This Air Fryer Teriyaki Salmon is delicious, easy, and healthy. Fresh salmon is placed in a quick teriyaki marinade and air fried to perfection. Slightly crispy on the outside with a sweet glaze, this recipe only takes 10 minutes to cook.
Why Make Teriyaki Salmon in an Air Fryer?
One of my favorite recipes, I love this because it comes out perfectly cooked every single time. The air fryer never fails! I use an Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid which is perfect for serving 2-3 people and doesn't take up a ton of space. You'll love this teriyaki salmon air fryer recipe because:
- It takes about 10 minutes to cook and the marinating time is quick - only 30 minutes at the most.
- This is a soy-free teriyaki recipe so it works for a migraine diet, whole30, and paleo diets as well as gluten free.
- Air frying salmon is so much better than baked. It never drys the fish out and gets the perfect texture every time. It's foolproof!
- This recipe is healthy but has a ton of flavor. It's the perfect mixture of sweet and savory.
- Salmon is high in omega-3's which have been shown to improve migraine days, and the other ingredients pack some anti-inflammatory power. It's a great recipe for your brain health!
Which Air Fryer is Best?
Choosing an air fryer depends on the size of your family and how many people you typically cook for. Here are a few options that may work for you.
Ninja Air Fryer - A very popular air fryer, this comes in 4 quart or a dual, which cooks in two separate baskets at the same time. The XL version comes with a 5.5 quart basket, good for a large family. A 4 quart costs about $99.
Philips- Philips air fryers are available in a lot of sizes and are better for a bigger family as well. They tend to have the best reviews as far as reliability, but are more expensive. A 4 quart air fryer costs about $150.
Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid - This is helpful for a family of 1-2 people who are looking to save space in the kitchen. While the air fryer lid is large, it fits on top of an instant pot, and you can usually store it this way as well. The downside is it’s challenging to cook food for a large amount of people and the lower basket does not cook as well as the top basket. However, it is the least expensive at roughly $60-70.
Just 6 main ingredients are needed for this teriyaki salmon air fryer recipe.
- Salmon Fillets - Fresh, center cut salmon fillets are best. I like farmed salmon here for the mild, rich flavor that compliments the teriyaki marinade nicely, but choose your favorite type! They just need to be fresh or fully defrosted for these cooking times.
- Coconut Aminos - Coconut aminos make this teriyaki marinade soy-free, but also give a great sweetness to it. No added sugar needed! I used The New Primal Noble Made for this recipe, which was found at Whole Foods. For a substitute to coconut aminos, check out the my Healthy Egg Roll Bowl post.
- Ginger and Garlic - Essential flavors that also make this a great anti-inflammatory meal.
- Toasted Sesame Oil - Essential for balancing the sweetness of the coconut aminos, it adds some depth of flavor and can be found in the oil section or ethnic food section at the grocery store.
- Cornstarch - Needed to thicken the teriyaki sauce, this keeps the recipe gluten free.
Optional toasted sesame seeds and sliced scallions make a lovely presentation, but are not essential to the overall flavor.
Step by Step Process
Step 1: Sauté the garlic. Add the toasted sesame oil to a medium pan with minced garlic, and turn to medium heat, stirring often till softened and fragrant - about 1 minute.
Step 2: Add cornstarch. Whisk in cornstarch till a smooth slurry forms.
Step 3: Make the teriyaki sauce. Stir in coconut aminos and ginger. Whisk together the teriyaki sauce ingredients in a medium pan or pot and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Simmer for 2-3 minutes until thickened, then remove from heat and set aside to cool. To hurry up the process, stick it in the fridge for a few minutes.
Step 4: Marinate the salmon in teriyaki. Meanwhile pat the salmon fillets dry with a paper towel. Pour about ¾ of the teriyaki sauce into a shallow dish and place the salmon skin side up, with the meat in the marinade. Don't throw out the marinade after you remove the fish, you'll use some of the leftovers to brush the fish with later.
Step 5: Place salmon fillets in air fryer. Preheat the air fryer to 400 degrees, spray the bottom with oil, and place the salmon fillets skin side down. Air fry for 7 minutes, then quickly brush the top of the fillets with some of the remaining marinade. Cook another 3 minutes. This should cook the fish to a really nice medium.
