Cedar plank salmon on the grill may seem intimidating if you’ve never attempted it before, but don’t worry – it’s real easy to do! Fire up your grill and let’s get grilling! As you know, I’m a grilling fanatic from spring till fall, and grilling cedar plank salmon is a fairly new thing for me too, since Katie don’t like fish all that much, we don’t eat nearly as much as I would like. Seafood just doesn’t make it onto our menu…
Have you thought about grilling cedar plank salmon, but not exactly sure where to start? I have good news, it’s actually quite easy and it’s fun too!
There are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind when grilling salmon on a cedar plank. So today, I’m going to share some tips and tricks for grilling delicious cedar plank salmon, the easy way!
First you’ll need a cedar plank. You can get several uses out of one cedar plank, especially if you keep your heat under control.
Soaking Cedar Planks In Water
Most cedar planks suggest soaking them for 30 minutes in water prior to grilling. That might work, but remember – they’re in the business of selling cedar planks. Soak your planks for TWO HOURS before grilling. This will make it so you’re planks won’t go up in flames right away. I find it easy to soak them in a rimmed baking sheet with a steel meat mallet holding it down.
Also suggested is to keep a spray bottle with clean water nearby to spritz the plank if it indeed catches fire along the edge. I usually get 5 or so uses out of my planks before the edges start to catch fire – it’s really no big deal. Just watch for it and be careful, keep the heat under control and you’ll be fine.
Warps – yes, it’s wood and when you soak it in water it will warp, especially when it hits the heat of the grill. Don’t worry too much about this, as it cooks it’ll dry back out and flatten out once again. I like to grill with the board curved upwards, this helps it flatted out as it cooks and prevents the edges from being directly on the grates.
Cooking With Cedar
We covered the 2 hour water soak, and after preheating your grill there is one more step. Place your plank on the grill for 5 to 7 minutes, and then flip. After flipping you can place your salmon right on the plank. Pre-heating the plank and flipping it dries out the one side and pre-heats it a little bit. I’ve found this works well when cooking with a cedar plank on the grill.
Crackling, yes you’ll hear crackling from your plank, especially as it begins to dry out at the start of your cook, this is normal!
You can use any cut of salmon you want and grill it with the skin side down. I prefer center cut salmon filet with the skin removed. This makes it real easy to serve up and less clean up as well – you don’t need to deal with the skin after eating. The seafood department at your local grocer will gladly remove the skin for you.
How do you wash your cedar plank?
This is a question I get a lot, how should you wash your cedar planks, and the answer is quite simple. How do you go about cleaning your cedar plank? Hand wash it just like you do other dishes.
I use anti-bacterial dish soap and a green scour pad. Wash any residue off, rinse, towel it down and air dry. Always pre-heat it before use, this helps ensure that if there is any bacteria on the plank, it gets killed off.
Grilling Cedar Plank Salmon
As I said, grilling cedar plank salmon is real easy to do!
- Center cut salmon filets
- Seasoning (optional) – we like Mrs. Dash Onion and Herb seasoning; but Old Bay is another popular choice
- Soak cedar plank in water for two hours before grilling.
- Preheat grill to 350 degrees F.
- Once preheated place cedar plank on grill; heat for 5 minutes and then flip the plank over. (It’s okay if it’s a bit warped!)
- Place salmon on the plank and close grill dome
- Grill for 20 minutes, checking occasionally to make sure the cedar plank doesn’t flame up; spritz with water if it does. Cook salmon to internal temperature of 135 degrees F.
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