Ina Garten’s 30-Minute Salmon Salad: ‘Get the Same Delicious Flavor With Less Work and Fewer Bowls’

Calling all salmon lovers. Ina Garten’s Salmon Salad is a simple Barefoot contessa salad recipe the celebrity chef’s been making for decades. Salmon is, of course, the star of the dish but the Food Network star enhances it with a few standard Barefoot Contessa ingredients. 

The salad is a classic Barefoot Contessa recipe

Ina Garten smiles wearing a blue scarf
Ina Garten | Vince Talotta/Toronto Star via Getty Images

Garten’s Salmon Salad is an original Barefoot Contessa recipe along with other dishes such as Perfect Roast Chicken and Coconut Cupcakes. Garten wrote all about it 12 Barefoot Contessa cookbooks ago — yes, 12 — in her 1999 cookbook, The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook

The now-73-year-old listed it as one of the many recipes she’d make and sell at her Barefoot Contessa store in the Hamptons. Garten severed her ties to the specialty food store in 1996 when she sold it to employees. But thanks to Garten’s cookbook her Salmon Salad lives on. 

Ina Garten’s Salmon Salad is a 30-minute dish

Garten’s Salmon Salad embodies almost all of the hallmarks of a simple Barefoot Contessa meal. Made with recognizable, fresh ingredients, it’s casual yet special enough to serve at any get-together. 

But, perhaps, the best thing about the dish is how simple the recipe is. As Garten explained in The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook, she streamlined the cooking process to make the salad even easier to prepare. 

“Many salad recipes require making the salad first and then the vinaigrette. At Barefoot Contessa, we often just toss all the ingredients together and get the same delicious flavor with less work and fewer bowls,” she said. “And sometimes the result is even magical, like the combination of grilled salmon and raspberry vinegar.”

Salmon Salad is prepared using nine ingredients, according to Garten’s Food Network recipe instructions. And that includes salt and pepper. Additionally, 15 minutes is spent on prep and another 15 is spent on cooking.

Garten’s Salmon Salad recipe calls for cooked and chilled salmon. If that’s not already done, expect to add another 10-15 minutes to the total time. As she noted in her cookbook, Garten grills the salmon for about seven minutes on each side, making sure it’s still rare on the inside. 

Reviewers love the Barefoot Contessa salad

Ina Garten smiles as she meets a fan
Ina Garten | Amy Sussman/Getty Images Entertainment Video for Food Network

Garten’s Salmon Salad averages five stars on Food Network’s website. It’s been reviewed nearly 50 times and almost all of the comments include praise for the cookbook author’s recipe.

“People who do not eat salmon will eat this salad. It’s that good,” a reviewer wrote. Another called it “absolutely fabulous,” describing it as having a “gourmet taste” yet being “so easy” to make. 

Others loved how it comes together in no time. “This is a great go-to, quick salmon salad,” a reviewer said. “Quick and easy and delicious!” 

One even described it as a Garten “home run” with “perfectly-balanced flavors.” They continued, saying, “The raspberry vinegar adds a mellow but bright note and balances the brine in the capers perfectly.”

Some recommended using canned salmon as a more affordable option, noting they got good results with the simple substitution. 

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