Pan Seared Salmon with Pumpkin Seed Pesto

November 3, 2011

I always tell myself to eat more fish, I know how nutritionally important it is and that it’s a healthy thing to do. Problem? I don’t love cooked fish. Sushi? Love it, and could eat it every day but give me cooked fish and I push it around my plate.


My goal is to find a few fish recipes that are delicious, easy to make during the week and solve this I don’t like cooked fish problem. Recipe trail number 1, Pan Seared Salmon with Pumpkin Seed Pesto adapted from Bon Appetit. Verdic? I like it. I really liked it. This was easy to make, dinner was ready in 15 minutes and the boyfriend and I loved this. Yeah for a new salmon recipe I like!


Pan Seared Salmon with Pumpkin Seed Pesto (adapted from Bon Appetit)


Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Serves: 4



  • 2 1/2 teaspoons plus 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup shelled pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
  • 1/2 cup (firmly packed) cilantro leaves and stems
  • 1/2 teaspoon cracked coriander seeds
  • 1/2 garlic clove, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon (or more) fresh lime juice
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 6-ounce salmon fillets (preferably wild)
  • 1 lime, cut into 4 wedges


    Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add pumpkin seeds; sauté until beginning to brown and pop, about 2 minutes. Transfer seeds to paper towels to drain; let cool. Reserve skillet.

    Pulse 6 tablespoons pumpkin seeds, cilantro, cumin, and garlic in a food processor until coarsely chopped. With machine running, gradually add 1 tablespoon lime juice, 1/4 cup oil, then 1/4 cup water, blending until coarse purée forms. Season pesto to taste with salt, pepper, and more lime juice, if desired.

    Heat remaining 1 teaspoon oil in reserved skillet over medium heat. Season salmon fillets with salt and pepper. Add to skillet and cook until just opaque in center, 3-4 minutes per side. Place fillets on plates. Spoon pesto over. Garnish with remaining pumpkin seeds. Serve with lime wedges.








    I served this with wild rice mixed with the remaining cilantro and lime juice. It paired very nicely with the salmon.

    3 Responses to “Pan Seared Salmon with Pumpkin Seed Pesto”

    1. Mo says:

      Omg this looks and sounds insanely good! We are big salmon eaters, even Ava ate about 4 oz of grilled salmon the other night. I will definitely be giving this recipe a try!

    2. This looks delicious! I love salmon! Well, I actually haven’t met a fish that I didn’t like. Problem is is that my husband won’t eat it. I ususally eat it when we are at a restaurant or I’ll make it for myself when he’s out of town.

    3. raquel says:

      it’s fantastic! I foresee it being a everyday favorite. Salmon is one of my favorite fish.

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