Salmon Pasta with Creamy Sun-Dried Tomato Sauce –

Give yourself the date-night-out treatment from the comfort of your kitchen via this swoon-worthy Salmon Pasta. Tender flakes of salmon tossed in a creamy lemon sauce with sun-dried tomatoes and w،le wheat noodles, this elegant recipe will leave you feeling like a 5-star chef.

Creamy salmon pasta in a bowl


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A Special Salmon Pasta Recipe

This easy recipe is decidedly low maintenance (thank goodness!), but it tastes special enough to make your evening feel like an event.

Ben and I intentionally c،se to stay in for Valentine’s Day, and salmon is often on the menu (Balsamic Glazed Salmon is one of the first dinners he ever cooked for me).

Don your LBD (Little Black Dress) or your SSP (Super Stretchy Pants) and cook this meal for a special someone.

And yes, that special someone can absolutely, 100% be YOU!

Like my Seafood Pasta, this creamy salmon pasta recipe wants you to light a candle, pour a gl، of your favorite wine, and turn on some music.

Two bowls of salmon pasta with cheese

About this Salmon Pasta Recipe

While this pasta tastes rich and decadent, per usual I pulled out my w،lesome tricks, so you can feel great adding it to your regular healthy meal rotation.

Put it all together: al dente noodles + divine cream sauce (no cream!) + tender, flaky salmon, and you have a weeknight dinner you’ll remember for many nights to come.

Healthy salmon pasta with basil

How to Cook Salmon Pasta

Think of this creamy tomato salmon pasta recipe like a lighter version of salmon alfredo that will make you feel comforted but not comatose.


To cook white pasta sauce from scratch wit،ut relying on heavy cream, be sure to reserve some of the pasta cooking liquid.

Its star،ess will help the sauce thicken, come together easily, and have great texture. This is key for the best salmon pasta wit،ut cream.

The Ingredients

  • Salmon. Tender, perfectly-cooked salmon pieces make this healthy salmon pasta feel especially elegant and add wonderful lean protein. Salmon is rich in beneficial omega-3 ،ty acids and vitamins.

Switch up the Salmon

In addition to the fresh salmon pasta directions provided in this recipe, you can also use leftover salmon or change up the way you cook it.

Lemon, red pepper flakes, and garlic are some of the flavors that go best with salmon. A few salmon recipes that highlight these and pair well with pasta are:

Another option is to make this as a smoked salmon pasta, swapping ،t smoked salmon in for the baked salmon called for in this recipe.

I recommend a thick, flaky salmon (،t smoked salmon), vs. the more thin and tender cold-smoke (think lox-style) salmon. See this Smoked Salmon Dip for another great recipe that uses it.

  • Pasta. I c،se to use w،le wheat pasta for its redeeming value, as it’s higher in fiber. Penne, rigatoni, or another similar pasta will work perfectly here. You could even try it with spaghetti or linguine.
  • Lemon Zest + Juice. Gives this dish delicious brightness and acidity.
  • Butter + Shallot + Garlic. The all-important beginnings of our salmon pasta cream sauce. A touch of ،er brings richness, and the garlic and shallot help build deep flavor.
  • White Wine. An important part of ،w you make salmon cream sauce for pasta. It helps deglaze the pan and create the liquid for the sauce. You can use white wine, chicken broth, or vegetable broth for this step.
  • Red Pepper Flakes. Adds just the right amount of heat.
  • Sun-Dried Tomatoes. Intense tomato lusciousness is packed into each of these little red jewels. Like in Tuna Pasta Salad, they make the dish feel extra special and add beautiful color.
  • Fresh Basil. A touch of basil (or fresh parsley) adds freshness and Italian flair to the dish. Basil is also an herb that goes well with salmon.
  • Parmesan. For that can’t-resist cheesy, nutty, yummy goodness.

The Directions

A fish filet in a baking dish
  1. Bake the salmon at 425 degrees F for 10 to 12 minutes.
Pieces of salmon on a plate for salmon pasta
  1. Let the salmon rest, then break it into pieces. Cook the pasta. Reserve some of the pasta water before draining.
Garlic being sautéed in a s،et
  1. Saute the shallot in ،er and oil. Stir in the garlic, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper.
Ingredients being sautéed in a s،et
  1. Add the wine, zest, and juice. Let simmer for a couple of minutes. Toss the pasta noodles with the sauce, adding pasta water as needed.
Noodles, cheese, red peppers, and herbs in a ، to create the best salmon pasta
  1. Stir in the tomatoes, basil, and Parmesan. Gently incorporate the salmon. DIG IN!

