Pan-Seared Salmon with Creamy Avocado Sauce

Pan-seared salmon topped with a creamy avocado and basil sauce.

Pan-Seared Salmon with Creamy Avocado Sauce

Many moons ago, Patty and I had a salmon dish at a local Boston restaurant that was topped with a simple, creamy, avocado-based sauce. I tried to recreate a similar sauce later at home with several variations of avocado, cream, yogurt, and ranch dressing, but nothing was quite right. It tasted artificial and gross—so I shelved the idea.

Fast forward nearly two years later when I stumbled upon a creamy avocado pasta that consisted of well, pasta, and a creamy sauce made with avocado, garlic, basil, lemon, and olive oil. The dish was fantastic, but the creamy avocado sauce? It was the answer to the equation I was looking for.

How to Make Creamy Avocado Sauce

Avocado sauce is the perfect simple sauce for salmon. It’s tastes like a combination of pesto and avocado sauce. The foundation of the sauce is fresh avocado, with added cream and olive oil to make the sauce a little thinner. The basil gives the sauce a pesto-like flare and carries a lot of freshness and flavor.

There are a few ways you can make the avocado sauce. I usually use a regular blender, but a Ninja single serve blender or NutriBullet will do the trick in a pinch.

What’s the Best Way to Cook Salmon?

I recommend pan searing the salmon (or grilling). Baking salmon is great, but pan searing offers a crispier seared edge. I think it better compliments the avocado sauce. A creamy sauce calls for crispier salmon.

Simply pan sear salmon in a little olive oil on medium-high heat for about 5-6 minutes per side in a nonstick or cast iron pan. it’s as easy as that. Top with creamy avocado sauce and serve with a lemon wedge. P.S. The more sauce, the better.

Now, for all of you who may be intimidated by cooking seafood. Fear not, salmon is one of the EASIEST entrees to cook. It’s good prepared medium-rare AND well done and flaky. I like a crispy outside and a medium center.

Pan-Seared Salmon with Creamy Avocado Sauce
Pan-Seared Salmon with Creamy Avocado Sauce
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Pan-Seared Salmon with Creamy Avocado Sauce

  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 10 mins
  • Total Time: 20 mins
  • Yield: 4 1x

Scale

Ingredients

  • 4 6-8 ounce salmon filets, skin removed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Fresh minced basil, for garnish
  • Lemon wedges, for serving

Creamy Avocado Sauce

  • 1 ripe avocado, halved, seeded and peeled
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1 clove garlic
  • half a lemon, juice squeezed
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup light cream or half & half
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Combine creamy avocado sauce ingredients in a blender, blend until smooth and creamy, set aside.
  2. Season salmon filets with salt and pepper on both sides. Coat the bottom of a skillet with olive oil, over medium-high heat. Once oil is hot, add salmon filets and sear for 5-6 minutes. Flip and sear for 5-6 additional minutes.
  3. Transfer salmon filets to a plate and top with creamy avocado sauce. Sprinkle with fresh basil and serve immediately with a lemon wedge.

Notes

If sauce is too thick you can add 1-2 tablespoons of water.

Adapted From: The Comfort of Cooking