Soy-Maple Salmon

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Seafood is so damn expensive.

We’ve been trying to cut our grocery bill because it seems what we spend is so outrageous for a family of three so I’ve been buying a lot of ground beef and chicken thighs. My family finally complained. I was sort of missing fish too so I broke down and bought three salmon fillets. I thought they were $7.99 a pound. Wow! What a great deal! After the seafood dude wrapped them up for me, I saw the real price and gasped. No, they were $7.99 each. Damn. I bought them anyway.

So at this price, I better not mess it up. Or I will cry.

When it comes to fish, simple is best. I went with a trusted recipe from the Food Network where you marinate the salmon in a few ingredients: soy sauce, real maple syrup, orange juice, garlic, and water. It has that salty, sweet thing going for it.

Soy-Maple Salmon

The key thing to learn here is that more is not better. Do not marinate your salmon for too long or the proteins start to break down. The results: a mushy piece of fish. Which would make me cry.

Let your salmon soak for about 20 minutes.

Soy-Maple Salmon

Twenty minutes later, pull it out of the marinade, season it with some salt and pepper, and bake it for about 10 minutes, depending on the thickness. That’s it!

I started checking on it after 8 minutes. The last thing you want is overcooked salmon. Take a fork and gently peek in the middle. It needs to flake a little and be slightly pink instead of deep pink. If it’s a little under cooked, it’s okay to pull it out of the oven and let it finish as it rests. It’s so much easier to stick it back in the oven if you have to. Once it’s overcooked, it’s all over. And that would make me cry. Notice a theme of sorrow?

Serve with bread or rice, and a salad or some fruit. The original recipe included directions to make a cauliflower side, which sounded good to me, but I knew my family would veto it. I decided to make one of my crazy salads instead where I combine every salad ingredient I can find in the fridge and top it with bacon. Because everything is better with bacon.

Soy-Maple Salmon

Soy-Maple Salmon

Servings 3


  • 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons real maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon orange juice
  • 3 cloves garlic smashed
  • 3 5-ounce skinless center-cut salmon fillets


  • Preheat the oven to 400F.
  • Mix everything together (except the salmon) with 2 tablespoons of water in a large bowl.
  • Add the salmon and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
  • Coat a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray. Drain the salmon, season with salt and pepper, and place on the baking sheet.
  • Bake for about 8 to 10 minutes, until it's a slight pink in the middle.
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