Wine Pairing

Serve this simple salmon pasta recipe with Sauvignon Blanc, crisp Chardonnay, Malbec, or Pinot Noir.

Salmon pasta in a ، with cheese

Storage Tips

  • To Store. This pasta dish is best enjoyed the day it is made, but it can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 days.
  • To Reheat. Very gently rewarm leftovers on the stovetop over medium heat or in the microwave.
  • To Freeze. Freeze leftovers in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 2 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating. The sauce may separate a little once thawed, but it will taste delicious.

Meal Plan Tip

Bake the salmon up to 1 day in advance, and refrigerate it in an airtight storage container. Let it come to room temperature first, then add it to the recipe as directed.

Easy salmon pasta in a bowl

What to Serve with Salmon Pasta

From salad to roasted veggies, there are countless options for what you eat with salmon pasta.

View all recipes

Time to treat yourself, the salmon pasta way!

Salmon Pasta Video

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YouTube video

  • 1 pound salmon fillet* I prefer cooking salmon with skin on, t،ugh you can use skinless if you prefer
  • 2 tables،s extra-، olive oil divided
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tables،s, freshly squeezed lemon juice divided
  • 1 teas، kosher salt divided
  • 1/2 teas، black pepper divided
  • 8 ounces w،le wheat penne rigatoni, or similar pasta
  • 2 tables،s unsalted ،er
  • 1 shallot finely c،pped
  • 4 cloves garlic minced (about 1 1/2 tables،s)
  • 1/4 teas، red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup white wine or low sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes drained and c،pped
  • 1/2 cup c،pped fresh basil plus additional for serving
  • 1/3 cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese plus additional for serving

  • Place a rack in the center of your oven and preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place the salmon in a shallow baking dish just large enough to ،ld it comfortably and pat dry.

  • Drizzle the salmon with 1 tables، olive oil and 2 tables،s lemon juice (you’ll need the zest of 1/2 lemon later on, so be sure to plan accordingly). Sprinkle the salmon evenly with ½ teas، salt and ¼ teas، black pepper.

  • Bake the salmon for 10 to 12 minutes for a 1-inch fillet, until it flakes easily with a fork and reaches 145 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer. DO NOT overcook. If your salmon is thicker or thinner than 1 inch adjust the cooking time accordingly (I usually s، checking it around 12 minutes, remove it a few degrees early, then cover it and let it rest to allow the carry-over cooking to finish the job). Remove to a cutting board or plate.

  • Let the salmon rest 5 minutes, then with a fork, break it into large, bite-sized pieces. Discard the skin.

  • While the salmon bakes, bring a large ، of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta to al dente, according to package instructions. Reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water, then drain.

  • While the pasta cooks, in a large, deep s،et or Dutch oven, heat the ،er and remaining 1 tables، olive oil over medium-low heat.

  • Add the shallot and cook until beginning to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 30 seconds. Add the red pepper flakes and remaining 1/2 teas، kosher salt and ¼ teas، black pepper.

  • Add the wine, lemon zest, and remaining 1/4 cup lemon juice. Bring to a simmer. Simmers gently for 2 minutes, adjusting the heat as needed.

  • Stir in the noodles. Toss the noodles so that they become coated with garlic-lemon sauce. If at any point, the sauce becomes too thick or dry, splash in the reserved pasta water as needed.

  • Stir in the sun-dried tomatoes, basil, and parmesan.

  • Last, gently stir in the flaked salmon, heating just until warmed through. Enjoy immediately, with a sprinkle of extra Parmesan and basil.

YouTube video

  • *You can also swap the 1 pound salmon fillet with four, 4-ounce fillets. Arrange them side-by-side in the baking dish. S، checking the fish for doneness at the 8-minute mark, then adjust accordingly.
  • Add capers as a final touch! They’re delightfully salty and briny!
  • TO STORE: This dish is best enjoyed the day it is made, but it can be refrigerated in an airtight storage container for up to 2 days.
  • TO REHEAT: Very gently rewarm leftovers on the stovetop over medium-low heat or in the microwave.
  • TO FREEZE: Freeze leftovers in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating. The sauce may separate a little once thawed, but it will taste delicious.

Serving: 1(of 4)Calories: 554kcalCarbohydrates: 43gProtein: 34gFat: 26gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 1gC،lesterol: 85mgPot،ium: 857mgFiber: 5gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 667IUVitamin C: 22mgCalcium: 131mgIron: 2mg

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