Spicy and Sweet: Chipotle Orange Glazed Salmon

Salmon, orange, chipotle...and some potatoes to soak up the juices...lovely!

Cayenne and dark chocolate. Thai chilies and coconut milk. Almonds glazed with red pepper flakes, fennel and sugar. I really enjoy the taste of spicy and sweet together and I particularly love the combination of smoky hot chipotle peppers and the citrusy sweetness of orange.

My local market had a special on salmon fillets the other day, and I was just dying to try my hand at a glaze made from a spicy and sweet duo. I had some chipotles in the fridge left over from making chili and I seem to have a plethora of oranges on hand at all times lately, so using these two for my glaze was a no-brainer. The result was a flavorful salmon dish with a little heat and just the right touch of sweet to temper it, bringing out the sweetness of the salmon itself.

The remaining supremes from the orange were combined with a bit of avocado and topped with a vinaigrette for a complementary and cooling side salad. I sliced some potatoes I had into thick chips, sprinkled them with olive oil, salt, pepper, smoked paprika and a tiny bit of garlic powder, roasted them at 350 degrees and then put the salmon into the oven for the last 8-10 minutes. This all came together rather quickly, and with a minimum of fuss, so it’s perfect for a weeknight dinner…or anytime. This spicy sweet glazed salmon has moved to the “Make it Again” list with my in house taste tester, so here it is for you to try!

Chipotle Orange Glazed Salmon (serves 2)
I’m sure that grilling the salmon would add another layer of smoky goodness to this dish…and might even be better…and I plan to try it that way, but our weather hasn’t been grill friendly so these instructions are geared around the oven.

2 – 6 to 8 oz. boned salmon fillets, skin on
1 small finely chopped shallot
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
Juice of 1 orange (about a generous 1/8 cup)
1 teaspoon finely chopped canned chipotle pepper
1 oz. dry white wine
2 teaspoons honey

In a small pan heat the olive oil over medium heat and add the shallots. Cook until the shallots are transparent, about 3-4 minutes. Add the orange juice, chipotles, white wine and honey, bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Continue simmering, stirring frequently, until the mixture begins to thicken slightly and has reduced by about 1/4-1/3 and is of a light glaze consistency. Remove from the heat.

Place the two salmon fillets in a lightly oiled baking dish skin side down. Spoon the glaze over each piece of salmon, reserving about 1/3 of the glaze for finishing. Place the salmon in a 350 degree F oven and cook until just opaque and cooked through, about 8-10 minutes. Spoon the rest of the glaze over the two pieces of salmon and serve with your favorite sides.


30 thoughts on “Spicy and Sweet: Chipotle Orange Glazed Salmon

  1. Sounds like a wonderful meal Betsy. We haven’t grilled that much this winter either, not that our weather wasn’t good for it…just didn’t have the recipes. I love a cedar plank salmon — we’ll have to try out your glaze next time.


  2. I plan on having Salmon today.. so this recipe come sat the perfect time. And I am so darn excited to try this out. That salmon just looks to die for. Yup, I want dinner right now lol. Oh, I also talk about you in my blog post tomorrow 🙂


  3. Looks like you created a great meal Betsy. Love how resourceful you are at turning what you have into a wonderful recipe. I haven’t heard of chipolte pepper. It might be an ingredient that goes by a different name here in Australia.


    • Hey Charlie Louie, thanks for your compliments! The chipotle pepper is a dried and/or smoked jalapeno pepper and most often canned with adobo sauce. Ours are usually located close to canned and diced jalapenos. They might actually be called smoked or dried jalapenos there…not sure about that!


  4. You said it best, Betsy, in your photo’s caption. “Lovely” is the word you used and that plate is just that. I’m sending this recipe to a friend with whom I spent a good portion of today. We both mentioned how much we loved salmon and how good it was “just plain.” Well, neither of us had seen this recipe and both probably spoke too soon. She’s gonna love it!


  5. Oh, I do hope your friend likes it, John! I love good salmon “just plain” as well. I liked this because it was different and not too sweet, which is more often than not the kind of salmon treatments I see other than plainly grilled. Thanks for your very kind compliments and let me know how your friend likes it if she does try it this way! 🙂


  6. I’m loving the sound of that glaze – I don’t think I’ve ever seen chipotle pepper in France – any suggestions for similar things which would produce the same sort of effect? Maybe I could just try some other random chilli and see how it works out?


    • Hi Charles, the chipotles I use are canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. Chipotles are actually smoked red jalapeno peppers and it’s the smoky flavor that adds so much to the glaze. You might be able to get some of that smokiness by grilling a fresh pepper and/or it is said that one can substitute any fresh hot pepper or hot dried pepper reconstituted for this, mixed with a little steak sauce to get the same smoky flavor, though I haven’t tried it. Here’s a link to some info that may be useful depending on what peppers you can find in your area: http://www.ehow.com/list_6917288_substitutes-chipotle-peppers.html


  7. Living here in Asia and actually even when I had to shovel the snow pathway to get to the grill, we like to grill outside all year around. This sounds fantastic with all of the oranges in season now.


    • It’s a nice and different way to use your oranges, Bam. We love to grill year round, too, but have had so much rain that we can’t…we don’t have a shelter for the grill and it’s charcoal…wet and charcoal is no good! 😉


  8. Om goodness! I’ve been following your blog and it looks like I’ve been missing quite a lot! This meal looks perfect. I’ve never tried orange with salmon but I think the way you made it look so appetizing, I’m gonna just have to give it a go!!


  9. Pingback: Two Taco Tango: How One Thing Leads to Another | bits and breadcrumbs

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