Pan Seared Salmon With Lemon Basil Pesto

Total Time
Prep 10 mins
Cook 10 mins

This is a salmon fillet served with a fresh pesto on top. You could use a store-bought pesto if you like, but homemade is so much better and so easy to do.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Heat a dry skillet, over medium heat, and lightly toast pine nuts (gently toss and shake pan occasionally); then place in a food processor.
  2. To the food processor, add basil and garlic; pulse just to combine.
  3. With processor running, drizzle in olive oil, and process, scraping down sides once or twice with a rubber spatula, to desired consistency (I like it sort of chunky).
  4. Add in Parmesan cheese, red pepper flakes, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste; pulse to combine; set aside.
  5. Wipe the salmon dry with paper towels (to allow a nice sear), then season lightly with salt and pepper.
  6. Heat the skillet, over medium-high heat, then spray with cooking spray.
  7. Cook salmon about 4 minutes per side or to desired doneness (I like it a little pinkish in the center since it will continue cooking a little when removed from the pan).
  8. Serve salmon with pesto spooned over top.
  9. Can also be served at room temperature.
Most Helpful

As with the other reviewer, I've never combined salmon with pesto before. Very nice. I used my own homemade pesto, but added the lemon juice. I also baked the salmon, as I have a difficult time flipping fish so it doesn't fall apart. :)

Lori Mama July 19, 2012

A very nice recipe. I cheated a little bit and used the last of some store-made pesto then added some lovely basil from the garden, along with the lemon and red pepper. I've never really thought of basil/pesto with salmon, but it worked together well. Mr Grumpy was not so enthusiastic, but he does not always like change.

duonyte July 13, 2012