Honey-Dijon Baked Salmon and Asparagus Pecans


In this recipe from Danielle Davis’ The Healthy Swaps Cookbook, the salmon is covered in honey Dijon frosting, coated in a pecan crumble and baked in the oven. To make it a complete meal, we added cooking asparagus alongside the fish. Or, you can serve the salmon with or over a green salad.

Activity time: 15 minutes; Total time: 35 minutes

Storage Notes: Leftovers can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.



Size tested: 4 servings

  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more to oil the pan and baste the fish, divided

  • 2 tablespoons of Dijon mustard

  • 2 tablespoons of honey

  • 4 skinless salmon fillets (4 ounces) 1 inch thick or thinner (see NOTE)

  • 1/4 cup Italian breadcrumbs

  • 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans

  • 1 teaspoon of garlic powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea or table salt, divided

  • 1 1/2 pounds asparagus, woody ends trimmed (see NOTE)

  • Freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley, more if needed

  • Lemon wedges, for serving


Place a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 425 degrees. Lightly oil a large rimmed baking sheet.

In a small bowl, whisk together mustard, honey and 1 tbsp of oil and until blended. Place fillets on one side of prepared baking sheet and brush with mustard mixture on top. In a medium bowl, combine breadcrumbs, pecans, garlic powder, 1/4 teaspoon of salt and 1 tbsp plus 1 1/2 teaspoons of oil. Sprinkle this mixture evenly over the salmon fillets. Drizzle with additional oil, if desired.

On the other side of the baking sheet, add the asparagus in a single layer as much as possible. Drizzle the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons of oil over the asparagus and sprinkle with pepper and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon of salt.

Cook salmon and vegetables for 10 to 15 minutes, or until topping is golden, checking after 10 minutes. To see if the salmon is cooked, cut it into the thickest piece with a sharp knife. The meat should start to flake and be opaque with a slight translucency in the middle. Asparagus should be dull green and tender when pierced with the tip of a knife.

Transfer the baking sheet to a heat-resistant surface, cover and let stand for 5 minutes.

Sprinkle with parsley and serve with lemon wedges on the side.

NOTE: You can ask your fishmonger to remove the skin from the salmon. Some salmon skins slip off easily. If not, place the fillet skin side down, and using a sharp knife, start with the thin end of the fillet and slice between the salmon and the skin. Using a towel, if necessary, grasp the skin with one hand while using the other to slice, tilting the blade towards the skin. Or, if you prefer the skin, leave it on.

Recipe source

Adapted from “The Healthy Swaps Cookbook” by Danielle Davis (Page Street, 2021).

Tested by Ann Maloney.

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