Recipe: Easy, Healthy Greek Salmon Salad
One of the easiest equations for a wholesome meal is vegetables + salmon. Both are packed with nutrients like protein, healthy fats, and fiber that just make you feel good with every single bite, and this simple recipe is proof. All the ingredients of a classic Greek salad — crisp lettuce, juicy tomatoes, refreshing cucumbers, and briny olives and feta — join forces with baked salmon fillets to make for a fresh dinner that's easy to love. What's even easier to love? It's on the table in under 25 minutes.
A Tangy Vinaigrette That Doubles as a Marinade
There are a number of smart things going on in this recipe that make it stand out from other Greek salads, including using butter lettuce instead of romaine, and soaking the raw onion in cold water to tame its sharp bite. But my favorite part of this recipe is the vinaigrette.
The tangy oregano vinaigrette not only dresses the salad, but it also acts as a quick marinade for the salmon. Infusing the fillets with the flavor of the vinaigrette boosts their flavor and marries them to the salad. It also helps ensure they won't dry out when baked. To take full advantage of this smart hack, the salmon marinates in the vinaigrette while the oven heats up, which means no added time on your end, but a big payoff in flavor.
Once you pop the salmon in the oven, you can use the 10 minutes it takes to cook to assemble the salad. That way, when it's ready, all you have to do is add it to your bowl.
Prep time: 10 minutes to 15 minutes ; cooking time: 8 minutes to 10 minutes
red wine vinegar
freshly squeezed lemon juice (from 1 lemon)
freshly ground black pepper
small red onion, thinly sliced
(6-ounce) salmon fillets, skin removed
medium heads butter lettuce, such as Boston or Bibb (about 1 pound), torn into bite-sized pieces
medium tomatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces
medium English cucumber, quartered lengthwise, then cut into 1/2-inch pieces
pitted kalamata olives, halved lengthwise
feta cheese, crumbled (about 1 cup)
Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 425°F. While the oven heats, marinate the salmon and soak the onions (instructions below).
Whisk the olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, garlic, oregano, salt, and pepper together in large bowl. Transfer 3 tablespoons of the vinaigrette to a baking dish large enough to hold all the pieces of salmon in one layer. Add the salmon, turning them over gently a few times to evenly coat in the vinaigrette. Cover and refrigerate. Place the onion and water in a small bowl and set aside for 10 minutes to make the onion less potent. Drain and discard the liquid.
Uncover the salmon and roast until it is cooked through and flakes easily, 8 to 12 minutes. An instant-read thermometer into the middle of the thickest fillet should register 120°F to 130°F for medium-rare, or 135°F to 145°F if you prefer it more well-done. Total cook time will depend on the thickness of salmon, based on the thickest part of the fillet. Meanwhile, compose the salad.
Add the lettuce, tomato, cucumber, olives, and drained red onion to the bowl of vinaigrette and toss to evenly coat. Divide between 4 plates or shallow bowls. When the salmon is ready, place 1 fillet on top of each salad. Sprinkle with the feta and serve immediately.
Make ahead: The vinaigrette can be made a few days in advance and stored in the refrigerator. Let come to room temperature before serving. The onion can be soaked and drained up to 1 day ahead.