This healthy Spicy Salmon bowl recipe is smoky andcrispy, easy to make, and full of flavor. The cooked salmon pieces are served with a bowl of cooked rice and then topped with a delicious and fresh mango salsa. This salmon buddha bowl is the perfect filling and hearty meal to make any time of the week, and y’all are going to love it!
These bowls are packed with so much goodness. The deliciously tendered and seasoned salmon pieces are served with cooked white rice and then covered with mango salsa, making this a healthy bowl meal.
Table of Contents
🐠 Ingredients & Substitutions
This rice bowl recipe requires simple ingredients, but we provide a good substitute for some items below.
Salmon fillets. First, you want to find fresh, wild-caught salmon. Salmon can vary widely in quality; therefore, we recommend finding the highest quality salmon. We don’t recommend using frozen salmon for this bowl. Instead, we recommend fresh salmon from your local seafood retailer or the seafood counter in the grocery store. When you go, ask the person helping you at the counter which salmon was just delivered and is fresh. They will know which fish just was delivered and which ones were delivered fresh or frozen. We typically ask them to debone and skin the salmon if we cut it into pieces. Our go-to is King Alaskan Salmon or Sockeye Salmon because they have a nice flavor.
Seasoning: smoked paprika, chili powder, cayenne powder, garlic powder, onion powder, and salt and black pepper. To add some sweetness to the spice notes, we add dark brown sugar, which adds a nice caramelized flavor to the salmon.
Rice. You could use any grain you like here, but our favorite is white jasmine rice. We make it with butter, salt, and pepper, and the rice is fully cooked within 20 minutes. But, here are some other grains you could use for this bowl and how long they take to make.
Couscous: takes about 10 minutes to make and has a nice chewy texture.
Quinoa: takes about 15 minutes to make, but it will be softer in texture. Quinoa is filling and gluten-free and is a great substitution.
Brown Rice: it takes about 40 minutes to make, but you can make ahead and reheat leftover rice for this recipe.
Cauliflower Rice: takes about 10 minutes to make if you make it from scratch. You can also find store-bought cauliflower rice these days too.
Mango Salsa. We used our roasted mango salsa recipe to pair with this salmon rice bowl. The flavor combination is unbelievable and delicious, and we highly recommend it. Of course, you could also use store-bought mango salsa too. Most grocery stores have fresh mango salsa or pureed salsa, like Stonewall Kitchen’s Mango Lime Salsa. Two alternative sauces would be to make your own spicy mayo sauce with sriracha or wasabi.
Fresh Herbs to Serve. Our go-to is fresh cilantro and green onion. We sometimes add fresh lime juice, avocado slices, or fresh veggies like red bell pepper or Persian cucumbers.
Make fluffy rice or grain of choice. First, rinse the rice with water using a strainer and a bowl. Next, add the rice to a bowl with water, mix with your hands, strain, and repeat, until the water becomes clear. This takes about 5 minutes, which helps remove the starches from the rice before it cooks. Follow the instructions on the packaging to make the rice. We like to add a tablespoon of salted butter and a healthy pinch of salt and pepper to the saucepan before the rice cooks. You can cook the rice on the stove-top, in a rice cooker, or instant pot.
Prepare, season, and cook the salmon. First, you want to prep the salmon and season it. If your salmon still has the skin on, you will want to carefully use a sharp knife to remove the skin from the flesh. Once the skin starts to separate from the flesh, you can grab the skin and tug it upwards and away to help remove the skin without using the knife the whole time. When the skin is removed, rinse it and dry it with a paper towel before cutting the salmon fillet into bite-size cubes. Afterward, toss the seasoning and brown sugar with the salmon cubes. Next, Cook the cubed salmon on a nonstick skillet by pan-searing it over medium-high heat with extra-virgin olive oil. Sear it on both sides until the salmon hits an internal temperature of 145°F. This quick saute method in oil makes perfectly crispy salmon bites.
Make salsa or prepare toppings: Make the mango salsa, or whip up a spicy sauce. Or, if using store-bought salsa, get it ready and prep the fresh herbs.
How to store leftovers and reheat the next day?
Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 day. We don’t recommend freezing leftovers.
This recipe is best on the first day but still has much flavor the next day. We typically reheat leftovers in a microwave until hot or in a saucepan over medium heat.
This Crispy Spicy Salmon Rice Bowl Recipe is simple to make and full of flavor. It’s healthy and delicious to make, and we hope you all love our recipe. Enjoy! ♡
Make fluffy rice or grain of choice. Rinse the rice with water using a strainer and a small bowl. Mix the rice in the water with your hands, strain, and repeat, until the water becomes clear. Follow the instructions on the packaging to make the rice.
Prepare the salmon. If your salmon still has the skin on, you will want to carefully use a sharp knife to remove the skin from the flesh. Once the skin starts to separate from the flesh, you can grab the skin and tug it upwards and away to help remove the skin without using the knife the whole time. When the skin is removed, rinse it and dry it with a paper towel before cutting the salmon fillet into bite-size cubes.
Season the salmon. Toss the salmon cubes with the brown sugar and spices: smoked paprika, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne, salt and black pepper.
Cook the salmon. Add the seasoned bite-size salmon cubes on a nonstick skillet by pan-searing it over medium-high heat with extra-virgin olive oil. Sear one side for 5-7 minutes, until blackened and flip it to continue cooking until the salmon hits an internal temperature of 145°F.
Make salsa and prepare toppings: Make the mango salsa, or whip up a spicy mayo sauce with sriracha or wasabi.Or, if using store-bought salsa, get it ready and prep the fresh herbs (green onion and cilantro) by coarsely chopping them.
Assemble and enjoy. Add 1 cup cooked rice to a medium bowl, and top with crispy salmon cubes, salsa/sauce, and fresh herbs. Enjoy!
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