Flavorful Cumin Crusted Salmon Recipe for Foodies

Welcome to my kitchen, my dear fellow food enthusiasts! As an Israeli chef, I aim to create dishes that balance enticing flavors with healthy ingredients. In this recipe article, I am excited to share with you one of my personal creations – the Cumin Crusted Salmon with Orange Rice Pilaf.

This Middle Easter-inspired dish is a satisfying meal with a refreshing twist. The salmon fillets are encrusted with cumin, paprika, coriander, and pan-fried to tender perfection. Pairing the salmon with orange rice pilaf will take your taste buds on a wild ride – the savory and bittersweet notes from the cumin crusted salmon complemented by the special orange rice pilaf that is infused with butter, veggies, walnuts, and cilantro. Just imagine: each forkful of this magical dish has an explosion of flavors in your mouth!

One of the things I love about this recipe is its versatility. Not only does it hit all the taste buttons, but it’s also low-carb and high-protein for those who are conscious about their diet. Whether you’re cooking for yourself or hosting a dinner party, this cumin-crusted salmon paired with vibrant citrus rice pilaf will be a crowd favorite! So let’s get into the kitchen, grab our aprons, and start cooking!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Cumin Crusted Salmon With Orange Rice Pilaf
Cumin Crusted Salmon With Orange Rice Pilaf

Are you on the lookout for a new salmon recipe to add to your meal rotation? If so, look no further than this cumin crusted salmon with orange rice pilaf recipe. This Middle Eastern inspired dish will transport your taste buds to new heights.

Not only is it incredibly flavorful, but it’s also a nutritious and filling meal that’s perfect for any occasion. It’s packed with omega-3 fatty acids and essential vitamins and minerals found in both the salmon and brown rice.

The cumin crusted salmon creates an irresistible crispy exterior, while the tangy and sweet orange glaze adds a burst of flavor. The nutty and savory rice pilaf, laced with vegetables such as zucchini, carrots, celery, and purple onions, adds the perfect complement to the richness of the salmon.

This recipe is versatile enough to fit any dietary needs – it’s low-carb, gluten-free and can be easily adapted for vegetarians by replacing the salmon fillet with roasted or fried tofu.

What makes this dish truly special is that it’s simple enough to make any day of the week yet impressive enough to serve at dinner parties or special occasions.

So why not try this cumin crusted salmon with orange rice pilaf recipe today? It’s a culinary experience you won’t regret!

Ingredient List

 Crispy outer layer with juicy salmon waiting inside
Crispy outer layer with juicy salmon waiting inside

Salmon fillets: The star of the dish is, of course, the salmon fillets. Choose fresh wild-caught salmon instead of farm-raised to enhance the flavor and nutritional value. You will need four 4-ounce fillets.

Brown rice: I use brown rice for this recipe since it has a better texture and more nutrients than white rice. If you don’t have brown rice, you can substitute it with white or basmati rice.

Vegetables: To add more flavor and nutrition to the dish, use chopped celery, carrot, zucchini, and purple onion.

Spices: The spices used for this recipe are coriander, cumin, paprika, salt, and pepper. The spice blend enhances the taste of fresh salmon in a unique Middle Eastern flavor.

Butter and Olive oil: You will need both ingredients as they serve their own distinct purpose. Butter adds a delicious richness and nutty flavor while olive oil keeps the dish light while adding heart-healthy fats.

Orange: To balance out the richness of the fish and spices, use fresh orange juice and zest to create a sweet-savory glaze on your baked salmon.

Cilantro: Adding fresh herbs such as cilantro brightens up any dish. Use it alongside roasted walnuts for extra crunch and texture.

This ingredient list guarantees that you get the best flavors out of your meal while keeping everything nutritious enough to give you energy for your day!

The Recipe How-To

 Golden and perfectly seasoned, I can almost taste it
Golden and perfectly seasoned, I can almost taste it

Once you have selected the freshest salmon fillets, it’s time to move on to the most delicious stage of all- cooking them! With this recipe, I decided to keep the salmon recipe simple yet packed with Middle Eastern flavors. The blend of cumin, paprika, and coriander add an earthy depth to the taste profile, creating a crave-worthy sensation.

Instructions for Cumin Crusted Salmon
Step 1: Prepare the Spice Mixture

In a small mixing bowl, whisk together 1 teaspoon of cumin, 1 teaspoon of paprika, ¼ teaspoon of coriander, and 1/4 teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper.

Step 2: Coat the Salmon Fillets

Lightly brush 4 salmon fillets (1 1/2 lb.) with a teaspoon of olive oil. Then rub each piece with an equal amount of spice mixture.

Step 3: Bake Your Salmon

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F (200°C). Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper, then place the salmon fillets skin side down on top. Bake for about 12-15 minutes until the salmon is opaque and cooked through.

