Crispy Skin Salmon Piccata

Crispy Skin Salmon Piccata is made by pan-frying fresh salmon until the flesh is tender and the skin is perfectly crispy, then topping it with a bright, lemony, buttery piccata sauce.

Crispy Skin Salmon Piccata |

I started really liking fish after I graduated from Florida State.  I started working at a cafe right on the beach and ate lunch there most days.  Of course, being at the beach and all, there was a ton of fish on the menu.  I'd have tuna, mahi mahi, and tilapia all the time, but for some reason, I never ordered salmon.

Not sure why, because salmon is super yummy.

Crispy Skin Salmon Piccata from The Two Bite Club

We don't eat fish at home very often because my husband is not really a fan.  Boo.

I really should buy it anyway because the kids like it, too!  He can eat something else, right?  Ah, but I really dislike making two meals at one time.  I'm a "you eat what I make or you don't eat" kind of mom, which has actually worked out for me because my kids will eat most anything.

I'll keep trying to get my man to try fish, I suppose!  Maybe one day he'll warm up to it.  Here's to hoping!

Crispy Skin Salmon Piccata made with fresh salmon and a lemon butter sauce with capers and garlic.

This Mother's Day he surprised me with a nice fresh salmon fillet, which I thought was incredibly thoughtful considering his general dislike for all things fish.

I was inspired to make this Salmon Piccata when I saw a half a jar of capers in the fridge.  I knew the buttery lemon sauce with the capers would be the perfect accompaniment for salmon.  And it was!  The crispy skin was a great textural contrast to the soft fish and I'm a sucker for crispy skin anything!

I like to serve this fish alongside steamed veggies and a garden salad.  Yum!

Crispy Skin Salmon Piccata

Print Friendly and PDF    

  • 2-3  skin-on fresh salmon fillets
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 5 tbsps butter, split
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/4 cup capers

  1. Pat dry both sides of the salmon with paper towels and remove any bones.
  2. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering.  Reduce the heat to medium and add the salmon to the pan, skin side down.  Pan-fry for 6 minutes, pressing down on the salmon with a spatula for the first few minutes to reduce curling.  Flip and cook for 1 more minute, or until the temperature is 120 degrees.  Remove to a paper towel-lined plate and loosely cover to keep warm.
  3. Pour the oil out of the pan.  Add 1 tbsp of oil to the pan until foamy.  Add the garlic to the butter and cook for 1 minute. 
  4. Add the lemon juice, chicken broth, salt and pepper to the pan.  Simmer for 5 minutes, or until reduced by half.  Add the capers to the pan and cook for 1 minute more.  Add the remaining butter to the pan 1 tbsp at a time until melted into the sauce.  
  5. Spoon the sauce over the fish and serve immediately.

  • When frying the salmon, resist the urge to flip the salmon early.  When it's ready to flip, the salmon should release from the pan fairly easily and be nice and crispy.  Be careful the fillet doesn't slide right off the skin when you're flipping it!
  • For an extra flavor boost, you can sub some or all of the chicken broth with white wine.