If you’ve been wondering how to cook salmon in the air fryer, consider this your ultimate guide! Easy and fast, air fryer salmon is a healthy weeknight dinner your family will love.

close up of air fried salmon

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Air fryer salmon just might be your new favorite thing! Tender and flaky on the inside, crisp on the outside, and done in minutes, air fried salmon is also full of omega 3s and protein, making it a delicious and healthy meal. Plus, it’s done in less than 10 minutes.

How to Air Fry Salmon

This is an easy, straightforward method to cook salmon in an air fryer. First, preheat the air fryer to 400ºF. Spray the cooking basket with non-stick cooking spray.

Pat the salmon dry on both sides with a paper towel. Generously season the salmon with salt and pepper and additional seasonings of choice like paprika, garlic powder, cumin, or ground mustard. Then, drizzle the salmon with olive oil just before putting it in the air fryer.

Place the salmon skin side-down in the air fryer basket and cook for 7-8 minutes. Check with a fork for doneness: if the salmon is flaky, it’s done. If it is not there yet, cook for a while longer, checking every minute. Remove from the air fryer, let rest for 5 minutes, and serve.

(For another delicious air fryer fish dinner, make my Air Fryer Tilapia!)

Tips for Cooking Salmon in the Air Fryer

  • Cut the salmon into equal, or as equal-as possible, pieces rather than cooking a whole, large filet. This will help make sure the pieces are all done at the same time, and it also won’t take as long as cooking a 2 pound piece of salmon.
  • Make sure to remove as much moisture as possible from the fish before cooking it. You can pat it dry with paper towels to absorb any excess moisture. This will make the finished salmon crispy and irresistible.
  • Leave the skin on the salmon and cook skin-side down.
  • No need to flip the salmon—the air fryer circulates the air so both sides are cooked equally.
  • Check the salmon about 7 minutes into the cooking time to see if it’s pale pink—you definitely don’t want to overcook your salmon! You’ll know it’s done when the flesh is pale pink, firm to the touch, and flakes lightly when touched with a fork. You can also take its internal temperature with a meat thermometer, which should read at least 125ºF.

Quick Tip

We love to keep it simple with air fried salmon, but you can give it a flavor boost by adding garlic butter, a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, or chopped herbs before serving.

close up air fried salmon

How to Cook Frozen Salmon in the Air Fryer

You can also cook frozen salmon in the air fryer, similar to how you would cook a frozen chicken breast in the air fryer. The salmon will take a little longer, about 14-16 minutes, to cook if you take it directly from the freezer to the air fryer.

If you like, you can defrost the salmon first before adding the seasonings. Place the frozen salmon portions skin-side down in your air fryer basket. Cook at 400ºF for 7-9 minutes to defrost, then follow the directions above.

How to Store Cooked Salmon

Leftover cooked salmon may be stored in an air-tight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. It can be gently reheated in the microwave or the oven.

What to Serve with Air Fried Salmon

To round out your meal of salmon cooked in the air fryer, try these tasty air fried Brussels sprouts. Or go for a simple roasted broccoli recipe. Make a pot of instant pot rice that will cook in the same time it takes for the salmon to be done.

More Seafood Dinner Ideas

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About Kasey Schwartz

For over 15 years, Kasey Schwartz, the mastermind behind All Things Mamma, has been the ultimate go-to for mouthwatering family recipes. Her work has been featured on Today.com, Buzz Feed, Better Homes and Gardens, and more, making her your go-to mom next door for all things delicious and family-friendly.

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