Air Fryer Bang Bang Salmon

A large bite of salmon resting on a fork.

Are you looking for a fast and easy way to cook delicious salmon in mere minutes? You’ve just found it, my friend….look no further than this Air Fryer Bang Bang Salmon. Salmon cooked in the air fryer (yes, even salmon with the skin on!) is moist, juicy, and done in about 10 minutes.

Air Fryer Bang Bang Salmon Recipe

Bang Bang Air Fryer Salmon ready to enjoy.

Howdy! Chef Alli Here. Let’s Get You Cookin’…. Shall We?? 🙂

I’m quick to tell everybody about my air fryer – we love that thing and absolutely use it waaaaay more than I ever thought we would. If you decide to get one for your family, I recommend that you opt for the rack-style air fryer, not the basket-style.

Cooking on a rack-style air fryer lets you spread the food out in a single layer and this is great for two reasons: the food can cook more quickly and it also gets much more golden brown and crispy on the exterior.

Some of our favorite air fryer recipes include Crispy-Crunchy Air Fryer Shrimp, Cheesy Bacon Jalapeno Poppers, Free-Style Mexican Pizzas, and Air Fryer Brats with Peppers and Onions…just to name a few.

My family adores BREAKFAST and I’ve learned there are lots of ways to make breakfast foods in our air fryer, too. We’ve been enjoying Air Fryer Sugar Donuts (yes, made from canned biscuits!) and Air Fryer Breakfast Pizzas, plus lots of Air Fryer Roasted Breakfast Potatoes with Bacon.

Long story short, I do not believe for even one second that you’ll regret an air fryer in your life!

**To see all of my air fryer recipes in one place – click here.

What to love about this recipe

  1. Salmon cooks super fast in the air fryer, yet stays moist and tender.
  2. There’s no need to remove the salmon skin before cooking. When the salmon is done, it separates easily from the skin for serving.
  3. This recipe is soooo flavorful with just a bit of ZING!

Ingredients you’ll need to make Bang Bang Salmon

  • Salmon fillets
  • Kosher salt
  • Brown sugar
  • Mayonnaise
  • Asian sweet chili sauce
  • Sriracha sauce

How to make easy air fryer salmon

**Print the full recipe from the RECIPE CARD at the bottom of this post

Salmon topped with a brown sugar dry brine.

In small bowl, make a dry brine by combining the salt with the brown sugar. Using your fingers, spread a thin layer of this mixture over the surface of the flesh of the salmon. **You may not need all of the prepared dry brine: store any extra in an air tight container to use later.

Let the seasoned salmon rest on the counter for one hour. At this point you will see that some of the dry brine has been absorbed into the salmon. After one hour, go ahead and rinse the dry brine from the surface of the salmon, then pat dry with paper towels.

A fresh salmon fillet that has been cut into portions.

Slice the salmon into 4 portions; place them onto a greased air fryer rack skin-side-down. Typically, when you purchase a fresh salmon fillet, there will be an area of the fillet that is thinner than the rest. Slice this thinner part off to become one of the 4 portions. Because it is thinner, this piece of salmon will cook more quickly than the remaining 3 thicker fillets.

Bang Bang Sauce ingredients ready to be combined in a bowl.

In a small bowl, make the Bang Bang sauce by combining the mayonnaise with sweet chili sauce and sriracha sauce, to taste. Using a small spoon or silicone basting brush, spread some of the Bang Bang sauce over the surface of each salmon fillet, letting it ooze down the sides as well.

Caramelized Air Fryer Bang Bang Salmon.

Air fry the salmon at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes, or until the fish is flaky at the center and easily “gives” when you insert a fork and give it a gentle twist. The Bang Bang sauce should be caramelized and bubbly on top, as pictured. **The cooking time can vary a bit, depending on your air fryer. Max cooking time for just about any salmon should be 12 minutes, tops!

Air Fryer Bang Bang Salmon with extra sauce on top.

Serve the salmon with additional Bang Bang sauce over the top or on the side. Garnish with extra sriracha sauce, if more heat is desired. Bang Bang Salmon is delicious served with warm Jasmine rice as a side dish.

Answers to Common Questions Asked About This Recipe

Which tools are helpful for making this air fryer recipe?

