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How to Reheat Salmon in Microwave

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Freshly cooked salmon is a favorite for many people, however leftover salmon can taste just as good if reheated properly. There are several methods to reheat salmon leftovers, but the microwave is considered the quickest method for this purpose. 

When done improperly, reheating salmon can dry up the fillets and give a fishy smell. Out of pure convenience, many people use the microwave to reheat salmon due to a lack of time. 

How do you reheat salmon in the microwave? To reheat salmon in the microwave, place the cooked fish on a microwave safe dish, add a tablespoon of water, cover with a lip or damp paper towel and nuke for 2 to 3 minutes until the internal temperature reaches 74°C or 165°F.

In this write-up, we are going to discuss how to reheat salmon in microwave safely. Answered below are frequently asked questions about using a microwave to reheat fish, along with the best way to reheat salmon in the microwave.

Can you reheat salmon in a microwave?

Yes, you can microwave salmon to reheat it quickly. However, the precooked salmon may dry out easily and the fishy smell can linger.

To avoid a strong fishy smell, microwave reheat salmon in stages starting at medium temperature. 

To avoid drying fillets, add a splash of water to the dish before microwaving. 

Use a microwave-safe dish to nuke the salmon while reheating. Start at a low temperature instead of a high temperature, and reheat incrementally at the interval of 30 seconds in order to frequently check the doneness.

Is it safe to reheat salmon in microwave?

Yes, reheating salmon inside the microwave is safe. However, it can dry up and emit a strong fishy smell when done in a rushed manner.

Most people with a tight time-schedule prefer to microwave salmon but it can dry up the fillets and leave a fishy odor which may be unpleasant. So, reheating salmon in a microwave should be done in a tactful way. 

To avoid such issues, microwave salmon while reheating it at low temperature and in stages, Furthermore, sprinkle water on top of the salmon and use a microwave cover to avoid its drying out.

How long salmon can be heated in a microwave?

Salmon can be heated in 2 to 3 minutes in a microwave. It may take a few minutes to microwave salmon while reheating it, but following the proper steps will ensure that it doesn’t dry out and overcook.

Reheating salmon in a microwave is a good option as long as you avoid high temperatures that can dry it up. Based on time and convenience, microwaving salmon is the easiest way.

To safely reheat salmon in the microwave, check it every 30 seconds to determine whether it has been reheated as desired or not. To reheat salmon evenly, flip and readjust its position after each interval.

How do you know when salmon is reheated in a microwave?

Salmon is reheated in the microwave when it reaches an internal temperature of 74°C or 165°F. Other signs to watch for are a sizzling surface, lots of steam rising from the fish and a noticeable smell of cooked salmon.

It is easy to know when your salmon is reheated in a microwave by checking it frequently after every 30 seconds.

While reheating leftover salmon in a microwave, set the appliance at 50% power or use the reheat setting. Use a dish that is safe in a microwave, put the leftover salmon on it and cover with a lid or damp paper towel. 

Microwave the salmon for 30 seconds at a time, the adjust its position and flip after 30 seconds and microwave it again. Continue reheating the salmon in segments of 30 seconds until it is reheated internally to the desired temperature.

How to store cooked salmon

Both cooked and raw salmon are considered to be a perishable food that should not be stored at room temperature for longer than 2 hours. Food borne bacteria may multiple quickly while salmon remains in the temperature danger zone between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Increase the shelf life of cooked salmon by storing in the fridge or freezer as quickly as possible. At the longest, cooked salmon should be put into the refrigerator within two hours of cooking it.

To maintain the quality, safety, and shelf life of the cooked salmon, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, heavy-duty aluminum foil or use a shallow airtight container for storing. 

In the refrigerator, properly cooked and stored salmon can last for 3-4 days.

If you want to store cooked salmon for a longer time, then put it into the freezer to extend the shelf life of your cooked salmon for nearly 2-3 months if cooked and stored properly. While storing the cooked salmon in the freezer, wrap it tightly in freezer wrap, Ziploc bag or store it in an airtight containers to reduce freezer burn. 

However, you should discard the cooked salmon if it smells sour before or after reheating it as it is a sign that the cooked salmon has gone bad. The look, smell and taste of spoiled salmon can also tell you that it is not edible.

