Weeknight Cooking

Butter-Basted Salmon with Buttermilk Garlic Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Photo by Bobbi Lin
Author Notes

Inspired by a Blue Apron recipe, we created our own spin on a simple salmon dinner. Easy to make on weeknights, we've tweaked it over time until we have it just the way we like it: crispy skin basted in butter and lemon, sweet potatoes cooked in coconut oil, and plenty of vegetables. —Posie (Harwood) Brien

Test Kitchen Notes

This is very yummy and very straightforward. Nothing too complicated. Nothing that had to be changed. My salmon fillets were 5 ounces each, and took a bit longer (2 minutes) to cook than the times given. —Stephanie Bourgeois

  • Serves 2
  • 2 skin-on salmon fillets (5 to 6 ounces each), patted dry and seasoned with salt and pepper
  • 2 cups baby spinach
  • 1 large zucchini (or 2 small), diced
  • 1 lemon (zest + juice)
  • 6 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk (regular milk is also fine)
  • 3 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • 1 clove garlic, smashed into a paste
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
In This Recipe
  1. Place the sweet potatoes in a medium pot and cover with cold water (plus a few inches). Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and simmer until potatoes are tender when pricked with a fork, about 15 minutes.
  2. Drain the potatoes and return to the pot. Add the garlic paste, sour cream, buttermilk, 3 tablespoons of butter, and salt and pepper to taste. Mash well and set aside.
  3. Heat 1 teaspoon olive oil in a large pan until hot. Add the baby spinach and lemon zest and cook until just wilted. Remove from the pan and set aside. Once cool enough to handle, chop the spinach roughly.
  4. Heat another teaspoon of olive oil in the same pan and add the diced zucchini. Season with salt and pepper and cook on medium-high heat for about 4 minutes, until softened and starting to brown. Remove from the pan and set aside with the chopped spinach.
  5. Heat 2 teaspoons of oil in the same pan. Once hot, add the salmon (skin-side down). Cook for about 3 to 4 minutes on the first side, then flip and add the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter and lemon juice to the pan. Cook for 3 more minutes, constantly spooning the lemon butter over the salmon as it cooks. Transfer to a plate.
  6. Spoon mashed sweet potatoes onto each plate, top with the zucchini and spinach, then finish with a salmon fillet.

See Reviews

See what other Food52ers are saying.

I like warm homemade bread slathered with fresh raw milk butter, ice cream in all seasons, the smell of garlic in olive oil, and sugar snap peas fresh off the vine.