Enclosing salmon in foil keeps it moist and tender for healthy and flavor-packed Foil-Roasted Salmon with Chickpeas and Greens. A creamy lemon dijon mustard sauce makes this a guest-worthy meal that’s surprisingly easy to prepare.
2021 has arrived! I hope you're headed into this fresh new year with optimism, energy, and perhaps some healthier meals too. If you've been reading for some time you might remember that last January we aimed to cook at home for 30 dinners in a row with our 30 Dinner Challenge. This year, since most traditions need a different take, we're treating January a little differently too. Locally-owned restaurants are struggling. Many are at risk of closing. Now is a critical moment to support the restaurants we love. So, if you are able, we encourage you to pick a few of your favorites to support this month. Grab some take-out, deliver a meal to a friend, or just give them a shout-out on social media.
And if you live in the Kansas City area, be sure to follow us on Instagram. We're giving away gift cards to many of our favorite restaurants all month long!
So, about this salmon. Even though salmon with chickpeas and greens seems exactly like the sort of healthy dish we’d all expect to see in the new year, this foil-roasted salmon recipe does not disappoint in the flavor department. It’s both weeknight-friendly and worthy of guests because it can be entirely prepped ahead of time, cooks hands-off in the oven, and is finished with a creamy sauce that makes it feel extra special.
This recipe is inspired by this Slow-Cooked Salmon, but over the years I’ve gravitated to the foil packet method because it creates a perfect environment for cooking salmon. No more dry or over-cooked salmon here! See below for more on the advantages of this cooking method. It’s so simple. Let’s do this!
Ingredients for Foil Roasted Salmon
- Salmon - I like to buy pre-sliced salmon filets because they are so easy to serve. You can also use one whole piece of salmon in this recipe. Be sure to season it with some salt and pepper before cooking.
- Swiss Chard - These colorful greens will cook down to tender underneath the salmon. Discard the tough stems and chop the leaves well before preparing. It will seem like a lot of greens when you start, but they cook WAY down.
- Canned Chickpeas - Also sometimes labeled as garbanzo beans. Be sure to drain and rinse them before using.
- Red Wine Vinegar and Extra Virgin Olive Oil - These make a light vinaigrette for the greens and beans. If you don’t have red wine vinegar, white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar will work.
- Capers, Garlic, Lemon slices - Don’t skip these - they add salty, tangy flavor to the dish that goes well with the fish.
How to Make Creamy Lemon Dijon Sauce
I have to tell you that the Creamy Lemon Dijon Sauce included in this recipe has basically become our house sauce. It’s just plain yogurt whisked with lemon juice, Dijon mustard, honey, and a pinch of salt. I use it over fish as in this recipe, as a dip for veggies, spooned over chicken breast, and even as a salad dressing. The measurements are just a guide - feel free to adjust it to taste depending on how you want to serve it!
Why Cook Salmon in Foil
A tightly sealed foil packet traps moisture and flavor inside so that the salmon stays flaky, tender, and perfectly moist. Whereas other cooking methods can lead to dried out fish if cooked for even a minute too long, a foil packet gives you extra wiggle room so the roasted salmon will stay moist even if cooked longer than needed.
- Change Greens - Swiss chard cooks down and becomes tender during this cooking method, but other greens would work well here. Kale or collard greens would also be great and are more sturdy so they’ll have more texture after cooking.
- Change Beans - Try this with any other canned beans - pinto or white beans would be great.
- Use Another Fish - This method works well with almost any other type of fish. Just adjust the cook time based on the thickness of the fish.
More Salmon Recipes:
- Broiled Honey Lime Salmon
- Pan Seared Salmon and Gnocchi with Sage Butter Sauce
- Lemongrass Roasted Salmon
- Salmon with Sweet Chili Lime Butter and Roasted Broccoli
- Chipotle Lime Salmon
- Thai-Style Salmon Satay with Peanut Sauce
Foil-Roasted Salmon with Greens and Chickpeas
- Mixing Bowl
- Half Sheet Pan
- aluminum foil
Salmon, Chickpeas, and Greens:
- 4 large leaves Swiss Chard, stems discarded and leaves finely chopped
- 1 15 oz can Chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 tablespoon Red Wine Vinegar (sub white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar)
- 1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 tablespoon Capers, drained
- 2 cloves Garlic, chopped
- ½ teaspoon Kosher Salt
- 4 filets Salmon (about 6 oz each; see note)
- 1 Lemon, thinly sliced
Creamy Lemon Dijon Sauce:
- ½ cup Plain or Greek Yogurt
- 2 tablespoon Lemon Juice
- 2 tablespoon Dijon Mustard
- ¼ teaspoon Honey
- Pinch Salt
- Preheat oven to 350°F / 177°C.
- Place a large piece of foil on top of a sheet pan. Toss chard and chickpeas with vinegar, olive oil, capers, garlic, and salt. Spread out on one half of the sheet pan.
- Top chard and chickpeas with salmon. Season salmon with some salt and pepper and top with lemon slices.
- Enclose salmon and seal foil tightly. (Note: You may have to really compress the chard to fit inside the foil packet. It will seem like a lot, but will cook way down.)
- Transfer sheet pan with salmon to oven and cook until salmon flakes easily with a fork, 25 to 30 minutes. (This will vary a bit depending on the thickness of your salmon. You can pull back the foil a bit to check on it.)
- While salmon cooks, whisk together yogurt, lemon juice, mustard, honey, and a pinch of salt.
- Serve creamy lemon sauce over salmon and greens. Enjoy!
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