Grilled Salmon Niçoise Salad
Delicious Grilled Salmon Niçoise Salad with grilled asparagus, roasted red peppers, artichokes and bold flavor Mustard Niçoise Salad Dressing.
Posted By Savita
One of our favorite Summer Salad! Grilled Salmon Niçoise Salad with grilled asparagus and vibrant Mediterranean flavors of roasted red peppers, olives, artichokes, tomatoes with spicy arugula. This salad is a great weeknight dinner salad, is healthier, filling and need very less active prep/cook time. Salad Dressing takes 2 minutes to assemble. Grill salmon and asparagus on an indoor grilling pan and you have a protein-packed and delicious summer dinner ready in 30 minutes. Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Low Carb and Keto Diet Friendly.
With such vibrant colors and zippy flavors, I also serve it as Antipasto Salad i.e. Salad before meal, the first Salad course of a three course meal.
What you need for Grilled Salmon Niçoise Salad
There are three parts of this Salmon Niçoise Salad:
- Mustard Caper Dressing
- Grilled Salmon and Asparagus
- An array of Vibrant Mediterranean flavors of olives, artichokes, roasted red bell peppers, cherry tomatoes with pepperoncini, eggs and arugula.
1. Mustard Caper Dressing
Ingredients for Mustard and Capers (Niçoise) Dressing
Here's what you need for the dressing:
- Olive Oil
- Lemon Juice
- Worcestershire Sauce or Anchovy Paste
- Salt and Black Pepper
Dressing takes only 2 minutes to assemble. Here's what I do to make the dressing:
- In a small bowl add all salad dressing ingredients (except capers) with 1/4 tsp of salt.
- Whisk well to emulsify. Mix in chopped capers. Taste and adjust salt and lemon juice. Set aside.
- Spoon over the salad when ready to server.
2. Grilled Salmon and Asparagus
Grilling Salmon is not only quick, fish also cooks moist and perfectly flaky. In summers, I always prefer to cook food in grill pan or outdoor BBQ. A best way for us to escape the scorching summer of California! Plus nothing beats the flavor of grill on a hot summer evening. Right?
Here is how I grill Salmon and Asparagus:
- I start by seasoning both; salmon fillet and trimmed asparagus. To prepare Salmon for Niçoise Salad, take salmon out on a wide plate. Wipe any liquid on salmon with clean paper towel. Coat salmon in olive oil, season with salt and black pepper. Prepare asparagus the same way.
Wiping any liquid from salmon helps salmon get perfect char from grill, and also it will not stick/steam when grilled.
- Always make sure to start with a hot, pre heated grill. Place Salmon skin side down and place asparagus on the side. Since fish cooks fast and so does asparagus. It makes sense to use same grill pan to grill both, salmon and asparagus, side by side.
- Salmon is ready to flip when skin gets good grill marks (about 2-3 minutes on a hot grill). Asparagus also starts to change color to crisp green. When turning salmon skin side up, also toss/turn the asparagus so that all pieces pickup some char and flavor. Another 2-3 minutes and salmon is ready.
- Transfer salmon in a clean plate. Using two forks, gently flake/break salmon apart for serving in salad. Also, rough chop the grilled asparagus.
Tip:To avoid salmon skin sticking on grill; always grill salmon on a preheated hot grill coated with a little coat of cooking oil. You can use cooking oil spray or brush.
3. Mediterranean flavors for Nicoise Salad
Few versions of traditional Niçoise Salad also has green beans and potatoes. However, I decided to pick asparagus oven green beans for two reasons;
- Love love asparagus. It's healthy, cooks quickly and taste amazing. When in season, I often substitute asparagus for beans.
- Due to quick cooking time, you one need one pan to cook both salmon and asparagus. Saves from the step of boiling water and blanching beans.
Other than asparagus and potatoes (which I skipped), all ingredients are quintessential for a bold flavor Mediterranean salad. Here's what you need to make this salad:
- Arugula - Go for baby arugula. Baby Arugula is sweeter and tender which pairs well with tomatoes and salmon. Use pre-washed unless using arugula from your own garden (can't get fresher than that!) Pre-washed is quick to use. If washing yourself, please invest in a Salad Spinner. It saves ton of time and delicate leaves are never bruised. I have a basic manual spinner, nothing fancy, which I bought from Ikea for $10. I use it all the time for washing greens. In my opinion, its a best investment for salad lovers.
- Hard Boiled Eggs - Hard boiled eggs are good filling addition to salad. Of-course, also a usual suspect of Niçoise Salad. If making salad ahead of time then boil and peel eggs and keep refrigerated. Slice for salad just before serving.
To hard boil eggs, put eggs in sauce pan and fill with cold water so that eggs are dipped in water. Boil rapidly for 12 minutes. For perfect hard boiled eggs, set aside in hot water for additional 10 minutes.
