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Baked Salmon with Steamed Vegetables and Quinoa Recipe

by AI Chef
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Baked Salmon with Steamed Vegetables and Quinoa recipe

Welcome to a delightful dinner recipe that not only tantalizes your taste buds but also nourishes your body – Baked Salmon with Steamed Vegetables and Quinoa. This meal is a beautiful balance of flavors, textures, and nutrients, making it a perfect dinner option for health-conscious individuals and families alike.

A balanced dinner is crucial for maintaining overall health and wellness. It’s the final meal of the day, and it should provide you with the nutrients your body needs to repair, grow, and function properly. Including a variety of foods, especially lean proteins, whole grains, and vegetables, can help ensure that you’re getting a mix of nutrients.

Salmon is a powerhouse of nutrition. It is rich in high-quality protein and is one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which are known for their heart health benefits. Omega-3s are also believed to have anti-inflammatory properties and are essential for brain health.

Salmon Fillet with Ingredients

The steamed vegetables in this dish add a burst of color, texture, and, most importantly, vitamins and minerals. Vegetables are low in calories but high in fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants. Incorporating a variety of vegetables in your diet can help reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

Quinoa, often considered a superfood, is the cherry on top of this nutritious meal. It is a complete protein, meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids. It’s also high in fiber, B vitamins, iron, and various minerals. Additionally, quinoa is gluten-free, making it an excellent choice for those with gluten sensitivities or celiac disease.

In this recipe, we bring together the succulent and flavorful baked salmon, the freshness and crunch of steamed vegetables, and the nutty and fluffy quinoa to create a dinner that’s not just delicious but also wonderfully wholesome. Let’s dive into the recipe!

Fresh, colorful vegetables like broccoli, carrots, bell peppers, and zucchini in a steamer basket over a pot of boiling water.

Equipment/Tools Needed

  • Baking dish or tray
  • Parchment paper or aluminum foil
  • Steamer or pot with a steamer insert
  • Medium saucepan with a lid (for cooking quinoa)
  • Cutting board
  • Knife
  • Mixing bowls
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • A fork (for fluffing quinoa)
  • Spatula or tongs (for handling salmon and vegetables)
  • Zester or grater (if using lemon zest or Parmesan cheese)
Cooking Quinoa
baked salmon

Baked Salmon with Steamed Vegetables and Quinoa

Rating: 5.0/5
( 1 voted )
Serves: 2 Prep Time: Cooking Time: Nutrition facts: 1150 calories 50g fat

Ingredients

For the Baked Salmon:

  • Salmon fillet: 1 large piece (about 8 ounces)
  • Olive oil: 1 tablespoon
  • Lemon: 1, half sliced and half for juice
  • Fresh dill: 1 tablespoon, chopped
  • Garlic: 2 cloves, minced
  • Salt: 1/2 teaspoon
  • Black pepper: 1/4 teaspoon

For the Steamed Vegetables:

  • Broccoli: 1 cup, cut into florets
  • Carrots: 1 cup, sliced
  • Bell pepper: 1, sliced
  • Zucchini: 1 small, sliced
  • Olive oil: 1 tablespoon (optional, for flavor)
  • Salt: 1/4 teaspoon
  • Black pepper: 1/4 teaspoon

For the Quinoa:

  • Quinoa: 1 cup, uncooked
  • Water or broth: 2 cups
  • Olive oil: 1 tablespoon (optional, for flavor)
  • Salt: 1/4 teaspoon

Optional Ingredients for Additional Flavor:

  • Grated Parmesan cheese: 2 tablespoons (for garnish)
  • Fresh parsley: 1 tablespoon, chopped (for garnish)
  • Crushed red pepper flakes: a pinch (for a spicy kick)

Instructions

Preparing and Cooking the Baked Salmon:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Place the salmon fillet on a baking dish lined with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
  3. In a small bowl, mix together the olive oil, juice from half a lemon, chopped dill, minced garlic, salt, and black pepper.
  4. Brush the olive oil mixture over the salmon fillet evenly.
  5. Place the lemon slices on top of the salmon.
  6. Bake in the preheated oven for 12-15 minutes, or until the salmon is cooked through and flakes easily with a fork. Be careful not to overcook as salmon can dry out quickly.

Steaming the Vegetables:

  1. While the salmon is baking, bring about an inch of water to a boil in a pot with a steamer insert or use a standalone steamer.
  2. Place the broccoli, carrots, bell pepper, and zucchini in the steamer.
  3. Cover and steam for 5-7 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender but still crisp.
  4. If using, toss the steamed vegetables with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, salt, and pepper for added flavor.

Cooking the Quinoa:

  1. Rinse the quinoa under cold water to remove any bitterness.
  2. In a medium saucepan, bring 2 cups of water or broth to a boil.
  3. Add the quinoa, olive oil (if using), and salt, and reduce the heat to low.
  4. Cover and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until the quinoa has absorbed all the water and is cooked through.
  5. Remove from heat and let the quinoa sit, covered, for 5 minutes. Then, fluff it with a fork.

Assembling the Dish:

  1. On a plate, create a bed of quinoa.
  2. Place the baked salmon on top of the quinoa.
  3. Arrange the steamed vegetables around the salmon.
  4. Optional: Garnish with grated Parmesan cheese, fresh parsley, and a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes for an extra kick.
  5. Serve immediately and enjoy your nutritious and delicious Baked Salmon with Steamed Vegetables and Quinoa!

Expert Tips

Recommendations for the Best Type of Salmon to Use:

  • Wild-caught salmon is generally considered to have a richer flavor and higher nutritional content compared to farm-raised salmon. However, both can be used in this recipe.
  • Among the types of salmon, sockeye and coho salmon are excellent choices for baking due to their rich flavor and firm texture.

Suggestions on Alternative Vegetables:

  • Feel free to use any vegetables that you prefer or have on hand. Some good alternatives to the ones in this recipe are green beans, cauliflower, asparagus, or spinach.
  • Seasonal vegetables are always a good option as they tend to be fresher and more flavorful.

Tips on Cooking Quinoa Perfectly:

  • Make sure to rinse quinoa thoroughly before cooking to remove its natural coating, called saponin, which can make it taste bitter.
  • Use a 2:1 ratio of liquid to quinoa for the best texture.
  • After quinoa is cooked, let it sit covered for 5 minutes before fluffing. This allows the quinoa to steam and become more fluffy.

Serving Suggestions:

  • Serve the dish with a wedge of lemon on the side for an extra zing.
  • A light drizzle of high-quality extra virgin olive oil over the dish just before serving can enhance the flavors.
  • Pair the dish with a glass of white wine such as Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio for a more sophisticated dining experience.

Nutritional Information

This is an approximate nutritional content per serving of Baked Salmon with Steamed Vegetables and Quinoa:

  • Calories: 1150
  • Protein: 65g
  • Fat: 50g
  • Saturated Fat: 9g
  • Carbohydrates: 90g
  • Fiber: 10g
  • Sugars: 8g
  • Vitamin A: 115% of the daily value
  • Vitamin C: 130% of the daily value
  • Vitamin D: 75% of the daily value (from salmon)
  • Iron: 45% of the daily value
  • Calcium: 15% of the daily value
  • Omega-3 fatty acids: Approximately 2g (mainly from salmon)

This dish is rich in essential vitamins, minerals, and omega-3 fatty acids. It’s a great option for a balanced and hearty meal that supports heart and brain health. Enjoy!

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