How to Make Steamed Salmon Cantonese Style at Home

Welcome, dear readers, to my recipe for Steamed Salmon Cantonese Style. If you’re looking for a healthy yet flavorful meal that will impress your dinner guests, this recipe is perfect for you. I have always been fascinated by the delicate taste of steamed salmon, and the Cantonese style in particular has won me over with its use of fresh ingredients and bold flavors.

Steaming might seem like a challenging cooking method, but trust me when I say that it’s surprisingly easy and quick. Not only does it require minimum preparation, but it also preserves the nutrients and natural flavor of the ingredients, making it an ideal option for health-conscious individuals or anyone looking to enjoy light and refreshing meals.

My Steamed Salmon Cantonese Style recipe features a combination of Asian-style seasonings such as soy sauce, Thai fish sauce, and mirin – alongside aromatic gingerroot and garlic cloves – which all contribute to create a harmonious sauce that perfectly complements fish dishes.

But don’t take my word for it. Give this Cantonese-style steamed salmon a try and experience firsthand how elegantly simple dishes can often be the most delicious ones.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Steamed Salmon Cantonese Style
Steamed Salmon Cantonese Style

Are you in search of the perfect steamed salmon recipe that is packed with flavor and easy to make? Look no further than this Cantonese Steamed Salmon recipe!

First and foremost, this recipe is incredibly healthy. Steaming the salmon fillet ensures that it retains all its natural flavors and nutrients without added fat. Furthermore, the use of fresh ginger, green onions, and cilantro creates a perfect balance of flavors that will leave your taste buds wanting more.

Not only is this recipe delicious, but it’s also easy to make. All you need is a fish steamer or a pot with a steamer rack to get started. The ingredient list is simple and easy to find at any Asian supermarket or grocery store. In fact, you probably already have many of the ingredients in your pantry!

Finally, this recipe can be tailored to fit different dietary needs and preferences. Don’t like fish sauce? No problem, substitute it for soy sauce instead. Prefer more spice? Add some red pepper flakes for an extra kick. With just a few substitutions and variations, you can create a completely personalized dish that fits your taste.

In summary, if you’re looking for a healthy, flavorful, and versatile fish dish that’s also easy to make – this Cantonese Steamed Salmon recipe should be on your menu tonight!

Ingredient List

 Juicy and delicious steamed salmon with a twist of Cantonese flavors
Juicy and delicious steamed salmon with a twist of Cantonese flavors

Before you start cooking, gather all the ingredients to make your Steamed Salmon Cantonese Style a success! Here are the ingredients you need:

For the salmon:

  • 2 salmon fillets (1-1/4 inches thick)
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1-inch fresh gingerroot, peeled and minced
  • 2 green onion cut long (3/4 inch each) and sliced thinly lengthwise
  • A handful of cilantro for garnishing

For the sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons mirin or sherry
  • 1 tablespoon Thai fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  • fish steamer or heat-proof plate that can fit inside a large wok or pot with lid.
  • steamer rack or ramekin overturned in the bottom of your wok/pot
  • water

Be sure to get top quality salmon as it is the hero ingredient in this dish. Also, don’t be tempted to skip on the aromatics – garlic and ginger will provide a depth of flavors while green onions will deliver its sweetness. Lastly, make sure to have all necessary equipment at hand before starting to cook.

The Recipe How-To

 Experience the taste of Asia with our Steamed Salmon Cantonese Style
Experience the taste of Asia with our Steamed Salmon Cantonese Style

Now that we’ve talked about what makes this recipe so irresistible, let’s get to the fun part: the actual cooking! Before diving into the recipe steps, it’s important to have all your ingredients on hand, as well as the right equipment. You’ll need a large fish steamer or a wok with a steam rack, as well as some parchment paper and heatproof serving dish.

For the salmon:

  • 4 salmon fillets
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1-inch piece of gingerroot, peeled and minced
  • 2 tablespoons mirin
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • Black pepper, to taste

For the toppings:

  • 1 bunch of green onions (scallions), cut long and thin
  • 1 bunch of cilantro (coriander), chopped
  • Sesame seeds, toasted

Step-by-Step Instructions
Step 1: Prepare the Fish

First, rinse the salmon fillets under cold water to remove any excess scales or debris. Then, using paper towels, gently pat them dry.

Step 2: Season the Fish

In a small bowl, whisk together the minced garlic, minced gingerroot, mirin, soy sauce, sesame oil, and some freshly cracked black pepper.

Next, place each salmon fillet on top of a piece of parchment paper (large enough to wrap around them). Spoon some of the sauce mixture over each fillet (about 1 tablespoon per fillet).

Step 3: Steam the Fish

Place some water in a fish steamer or wok and bring it to a boil. Place a heatproof serving dish or plate in the steamer rack.

Once the water is boiling, carefully add each piece of salmon to the steamer rack on top of the heatproof dish. Cover tightly with a lid and steam for about 10 minutes until fully cooked.

Step 4: Top and Serve

Using tongs or a spatula, carefully transfer each piece of steamed salmon onto individual plates. Top generously with chopped green onions and fresh cilantro. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.

