Is it Safe to Eat Salmon Skin?


There are a variety of reasons that people turn to eating salmon instead of red meat. And those generally have to do with health benefits and promoting heart health. Eating a salmon fillet can be completely different than eating fish skin. Considering the source, is it safe to eat salmon skin? Yes, it can be. Some choose to eat it and some don’t, and it can be considered a personal preference. 

Recipe For Smoked Salmon cover

Some also choose to remove their salmon skin before cooking it. However, some say the flavor of the salmon is so much better when it cooks with the skin left on. This too is a matter of personal preference. 

Benefits of Eating Salmon

Eating salmon meat is considered to be one of the best sources of meat proteins. There are many nutritional benefits such as healthy fats. It has a highest concentration of omega-3 fatty acids, chiefly occurring in fish oil. 

Along with these healthy fats, eating salmon is a good source of protein. We consider it to be one of the best choices, compared to red meat. This is true because unlike red meat, it helps to diminish the risk of heart disease. 

In addition to a lot of omega-3, there are vitamins that also provide benefit, such as vitamins b, vitamin d, and essential minerals. 

Recipe For Smoked Salmon close up

If you appreciate the flavor of salmon, and eat it on a regular basis, there are many benefits that can be gleaned from consuming it. 

Knowing Where Your Salmon Comes From

Knowing where your salmon comes from might help you to determine whether you choose to eat the salmon skin. After all, no one wants to end up with food poisoning or health risks because of something that was eaten. 

When you go to the grocery store to purchase your filet of salmon, you’ll notice that there are a variety of types that are available. On the packaging, some might be labeled as wild salmon, wild-caught salmon compared to farm-raised salmon. 

If you read further on the packaging label, you’ll also notice that it should list a location such as the Atlantic Ocean or wild-caught Pacific salmon. These will give you a general idea of the location that your salmon came from. 

It’s important to know the quality of the fish is safe to eat and that it originated from clean waters.

Benefits of Eating Salmon Skin

If the salmon is from reputable sources, you might decide to eat the skin of salmon, but some people prefer to not eat it, which is fine. Crispy salmon skin, fried to a golden brown can become somewhat of a healthy snack for some. Like salmon itself, it can be a good source of omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins such as vitamin b. 

While there can be small health benefits, some believe that the risks and potential health complications outweigh the benefits. And so they choose to discard the leftover salmon skin rather than eating it. 

Drawbacks to Eating Salmon Skin

There are a few potential risks involved with eating salmon skin. Salmon skin often has a few salmon scales left behind that didn’t completely get wiped away during the processing, so you’ll want to watch out for those as they don’t favor well when you consume them. .

If the salmon is caught from water that’s not clean, there’s a greater potential of consuming higher levels of contaminants and developing potential health problems from eating the salmon or salmon skin. 

If you’re someone who has a weak immune system, you might want to forego eating the salmon skin. This is also true for pregnant women and young children, since they’re more vulnerable. We recommend staying on the safe side and avoiding the potential risks, rather than taking those risks. 

Recipe For Smoked Salmon background of fish

How to Remove Salmon Skin

If you’re planning to make salmon chips or want to cook your salmon meat without the skin, you’ll want to remove the skin first before baking, frying or grilling the fish. To do this, allow the salmon to thaw fully. Salmon can be thawed in the refrigerator or by placing it in a bowl of cold water.

Make sure all of the fish scales have been removed. This is usually done previously for fish that’s purchased at the grocery store. 

Place the fish on a flat surface, such as a cutting board. Then, using a good, sharp knife, remove the skin of the salmon from the rest of the fish, separating the salmon filets from the healthy skin. 

We’ve found that the best way is to start on the edge and gently pull up on the skin as you go. This will allow you to leave the flesh of the fish behind, which can then be set aside on a paper towel and cooked as desired. 

How to Cook Salmon Skin

Once you have your salmon skin prepared and separated from the meat part of the fish, you’ll want to cook it before eating it. We don’t recommend eating raw salmon skin due to risk factors. 

There are several different cooking methods that you can use that result in delicious salmon skin. The cooking process is one that you’ll want to select based on personal preference. 

Recipe For Smoked Salmon small piece

Some of the different ways to cook salmon skin include frying it on the stovetop or baking it in the oven. To fry on the stovetop, just use a frying pan lined with olive oil and cook on medium heat until it’s nice and browned. This will make a crispy fried salmon skin that’s a delicious treat.

Some people are fond of salmon skin chips and the crispy texture that the crispy skin creates. This cooking process can be done in the oven on an oil lined baking sheet. Just cut your salmon skin to the desired sized pieces and lay them flat on the baking sheet, cooking at 400F degrees for about 8-10 minutes, or until the desired doneness is achieved. 

Cutting salmon skin can sometimes be a challenge because it tends to be tough when it’s raw. We like to use a pair of kitchen scissors to easily cut it to the desired sized pieces.

The taste of salmon skin can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. 

Related Ideas:

If you’re like us and salmon is one of your favorite dishes, you’ll want to check out these recipe ideas and advice for salmon storage. We’ll help you know how to bake salmon, smoke it, and store it in the freezer or refrigerator. 

Amazing Recipe for Smoked Salmon

How Long to Bake Salmon at 350

​Can You Freeze Smoked Salmon

How Long to Smoke Salmon at 200 Degrees

How Long to Bake Salmon at 400

How Long Does Salmon Last in the Fridge

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Sarah is known for her extra fancy yeast breads, melt in your mouth pies, and everything salads. She has won awards as a home cook, and is passionate about helping others feel smarter in the kitchen. Sarah is the cooking genius of the sister duo.

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