Creamy Lemon Dill Salmon

salmon fillets in a skillet

Creamy Lemon Dill Salmon ~ an easy dinner that never fails to please. The salmon is succulent because it’s bathed in a creamy wine sauce perked up with lots of lemon juice and fresh dill. It almost doesn’t matter what you serve with it, all attention will be riveted right here.

cooking creamy lemon salmon in a skillet

the secret to succulent lemon dill salmon

This quick and easy salmon recipe relies on some old culinary tricks to give it restaurant quality deliciousness with little effort:

  • shallots ~ they have a subtle but distinctive flavor.
  • wine ~ when wine is reduced down it lends a sophisticated complexity to the sauce.
  • heavy cream ~ because…you know.
  • capers* ~ you get a little lemony tang in every bite.
  • fresh herbs ~ fresh herbs are an affordable luxury that makes a huge difference in the overall experience of so many dishes.

*what the heck are capers, anyway?

Did you think they were fish eggs? I used to think that too, until I learned that they’re the little unopened flower buds of a Mediterranean bush that have been dried and pickled. They have a tangy lemon-like flavor and work really well in salads, and with fish and chicken. So next time you see a little bottle of capers at the supermarket, pick it up, it will last months in the refrigerator, and they’ll perk up your cooking.


Salmon with Lemon

Shallots are part of my weekly shopping, I always pickup a few, and keep them with the onions and garlic in a hanging wire basket in my kitchen. They come in handy for everything from scrambled eggs to this salmon dinner.

tip: I use shallots in place of onions and garlic in lots of recipes…they have a more pronounced flavor than onions, but aren’t as sharp as garlic. They’re the Goldilocks of the allium family.

Cooking salmon in a cream sauce

what to serve with salmon

I like to serve this salmon on a big bed of wilted spinach to offset the richness of the cream sauce. In any event it makes me feel a little less guilty for enjoying all that cream. Other side dish ideas:

closeup of salmon fillets


Reader Rave ~

Hi Sue, I am back again on this great recipe which I did again today but this time I used 15% fat UHT cream and lowered the temperature of the pan to low. It worked very well, same as with the full fat, and no curdling at all! I will have this dish again and again! Tx!” ~Alexandra


salmon fillets in a skillet
3.69 from 83 votes

Creamy Lemon Dill Salmon

Creamy Lemon Dill Salmon ~ an easy dinner that never fails to please.  The salmon is succulent because it's bathed in a creamy wine sauce perked up with lots of lemon juice and fresh dill.  It almost doesn't matter what you serve with it, all attention will be riveted right here.
Course dinner
Cuisine American
Diet Gluten Free
Total Time 30 minutes
Yield 4 servings
Calories 435kcal
Author Sue Moran


  • 1 1/3 lb salmon filet (or 4 individual slices)
  • olive oil
  • salt and fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1 large shallot
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
  • 3 Tbsp capers


  • thin lemon slices
  • more fresh chopped dill


  • Set oven to 400F
  • Lightly coat the bottom of a large skillet with olive oil and heat on medium high heat until hot but not smoking.
  • Season the salmon on all sides with salt and pepper, and then sear it on both sides. Remove the salmon to a baking sheet and bake for 12-15 minutes, or until just done through.
  • Meanwhile make the sauce by adding the shallot to the browning pan and saute for a minute or two to soften. Add the wine and let the wine bubble away to reduce for a couple of minutes.
  • Add the lemon juice and cream to the pan and bring up to a simmer. Add the fresh dill and the capers. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • When the salmon is done, add it to the pan, nestling it down into the sauce. Spoon some of the sauce over the fish, and garnish with lemon and more fresh dill.
  • Serve right away on a bed of wilted spinach, with couscous or a rice pilaf on the side.

Cook's notes

  • Make a lighter lemon sauce using the Greek egg thickening method, you can see it in my recipe for CHICKEN IN LEMON SAUCE WITH OLIVES.  The sauce will be silky, thick, and lemony, without any cream at all.
  • If you aren't a dill fan, you might try tarragon.