And that’s it! Delicious Steamed Salmon Cantonese Style is now ready to serve.

Substitutions and Variations

 A perfect recipe for seafood lovers and those who want to try something new
A perfect recipe for seafood lovers and those who want to try something new

Substitutions and variations are a great way to make a recipe your own or to accommodate dietary restrictions. Here are some tips and suggestions for this Cantonese-style steamed salmon recipe:

– Instead of salmon fillet, you can use other types of fish fillets such as sea bass, halibut, or even tilapia. Keep in mind that the cooking time may vary depending on the thickness of the fish.

– For those seeking a vegetarian alternative or do not eat fish, you can substitute chicken broth for water and instead of salmon fillets, use firm tofu or mushrooms. This would result in a delicious vegetable-based dish with flavors similar to the original recipe.

– You can also substitute other ingredients in the recipe with what you have on hand without sacrificing taste. Try using tamarind paste instead of Thai fish sauce, or rice wine vinegar instead of mirin, and adjust the amount used accordingly.

– If you prefer a slightly different flavor profile, you can experiment with using different sauces or herbs when serving. For example, cilantro and green onions work well as garnish or mix-ins when serving this Asian-style dish.

– For those wanting a more intense flavor experience, try adding black pepper, garlic, or black bean sauce to your steamed salmon dish to elevate its already flavorful base.

These substitutions and variations will allow for greater flexibility in both preparation and creativity in making the dish unique to your personal tastes or dietary needs.

Serving and Pairing

 Impress your guests with this stunning fish dish on your party table
Impress your guests with this stunning fish dish on your party table

The steamed salmon cantonese style recipe is a dish that pairs perfectly with many side dishes, making it an ideal option for a dinner party or gathering. I suggest serving this dish with freshly cooked white rice, which will help absorb the flavorful sauce that accompanies the fish.

Due to the asian-style components of the recipe, other asian-inspired side dishes complement this steamed salmon very well. For example, stir-fried vegetables such as snow peas or bok choy make excellent accompaniments, as they add vibrant color and a slight crunchiness to your meal. Additionally, miso soup is also a popular Japanese side dish, which makes for a great addition to any asian-inspired spread.

For wine-pairing options we recommend serving this dish with a crisp and refreshing glass of white wine, ideally a Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc. Moreover, if you want to keep the Asian theme going- serve Sake or Japanese beer for an authentic experience.

I also recommend garnishing your dish with some chopped cilantro or fresh green onions to add some burst of flavor and some dimension to your plates. These greens artfully placed on top also create an appealing visual appearance in addition to its bright taste.

Whether you’re hosting a small dinner gathering or preparing this dish for your family meal; these suggested pairings will help elevate any mealtime experience adding some great variety!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Healthy, yet flavorful salmon recipe that you'll surely enjoy
Healthy, yet flavorful salmon recipe that you’ll surely enjoy

This Cantonese-style steamed salmon recipe is a great make-ahead dish as it can be prepared hours before the party starts. However, it is not advisable to steam the salmon ahead of time, as this may dry out the fish and negatively affect its texture.

If you wish to prepare the ingredients beforehand, you can marinate the salmon fillets overnight in the refrigerator. This will allow the flavors to permeate the fish, resulting in an even more delicious meal.

Storing your leftovers is simple: place them in an airtight container and keep them in the refrigerator for up to three days. When reheating, place the salmon on a heat-proof plate or dish and add a small amount of water at the bottom. Cover with foil and steam for about five minutes or until heated through.

If you’re looking for a quick reheat method, simply microwave on high for one minute per fillet. This method may cause some texture loss but still retains most of the flavors.

With proper storage and reheating techniques, you can enjoy this healthy and delicious steamed salmon Cantonese-style for days after your party is over.

Tips for Perfect Results

 Steamed salmon has never been this easy and tasty!
Steamed salmon has never been this easy and tasty!

To ensure that your Cantonese-style steamed salmon turns out perfectly each time, I have some tips that can help you improve your recipe. These tips will teach you how to steam fish properly and get the best flavor out of your salmon fillet.

Firstly, make sure to place the salmon fillet on a heatproof plate or dish that fits inside your fish steamer. You can also use a rack to keep the fish elevated above the water. By doing so, the fish will not touch the water, and you’ll avoid overcooking or undercooking it.

Secondly, season your salmon with black pepper to taste just before steaming it. This seasoning adds an extra layer of flavor to the fish that brings out its natural taste.

Thirdly, don’t be afraid to be creative when using substitutes or variations of the ingredients in this recipe. For example, you may replace cilantro with parsley or Thai fish sauce with oyster sauce if you prefer a different flavor profile. And if you don’t have mirin at hand, feel free to use rice vinegar mixed with sugar to add a sweet and tangy taste to the sauce.

Fourthly, garnish your Cantonese-style steamed salmon with chopped green onions and fresh cilantro for a pop of color and added flavor. The combination of these two ingredients will brighten up your dish while complementing perfectly the flavors of ginger and soy sauce in the recipe.

Lastly, serve your steamed salmon immediately after cooking on a bed of fluffy white rice to absorb any remaining sauce. You can also pair it with stir-fried vegetables such as bok choy or broccoli for a complete meal that is both healthy and satisfying.