Step 6: Finish the teriyaki salmon. Remove the salmon from the air fryer and plate with side dishes. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and sliced scallions, if desired, and serve with a small side of the ¼ leftover teriyaki sauce, if anyone wants a little extra.
- The 10 minute cook time is for fairly thick salmon fillets (almost 2"). Adjust to more or less depending on the side of your salmon, as well as how quickly your air fryer cooks.
- Salmon can break apart easily trying to remove it from the air fryer basket. Tongs and a spatula can help, as well as an extra set of hands.
Can I Make Teriyaki Salmon without an Air Fryer?
Don't worry if you don't have an air fryer for this recipe! My pan-fried teriyaki salmon recipe will meet your needs without an extra kitchen appliance. However, they are different in texture!
How to Store
Allow salmon to cool and place in an airtight container for storage in the refrigerator up to 3 days. I do not recommend freezing this recipe.
To reheat - Microwave salmon, covered with a paper towel, for 30 second intervals until just warmed through.
Side Dish Ideas
This salmon teriyaki air fryer recipe pairs well with brown or white rice. I like to get the microwavable packets from Trader Joe's to make a super fast meal. Quinoa would also work well for a higher protein addition.
Frequently Asked Questions
Usually between 9-10 minutes at 400 degrees F is perfect. For a thicker fillet that is 1 inch plus, choose 10 minutes and for a thinner - stay around 8-9 minutes.
No! This recipe does not require you to flip it and can be used with skin on salmon. The skin side will be on the bottom of the air fryer basket so you can brush the marinade on top of the fish.
Yes! I recommend setting the air fryer to 400 degrees F just a few minutes before you begin cooking. Air fryers heat up really fast so it doesn't need to be done super far in advance.
For this particular recipe I recommend defrosted salmon, especially since you want the marinade to really soak into the fish for extra flavor. But for air fryer salmon in general, it just takes a longer cook time of about 13-15 minutes!
Salmon and Air Fryer Recipes
For more salmon recipes like this teriyaki salmon air fryer, check out these posts!
And for more air fryer recipes, you'll love these!
Air Fryer Teriyaki Salmon
- 1 Air fryer or Air fryer lid
- ½ cup coconut aminos
- 1½ teaspoons cornstarch
- 1½ teaspoons toasted sesame oil
- 2 large garlic cloves, minced
- 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated
- 4 4-6oz salmon fillets
- oil spray
- kosher salt
- optional: toasted sesame seeds and sliced green onion
- Add the toasted sesame oil to a medium pan with minced garlic, and turn to medium heat, stirring often till softened and fragrant - about 1 minute.Whisk in cornstarch till a smooth slurry forms.Stir in coconut aminos and ginger. Whisk together the teriyaki sauce ingredients in a medium pan or pot and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Simmer for 2-3 minutes until thickened, then remove from heat and set aside to cool. To hurry up the process, stick it in the fridge for a few minutes.
- Pat the salmon fillets dry with paper towels. Transfer about ¾ of the teriyaki sauce to a shallow dish and place the salmon skin side up, with the meat in the sauce. Soak for up to 30 minutes.
- Preheat the air fryer to 400 degrees F. Spray the inner container with oil and place the salmon skin side down. Sprinkle kosher salt over the top of the fillets and cook for 7 minutes, then remove the air fryer top to quickly brush remaining teriyaki sauce over the tops of salmon. Cook another 2-3 minutes until salmon is cooked through to medium (125-130 degrees F).
- Carefully lift the salmon from the air fryer basket using tongs on the sides and sliding a spatula underneath the fillet. Serve warm, sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds and green onion, if desired.
- There should not be a lot of teriyaki sauce with this recipe, just enough to soak the fillets and baste. If you'd like a lot extra for dipping, double the recipe for the sauce.
- I used Noble Made Coconut Aminos by The New Primal. Coconut aminos are lower in sodium than traditional soy sauce and also gluten free. They are considered "migraine friendly". Soy sauce can be substituted for this recipe, but you will need to add sugar to sweeten the mixture. This recipe is sugar free as written (except natural sugars).
- Teriyaki salmon will keep in the fridge 2-3 days depending on the freshness of salmon.