Calories: 435kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Cholesterol: 165mg | Sodium: 258mg | Potassium: 820mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 1170IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 2mg
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.

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creamy lemon dill salmon pin


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  • Reply
    October 21, 2017 at 6:21 am


    Question. I’m lactose intolerant and can’t do the cream. Is there a vegan alternative that you recommend in lieu of the cream for this recipe? Thanks!

    • Reply
      October 21, 2017 at 7:14 am

      That’s a tough one, Ashanti. Coconut milk is the most common substitute for cream in lactose free recipes where cream is needed, but I’m not sure how it would work with the flavors in this dish.

  • Reply
    Albert Bevia
    September 28, 2017 at 7:57 am

    First off, the image of this dish is absolutely gorgeous. Salmon has to be one of my favorite things to cook, but I have never tried it like this, your recipe is above and beyond, I will making this for sure. Thanks for the great recipe 🙂

    • Reply
      September 28, 2017 at 8:09 am

      Thanks Albert ~ I save this creamy treatment for special occasions, but it really is tasty 🙂 Hope you love it!

  • Reply
    September 27, 2017 at 2:35 pm

    5 stars
    Great recipe impeccably performed! Love it! Thank you, Sue

  • Reply
    2 Sisters Recipes
    September 27, 2017 at 11:50 am

    Great recipe Sue! We eat salmon a lot so this is our kind of recipe ! Love the creamy lemony sauce with capers in this one -can’t wait to try this recipe! Photos look so good they’re making me hungry!

  • Reply
    September 27, 2017 at 9:45 am

    What do you think about using Greek Yogurt in lieu of cream. Always have salmon in freezer and Greek Yogurt in refrigerator so could be a last minute addition. Don’t have fresh dill, but do have fresh tarragon in my herb garden.
    Love your recipes.

    • Reply
      September 27, 2017 at 10:07 am

      That’s an interesting question, Schatzi. Yogurt doesn’t heat up very well, it can curdle. If it were me, I might cook the salmon as above, and then serve it with a cold yogurt/lemon/tarragon sauce.

  • Reply
    September 27, 2017 at 7:45 am

    We eat a lot of salmon and I always appreciate new recipes. What an elegant presentation Sue. I also clicked on your salmon zucchini cakes . I pinned both.

    • Reply
      September 27, 2017 at 8:08 am

      I’m so glad you clicked through to the salmon burgers, those are so good, they’re our go-to recipe in summer. We eat a lot of salmon, too, it’s just so hard to track down affordable wild caught!

  • Reply
    Tricia @ Saving Room for Dessert
    September 27, 2017 at 7:00 am

    Chris is right, I want to have someone over to dinner so I can serve this beautiful dish! Great recipe Sue – a company worthy treat for sure.

  • Reply
    Jennifer @ Seasons and Suppers
    September 27, 2017 at 6:47 am

    What a fabulous way to enjoy salmon! We eat salmon a lot, so I am always looking for new ways to enjoy it. Can’t wait to try this one 😉

    • Reply
      September 27, 2017 at 7:43 am

      I’m usually an olive oil girl when it comes to salmon, but the wine and cream really does step it up 🙂

  • Reply
    Chris Scheuer
    September 27, 2017 at 5:13 am

    This is a gorgeous, dinner party worthy meal! I love the simplicity and elegance, well, everything about it!

    • Reply
      September 27, 2017 at 7:43 am

      Thanks Chris <3

  • Reply
    [email protected]'s Recipes
    September 27, 2017 at 3:40 am

    I love salmon, well, who doesn’t? I usually prepare them with just ginger and salt. Have never made them with creamy sauce. Looks so yum, Sue.

    • Reply
      September 27, 2017 at 7:44 am

      I’d love to get your recipe Angie, I’m wondering if you mean fresh ginger? It sounds intriguing!

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