Learn how to grill salmon in foil with my step by step photos, recipe and video. I think you’ll love this easy and healthy way to prepare fish, and grilled salmon is so delicious!
If you enjoy camping, you may already know what a foil packet meal is. In the camping world, many people call them hobo meals.
Many recipes for foil packet meals are written for campfire cooking. But, did you know that it’s also possible to make foil dinners on the grill? Actually, not only dinners; almost anything you would normally cook over an open fire can be grilled in aluminum foil, even dessert!
Making grilled salmon in foil is especially awesome because it makes cleaning the grill so much easier!
I have a great recipe for mango salsa salmon, but the fish sits right on the grates. This means the grill has to be cleaned afterward. This is just one good reason for learning how to grill salmon in foil.
- Buying a whole salmon versus individual filets.
If you’ll be serving more than 4 people, buying a whole fish may be a better overall value. The cost for individual portions tends to be quite a bit higher.
Ask your fishmonger or the seafood department at the grocery store to give it to you clean and ready to slice into portions. Or, if your grill is large enough, you can cook it whole and slice it into portions just before serving.
- Salmon skin- on or off?
If you purchase salmon that has skin on it, you can remove it or leave it on; it’s entirely optional. Salmon skin is completely edible and keeping it on makes for a nice presentation, especially if you are serving a whole salmon.
Video: how to grill salmon in foil
Check out the video in the recipe card at the bottom of this post. It shows how to prepare the fish for grilling, as well as how to make foil packs.
As long as the piece of foil is large enough, making grill packs is very simple.
- Be sure to use enough foil.
To prevent the contents from leaking out, wrap the salmon in a very large sheet of aluminum foil. You want to have enough excess on the top and bottom to fold the foil completely up and over the top of the fish.
Leave enough excess on the sides to make at least 3 folds in. This way, you can close the packet up tightly.
- Place lemon slices and dill on the center of the sheet.
- Set the salmon on top of the lemon and dill and sprinkle the filet with sea salt.
- Add more lemon slices and dill as well as butter on top of the fish.
How to make a foil packet
- Pull the bottom half of the foil up and over the fish.
- Fold the top half down and over the fish.
- Make 3 folds in from each side, tightly closing the packet.
How long to cook grilled salmon in foil
The total grilling time depends on the size of the fish or filets and how hot the grill is. Using a gas grill preheated to 425°F, it took me 16 minutes to completely cook 1 ½ pounds of salmon.
The FDA recommends cooking salmon to an internal temperature of 145°F. When you aren’t grilling fish in foil, it’s easy to check for doneness by using a fork to see if the fish flakes easily.
When you grill salmon in foil, it’s easiest to use a cooking thermometer to check the internal temperature of the fish. Just use the probe of the thermometer to poke a hole through the top of the pack.
If the salmon needs additional cooking time, you’ll want to use more foil to cover the hole. This will prevent steam from escaping.
This is a healthy fish recipe, and the salmon has a bright citrus and dill flavor. It’s fantastic with healthy grains and steamed or grilled vegetables. I think it’s delicious with tabouli salad or 4 bean salad along with blanched asparagus.
Understandably, there are concerns about the safety of consuming aluminum. The truth is, aluminum is present in commercially manufactured foods as well as some natural foods like salmon and other fish. However, research studies indicate that the levels of aluminum are usually very small and deemed to be safe.
According to the National Institute of Health, a healthy portion of salmon is 3 to 4 ounces. The nutritional information for this grilled salmon recipe is based on a 6 ounce serving.
Other foil packet meals for the grill
How to Grill Salmon in Foil
- 1 1/2 lb salmon filet boneless
- 1/2 cup fresh dill (1 small bunch)
- 2 lemons sliced
- 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tbsp butter
- Preheat your grill to 425°F. Rinse the salmon with cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Feel for any pin bones and remove if you feel any.
- Place a large piece of foil (enough to fold over the salmon) that has been coated with oil or cooking spray on the countertop.
- Lay 4 lemon slices on top, then a few dill sprigs and then the salmon. Season with salt and pepper, then top with 4 more lemon slices, sprigs of dill and the 2 tablespoons of butter. Season again with salt and pepper.
- Fold the bottom piece of foil up and over the salmon. Fold the top foil down and over the salmon. Fold each side towards the center twice and press together to create a package. Transfer to baking sheet to grill.
- Place salmon package on hot grill (not with baking sheet), cover and grill for 16 minutes. The internal temperature should be 145°F when thermometer is inserted into thickest part of salmon.
- Serve with fresh lemon slices, dill sprig and steamed rice or vegetables.
- If the filet has skin on it, I don’t remove it. It’s completely edible and a nice way to keep the salmon filet whole for presentation. This is completely optional.
- Nutritional information shown is based on a serving size of 6 ounces.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.