Bourbon Marinated Salmon – Easy Recipe!

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This Bourbon Marinated Salmon is so good, you will never need to order it out again! It was a favorite at our make ahead meal assembly store.

Bourbon Marinated Salmon Recipe and zucchini on dish

Whenever I make bourbon salmon, I’m in a good place! Here’s why:

  • Forget heading out to Cheddars, Ruby Tuesday or even Publix. It rivals any salmon entree you can order at a fine restaurant so I feel a little indulgent without really splurging.
  • It’s a “good for you” fish since it boasts high levels of omega-3 fatty acids (which lowers the risk of heart disease, among other benefits.) Ya-da, ya-da, ya!
  • It cooks quickly, is complemented by almost any vegetable I have on hand.
  • I plan for leftovers and flake the fish cold over salad greens and have a spectacular lunch the next day.

We turned many customers into “salmon” lovers with this recipe (and Phyllo Wrapped Salmon) at our make ahead meal assembly store! (If you are already a seafood fan, check out Lemony Baked Basa which was very popular too.)

How to make Bourbon Marinated Salmon

The marinade has a bold and slightly sweet taste. Brown sugar or coconut sugar makes is sweet. But, it definitely owes its distinctive flavor to the bourbon. Please don’t let the alcohol scare you away from this recipe though.

Small bottle of Kentucky whisky on table.

You don’t have to drink hard liquor or buy a big bottle of bourbon whiskey to make this one. Just buy one teeny, tiny inexpensive bottle of bourbon, like the one shown here. It makes lots and lots and lots of marinade.

Also, almost half the marinade is discarded and much of the alcohol in the remaining marinade burns off during cooking.

Still looking for a substitute? Check out these alcohol substitutions by What’s Cooking America.

Sockeye salmon marinating in bourbon sauce.

The preparation for bourbon salmon is easy. Simply combine all the ingredients together and marinate.

Tip: If you are not a big fan of pineapple juice, simply buy a can of pineapple chunks in 100% juice. I usually pour about 2 cups from a 20-ounce can. (Use the pineapple to make salsa or Caribbean Salad with Honey Lime Dressing!)

How long do you cook salmon?

Not long at all and that’s another fantastic reason to enjoy seafood in general and this recipe!

In a 375 degree Fahrenheit oven, it only takes about 10-15 minutes, depending upon the thickness of the fish. A good rule of thumb is about 10 minutes per inch of thickness. The fish is done when it separates easily with a fork. I always use my trusty thermometer and cook it to a temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit.

It’s fantastic on the grill too!

Bourbon Salmon and zucchini in a dish.

This salmon goes well with almost anything. You won’t be disappointed.

I promise!

Make Ahead and Freeze Bourbon Salmon

If you want to make up the recipe to freeze, place the fish and marinade in a tightly sealed bag in the freezer, removing as much air as possible.

  • Customize the preparation of this bourbon salmon recipe to meet your needs. For example, portion 2-3 salmon fillets in a bag and use half of the ingredient amounts listed.
  • To make up several batches at a time, line up plastic bags that zip in canisters or bowls for easy assembly.
  • When making this recipe up to freeze, use fresh or already frozen salmon. (Don’t re-freeze fish that has been previously frozen.)
  • For the best quality, cook salmon within 2-3 months of freezing.

Bourbon Marinated Salmon was one of the very first recipes that ever posted. I updated the pictures and tweaked the post a bit. But, I didn’t change the recipe format…because you are going to want to make up batches for the freezer.

Please rate this recipe and tag @DinnerMom on social media. We love to see what you are cooking up!

Salmon in a Bourbon Marinade Recipe
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5 from 4 votes

Bourbon Marinated Salmon

Salmon in a bourbon glaze is a delicious way to enjoy this healthy fish. 
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Marinate time30 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4
Calories: 310kcal


  • 20 ounces Salmon boneless
  • 1/4 cup Brown Sugar or Coconut Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 cup Pineapple juice
  • 2 teaspoons Bourbon
  • 1/2 teaspoon Pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1/4 cup Canola Oil preferably expeller pressed



  • Add all of the ingredients, except for the salmon, to a container or plastic bag that seals.
  • Seal the bag and gently massage to combine ingredients or gently stir with a spoon.
  • Lift the salmon fillets into the bag with the marinade. Seal tightly, removing excess air, and gently turn to coat.
  • Allow the salmon to marinate about 30 minutes. Turn fish in bag as necessary to ensure that marinade is distributed evenly over fish.
  • Remove fish from bag and discard marinade.
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and bake skin side down for approx. 10-15 minutes (10 minutes per inch of thickness.) Fish is done when flesh is opaque and separates easily with fork. Alternatively, grill salmon over medium-high heat.


If you will be freezing this entrée to enjoy later, place the bag with the salmon fillets and marinade inside another plastic bag for extra protection during storage.
Label with cooking instructions by printing a copy of the recipe/cooking directions and placing it between the bag layers.
Freeze bags in a flat position for efficient storage and so that the fish and marinade will defrost quickly.
Thaw fish in refrigerator for 24-36 hours, if frozen.
Note that nutrition estimate assumes only half of the marinade will be consumed. I find that often even less is consumed.


Serving: 4g | Calories: 310kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 77mg | Sodium: 874mg | Potassium: 754mg | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 55IU | Vitamin C: 1.6mg | Calcium: 26mg | Iron: 1.6mg
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  1. I love a good salmon dish. So great that you can put this together in advance to make dinner come together quickly once you’re ready to cook!

  2. Looks and sounds yummy! Are those sesame seeds on the salmon in the picture?

  3. I’m always on the lookout for good salmon recipes! This one was so easy to make. Glad I don’t have to buy a big bottle of bourbon to enjoy!

  4. how did you make the vegetable on the side…looks delicious

    • Hi! Those are zucchini that have been quartered, tossed with a little olive oil and sprinkled with salt and pepper. Cook them along side the salmon for a complete meal!

  5. I am not a salmon fan, but I really loved this!!

  6. wilhelmina says

    Bourbon adds such a great flavor in this salmon dish! Delicious!

  7. absolutely delicious

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