By following these tips, your Cantonese-style steamed salmon will turn out wonderfully flavored, tender, and moist every time you cook it.


As you embark on making this scrumptious Steamed Salmon Cantonese Style Recipe, it is not uncommon for questions to arise. From ingredient substitutions to steaming techniques, there are many aspects that can be confusing or unclear. In this section, we address some of the frequently asked questions about this recipe to ensure your cooking experience is effortless and smooth-sailing.

How long does it take to steam fish in a steamer?

To perfectly steam your fish, start by filling up the bottom of your steamer with an inch of water and bringing it to a boil. Place your fish on the steamer’s rack and ensure that the rack is not touching the water. Cover the steamer and let it cook for about 4 to 8 minutes or until the fish is thoroughly cooked.

Is steamed salmon healthy?

Salmon is an incredibly nutritious food, rich in protein, vitamin A and omega fatty acids. These nutrients play a vital role in supporting healthy heart and brain functions.

Can you eat steamed salmon?

Cooking salmon through steaming is a quick and healthy method that results in a scrumptious and moist dish. When water hits its boiling point, it transitions into steam, which then delicately and rapidly cooks the seafood. This process is especially ideal for cooking fragile ingredients like seafood because it offers gentle heat.

How do you steam salmon without a steamer?

Steaming your food is a great way to cook it while retaining its nutrients and natural flavors. One easy and efficient method for steaming is by utilizing a colander. By placing a heat-safe colander into a large pot with a lid, you can create a makeshift steamer that will cook your ingredients to perfection. To ensure that smaller items don’t fall through the holes in the colander, you can place them in a perforated bowl or wrap them in a cheesecloth. This simple technique is a game-changer for any home chef looking to elevate their culinary skills.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this Cantonese style steamed salmon recipe is perfect for anyone who loves Asian cuisine and wants to enjoy a healthy and delicious meal. It is a quick and easy recipe that you can prepare with just a few ingredients and minimal effort, making it a great choice for busy weeknights or weekend dinners.

This dish is not only tasty but also healthy, making it a great option for those watching their health. The recipe also offers various substitutions and variations to cater to different dietary needs, preferences and tastes.

Moreover, I would highly recommend this recipe for your next dinner party as the dish has the elegance of Asian flavors which will impress your guests. You can pair the steamed salmon with some rice or vegetables to make a wholesome meal.

I hope that this recipe article has been helpful, and you will give this Cantonese style steamed salmon recipe a try at home. Trust me; once you’ve tasted it, you’ll love it as much as I do!

Steamed Salmon Cantonese Style

Steamed Salmon Cantonese Style Recipe

When salmon is steamed with fresh ginger, fish sauce, and premium rice wine, it takes on a creamy texture that cannot be achieved with any other cooking method. As a final step, hot, garlic-flavored oil is poured over the salmon to sear in the juices. From the Wild Ginger Restaurant, Seattle WA. Pike Place Public Market Seafood Cookbook by Braiden Rex-Johnson.
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Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Chinese
Calories 297.1 kcal


  • 3 cups water
  • 1/2 lb salmon fillet, bones removed, rinsed, drained, patted dry, and cut into 2 (4-ounce)
  • 1 1/2 inches length gingerroot, very thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chinese rice wine (Shao Hsing) or 2 tablespoons mirin (Shao Hsing)
  • 2 tablespoons Thai fish sauce (nam pla)
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil (2-3)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 green onions, top 2 inches removed, remaining portion julienned
  • 2 sprigs cilantro, for garnish


  • To steam in a wok, cross two chopsticks in an X, then cut a groove in the lower chopstick so that the top one fits snugly.
  • Set the chopsticks in the wok and add water to 1 inch below the level of the chopsticks.
  • Place lid on wok and turn heat to high.
  • Place the salmon, skin side down, on a glass pie plate or rimmed glass plate slightly smaller than the diameter of the wok.
  • Cover with ginger slices.
  • Pour rice wine and fish sauce over fish.
  • When the water is boiling, remove the lid from the wok and position the plate containing the salmon and seasonings on top of the chopsticks.
  • Replace the lid and cook 7 to 8 minutes, or until the salmon just turns opaque and begins to flake.
  • Two to three minutes before the salmon is done steaming, heat the peanut oil in a small skillet over high heat.
  • When the oil is very hot, add the garlic and cook until browned.
  • Discard the garlic, but do not turn off the heat until you use the oil; it must be very hot to sear the fish properly.
  • When the salmon is cooked, transfer to a warm plate.
  • Place green onion strips on top of the fish and immediately pour hot oil over the fish and onions.
  • Garnish with cilantro sprigs and serve immediately.
  • Serves 2 as an entree, 4 as an appetizer.

Your Own Notes


Serving: 533gCalories: 297.1kcalCarbohydrates: 3.1gProtein: 24.7gFat: 18.6gSaturated Fat: 3.2gCholesterol: 52.3mgSodium: 1513.1mgFiber: 0.5gSugar: 1g
Keyword < 30 Mins, Asian, Cantonese, Chinese
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