Recipe | BBQ Sockeye Salmon

Hello Friends, and happy Monday to you! Here is a little treat we whipped up this weekend after receiving a whole sockeye salmon from Skipper Otto. This beautiful fish, aptly named Sal, was caught in the Barkley Sound region off the British Columbia coast. He was scaled, properly gutted, had the most perfect sea-water aroma, and beautiful clear blue eyes. 🙂 Ok, but seriously. Simply put, and simply cooked, he was delicious. Here’s what we did…

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BBQ Sockeye Salmon

Serves 4-8, depending on how greedy you are…


  • 1 whole fresh salmon (I prefer sockeye, but everyone has their favourite), head on, scaled, gutted
  • Coarse salt & freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1/4 cup lemon pesto mayo**
  • 3 Tbsp diced red onion
  • 3 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • A little neutral oil for the BBQ


Heat the BBQ on full whack until the temperature gauge reaches 400 – 450F. Turn your middle burner off, and adjust the other two burners to medium. 

In the meantime, using cold water, wash your fish (inside and out), then dry well with a paper towel. Combine red onion, basil, and garlic. Line the inside of your fish with lemon pesto mayo** – combine 1/4 cup basil pesto (store bought or homemade) with 1 cup mayo, and the zest & juice of 1 lemon – keep in the fridge up to a week or so – use on burgers, fish, chicken – yum. Then season the inside liberally with coarse salt & freshly cracked black pepperStuff your fish with the red onion, basil & garlic mixture. Finally season the skin liberally with coarse salt & freshly cracked black pepper. 

Transfer to the grill. Cook on either side for approximately 5 – 7 minutes per side. Using two sets of tongs, one for the tail side, one for the head side… turn the fish to grill the other side. Your fish will be medium rare after approx. 25 minutes – if you wish to cook it more (however, if your fish is this fresh, you really shouldn’t!), then keep flipping on the grill for another 20 – 25 minutes. 

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Remove one side, by running the tip of your knife down the spine of the fish – from head to tail. Then score the tail from top to bottom, and run your knife along the middle bones from the tail to the head. Flip that side onto it’s skin. This will expose the ribs. Remove the ribs easily – it should come out in one piece. Cut into portions, and serve. Be careful of bones. 

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Serves with a lovely side of fresh Heirloom Tomato Caprese, a little grilled zucchini – and a light, crisp bottle of Rosé

Happy Salmon Season! 




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