My dad’s a salmon guy. Always has been.

Give him a piece of salmon and it’s gone within 5 minutes.

What a guy!

So, when I was asked to create an almond-inspired main dish for the Almond Board of California, I thought I’d whip up a fish dish for him.

And boy o’ boy was he one happy camper.

Salmon is one of those foods that you can make over and over again and people just don’t seem to get bored with it.

What’s the trick?


Just don’t overcook it.

Friends, allow me to share with you my easy salmon recipe.

Go ahead, pick up a piece from your local fish market. I’ll wait.

There. Now get ready. This salmon is delicious. Like, kinda ridiculous. I surely don’t know everything (my dad does), but I do know that there’s not much in life that a good meal can’t fix. I mean it’s just gunna make your life a little bit better.

It just will.

So, ya wanna make it?

I thought so.

All you need are a few simple ingredients. Salmon and quinoa are the main two. The others are dried cherries, fresh cilantro, sliced almonds and a few other odds n’ ends. But, don’t be intimidated by the recipe below, I promise it’s not as scary as it looks.

It’s actually quite easy. Yes, a very easy gluten-free recipe that you can make tonight!

And if you’ve never cooked salmon or you hate the way it smells…

Well, then let’s just say you’re in for a treat. Plug your nose with a clothes pin and strike up that stove top, sista.

The finished product is positively sinful. At this point, you may either eat it right out of the pan with a fork or- if you have patience (which my father does not) you can plate it and then eat it.

Let me know what you decide to do.

It’s okay. I’ve been there.


I created this recipe for the Almond Board of California; check out my other tasty recipes in the Almond Board’s Spring Booklet, free to download here.

Almond Crusted Salmon with Cilantro Cherry Quinoa
Serves: 4
Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free and Soy-Free
Author: Amie Valpone
Recipe type: Entree



  • 2 Tbsp. sliced almonds
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
  • Juice of 1 fresh orange
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 5 oz fillets salmon
  • Nonstick cooking spray



  1. Preheat the oven to 425˚ F. Prepare a shallow baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Cook quinoa according to package directions.
  3. Meanwhile, in a medium sized bowl, combine almonds, parsley, orange juice, sea salt and pepper; mix well to combine.
  4. Place the salmon fillets, skin side down in the prepared baking dish. Drizzle orange juice onto each fillet, then coat each fillet with the almond parsley mixture.
  5. Transfer the salmon to the oven for 10-12 minutes or until salmon is cooked through. Remove from the oven, cover with aluminum foil, and set aside on the counter for 5 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, transfer cooked quinoa to a large mixing bowl with chickpeas, olive oil, dried cherries, cilantro, orange zest, sea salt and pepper; mix well to combine.
  7. Remove tin foil from the salmon and transfer to serving plates with a side of cooked quinoa.
  8. Serve warm.
Nutrition Facts
Almond Crusted Salmon with Cilantro Cherry Quinoa
Amount Per Serving
Calories 567 Calories from Fat 180
% Daily Value*
Fat 20g31%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Cholesterol 93mg31%
Sodium 684mg30%
Potassium 1314mg38%
Carbohydrates 48g16%
Fiber 9g38%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 47g94%
Vitamin A 410IU8%
Vitamin C 7.4mg9%
Calcium 106mg11%
Iron 5.1mg28%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.



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  1. This might just be on the menu for dinner at my house this weekend. I’m having guests and this is the perfect recipe. Who doesn’t love salmon??

    1. Thanks Celia; salmon and quinoa are both protein-rich foods but as long as you eat the correct portions- it’s not too much! Enjoy.

  2. 5 stars
    oh my gooodnesssss! this looks absolutely delicious.

    I can’t wait to make this almond inspired salmon. The quinoa looks really good to, it’s always yummy to add fun things into the quinoa to bring out different aromas and flavors.

    Your pics are so pretty too!

  3. I am very picky about salmon. A certain mother I know always overcooked it (without proper seasoning) when I was growing up. This looks just perfect, though! Exactly how I would like it.