Jamaican Jerk Salmon Bowls with Pineapple Salsa – So much flavor packed into one bowl! A gorgeous mix of spices, heat, sweetness, and freshness.
Build-your-own bowls continue to be a family favorite at this house since everyone has the freedom to choose what they’d like to eat (from the choices available on the table). Our most recent bowl meal success is this Jamaican Jerk Salmon Bowl. It’s fast, family-friendly, and fresh, which makes it a perfect candidate for family dinner.
I’ve been slowly increasing the amount of fish we eat, and frozen fillets are still my go-to choice. There’s nowhere to get fresh, wild-caught salmon in the desert, but frozen fillets are the next best thing. I love that the fillets are individually frozen, so I can pull out what I need for dinner and keep the rest frozen until next time.
I also find it’s easier for me to choose sustainably caught fish when I choose frozen. The Fishpeople keta salmon filets I used for this recipe are rated as a Best Choice from the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch, which grades fish sustainability.
There are a few big points of flavor here that really make this dish a winner. The salmon is flavorful on its own, but with that Jamaican Jerk glaze? Dynamite.
Next, we usually use flavorful rice as a base. We love cilantro lime rice, coconut rice, or this veggie rice pilaf. For a grain-free version, you can use a bed of stir-fry veggies (I love bell peppers, zucchini, onions, carrots, celery, etc.), roasted sweet potatoes, or cauliflower rice.
Add an extra layer of veggies for some color (if you haven’t used them as a base), then top the whole thing with a giant scoop of this fresh pineapple salsa. It’s sweetness and tang balance out some of the spices and heat from the Jamaican Jerk sauce and really round out the dish. I LOVE this pineapple salsa! You could also use a mango salsa, if pineapple’s not your thing, or some avocado.
The big thing that makes meals like this a success at our house is that I know everyone will eat something. Sophie might choose rice, avocado, and pineapple salsa. Milo might pick at his veggies, but he’ll taste the salmon and a scoop of rice. Michael will go for everything but the avocado, and I might skip the rice in favor of more veggies. We all get something we love and the flavors keep all of us happy.
Watch the heat. Jamaican Jerk is notoriously spicy, so be sure to taste test your spice blend before seasoning your fish. I picked up a mix in a spice shop while visiting my mom near Las Vegas earlier this year, and it’s very mild, which is perfect for my spice-averse little ones.
Make your own. You can absolutely make your own Jamaican Jerk seasoning mix if you can’t find one you like, or prefer not to buy one. I picked one up at a spice shop in Colorado while visiting my in-laws, and it’s a great mix of spices without too much heat.
Make ahead. To save time, you can mix up the pineapple salsa up to a day ahead of time. The pineapple salsa will keep for about 4 days in the refrigerator, but will be best in those first 2-3 days.
This post is written in partnership with Fishpeople. We love getting to partner with companies and brands whose mission aligns with ours, and sustainably-caught fish is one of our food passions. I was compensated for this post, but all opinions are my own.
2 Tbsp tamari (can use soy sauce or coconut aminos)
2 Tbsp orange juice
1 Tbsp honey (or more, to taste)
salt and pepper, to taste
2 tsp cornstarch
For pineapple salsa:
1 1/2 cups pineapple, diced
2–3 Tbsp finely minced red onion
2–3 Tbsp fresh cilantro, minced
1–2 Tbsp finely minced jalapeno
Juice of 1 lime
Rice or roasted sweet potatoes – try coconut rice, veggie rice, etc.
For the salmon:
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Whisk together the glaze ingredients in a saucepan on the stove–jamaican jerk seasoning, lime juice, tamari, orange juice, honey, salt, pepper, and cornstarch. Taste and add additional honey, salt, or jerk seasoning if desired.
Stir glaze over medium heat until it thickens. (If your mixture thickens more than you like, just add a drizzle of water to thin it back out).
Place salmon fillets on a baking sheet lined with foil and drizzle with half of the glaze mixture. Bake 10-12 minutes, or until cooked through. Drizzle remaining glaze over the top.
For the salsa:
While the salmon is cooking, stir together salsa ingredients. (This can also be done up to a day ahead of time).
Make bowls by combining your favorite veggies, rice (or roasted sweet potatoes), avocado, and plenty of pineapple salsa.