Best Grilled Salmon Recipe and Marinade

This is the best grilled salmon recipe! The marinade makes the fish so flavorful and it’s ridiculously easy to make! It’s going to become your go-to salmon recipe!

This is the best grilled salmon recipe! The marinade makes the fish so flavorful and it's ridiculously easy to make! It's going to become your go-to salmon recipe!

I’m a creature of habit…I get stuck in ruts. Many people, after they find out about Rachel Cooks, have made comments about how well we must eat…gourmet food every night!

It’s not exactly the case. I have my go-to recipes and more often than not, I’m whipping up something we’ve had before and something that takes 30 minutes or less to make. Sure, I love to develop new recipes to share with you guys, but our life is just as busy as anyone else’s, so sometimes it’s just a matter of speed and making something everyone likes. Well, everyone except N because that kid still likes NOTHING.

We have salmon about every other week and my lemon salmon with dill recipe is my go-to. Ben loves it, I like it, it’s healthy and it’s so easy. We both LOVED the walnut crusted salmon but since the kids are allergic to tree nuts, that’s obviously not a recipe that’s in regular rotation.

I’ve been wanting to try out a new salmon recipe on the grill, so when Traeger sent me one of their beautiful grills (which I instantly fell in love with…seriously…I think Ben is a little jealous), salmon had to happen.

Traeger Grill Close Up Photo

I’m antsy and can’t wait until the end of the post to share the verdict…we loved this salmon! We’re deeming it the best grilled salmon recipe – the marinade is irresistible, the salmon stays so moist (sorry for using that word, but it does!), and the Traeger grill gives it the most amazing flavor.

So you might be wondering what the heck a Traeger is and what is so special about it. Besides a dream come true, it’s also a wood pellet grill. I’m sure you’re familiar with grills that run on gas or charcoal. This one is powered by wood pellets.

What’s so great about that? F-L-A-V-O-R. Not only does the wood impart a mouthwatering smoked flavor, but it also gives you versatility. You can choose Apple wood (great for pork!), Hickory, Mesquite, Pecan, Cherry, Maple, or an all-purpose and less flavorful (but still wonderful!) wood like Alder – you can even bake in the grill using a wood like Alder. Traeger also offers some fun wood pellet blends…I just went to their website and saw that they have a blend inspired by Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy! It’s a blend of alder, maple, and citrus, and I need to try it yesterday. I’m guessing the citrus in it would be phenomenal with fish!

This is the best grilled salmon recipe! The marinade makes the fish so flavorful and it's ridiculously easy to make! It's going to become your go-to salmon recipe!

So far on my Traeger I’ve made ribs, pulled pork (twice!), this salmon (three times!), chicken using this honey mustard chicken marinade, and pizza. Honestly you guys, Ben and I both blown away by how good everything tastes on this grill. It’s an investment compared to your typical gas or charcoal grill, but after trying it, I’d totally spend the money on it myself.

Another great thing about a Traeger grill is that it has a thermostat so you don’t have to babysit it. The pork shoulder for the pulled pork needed to cook slowly for over 16 hours, so it was great to know that it was being kept at the correct temperature while I slept!

Now, I will say, you don’t need a Traeger grill to make this salmon recipe, but it will take the flavor to the next level.

This is the best grilled salmon recipe! The marinade makes the fish so flavorful and it's ridiculously easy to make! It's going to become your go-to salmon recipe!

Best Grilled Salmon Recipe Marinade Ingredients:

This salmon marinade is a flavor powerhouse and you don’t have to let the salmon soak in it for very long at all! In fact, I usually just marinate it while I’m preheating my grill and that gives this salmon all the flavor it needs. Here’s what’s in the marinade!

  • Soy Sauce (I like to use the reduced sodium variety)
  • Olive Oil
  • Fresh Ginger
  • Garlic
  • Dark Brown Sugar

This marinade is so flavorful and so simple to make. It’s the perfect sweet and savory combination and goes great with the grilled salmon.

This is the best grilled salmon recipe! The marinade makes the fish so flavorful and it's ridiculously easy to make! It's going to become your go-to salmon recipe!

My best tip for Grilling Salmon:

Grilling salmon can be a little tricky! The flaky fish has the tendency to fall apart on the grill if you’re not careful. My best tip is to start cooking it skin side up. Sear for 3-4 minutes to get those beautiful grill marks on your fish before carefully flipping and cooking the remainder of the time skin side down. This allows you to have the amazing flavor the grill imparts without your fish falling through the grates. No one wins in that situation! Use this method and you’ll have 100% success with this best grilled salmon recipe!