Instructions for Orange Rice Pilaf

For rice lovers, this is one recipe that will quickly become your go-to meal. This orange rice pilaf perfectly complements salmon’s flavor, thanks to positive health-benefiting ingredients such as carrots, celery, garlic cloves, and cilantro.

Step 1: Cook Your Carrots and Zucchini

In a saucepan over medium heat, add one tablespoon of kosher salt to two cups of water. Once the water starts boiling add one peeled and sliced carrots and one thinly sliced small zucchini. Cook for about five minutes or until they become slightly tender.

Step 2: Sauté Your Vegetables

Add one minced garlic clove, three finely chopped stalks of celery, and half a diced purple onion into a pan with two tablespoons each of olive oil and butter over high heat. Let them sauté for about five minutes or until soft.

Step 3: Cook Your Rice

Stir in one cup of your favorite rice (I recommend basmati rice) along with an additional tablespoon of unsalted butter into the pan until well coated. Add four cups of water along with one tablespoon each of kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper. Bring your mixed dish to boil then reduce heat to low-medium heat and cover tightly.

Step 4: Simmer Until Tender

Cook the rice for around thirty minutes or until tender while periodically stirring with a fork. Once it’s done just fluff up using a fork stir in half a cup chopped fresh cilantro and toasted crushed walnuts.

You won’t regret taking time out to make this recipe because as soon as you take

Substitutions and Variations

 The aroma of cumin elevates the dish to the next level
The aroma of cumin elevates the dish to the next level

Are you looking for ways to switch things up and put your own twist on this recipe? Here are some substitutions and variations that you can try out for a truly unique culinary experience.

Firstly, if you don’t have any salmon fillets on hand or if you’re not a fan of fish, feel free to swap them out for chicken breasts or even tofu. Just adjust the cooking time accordingly.

If you’re looking for a low-carb option, swap out the rice pilaf for some cauliflower rice instead.

You can also mix up the spices used in the cumin crust by adding chili powder, garlic powder, or a hint of cinnamon for a Middle Eastern-inspired flavor.

For a sweet and savory twist, try adding some dried fruit or chopped walnuts to the rice pilaf. Or, you could caramelize some onions to add an extra layer of flavor.

If you want to make this recipe even more citrusy, add some lemon zest to the cumin crust or sprinkle some extra orange zest over the finished dish.

And if you’re someone who loves sauce with their protein, why not try making a lemon butter sauce to pour over your baked salmon? Simply melt some butter in a small pan and whisk in some lemon juice and grated lemon peel. Drizzle it over your cumin-crusted salmon and enjoy!

With all these possibilities, you can customize this recipe to suit your taste preferences and dietary needs while still savoring the delicious flavors of orange rice pilaf and succulent crusted salmon.

Serving and Pairing

 Making a statement on the plate, while still keeping it simple
Making a statement on the plate, while still keeping it simple

When it comes to serving and pairing this delicious Cumin Crusted Salmon with Orange Rice Pilaf recipe, it’s all about balance and harmony. The flavors in this dish are bright and bold, featuring Middle Eastern spices such as cumin and paprika, which bring a smoky and earthy flavor to the salmon. Meanwhile, the sweet and citrusy orange rice pilaf accentuates the juicy salmon in a sweet-savory way.

To balance the flavors of this dish, pair it with something refreshing like a crisp green salad or roasted zucchini. You can even cook some garlic cloves, carrots, celery and purple onion on the side for a boost of vegetables. A handful of walnuts or fresh cilantro can add crunch and freshness to your plate.

As for beverages, artful wine pairing is part etiquette, part science, but taste preferences reign supreme. A white wine such as Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio can offer crispness and acidity which complements the citrus in the dish. If you prefer reds over whites, opt for a lighter-bodied red like Pinot Noir or Beaujolais.

A good side dish can always take your meal to the next level! This Cumin Crusted Salmon with Orange Rice Pilaf is versatile enough to be enjoyed by itself or served along with other dishes. Whether you’re on the hunt for new flavors or trying something new for dinner tonight, this recipe is sure to delight your taste buds with its complex range of flavors!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

Salmon is a delightful dish that should be enjoyed as fresh as possible. However, sometimes you may not have time to prepare the entire dish on the day of serving, but fear not! This cumin crusted salmon with orange rice pilaf recipe demands little effort in advance preparation, perfect for a busy weeknight meal.

Make-Ahead: To save time, you can cook the rice pilaf up to two days before you plan to serve it. Store it in a covered container in the refrigerator and reheat on the stove using heatproof steam bags or in the microwave until fully heated through.

Storing: Cooked salmon can be stored for up to two days in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Simply add lemon wedges or lemon butter to the container before sealing to keep your baked salmon fresh and moist.

Reheating: When reheating, remember to keep the oven temperature low and wrap the salmon tightly in foil to retain its moisture. Reheat in the oven for around 10-15 minutes at 300°F (150°C), depending on how thick your salmon fillets are.