- Artichokes, Roasted Red Bell Peppers and Olives - The Three-flavor-bombs of Nicoise Salad as I like to call these. Use water packed artichokes for clean artichoke flavor. Oil packed are fine too. Only get rid of extra oil as sometimes it muddles with flavor of dressing or increase oil in the salad. Same goes with roasted red bell peppers and olives. In short, especially for salads, water or brine packed are better than oil packed.
- Cherry Tomatoes - Go for ripe sweet cherry or grape tomatoes. The fresh ripe seasonal tomatoes work perfect too.
Tip:Make ahead this Salad by making the dressing; boil eggs, chop and pack other ingredients in a container. Salmon and asparagus are best when cooked fresh, up-to an hour or just before serving.
For good presentation, assemble salad in layers on a large oval or round platter. For weeknights, you can go easy and serve any way you prefer.
For Niçoise, I love to drizzle dressing on salad just before serving. Ingredients in this salad already pack a big punch of flavor. However, the tangy mustard-lemon Caper dressing brings out the flavor even more. You will love the combination of dressing with hard boiled eggs (pure yum!)
That said, assembly is really easy! Here's how you assemble the Grilled Salmon Niçoise Salad:
- Start with a big platter that is narrow in depth.
- Layer arugula as base green.
- Keep warm ingredients together i.e. layer salmon, hard boiled sliced eggs and grilled asparagus as first three layers (three lines) of salad.
- Next, layer cherry tomatoes followed by olives, artichokes, and red bell peppers.
- Drizzle few spoons of Salad dressing on all layers. Serve remaining dressing on the side.
Sounds easy, right? Always remember to use fresh and quality ingredients. This Salmon Salad is so easy to prep and looks like a million dollars. I bet anyone would want to dig-in, right away!
Note:Grilled Salmon Salad is Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Keto Diet Friendly.
Unlike regular Niçoise Salad with potatoes, Salmon Niçoise is also low in carbs and starch. Plus loads of veggies and Mediterranean flavors make it a perfectly healthy and filling dinner.
Next trip to grocery store.. bring home some fresh salmon and asparagus. Try delicious Grilled Salmon Salad for dinner or wow your guests by serving as Antipasto Salad. (I know if you love Mediterranean flavors, the rest of ingredients are in your pantry, already!)
Happy Cooking! Savita x
Grilled Salmon Niçoise Salad
- 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
- 1 tsp Mustard (dijon mustard)
- 1 Garlic (clove, minced)
- 2 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
- 2 tbsp Lemon (juice)
- 2 tsp Oregano (fresh leaves, minced)
- 1 tbsp Capers
- 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
- 1/2 lbs Salmon (2-3 fillets)
- 3 Egg(s) (hard boiled, sliced)
- 1/2 Cup Kalamata Olives (sliced)
- 1 Cup Artichokes (water packed, rough chopped)
- 1 Bunch Arugula
- 1 Cup Cherry Tomatoes (halved)
- 1 Bunch Asparagus
- 2 Roasted Red Bell Peppers (thin sliced)
- 2 tbsp Olive Oil
- Salt and Black Pepper
Niçoise Salad Dressing - Yields 1/3 Cup
Grilled Salmon Niçoise Salad
1. Prep Asparagus for Salad: Trim ends of asparagus. Season with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and generous pinch of salt and black pepper. Set aside.
2. Prepare Salmon for Niçoise Salad: To prepare Salmon for Niçoise Salad, take salmon out on a wide plate. Wipe extra moisture with clean paper towel. Season fish with 1 tablespoon olive oil, and generous pinch of salt and black pepper on both sides.
3. Grill Salmon and Asparagus: Preheat grill or indoor grill pan. Spray or brush with light coat of oil. Place Salmon skin side down and place asparagus on the side. Salmon is ready to flip when skin gets good grill marks (about 2-3 minutes on a hot grill). Flip Salmon, also toss the asparagus once so that all pieces pickup some char and flavor. (another 2-3 minutes.) Once cooked, take both out of grill. Reserve grilled asparagus on the side. Flake salmon gently using two forks.
4. Prepare Niçoise Salad Dressing: To prepare Niçoise Salad Dressing, in a small bowl add all salad dressing ingredients (except capers) with 1/4 tsp of salt. Whisk well to emulsify. Mix in chopped capers. Set aside.
5. Assemble Salad: To assemble salad, on a large salad platter, layer baby arugula as base. On top layer flaked salmon, hard boiled sliced eggs, and grilled chopped asparagus, followed by rest of the salad ingredients i.e. halved cherry tomatoes, sliced olives, artichokes, and sliced roasted red bell peppers. Drizzle few spoons of Salad dressing on all layers. Serve remaining dressing on the side. Serve and enjoy!
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