If you’re looking for more salmon recipe, this baked salmon is one of my absolute faves! Only 5 ingredients!

Best Grilled Salmon Recipe and Marinade

Best Grilled Salmon Recipe and Marinade

Yield: 4-6 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

This is the best grilled salmon recipe! The marinade makes the fish so flavorful and it's ridiculously easy to make! It's going to become your go-to salmon recipe!


  • 1/2 cup reduced sodium soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 1-inch section of fresh ginger root, grated
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated
  • 2 pounds salmon, cut into fillets


  1. Mix together marinade ingredients in a baking dish: soy sauce, olive oil, brown sugar, ginger, and garlic. Add salmon fillets skin side up into the marinade and place in the fridge for 15-45 minutes.
  2. When ready to grill, start your Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open until you see smoke appear (takes 3-5 minutes). Set the temperature to 350°F and preheat with the lid closed for 10-15 minutes.
  3. Remove salmon from marinade and place skin side up on grill. Cover and cook for 4 minutes. Flip carefully using a spatula. Cook for 20-25 minutes longer until fish is flaky. Serve immediately.


  • You can halve this recipe to serve 2-3 people.
  • If you don't have a Traeger grill, this can be prepared on a gas or charcoal grill over medium heat (350°F) as directed in recipe.
  • This salmon is great leftover - I love to flake the cold salmon on a leafy green salad.
  • Nutrition information calculated for only half of the marinade since much of it is discarded.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 262 Total Fat: 6g Saturated Fat: 1g Cholesterol: 60mg Sodium: 701mg Carbohydrates: 6g Fiber: 1g Sugar: 3g Protein: 29g sometimes provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as they are not calculated by a registered dietician. Please consult a medical professional for any specific nutrition, diet, or allergy advice.
Verdict: Obsessed. The flavor of this salmon is out of this world, you guys! You have to try it. If you try it, make sure to share it on Instagram tagging #RachelCooks and let me know if you think it’s the best grilled salmon recipe you’ve ever tried!
Husband’s take: Ben loves my lemon and dill salmon so much, so I’m always scared to try out new salmon recipes on him. He LOVED this. We both couldn’t believe how juicy and flavorful this salmon was. It’s definitely one of our new favorites.
Changes I would make: None at all! If you like it a little spicy, try adding red pepper flakes or some hot sauce to the marinade.
Difficulty: So easy!

Disclosure: Traeger sent me a grill to try out but I was not monetarily compensated for developing this recipe or writing this post. All opinions are ALWAYS my own! 

When you make a recipe from my site tag it with #RachelCooks!
I love to see what you're creating!


  1. Try honey instead of the brown sugar.

  2. This is exactly what I’be been looking for! Thank you so much. Salmon is my favorite so I’m really excited about this new marinade. I’ll be cooking tomorrow so I’ll let you know. I have zero doubt this will be delicious. I can’t wait. Again, thank you for the recipe. I don’t have the new grill so I’ll be using my Weber Gas Grill. I’ll likely be shopping for the new grill you recommend as I adore the wood flavor with is totally lost of these gas grills. ❤️

  3. This is an excellent grilled salmon recipe. I prepared the marinade exactly as written. After 4 minutes skin side up and 18 minutes skin side down on a gas grill, it was cooked perfectly. Guests raved about it.

    Rating: 5
    • I’m so glad to hear that! There isn;t anything better than guests raving about something you cooked! Thank you for taking the time to come back and leave a comment, it means a lot to me!

  4. This was a great change up… My boyfriend is an executive chef so cooking for him can be a bit intimidating, but this was 100% spot on… Thanks so much!!!

    Rating: 5
  5. Found It!!!

  6. sounds delicious.

    I know how easy it is to become a creature of habit when preparing meals for the family

  7. Yummy! You could add curry powder to the marinade for a variation. I often use this type of marinade and bake the salmon at 425 degrees. You’d miss the delicious smoked flavor though.

  8. I’m totally a creature of habit when it comes to my meals too…I find a few recipes I enjoy that are quick and easy and I put them on repeat, lol! This salmon looks absolutely heavenly!

  9. i coat my grill first with non stick spray or oil, then i coat my fish with little olive oil.

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