If you want to go an extra mile with storing and reheating your salmon, try adding a sweet savory ginger glaze on top of your salmon fillet before storing. Mix minced ginger, honey, soy sauce, and chili lime seasoning together in equal parts, brush over your cooked salmon fillets and refrigerate them. Reheat your glazed salmon fillets in the oven with an additional touch of orange peel and lemon butter sauce for a new twist on this recipe.

Enjoy this delicious cumin crusted salmon with orange rice pilaf any day of the week by following these simple suggestions for make-ahead preparation, storage and reheating.

Tips for Perfect Results

To ensure that your cumin crusted salmon with orange rice pilaf is top-notch, here are some tips to help you nail it:

First, when cooking the rice, be sure to let it rest for at least five minutes before fluffing it up. This will help the grains separate and give you a light and fluffy rice pilaf.

Secondly, pat dry the salmon fillets before seasoning them. This will prevent excess moisture from diluting the spices and create a crispier texture when baking.

Thirdly, don’t overcook the salmon. It is best to use a meat thermometer to monitor its internal temperature, cook it until it reaches 145°F (63°C), and then remove it from the oven immediately. Doing this will prevent it from being dry and instead retain its moisture for a tender and succulent salmon.

In addition, sprinkle some fresh cilantro or chopped walnuts over the top of the finished dish to add complexity and texture.

Finally, do not be afraid to make any adjustions or modifications based on your personal preference. You can easily swap out vegetables like zucchinis or carrots for other greens like asparagus or even kale. Additionally, you can try using different types of fish such as halibut, trout, or cod instead of salmon; each type of fish adds its unique flavor profile.

By following these tips and adding your twist to the recipe, you are guaranteed to create a delicious and exclusive masterpiece in your kitchen!

Bottom Line

Now that you have all the tools to create this delicious Cumin Crusted Salmon with Orange Rice Pilaf, there’s only one thing left to do: try it for yourself! You’ll love the sweet and savory flavors that complement each other so perfectly in every bite. Remember, don’t be afraid to get creative with this recipe – make it your own by trying different flavor combinations and adding your own personal touch.

Finally, I urge you to take advantage of the many health benefits that salmon has to offer. It’s a great source of protein and essential omega-3 fatty acids, which are important for heart health and brain function. Plus, by using brown rice instead of white rice, you’re getting even more nutritional value in every serving.

So go ahead and give this recipe a try – I guarantee you won’t regret it. Whether you’re looking for a quick dinner option or an impressive meal to serve guests, this Cumin Crusted Salmon with Orange Rice Pilaf is sure to become a new favorite in your recipe collection.

Cumin Crusted Salmon With Orange Rice Pilaf

Cumin Crusted Salmon With Orange Rice Pilaf Recipe

An entry in Dining on a Dollar. The salmon is very flavorful and is accented beautifully with the delicate flavors of the rice. Serve this was a side salad for a delicious and healthy meal.
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Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Seafood
Calories 479.7 kcal



  • 4 (4 ounce) salmon fillets
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped (optional)

Rice Pilaf

  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 large purple onion, diced
  • 1/4 cup celery, diced
  • 1 medium carrot, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, mined
  • 1 medium zucchini, diced
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas, rinsed
  • 1 orange
  • salt and pepper


  • Wash salmon fillets and pat dry. In a small dish mix together the cumin through black pepper. Rub over salmon fillets and allow to rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
  • Rinse the rice well under cold running water. In a large pot, bring 12 cups of water to a boil, add in rice, stir once and boil uncovered for 30 minutes. Place a stainer in the sink and pour rice into a stainer. Allow to drain for 10 seconds. Return to the pot, turn off heat source, cover and let rice steam for 10 minutes.
  • In a small dry skillet, lightly toast the walnuts. Set aside.
  • While rice is steaming, warm the olive oil and butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add in onion, celery and carrot. Cook until onion is wilted. Cover and reduce heat to low. Allow to cook for 4 to 5 minutes or until carrot is barely tender. Add in garlic and zucchini. Cook until zucchini is crisp tender stirring frequently.
  • When rice is done add to vegetable mixture. Thoroughly combine vegetables with steamed rice. Stir in peas. Cover and allow to rest for a few minutes.
  • Zest orange then remove peel. Cut and section the orange. Cut sections into thirds if large or into half for smaller sections. Add orange zest and sections to rice mixture along with toasted walnuts. Keep warm while grilling the salmon.
  • Grill salmon over medium heat until it flakes; approximately 5 to 8 minutes per side. Spoon the rice pilaf onto serving plate and top with grilled salmon. Garnish each serving with fresh cilantro if desired.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 316gCalories: 479.7kcalCarbohydrates: 49.4gProtein: 30.5gFat: 18.2gSaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 59.2mgSodium: 264.6mgFiber: 5.5gSugar: 7.5g
Keyword < 4 Hours, Low Cholesterol
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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