After trying 5 different methods for cooking salmon, the winner is clear.
The most common mistake when it comes to salmon is overcooking. In fact, we bet that many people haven’t ever really cooked their salmon to a true, melt-in-your-mouth state. What you probably think of as done is probably overdone. Salmon, like steak, can be served on a spectrum from rare to well-done inside. Fillets, especially a lean one like sockeye (which home chefs are more likely to encounter than king), can go from perfectly cooked to dried out in a matter of moments. As long as a salmon fillet reaches 145°F (or 120°F for medium-rare), even if it looks quite underdone, it is good to go.
Popular methods for cooking salmon vary wildly from pan-seared crispness to low-and-slow roasting. Now, it must be said that there are many solid, weeknight-friendly ways of cooking salmon that we rely upon. The two easiest and most common ways of cooking salmon are in the oven on a sheet tray at 425°F (like this one) and on the stovetop with a little oil (like this one).