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In this salmon en papillote recipe, the fish is cooked in a parchment paper packet for just under 10 minutes until it’s moist and delicious.

Salmon en Papillote with Roasted Potatoes | A Couple Cooks

Here’s a little meal we whipped up in honor of Valentine’s Day. I must admit, I used to be quite the Valentine’s Day cynic. I won’t go into it here, but some of my arguments were consumerism, cheesy cards, and the way it makes some single people feel bad. Since my youth, I’ve warmed up to the concept of celebrating love on February 14 because, well, why not take another day to cherish those you hold dear? And it doesn’t have to be just romantic love. Family, friends, community—everyone can be celebrated on V-day! I do follow that up with a meal that’s perfect as a cooking date for a couple—though of course it can be doubled or tripled for more. Keep reading for the salmon en papillote recipe!

Related: 28 Day Healthy Meal Plan

Salmon en Papillote with Roasted Potatoes | A Couple Cooks

What is salmon in papillote?

Salmon en papillote is a fancy French way of saying “salmon in paper.” The fish is cooked in a parchment paper packet for just under 10 minutes until it’s moist and delicious. We’ve added lemon, thyme, and rosemary for flavor, and cooked it with thinly sliced carrots. Some added roasted potatoes make it a meal. It’s fairly easy to put together, but so elegant it will seem like it took hours in the kitchen.

Related: 14 Red Potato Recipes

Salmon en Papillote with Roasted Potatoes | A Couple Cooks
Salmon en Papillote with Roasted Potatoes | A Couple Cooks

Making this salmon en papillote

For the salmon, try looking for a sustainably raised fish. We bought ours at the Indy Winter Farmer’s Market from Sitka Salmon Shares, which provides responsibly-sourced fish from Alaska. If you’re a vegetarian or vegan, we have a white bean option (below). You may want to add a salad or bread since the white bean option is not quite as filling.

Related: 10 Romantic Dinner Recipes |  Easy Dinner Recipes for Two

If you do try this as a cooking date, make sure to do the following:

  • Buy the ingredients in advance; make sure not to shop when you are hungry!
  • Turn on some music (Alex’s favorite is Google Music—they have great thematic mixes).
  • Pour some wine or your beverage of choice.
  • Put together some items to nibble on while cooking: we like a nice cheese, crackers, olives, baguette, nuts, etc – simple items that need no preparation.
  • Allow for about 1 hour or a little over to prepare the meal, depending on how fast of a cook you are.
  • Make the potatoes first and get them in the oven; then start the salmon packets.
  • Folding the heart-shaped packets is the only somewhat tough part; we’ve added a link below to help out.
  • We have a dessert recipe coming soon to end your meal on a sweet note; it requires no advanced prep so you can make it after you eat your meal.

We hope you enjoy this meal! Let us know if you give it a try.

Salmon en Papillote with Roasted Potatoes | A Couple Cooks
Salmon en Papillote with Roasted Potatoes | A Couple Cooks

Looking for more healthy seafood recipes?

Outside of this salmon en papillote, here are a few more healthy seafood recipes:

This recipe is…

This salmon en papillote recipe is pescatarian, gluten-free and dairy-free. For vegetarian, vegan, and plant-based option, see the recipe below.

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Salmon en Papillote with Roasted Potatoes

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  • Author: a Couple Cooks
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes (10 minutes for salmon only)
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 2 1x


In this salmon en papillote recipe, the fish is cooked in a parchment paper packet for just under 10 minutes until it’s moist and delicious.



For the roasted potatoes (optional)

  • 2 pounds mixed red and yellow-skinned potatoes
  • 2 teaspoons thyme leaves, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • Fresh ground pepper

For the salmon en papillote

  • 2 pieces parchment paper
  • ½ pound salmon (or for a vegetarian version, 1 ½ cups cooked or a 15-ounce can white beans)
  • 3 medium carrots
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped
  • 1 green onion
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • Fresh ground pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
  2. For the roasted potatoes (optional): Dice the potatoes. Chop the thyme leaves. In a large bowl, mix the potatoes and thyme with the olive oil, kosher salt, honey, and fresh ground pepper. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet in a single layer and bake for 30 to 35 minutes until tender and lightly browned.
  3. For the salmon en papillote: Cut the salmon in half. Peel the carrots and cut them into very thin strips (julienne). Peel the garlic. Slice the lemon into rings. Finely chop the thyme and rosemary. Thinly slice the green portion of the green onion.
  4. Fold the parchment paper in half and then cut it into a heart shape. Lightly brush the right half of the parchment heart with olive oil. On the right half of the heart, place the carrots on the paper, then place the salmon on top. Add the whole garlic cloves and lemon rings next to the carrots. Top each packet with half of the chopped herbs, ½ tablespoon olive oil, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, ⅛ teaspoon paprika and fresh ground pepper. (Note: For the vegetarian version, substitute 1 ½ cups drained and rinsed white beans. Decrease the herbs to 2 teaspoons each.)
  5. Seal each packet by folding over the left half of the heart, then folding ½-inch straight folds along the edge of the heart. (See How to Fold Parchment Paper for more detailed instructions for how to fold the parchment paper.)
  6. Bake the salmon 9 minutes for a 1-inch thick piece, or 10 to 11 minutes for a piece thicker than 1 inch (insert a knife into the middle of one piece to ensure the desired doneness). Rest for a few minutes before serving. Garnish with green onions and serve.
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: French

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes for memorable kitchen moments! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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  1. Laura says:

    I made these recipes last night and got rave reviews. I made one addition only, a tablespoon or two of a dry, fruity white wine over the top, before closing the packets. My husband was impressed and our guest, halfway through the meal, said “this is really good!” The potatoes were easy and the addition of thyme and honey was lovely. Thank you for a great recipe that I will make again, many times!

  2. TimedEating says:

    Nice recipe – the photos are truly gorgeous. Great resolution on the close up salmon picture – virtually pops off the page!

    I did some work on roast potatoes recently, and found you’ll get crispier roast potatoes and use less oil if you follow a few simple steps – here’s the recipe if you’re interested –

  3. Liz @ Floating Kitchen says:

    This look like a perfect date night dinner. I haven’t cooked fish in papillote in so long (food blogger problems!). Thanks for reminding me. Yours look gorgeous!

  4. Sara @ Cake Over Steak says:

    Love it with the heart-shaped papers! Very cute.

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