Grilled Asian Sesame Salmon Kebabs and easy and delicious summer meal and perfect for entertaining. I think everyone loves food on a stick, because, it's just fun, right? Skewers are also perfect for grilling. And salmon just has a natural affinity for Asian flavours.
I'm using wild sockeye for these kebabs, but did you know that there are five main species of wild Pacific salmon? Each one is distinct in its fat content, flesh colour, texture, and flavour.
Here's a brief description of the varieties:
The Chinook, also called King salmon, is the largest and also has the highest fat content. It has a rich, full flavour, and flesh colour can range from white to a deep red. The texture is fairly firm with large flakes.
My favourite salmon, Sockeye also have a higher fat content. The flavour is also rich and full, and more intense. The flesh colour is deep red or orange and texture is firm and flaky.
Coho has a milder and more delicate flavour. It has a reddish-orange coloured flesh and a fine-textured firmness.
Pinks are the smallest of the salmon species and have a very mild flavour and a delicate, pale coloured flesh.
Chum has a low fat content and a mild and delicate flavour. Its flesh is reddish-pink with a firm, dry texture.
In summary, use the first two salmon species: Chinook, and Sockeye, for the grill, for roasting, and for any dish where you want the salmon to shine. Use Coho, for a milder, but still delicious salmon flavour, that will show off an amazing sauce. Pink and Chum salmon are best for soups, stocks, or stews.
We all need to eat more salmon. Why? Because it's one of the most nutritious foods available. You know that fat content I talked about above? That's a great thing. Because that fat contains heart, brain, and skin healthy omega 3 fatty acids.
Salmon is low in calories but high in protein and vitamin D, as well as selenium, niacin, and B vitamins. Read more about the benefits of eating salmon here: Salmon Nutrition Facts
Salmon, because it is a rich and oily fish, with all of that wonderful good fat, is a fantastic candidate for the grill. However, It's important not to overcook salmon, or it will be very dry and crumbly.
Perfectly cooked fish should flake easily and still have some translucency in the centre. The salmon will also retain heat and continue to cook after removing from the grill.
What to Serve with Grilled Salmon Kebabs
Serve these grilled Asian salmon kebabs with rice, or with a seasonal summer salad, like Tomato Peach Salad, or Cucumber Melon Salad. You can slather the kebabs with Honey Teriyaki Sauce or serve them with Homemade Tartar Sauce on the side. And for more ways to cook salmon, check out Alder Planked Salmon–How to Cook Planked Salmon, Teriyaki Salmon Stir Fry or Air Fryer Salmon.
And, if you have leftover cooked salmon, it's perfect for Salmon Cakes, Sweet Potato Salmon Frittata, Salmon Spinach Pasta or Sriracha Salmon Quesadillas.
Grilled Asian Salmon Kebabs
- bamboo or metal skewers
- 11/2 lb salmon fillet skin removed
- ¼ cup soy sauce
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 3 tablespoon sesame oil
- 2 tablespoon lime juice
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 2 tablespoon fresh ginger grated
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 red bell peppers cut into 1" pieces
- ½ red onion cut into 1" pieces
- If using bamboo skewers, soak them in water for 30 minutes before threading
- Cut salmon fillet into 1" pieces.
- Beginning and ending with the vegetables, thread the salmon, bell pepper, and onion pieces on the soaked skewers. You should have 8 skewers. Put the skewers in a shallow dish
- In a bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil, lime juice, garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes.
- Pour the soy mixture over the threaded skewers and set aside while the grill heats.
- Heat grill on medium-high and spray with cooking oil spray.
- Grill skewers, brushing with extra marinade, turning, about 10 minutes
- garnish with chopped scallion and serve.
My kids will eat salmon, but once I put it on a skewer they were super excited to eat it. And then they finished every last bit!
I just loved how easy these were!
Great recipe thank you.
Hi Claire, Somehow, everything is better on a skewer! I'm so glad your kids liked it, and thanks for coming back to let me know.
Lori | The Kitchen Whisperer
Thanks for the info on the different types of salmon as well as the nutrition over view! I love salmon and seriously am loving the Asian spin you put on it!
You're so welcome, Lori!
I learned a whole bunch of things about salmon I didn't know I didn't know. 🙂 We are having a BBQ this weekend, and I just added these to the menu. They're going to be a perfect addition. Thanks so much!
Hey Rebecca, I'm so happy that you got to learn some stuff from my posts. I know that you are going to love these kebabs for your BBQ. Enjoy!
I love these kebabs, fun to eat and good for you! Perfect to serve guests.
Thanks, Anne, these kebabs are always a hit for entertaining!
I love these! It’s a perfect healthy summer meal and my kids love it too (the brown sugar in the sauce makes a delicious glazed result). Thanks for this great recipe, I’m always looking for more ways to use healthy wild salmon.
Matt - Total Feasts
I didn't realize there was such variation in salmon. Love the look of the grilled salmon, it looks delicious.
Hi Matt, Thank you, it really is delicious!
Such a fun delicious way to entertain your favorite people 🙂 Also, another great way to use salmon - thank you for such a great option!
You're welcome Danielle! Kebabs really are a fun way to entertain!
Melanie @ Bon Appét'Eat
This looks so delicious, I feel I'm lacking talent in the BBQ area and this is so my type of dish. I'm sold!
Hi Melanie! These kebabs are a good place to start your BBQ adventures. So quick and easy!
Leanne @ Crumb Top Baking
I had no idea there were so many varieties of salmon! Thanks for the info Colleen! I'll have to remember these the next time I pick up some fresh salmon. It's the only seafood my hubby will eat so I know these kebabs would be a hit!
You are very welcome, Leanne! I hope you and your hubby love these kebabs.
Salmon is my favorite fish, and I love all the flavors you have going on here, especially the ginger. I'm definitely putting this on the summer rotation!
Enjoy, Amanda. You will love these!
Love salmon, but have not tried it kn Kabobs, as I worry that the meat will fall apart. MY fav is sockeye too as it is always available in our store here. I love to grill my salmon with
Hoisin sauce marinade and shiracha sauce.
Shobee, if you love sockeye, you'll have no worries about them falling apart. It's a meaty fish that stands up to kebabs problem free!
I have never made salmon kebabs, even though we grill salmon often! I can't wait to try these! I love the Asian flavors!
Hi Beth, these are so easy and quick to cook on the grill. Enjoy!
We are very regular salmon eaters in my house and I love this recipe for a new take on one of our faves. Those grilled lime slices are genius!
Tatiana, we love salmon too. I'm glad you could find a new take here, and grilling lemons & limes is awesome, because they take on a smoky flavour.
WOW these kebabs look so delicious and unique - what a great and creative idea making salmon kebabs! Can't wait to try this recipe soon!
Hi Natalie, Thank you, and bonus, they are super easy and quick as well. Enjoy!
I love learning new ways to incorporate salmon in our meals. This sounds so flavorful. And the kids love everything on a skewer! lol
Hi Julie, putting food on a stick is a great way to get kids to eat it, right? 😉