Tips to reheat salmon in a microwave

Safely reheat salmon in a microwave if you are short of time and looking for the most convenient reheating option. It is quick, safe and easy when done the right way.

Follow these microwave tips reheat salmon in the microwave:

  • Always microwave on a microwaveable dish, glass and ceramic are often preferred over microwaving plastic.
  • Add a splash of water to the dish so the fish doesn’t dry out.
  • Cover with a lid, microwave safe plastic wrap or use a wetted paper towel to create steam and lock in the moisture.
  • Set the microwave to 50% power, medium heat or use the reheat setting as it is not recommended to reheat salmon with high heat.
  • Use the microwave to reheat salmon leftovers for 30 second increments.
  • To reheat salmon evenly, change its position or flip the fish over after 30 seconds to heat all sides more effectively.
  • Continue reheating salmon in intervals of 30 seconds until the internal temperature reaches 74°C or 165°F.
How to reheat salmon in microwave

Best way to reheat salmon in microwave

The best way to reheat salmon in a microwave is to use your microwave carefully and incrementally at medium temperatures. To prevent overcooking the leftover salmon, a few best practices should be followed.

  • Place the cooked salmon on a microwave safe plate.
  • Add a tablespoon of water to the dish.
  • Cover with a microwave cover or damp paper towel.
  • Use the reheat button or set the microwave to medium heat or 50% power level.
  • Microwave for 30 second increments.
  • Flip and rotate the fish.
  • Continue to nuking and readjusting every 30 seconds until the internal temperature of the reheated salmon reaches 74°C or 165°F.

Reheating Salmon in Microwave: Final Thoughts

The microwave is a quick and easy option to reheat salmon. However, when rushed it can make salmon tough to eat as this quick method of reheating salmon can make it dry and rubbery. 

To start with, raw and cooked salmon must be handled safely and stored properly to ensure safe reheating. Use an airtight meal prep container to lock in freshness and refrigerate or freeze within 2 hours of being cooked.

If the salmon is frozen, then you should defrost salmon before reheating. Otherwise, remove the fish from refrigerated storage and allow it to come to room temperature for 10 to 30 minutes before microwaving. 

Place the precooked salmon on a microwave safe dish, sprinkle a spoonful of water over the top and cover with a lid, plastic wrap or wetted paper towel to lock in the moisture. 

Microwave on medium heat or 50% power level using the reheat setting.

Heat for 30 second durations, and flip or rotate the salmon after each interval to promote even reheating. Total microwave time should be between 2 to 3 minutes until the salmon heats to an internal temperature of 74°C or 165°F.

Confidently reheat salmon in the microwave for a quick and easy meal using your leftovers. When done properly, the microwave is a safe and effective way to reheat salmon for a meal that is ready to eat in just a few minutes.

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Tuesday 6th of September 2022

This method allows the salmon to retain its moisture and flavor, making it a delicious and healthy option for a quick meal. reheat salmon in the microwave for fast and effective results, but keep a careful eye on time and internal temperature. If you reheat salmon in the microwave, be sure to check it frequently to ensure that it doesn't become overcooked.

Seth H.

Sunday 6th of June 2021

Hello, you've got some good tips here. I've been looking on your website for ideas. I've been preparing ready to eat meals for an elderly friend who can't physically cook for herself. However, she can pop the plate into her microwave without too much trouble. I put a reheatable meal on a plate and cover it with cling wrap, label and date, and drop them off 3 times a week. So my main interest is foods that reheat in a microwave well.

I've tried salmon a couple times and my best success is from searing the filet on all sides but leave it slightly underdone. I know this doesn't follow health department guidelines, but I figure searing the salmon and having it sit chilled for 2-3 days can't be any worse than raw salmon sitting uncooked for 2-3 days. I work in a production kitchen so I'm familiar with rules and regs.

Anyway, I'll be perusing your blog for ideas, mainly because I'm getting bored with making the same meals all the time.

Thanks for all your ideas and efforts.


Monday 7th of June 2021

Hello Seth, thank you for reaching out. I second your recommendation for searing the fillet before microwaving. As long as the salmon is safely handled and stored within the recommended timeframe, then I think that method produces the best results. I have prepared food for elderly family and friends and know how rewarding and invaluable that is for them. Keep up the good work and know how much they truly appreciate it. Warmly, Joshua