This teriyaki salmon in the air fryer is one of the easiest and tastiest air fryer meals I’ve ever made. I marinated the salmon while I was walking the dog, cooked the salmon when I got home and heated up the sauce and presto — dinner!
Salmon is one of those foods I don’t buy too often because it isn’t cheap, but it’s a real treat when I do eat it. I used frozen salmon that I thawed ahead of time for this recipe, but if you want to use fresh salmon that’s even better! If you’re using frozen, make sure to take it out of the freezer and put it in the fridge the night before you plan to cook it.
I made my teriyaki sauce from scratch, but don’t be intimidated. It’s not difficult! It uses ingredients you’re sure to already have at home.
Teriyaki Salmon Ingredients
- Salmon: You can easily scale it up this recipe depending on what you need. Typically, you should aim for 1.5-2 fillets of salmon per person. It really depends on how many sides you’re serving with it. I made this just for me so 2 was the perfect amount, but you can use up to 4 fillets for this amount of sauce.
- Soy Sauce: This is the basis for the teriyaki sauce. I used regular soy sauce, but you could use reduced sodium as well and that way it would be less salty.
- Water: We use water to fill out the sauce and lessen the saltiness of the soy sauce.
- Brown sugar: The teriyaki sauce needs some sweetness to cut through the saltiness of the soy sauce, so that’s what we use the sugar for.
- Ginger and garlic: These are very important for the umami flavor for the teriyaki sauce! I used a microplane to grate both of these into the sauce, but if you don’t have a microplane you can just finely mince them.
- Sesame oil: A splash of sesame oil adds to the flavor of the teriyaki sauce.
- Mirin: I’ve made this teriyaki sauce with and without mirin and while I prefer it with mirin, if you leave it out you’ll still have a delicious sauce. Mirin just adds another note of sweetness.
- Honey: This recipe also uses a tablespoon of honey to further cut through the saltiness of the soy sauce.
- Cornstarch: The cornstarch is used to thicken the teriyaki sauce that you’ll then pour over of the salmon.
How to Make a Cornstarch Slurry
When you mix up the ingredients for the teriyaki sauce you won’t thicken it for the marinade, but you will thicken the reserved marinade for topping the salmon. To do this we’ll use a cornstarch slurry, which is just cornstarch and cold water.
I used 1 tablespoon of cornstarch and 2 tablespoons of water. If you want your teriyaki sauce thicker, you can try 1.5 tablespoons of cornstarch and 3 tablespoons of water and scale up as needed to achieve your desired viscosity. I personally like my teriyaki sauce a little runny so I can mix it with my rice.
How to Make Teriyaki Salmon in the Air Fryer
You’ll first mix the ingredients for the teriyaki sauce. Make sure to mix well because the brown sugar will sink to the bottom. Pour the marinade over the salmon in a small, shallow dish and reserve 1 cup for topping the salmon.
Marinate the salmon for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours. Before adding the salmon to the air fryer basket, make sure to add parchment paper. This makes cleanup far easier. Since the teriyaki sauce has honey and brown sugar in it, it will caramelize slightly, so you want to protect your air fryer basket from that.
However, you do still need the air to circulate, so make sure to cut down the parchment paper to fit just inside the bottom of the basket. You can do this by eyeballing it or putting your basket on the parchment and tracing the size out.
Add your salmon to the air fryer basket and then cook at 370 degrees Fahrenheit for 11-15 minutes. The time it takes to cook your teriyaki salmon in the air fryer depends on the size of your fillet. Mine fillets took 12 minutes. Make sure to start checking it at 11 minutes to ensure you don’t overcook the salmon.
While the salmon is in the air fryer, put the reserved 1 cup of marinade in a small saucepan and bring to a very gentle simmer and then add the cornstarch slurry to thicken. It should thicken in just a minute or two.
What to Serve with Air Fryer Teriyaki Salmon
I served my air fryer teriyaki salmon with white rice and roasted broccoli, but you could also serve with asparagus or any other vegetable of your liking. You could also substitute the white rice with brown rice, cauliflower rice or even quinoa. This recipe is extremely versatile.
How to Scale Up the Teriyaki Salmon in the Air Fryer
If you are making this for more people, you don’t need to double the sauce unless you’re cooking more than four salmon fillets. Don’t worry about having too much sauce because if you end up with too much, you can easily store it in the fridge for several months.
Storage and Reheating
You can store this teriyaki salmon in the fridge for 3-4 days in an airtight container or wrapped in foil. To reheat, keep it wrapped in foil and bake at 300 degrees Fahrenheit for about 8-10 minutes.
Salmon can easily overcook and become dry, so when reheating it you want to do it slowly and periodically check to see if it’s warm enough to your liking.
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Teriyaki Salmon in the Air Fryer
- Air Fryer
- 4 fillets salmon
- 1 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup cold water
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 inch ginger, grated or finely minced
- 1 clove garlic, grated or finely minced
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 3 teaspoons mirin
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons cold water
- Mix the teriyaki sauce ingredients together, making sure to mix in the brown sugar that will settle to the bottom. Pour the marinade over your salmon in a small, shallow bowl and then cover and marinade for at least 30 minutes but up to 2 hours. Make sure to reserve 1 cup of the marinade to top the salmon with.
- Add parchment paper to the bottom of your air fryer, making sure it fits well as to not block air flow. Cook the salmon in the air fryer at 370 degrees Fahrenheit for 11-15 minutes. The size of your fillets will determine how long it needs to fully cook through. The inside temperature should be 125 to 130 degrees Fahrenheit.
- While the salmon is in the air fryer pour the remaining marinade into a small saucepan and bring it up to a very gentle simmer and then add the cornstarch slurry. Mix well for a couple of minutes until it has thickened. If you want it thicker, you can add another cornstarch slurry (see instructions in the post above).
- Serve the salmon with your choice of rice or vegetable and top with the thickened teriyaki sauce.