Braised Salmon with Pesto & Balsamic

I just got back from spending 10 days in the beautiful expanse that is Canada. Our cell plan doesn't support international data, so I was 10 days without a functioning cell phone or internet. It was glorious. To be honest, it's a bit hard to get back in the groove of emails and creative work. Thankfully, I busted out a TON of content before I left that I'm just starting to sift through. And here is the first of many.

Growing up, I was always considered a "good eater" to put it delicately. When I was a toddler, this meant that I never complained ... and I ate it all. My parents were lucky amidst the screaming sea of toddlers who only ate 5 things and considered different foods touching sacrilege. In middle school this meant feeling self conscious and sometimes shameful that I ate like a healthy person when the girls around me only took a few bites of their measly lunch. In college, I met my true kin: other "eatin' girls" that saw food not as the enemy, but as one of life's greatest gifts and something to be savored and celebrated ... like every day. Thank God for those women.

But despite my reputation as a human vacuum, I did have one enemy growing up: salmon. I hated it. Whenever the realization hit that it was on the menu for dinner I was severely disappointed; dinner was one of my favorite times of day, you see. Salmon in the oven always elicited a response like "AWWWW MOOOOMMMMM WHYYYYYYYY?" Qeue sulking. Or something like that. 

I honestly can't point to the specific moment when I started to like salmon, but one day, it must have happened, because now I love it. It's one of those fish that people tend to like even if they don't "like fish" so its a great healthy dish to make for friends. Not to mention it's packed with omega 3 fats, protein, B vitamins, and potassium. 

Usually the biggest question in people's minds when cooking salmon is how to tell when its done. An instant read thermometer will let you know when it gets to 145 degrees, but you can also tell when the meat is flakey and comes apart easily. You can also take it out of the oven just before it's done, cover it, and let it rest for 10 minutes, where it will continue cooking gently to perfection. 

The method in this recipe keeps in all of the flavor and moisture, so even if you forget about your timer, you'll still end up with a tender cut of fish. It only requires a handful of ingredients, and is topped with Sprouts Vegan Pesto and Balsamic Reduction, making this recipe even easier. 

Easy Recipe for Braising Salmon

Perfect Braised Salmon With Pesto & Balsamic

This healthy, delicious recipe feeds up to four and is perfect when served with fluffy rice and steamed veg.



1 lb Salmon Fillet
2 lemons, sliced ¼” thick
1 lemon, sliced in wedges for garnish
2 Tbsp. white cooking wine
Sprouts Vegan Pesto
Sprouts Balsamic Reduction
2 Tbsp butter
½ Shallot, minced

Special Tools


Tin Foil
Parchment Paper
Baking Sheet


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

  2. Place enough tin foil flat on a baking sheet to completely wrap up your fillet. Place sliced lemons down on foil lined baking sheet, arranged so that the fillet can sit on top.

  3. Place salmon skin side down on top of the lemon layer. Spread minced shallot on top of salmon, and then dollop top with 2-3 Tablespoons pesto. Cut butter into almond sized pieces and sprinkle top of salmon.

  4. Cut a piece of parchment paper that will cover the top of the salmon and press lightly onto the top.

  5. Pour 2 Tablespoons of white wine vinegar around the salmon so that it mingles with the lemon and then fold up the foil so that it will keep in the steam.

  6. Place in the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until salmon is just cooked through and flakey. Remove from oven and let sit for 5 minutes.

  7. Plate and drizzle with balsamic reduction. Serve with a lemon wedge as a garnish.

Top Salmon With Parchment For Braising