon

Storage: Simply store leftover healthy blackened salmon fillets in one large airtight container or individual airtight containers in the fridge for 3 – 4 days. Store the mango salsa in a separate container to maximize freshness. Do not freeze cooked salmon.

Reheating: For the best results, reheat your salmon fillets in a pan on the stove top to make sure the salmon stays crispy. You can also air fry the salmon for 3 – 4 minutes at 350°F or microwave the salmon alone and then add the mango salsa on afterward.

healthy air fryer blackened salmon with fresh mango salsa and rice

If you loved this healthy dinner recipe, check these out!

Need some more healthier, easy, and simple dinner, lunch, and meal prep recipes? Here are some of my favorite Healthful Blondie meals to try out….

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If you make this recipe, be sure to comment and rate it down below. Also, don’t forget to tag me @healthfulblondie on Instagram and use the hashtag #healthfulblondie so I can see your delicious creation and share it with my followers!

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perfect pan seared blackened salmon with healthy fresh mango salsa

Blackened Salmon with Mango Salsa


  • Author: Tati Chermayeff
  • Total Time: 12 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x

Description

Super easy and flavorful healthy blackened salmon with fresh mango salsa ready in under 15 minutes! These salmon fillets are coated in a blend of spices, flakey, and pan-seared or air fried to crispy perfection. Ideal for meal prep, family dinners, and Summer BBQs.


Ingredients

Scale

Salmon:

  • 4 (6 oz) salmon fillets, skin-on
  • 1 Tbsp paprika
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 12 Tbsp olive oil

Mango Salsa:

  • 2 ripe mangos, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup red bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup red onion, finely diced 
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, thick stems removed and roughly chopped
  • 1 jalapeño (optional), seeded and minced
  • 1 large lime, juiced (about 3 Tbsp lime juice)
  • 1/4 tsp salt, or to taste

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl, combine the paprika, cumin, cayenne pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. 
  2. Gently pat the salmon fillets dry with a paper towel. Then place them on a large plate, flesh-side up, and use your fingers to pat the seasoning mixture on each piece of salmon.
  3. PAN-SEAR: In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Once heated, place salmon, flesh-side down into the pan. Cook for 2 – 3 minutes, until crisp, and then flip salmon with a spatula and cook for another 5 – 6 minutes until the skin becomes crispy and salmon is desired doneness. 
  4. AIR FRY: Preheat air frier to 380°F, place seasoned salmon fillets skin side down, and air fry for 8 – 10 minutes or until it reaches desired doneness. 
  5. Meanwhile, mix all the mango salsa ingredients together. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
  6. Top salmon with fresh mango salsa and serve immediately with a side of roasted vegetables and on a bed of rice and enjoy!

Notes

TO STORE: in airtight container in fridge for 3 – 4 days. Store the mango salsa in a separate container to maximize freshness. 

TO REHEAT: for best results, reheat salmon fillets in pan on the stovetop or air fry at 350°F for 3 – 4 minutes. Can microwave salmon and top the mango salsa afterward.

  • Prep Time: 2 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Category: Dinner, Main Course, Lunch
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American, Healthy

Keywords: blackened salmon with mango salsa, air fried salmon, pan seared salmon, salmon, mango salsa, healthy salmon recipe, 15 minute dinner

Recipe by Tati Chermayeff / Healthful Blondie + Photos by The Travel Palate

I only recommend products I absolutely love and use myself. In full disclosure, by purchasing a product I recommend, I may receive a small compensation. Everything counts to keep my dream afloat; thank you for supporting Healthful Blondie!

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4 Comments
  • Natalie
    Posted at 07:54h, 29 April Reply

    This was delicious! I used my air frier for the salmon and it was perfect! Thank you for showing two ways to cook salmon, it was very helpful.

    • Tati Chermayeff
      Posted at 19:02h, 12 May Reply

      Of course! Thank you for commenting and leaving this kind note! I love this recipe 🙂

  • Izzy
    Posted at 10:31h, 21 June Reply

    This was sooo good I used the pan searing method and it turned out amazing! I always thought blackening salmon was super complicated but this was so easy and delicious, thank you for this recipe!

  • Valeria Hirsch
    Posted at 10:21h, 22 June Reply

    did this for yesterday’s lunch! The TASTE OMG! Amazing

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