Pesto Salmon with Burst Tomatoes

published Jul 12, 2021
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Pesto Salmon with Burst Tomatoes

Your favorite store-bought pesto jazzes up salmon fillets in this flavor-packed skillet dinner.

Serves4

Prep7 minutes to 10 minutes

Cook7 minutes to 11 minutes

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Credit: Photo: Ghazalle Badiozamani; Food Styling: Jesse Szewczyk

This five-ingredient skillet dinner is about as fast and fancy as they come. Sear cherry tomatoes with tender shallots until the tomatoes release their sweet juices, then nestle pesto-slathered salmon fillets on top. The result is a bright, bold meal that’s guaranteed to be a weeknight win.

Credit: Photo: Ghazalle Badiozamani; Food Styling: Jesse Szewczyk

The Very Best Pesto for This Quick Skillet Dinner

Since pesto is the driving force of flavor here, you’ll want to use a great-tasting one. I’ve tried just about every grocery store brand, and my preferred choice is Gotham Greens. It’s more expensive than others but would truly make an Italian nonna proud. Better yet, if you have basil overflowing in your garden, consider making a batch of your own pesto and freezing it so you can reach for it whenever you need.

Pesto Salmon with Burst Tomatoes

Your favorite store-bought pesto jazzes up salmon fillets in this flavor-packed skillet dinner.

Prep time 7 minutes to 10 minutes

Cook time 7 minutes to 11 minutes

Serves 4

Nutritional Info

Ingredients

  • 1 pound

    cherry or grape tomatoes (about 3 cups)

  • 1

    medium shallot

  • 4

    (6-ounce) skin-on salmon fillets

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons

    kosher salt, divided

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    freshly ground black pepper, divided

  • 4 tablespoons

    olive oil, divided

  • 1/4 cup

    basil pesto, store-bought or homemade, divided

Instructions

  1. Halve 1 pound cherry or grape tomatoes. Dice 1 medium shallot. Pat 4 salmon fillets dry with paper towels, then season on both sides with 1 teaspoon of the kosher salt and 1/4 teaspoon of the black pepper.

  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet with a lid over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the salmon skin-side up and sear until golden-brown on the bottom, about 4 minutes.

  3. Transfer the salmon skin-side down to a plate (it will not be cooked through). Add the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil to the pan. Add the tomatoes and shallot, season with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes begin to blister and burst, 1 to 2 minutes.

  4. Reduce the heat to medium and return the salmon skin-side down to the pan, nestling it into the tomatoes. Spread 1/4 cup basil pesto onto the salmon with the back of a spoon. Cover and cook the salmon to desired doneness, 2 to 5 minutes depending on the thickness of the fillets. An instant-read thermometer inserted 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.

Recipe Notes

Storage: Leftovers can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 days.