View Full Version : How do you get the skin off of salmon?

02-26-2004, 08:46 AM
O.K., this might just show you all how much of a novice I am when it comes to cooking fish but how on earch do you get the skin off of salmon prior to cooking it? Is that even the way I should do it? Any suggestions on handling and baking, preparing fish would be much appreciated.


02-26-2004, 08:56 AM
No secret tips here, but i do cook salmon frequently. Usually i just leave the skin on when baking, grilling, broiling, etc. then when eating it, just scrape the fish off the skin and you should end up with a belly full of salmon and a plate with the skin on it. it comes off of the skin very easily after it's cooked. BUT if you are making something that requires the salmon be chopped up, etc. BEFORE cooking (i.e. salmon cakes with fresh salmon) then the easiest way i know (which i learned by trial and error, once again this isn't a secret tip so there may be easier/better ways) is to peel up one corner of the skin and just pull slowly and easily. usually it just comes right off. sometimes i have to use my paring knife to get the skin started, but then it comes off easily. Hope this helps and you get more input!

02-26-2004, 08:56 AM
I find it much easier to leave the skin on, then remove if you want AFTER cooking. After you've finished baking, just slide a spatula underneath the fish between the meat and the skin and it should come loose without too much trouble. This is even easier if you grill - just leave the skin behind on the grill grate. When it cools, we scrape it off and toss it into the woods for the critters to enjoy. :)

I'd love to hear if anyone has tips for removing salmon skin prior to cooking - I tried it once or twice and made a huge mess!

02-26-2004, 09:05 AM
Are they steaks or fillets? I am not sure about steaks but I always cook my fillets with the skin on (skin side down) After cooking the salmon comes off the skin very very easily.

You may want to talk to your fish people. We have a really great fish market here and they take any skin off for no charge. I am not sure if you have a fish market available or if a grocery would do that for you.

If you do a search for Salmon you will get lots of recipes. I just tried the Miso-Glazed salmon posted here on the board and it was delicious!

Here is a thread with a bunch of Salmon recipes:


Here is the recipe for Miso-glazed Salmon:

Miso-Glazed Salmon

Recipe By :
Serving Size : 4 Preparation Time :0:00
Categories : Seafood

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons hot water
2 tablespoons miso
4 (6 ounce) salmon fillets (about 1 inch thick)
cooking spray
1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives

Preheat broiler.

Combine first 4 ingredients, stirring with a whisk. Arrange fish in a shallow baking dish coated with cooking spray. Spoon miso mixture evenly over fish.

Broil 10 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested eith a fork. Sprinkle with chives.

02-26-2004, 09:06 AM
I make salmon a lot and also leave the skin on when I cook it; it comes off easily once the fish is cooked.

02-26-2004, 09:44 AM
If you don't want to keep the skin on, have the person at the fish counter cut it off for you. I haven't had good luck doing it myself. However, the skin helps to hold the fish together, especially when grilling, and like others said, it is easily removed after cooking.

In terms of preparation suggestions, firmer fillets like salmon and mahi-mahi, as well as tuna, swordfish, and salmon steaks, are great for grilling. Flaky fish like flounder, red snapper, and tilapia are better baked or pan-fried.

02-26-2004, 09:50 AM
I just use a fillet knife. However, it's not the easiest to get off, and I usually end up with a little too much meat cut off.

My DH is an expert filleter (he fishes a lot) so I had him do it last time. He flips the fish so the skin side is down on the board, gets a small corner started, and slides the blade along the back of the skin, not along the meat. The method works better on walleyes than on salmon, but it'll get the job done.

02-26-2004, 10:27 AM
As others have advised, it is difficult to skin raw fish but the fishmonger will remove. Also, Trader Joes sells excellent skinless salmon as well as the skinned variety.

For most dishes, leaving the skin on is fine as it can be removed easily after cooking.

However, there are a few dishes I make that shouldn't be made with skin on salmon filets as the skin and fat below it would just provide too much fat and fish flavor.

02-26-2004, 11:29 AM
Well, well, well. I am so glad I asked you all this question because I have been taking the skin off BEFORE cooking the salmon for months. Everytime I do it, I think this can't be right it is taking off way too much of the salmon and wasting it. I am making some tonight and will just leave the skin on this time.

Thanks for all of the advice!