Should Salmon Be Covered When Baking In The Oven?

For many, salmon sits high up on the list of go-to meals, as the fish typically cooks quickly and evenly, and is usually a crowd pleaser. No fuss, minimal clean-up, and packed with flavor and omega-3s, per Healthline, it's a pretty solid choice for dinner.

There are several methods that can be used to cook salmon and they run the gamut in terms of difficulty and ease. Grilling fish is notoriously finicky, so it may be best to leave that to seasoned chefs or leisurely summer evenings with a beer in hand and little pressure to have food on the table fast. If you're lucky enough to have counter space for an air fryer and are well-versed in using it, a juicy piece of fish is yours for the taking with the right salmon air fryer tips.

Of course, your trusty old oven is always a dependable and easy option — but how do you ensure a moist and fork-tender fillet that's properly cooked in a timely fashion? If you've ever second-guessed yourself as you've covered your baking dish in aluminum foil or parchment paper because some recipe you saw somewhere at some point said to do that, we're here to help. So, do you really need to cover salmon when baking in the oven?

For salmon, no cover required

Nope. You sure don't have to cover salmon when baking! Common sense and intuition may lead you to believe covering your salmon in the oven would cause it to cook faster — trapping the heat and speeding things up. And while that may be true with certain dishes such as casseroles and lasagna, it does not pertain to salmon. Moist foods heat through more evenly and quickly when the steam is trapped (via eHow). However, dry dishes (such as salmon and roast chicken) will yield better results when the lid is off, allowing for a crispy exterior and tender interior. Who wants soggy salmon?

For the best results, Healthy Recipes suggests leaving the salmon uncovered and keeping a meat thermometer handy to avoid overcooking it. Fish cooks quickly so keep an eye on the clock and remove it from the oven when the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees Fahrenheit. (While you can check your salmon with a fork to ensure it's cooked properly, a meat thermometer will offer up more precise information and a prettier final dish.) The length of cook time will depend on your oven and the size of the fillet, so be sure to pay attention while your salmon is baking.