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This garlic butter salmon pasta is quick, easy, and uses only a handful of ingredients. Perfect for dinner on a busy weeknight!

Garlic butter salmon pasta in a white bowl

I’ve made this pasta a couple of times now, and I love how fast it comes together. If you’re looking for a simple sauce for salmon, butter and garlic make a fabulous combo. I will always stand by that. 😛 Add in the pasta and you’ve got yourself one tasty meal.

The sauce is easily made while the pasta is cooking. I suggest waiting until the water’s boiling before starting the sauce because it doesn’t take much time at all.

If you’re looking for another super quick weeknight pasta, try my popular tuna garlic pasta.

Garlic butter salmon penne bowls

The chicken broth reduces a lot and adds a delicious savory flavor to this dish. This isn’t really a super “saucy” pasta per se, but it’s perfectly buttery, and the lemon juice adds a bit of freshness. The olive oil stops the butter from burning while you’re searing the salmon.

A couple notes on the salmon:

  • I used a piece of fresh sockeye salmon that weighed around half a pound. Anything around that quantity will work. You can buy either skin-on or skin-off salmon. The skin is fine to eat, but some people don’t like it. If you buy a piece with the skin on but don’t want to eat it, I suggest peeling the skin off on the step where you’ve taken the salmon out of the pan – it should peel off easily.
  • You could use leftover salmon (like from grilling or if you happen to have cooked salmon on hand), but I suggest cooking it for even less time. Just let it warm through.

Salmon and pasta in a bowl

You can use any kind of pasta in this recipe. I’ve made it with penne and spaghetti, and it’s good either way. 

More salmon pasta recipes to try:

Easy salmon pasta in a bowl

I hope you’ll give this easy salmon recipe a try!

Questions? Let me know in the comments below.

Garlic butter salmon pasta in a white bowl
4.76 from 37 votes

Garlic Butter Salmon Pasta

This garlic butter salmon pasta is quick, easy, and uses only a handful of ingredients. Perfect for dinner on a busy weeknight!
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 20 minutes
Servings: 2


  • 1/2 pound fresh salmon
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Flour for dredging
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 3-4 cloves garlic minced
  • Optional garnish: fresh parsley, red pepper flakes, parmesan cheese
  • 4 ounces uncooked pasta


  • Boil a salted pot of water for your pasta. Cook it al dente according to package directions. I suggest starting the sauce once the water's boiling.
  • Sprinkle the salmon with salt & pepper and coat it in the flour.
  • Add the oil and butter to a skillet over medium-high heat. Once the pan is hot, add the salmon and cook it for 2 minutes/side, then take the fish out of the pan and set it aside (if you bought salmon with skin and don't want to eat it, you can easily peel the skin off at this point if you wish).
  • Add the chicken broth, garlic, and lemon juice to the pan. Reduce the heat to medium and let it simmer for about a minute.
  • Add the salmon back into the pan and break it up with your spoon into bite-size pieces. Cook it for a few more minutes until it's cooked through and the sauce has reduced a fair bit.
  • Drain the pasta and add it to the skillet (you can add a little pasta water if you wish). Toss it & serve immediately with parsley, red pepper flakes, and parmesan cheese if desired.


  • Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy only and should be construed as an estimate rather than a guarantee. Ingredients can vary and Salt & Lavender makes no guarantees to the accuracy of this information.


Calories: 559kcal, Carbohydrates: 47g, Protein: 31g, Fat: 27g, Saturated Fat: 9g, Cholesterol: 92mg, Sodium: 369mg, Potassium: 747mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 395IU, Vitamin C: 8mg, Calcium: 34mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

© Salt & Lavender Inc. Content and photographs are copyrighted. Sharing this blog post is much appreciated, but copying and pasting full recipes without authorization to social media is strictly prohibited.

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Hi! I’m Natasha.

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  1. 5 stars
    This was simple and outstanding. One of the secrets is to use a reasonably thick portion of salmon and do NOT overcook it. TOO may restaurants do that, where it’s a hard flake with that white stuff around the edges. Give it a good crust but the inside should be tender. Even if it is not yet ready, the final cooking will get it to the perfect point.

    I finished this off with some super high quality EVOO. A nice finish to an excellent dish!

  2. 5 stars
    This was a big hit tonight! I added peas for some vegetables. Everyone liked it and it was really quick. We’re a bit lactose intolerant, so it was nice to find a salmon pasta recipe without the heavy cream.

  3. Hey! So keen to try! Looks gorgeous! Might swop out some of the dairy and gluten options! But looks divine.

    Just wondering can I freeze this meal?

    1. Hi! I hope you enjoy it, Abs! In general, I don’t like freezing cooked fish as it can really dry out once you’ve thawed it. I also am not sure you’d be left with much sauce since it’s just a buttery sauce.

  4. 5 stars
    I have to say that I’ve never left a review on a recipe before but wow this one truly deserves it. I didn’t have a lot of faith in it at first because usually this type of sauce tends to leave you with a dry pasta but it’s definitely not the case with this one. My whole family absolutely loved it (even my 19-month old!). I followed the recipe as best as I could. I only added baby spinach at the end right before adding the cooked pasta. I topped it with Parmesan – and omg, just delicious, light, and healthy!! Loved it. Will probably make every other week.

    Also thank you for the website’s feature that lets you add more servings and the recipe automatically alters the ingredients quantity.

  5. 5 stars
    Loved this recipe! I had linguine, so I used that. I may add a few capers next time. I squeezed a half a lemon into the sauce which worked out wonderfully!

  6. 5 stars
    This was divine! I added dried dill
    To it with the Parmesan cheese. It’s going into the dinner rotation! So simple but flavorful

  7. 5 stars
    I’ll admit, I questioned this recipe all the way through, but wow, was I wrong to do that! It was so freakin’ tasty. I added onions and mushrooms to it and also cooked up some shrimp with the salmon. And I only used oil to cook the shrimp and salmon and reserved the butter to mix in with the chicken broth. Lastly, I omitted the flour just ’cause I didn’t have any on-hand. Will definitely be making this again.