Angel Hair Pasta with Salmon Arugula and Creamy Lemon Parmesan Sauce
Angel Hair Pasta with Salmon Arugula and Creamy Lemon Parmesan Sauce

Take advantage of the salmon season and prepare this Angel Hair Pasta with salmon, arugula and creamy lemon parmesan sauce. You can have this satisfying dinner on the table in half an hour.

It’s the best time of the year! No, not the holidays – it’s salmon season!

Wild-caught Pacific salmon shows up in most grocery stores from early summer through fall, so now is the ideal time for you to head to your local grocery stores and stock up.

Most salmon sold in grocery stores today are farmed, which means they’re fed fishmeal instead of the plants and seaweed that their wild counterparts enjoy. In addition to a substandard diet, rearing in confined spaces means they are susceptible to diseases and illnesses. (However, greater safety measures are being put in place every day that reduce the likelihood of foodborne diseases being transmitted to those who eat farmed salmon.)

While I understand that wild-caught salmon isn’t economical for everyone, I highly recommend budgeting for it during the season. Then you’re likely to get great sales for the wild varieties.

What Are the Benefits of Salmon?

I learned about the nutritional benefits of salmon after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. When I sat down with a nutritionist to discuss any changes I should make to my diet, I discovered that many people battling MS are also vitamin D deficient, and I was no exception.

This poses a problem for many people – especially women – as my body doesn’t absorb calcium as well as it should. A lack of calcium intake leads to osteoporosis, which causes brittle bones that break easily.

I didn’t like any of this, so we looked for ways to add more vitamin D to my diet. A big way is through salmon, which contains an obscene amount of vitamin D! It’s healthy for me and it tastes good? Sign me up!

How Much Salmon Should You Buy Per Person?

The recommended serving size for salmon is 2 1/2 ounces for an adult. I tend to round up to 3 ounces because my family loves to eat. However, since this particular recipe is more of a pasta dish, 2 1/2 to 3 ounces is a suitable size per person.

If you’re cutting the fillets from a larger piece, the length of your thumb is a good guide to how wide you should cut each piece.

Ask the fishmonger to remove the scales

Some fish departments do not always scale (scrape the scales off) their fish without being asked. You definitely don’t want to eat fish that isn’t scaled, and since we don’t skin our salmon, ask your fishmonger to scale your fillet.

They usually do it graciously because it’s quite an ordeal at home, so be sure to ask about it.

How to remove the pin bones from the salmon

The only downside to salmon I’ve found is the little sticky bones you may discover after you’ve brought your fillets home from the store – just a minor inconvenience. Even though our local fishmongers are doing their best, sometimes the little guys slip past them.

These bones should always be removed as they can and will get stuck in your (or your child’s) throat and cause serious problems. (If you or one of your guests gets a bone stuck in your throat, aggressive coughing usually clears it up, but if you start choking on a fishbone, call 911 right away.)

To find and remove the little guys, just run your fingers over the salmon fillet. The needle bones will feel like hard bumps just below the surface of the salmon. If you feel one, gently push up to reveal the tip. Using pin bone tweezers (or even clean eyebrow tweezers), grasp the end of the pin bone and pull in the direction it’s pointing.

Don’t pull it back or twist it, because you’ll loosen (and lose) some of the meat that way. Pulling forward at the same angle it’s already growing should remove it cleanly.

How long can you freeze salmon?

If you find wild salmon on sale, buy as much as you can and freeze what you won’t use right away.

I have a handy vacuum sealer that I use to marinate and seal salmon fillets that I buy in bulk when my local grocer has offers. Oily fish like salmon freezes well for two to three months, so there’s no reason not to stock up.

I’m a sockeye lover, but I also recommend king (or chinook) salmon if you can’t find the former. Sockeye has a beautiful deep red-orange color with a flavorful, leaner flesh. The king salmon has a lighter orange appearance and the highest fat content of any salmon species.

More ways to enjoy salmon!

  • Grilled salmon with peach salsa
  • Slow roasted salmon with a sweet chili glaze
  • A roasted harissa salmon with vegetables
  • Baked salmon in honey mustard
  • Foil-baked salmon with leeks and peppers

Angel Hair Pasta with Salmon, Arugula and Creamy Lemon Parmesan Sauce

preparation time
10 mins

cooking time
25 minutes

total time
35 minutes

6 servings


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, separated

  • 6 salmon fillets (2 1/2 to 3 ounces each, about 1 to 1 1/4 pounds total), preferably wild-caught king or sockeye salmon

  • 2 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, divided

  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper, divided

  • 1 pound angel hair paste

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, separated

  • 1 tablespoon chopped shallot

  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped

  • 1 cup dry white wine or seafood stock

  • juice and zest of 2 lemons (1/3 to 1/2 cup juice)

  • 2 cups cream

  • 5 ounces arugula (4 boxed cups)

  • 1 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese


  1. Preheat oven:

    Set the oven to the lowest setting (mine is 150°F) to keep the salmon warm after cooking.

  2. Start the water for pasta:

    Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

  3. Season salmon fillets:

    Rub both sides of the fillets with 1 teaspoon kosher salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper.

  4. Sear salmon:

    Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet (preferably non-stick) over medium-high heat. Once the oil begins to ripple in the pan, place the salmon fillets in the pan, skin-side up.

    Press the fillets down lightly to ensure the entire surface is in contact with the pan. Sear the salmon fillets for 3 minutes or until the meat turns opaque pink 1/4 the way up the sides of the fillets.

  5. Flip the salmon and keep it hot:

    Using a spatula, turn the salmon over and cook, skin-side down, for another 3 minutes.

    Transfer the fillets to a sheet pan and place in the heated oven while you finish the dish. It’s okay if the salmon isn’t quite cooked through – it will continue to cook in the oven.

  6. Boil the shallot and deglaze the pan:

    In the same skillet you seared the salmon in, heat the remaining tablespoon olive oil and 2 tablespoons butter over medium-high heat. Add the shallot and garlic to the pan and sauté for 3 minutes, or until glossy and fragrant.

    Pour the white wine and lemon juice into the pan and use a wooden spoon to scrape off any food that is stuck to the bottom of the pan. Add the lemon halves and bring the mixture to a boil.

  7. Reduce the sauce and cook the pasta:

    Reduce the sauce in the pan by half by continuing to boil. This should take 3 to 4 minutes.

  8. Cook pasta:

    By now your pasta water should be boiling. Add a generous tablespoon of salt to the boiling water and drop the noodles into the center of the pot. Immediately stir the noodles to separate the noodles.

    Reduce the heat slightly to avoid boiling over and cook the pasta until al dente (or according to package directions), 4 to 5 minutes. Drain noodles.

  9. End of sauce:

    Once the liquid in the pan has reduced by half, reduce the heat to medium-low. Remove the lemon halves. Slowly stir in the whipped cream and remaining butter.

    Let the sauce simmer, then add the arugula. Stir to coat the arugula in the sauce and let it collapse slightly – this should only take about a minute. Add the parmesan along with the remaining salt and pepper. Taste the seasonings and adjust if necessary by adding a little more salt or pepper.

  10. Mix pasta and sauce:

    Put the pasta in the pan with the sauce. Using tongs, toss the pasta in the sauce until evenly coated.

  11. Serve the pasta with the salmon:

    Remove the warm salmon fillets from the oven and arrange on the pasta. Serve immediately. While this dish is best enjoyed the same day it was made, we’ve had success reheating leftovers in the microwave the next day.

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Hello everybody, Even if you're limited on time and money, I believe you can prepare wonderful food with everyday products. All you have to do is cook cleverly and creatively!