This warm salmon pasta salad features creamy goat cheese, peppery arugula, and al dente linguine. The warmth from the salmon perfectly wilts the greens and melts the goat cheese to make a lovely sauce!
Salads with warm ingredients to wilt the greens just slightly, has got to be one of the most delicious ways to eat salad, ever. It feels more like a meal to me, but I'm eating a salad! I'm tricking my brain into being completely satisfied by a healthy bowl of greens.
This lemony salmon pasta salad is a winner in my book. Peppery arugula makes it a salad, while a little al dente linguini makes it a filling meal.
It's so easy to prepare, and cleanup is a breeze because I line my baking sheet with foil when broiling the salmon.
Ingredients in This Recipe
Fresh salmon is a healthy fish option because it's loaded with B vitamins (B12 to be exact), vitamin D and the antioxidant selenium. Of course, we also want to eat plenty of salmon because its a great source of omega-3 fatty acids and niacin. It's high in protein, so it's filling in a light dinner meal.
To season the salmon, I used a combo of lemon zest, salt, and coriander.
Coriander is a spice (the seed of the cilantro plant in fact) that has an almost lemony scent and flavor. It's still savory though and adds a nice element. I use ground coriander for this recipe, but you can also crush the seeds if you have them.
For the rest of the salad, I used juicy grape tomatoes, shallot, crumbled goat cheese, and peppery arugula — all tossed with al dente linguine!
The tomatoes get perfectly warm and flavorful when tossed with the hot pasta and salmon, and the goat cheese melts just enough to almost make a sauce.
Let me know how it went!
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How to Make Warm Salmon Pasta Salad
You will thank me for creating your new favorite go-to dinner after making this. Let me know how you like it!
- Rinse the salmon and pat dry. Then, place it skin side down on a foil-lined baking sheet.
- Combine half of the lemon zest, the ground coriander, and kosher salt in a small bowl.
- Brush the top of salmon with 2 teaspoons oil and rub with zest mixture. Let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile cook the linguine until al dente.
- Broil salmon 8 to 10 minutes for medium-well.
- When cool enough to handle, peel the skin off the salmon and flake into a large serving bowl.
- Add the halved tomatoes, sliced shallot, crumbled goat cheese, arugula, pasta, remaining lemon zest, kosher salt, and 3 tablespoon oil to bowl. Toss gently to combine.
Can I Use Another Type of Pasta?
Of course! You may use any pasta shape you have on hand to make this salmon and arugula pasta salad.
Can I Use Gluten-Free Pasta?
Also yes! Cook the pasta until al dente, following the instructions on the packaging.
Can This Recipe Be Made in Advance?
Make components of this salad ahead of time. You can use leftover cooked salmon and add it to the warm pasta when making the recipe.
Tips for the Best Salmon Pasta Salad
- You'll want to buy a large, 1.5-pound salmon fillet for this salmon and pasta dish. You may need to go to the seafood counter of your local grocery store to purchase one. You can also use frozen salmon filets.
- Rubbing the salmon with seasonings and letting it sit for just a few minutes before broiling allows the salt to penetrate and helps the fish come out perfectly moist and flavorful.
- I love the peppery bite that the arugula adds to this dish. However, you may substitute it with baby spinach or another leafy green if desired.
More Easy Salmon Recipes:
Warm Salmon Pasta Salad
- 1½ pounds salmon fillet skin on
- 1 lemon, zest finely grated
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1½ teaspoons kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons, extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 pound linguini fini
- 1 pint grape tomatoes cut in half
- 1 small shallot peeled and thinly sliced lengthwise
- 4 ounces soft plain goat cheese crumbled (plus additional for garnish)
- 5 ounces baby arugula
- Freshly ground pepper optional
- Line a large baking sheet with foil. Rinse salmon and pat dry; place, skin side down, on baking sheet. Combine half of lemon zest, the coriander and ½ teaspoon kosher salt in a small bowl. Brush top of salmon with 2 teaspoon oil and rub with zest mixture. Let stand at room temperature 10 min.
- Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook until al dente, about 7 minutes; drain.
- While pasta cooks, heat boiler and arrange rack 4 inches from heat. Broil salmon 8 to 10 minutes for medium-well. Transfer on baking sheet to rack and let cool slightly.
- Peel skin off salmon (discard skin) and flake into a large serving bowl. Add tomatoes, shallot, cheese, arugula, pasta, remaining lemon zest, 1 teaspoon kosher salt and 3 tablespoon oil to bowl; toss gently to combine. Garnish with cheese and season with pepper, if desired. Serve immediately.
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About Tara Teaspoon
I’ve been in the food publishing business for over 20 years, creating recipes & food-styling for magazines, books, television & advertising. Order my new cookbook & stick around for amazing things to eat.
Recipe Tara Teaspoon. Photography Yunhee Kim and Lindsay Steele. Originally published LHJ June 07. Updated March 2022.
The arugula is a wonderful addition!
IMO, arugula is the most underappreciated green. It's so perfect in this salmon pasta!