Bourbon-glazed Salmon

Jack Daniel’s and I have never really been friends. Years of experience have told me that I should stick to the colourless spirits, like vodka, gin and white rum, when I fancy a few drinks. Anything with a golden hue will inevitably have some undesirable effects on me. Mostly the following morning when I am struck down with one of my “despair hangovers”! That being said, even though Michael and I don’t drink Bourbon, we like to be good hosts and always keep a bottle in the cupboard. You know, just in case…

Now that Christmas and New Year have been and gone, we find ourselves with a drinks cabinet in need of a very early Spring clean. There’s no point in having opened bottles of liquor sitting there for months on end, is there?

Of course, the realist in me knows that anything with a 40% alcohol content will be just fine for a few months. However, it’s the need to tidy things away and not have leftovers that always wins. As such, I have been trying to find some ways of putting the booze to good use before it goes down the sink. Or, even worse, in a glass with ice and then down my throat! I was bad with hangovers when I was 20 – you can imagine how bad they’re getting are as I approach 40…

The good news is that a lot of spirits can be used in cooking and as the alcohol cooks out there’s no risk of you getting a foggy head the next morning. My Margarita Chicken is a great way to put any surplus tequila to good use. You can add calvados, cognac and vermouth to pretty much any dish to add a bit of flavour too. And, like me, should you be desperate to use up a glut of JD then I have a solution for that too: Bourbon-glazed Salmon.

This is another one of those recipes that delivers a lot of flavour in very little time. The glaze can be made whilst the salmon is baked in the oven. So, if you plan well you can easily get this on the table in under 30 minutes – including any sides too.

The fish is topped with sliced lemon and cooked on a hot baking sheet. This slightly crisps the skin but more importantly ensures it cooks fast and stays moist. Whilst that’s happening the bourbon is reduced down to a thick glaze, with the addition of lemon juice, soy sauce and a bit of garlic. When drizzled over the tender pink fish you get a wonderful combination of sweet and smoky, sticky and zesty.

Indeed, there’s a small part of me that wonders whether the glaze would make a nice topping for ice cream too – though maybe I might miss out the garlic before trying that.

Bourbon-glazed Salmon

The sticky-sweet glaze pairs perfectly with the tender pink Salmon. 
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Fish
Servings: 2
Calories: 527kcal


  • 2 Salmon Fillets around 150g each
  • 60 ml Bourbon
  • 60 g Soft Brown Sugar
  • 2 tsp Light Soy Sauce
  • 1 clove Garlic grated
  • 2 Lemons
  • 1 pinch Salt
  • 1 pinch Black Pepper
  • Small handful coriander chopped


  • Preheat the oven to 200°C. Spray a heavy baking tray with oil and put into the oven to heat.
  • Put the bourbon, sugar, soy sauce and garlic into a small saucepan, along with the zest and juice of one lemon. Bring to the boil then simmer until it becomes a thickened glaze – this could take 5-10 minutes. Once you’re happy with the glaze take off the heat and cover.
  • Remove the hot baking tray from the oven. Spray with a little more oil, then carefully lower the salmon into tray, skin side down. Top with slices from the second lemon. Return the pan to the oven for 10-15 minutes – keep an eye on the salmon, as you don’t want it to overcook.
  • Remove the salmon from the oven and drizzle over the warmed glaze (depending on how far ahead it was made you might need to reheat it a little) and sprinkle with the chopped coriander.


Estimated Values per Serving
of which Saturates4g
of which Sugars32g
Note: Nutritional information shown is per serving of the above recipe. Any side dishes or garnishes shown in photos are not included in these values, unless they are specifically listed as part of the recipe.

Scott Silverthorn

Hi, I’m Scott. I love cooking food and I love eating it - both useful credentials for writing a food blog! I get a lot of joy from sharing my passion with my friends and family, so here's hoping you enjoy it too.

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