You’ll find a rack-style air fryer to be a very useful kitchen appliance. Unlike a basket-style air fryer, you can spread the food out over the rack in a single layer allowing it to cook really quickly with lots of added crispy-ness. And, you can cook larger quantities of food in a rack-style air fryer vs. a basket-style air fryer.

Use a metal spatula for removing the salmon fillets from the rack. A thin, metal spatula can be inserted between the cooked fillet and the salmon skin so that you can leave the skin behind as you easily lift the fish away.

A silicone basting brush is handy in this recipe for basting the salmon fillets with the Bang Bang sauce. You’ll find this a super handy tool for lots of kitchen tasks such as melted butter, sauces, marinades, egg wash, etc.

How do you know when salmon is fully cooked at the center?

Great question, and a very important one. To test fish for doneness, insert the tines of a fork at the thickest part of the fillet then give the fork a very gentle twist. If the fish easily flakes apart when you turn the fork a bit, this means it is fully cooked and ready to eat.

If the flesh of the fish is resistant in any way when tested with a fork, cook it in 1-2 minute increments until done so that you don’t overcook it.

Can I use skinless salmon fillets to make this recipe?

Yep. Because there’s no skin barrier, the salmon may actually cook even faster so take care not to over cook it.

What does the dry brine do for the salmon in this recipe?

The dry brine is concentrated and uses the natural moisture content of the salmon to be absorbed into the meat. If you are worried about the salt content being a bit much, keep in mind that a bit of the brine is absorbed into the meat for added flavor, but the majority of the sodium is rinsed away after one hour of brining as per the recipe instructions.

Can I double this recipe?

Yes and I do so all the time – it works just great.

Can I freeze the salmon after I’ve brined and rinsed it? What about the Bang Bang sauce?

Yes, you can freeze the brined and rinsed salmon, but it’s a HARD NO on freezing the Bang Bang sauce due to mayonnaise being the main ingredient.

Can I dry brine the salmon and then cook it later?

Yes, as long as you rinse off the dry brine after 1 hour. Place the rinsed salmon into the fridge to be cooked when you’re ready later.

More favorite recipes to enjoy –

Printable Air Fryer Bang Bang Salmon Recipe

A large bite of salmon resting on a fork.

Air Fryer Bang Bang Salmon

Are you looking for a fast and easy way to cook delicious salmon in mere minutes? You've just found it, my friend. Look no further than this Air Fryer Bang Bang Salmon. Salmon cooked in the air fryer (yes, even salmon with the skin on!) is moist, juicy, and done in a flash.
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Dry rub marinating time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 208kcal

Ingredients

Salmon

  • 1 lb. boneless salmon fillet, skin-on works best
  • 2 tsp. dark brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt

Bang Bang Sauce

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbs. Asian sweet chili sauce
  • 1-2 tsp. sriracha sauce depending on how spicy you prefer

Instructions

Prepare the Bang Bang Sauce

  • In a small bowl, make the Bang Bang sauce by combining the mayonnaise with sweet chili sauce and sriracha sauce, to taste; reserve.

Prepare the Salmon

  • In small bowl, make a dry brine by combining the salt with the brown sugar; using your fingers, spread a thin layer of the this mixture over the surface of the flesh of the salmon. (You may not need all of it.)
    Let the seasoned salmon rest on the counter for one hour, then rinse the brown sugar mixture off; pat salmon dry with paper towels. Slice the salmon into 4 portions; place them onto a greased air fryer rack, skin-side-down.
  • Using a small spoon or silicone basting brush, spread some of the Bang Bang sauce over the surface of each salmon fillet, letting it ooze down the sides as well.
  • Air fry the salmon at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes, or until the fish is flaky at the center and easily "gives" when you insert a fork and give it a gentle twist. (The Bang Bang sauce should be caramelized and bubbly on top, too.)
    **Cooking time can vary a bit, depending on your air fryer. Max cooking time for just about any salmon should be 12 minutes, tops!

Serve the Salmon

  • Insert a thin metal spatula in between the cooked fillet and the salmon skin so that you can leave the skin behind as lift the salmon from the air fryer rack. The cooked salmon should easily lift right away from the skin – so slick!
  • Serve the salmon with more Bang Bang sauce over the top or on the side. Garnish with extra sriracha sauce, if more heat is desired.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: air fryer, easy, easy fish recipes, quick

Nutrition

Calories: 208kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 65mg | Sodium: 1196mg | Potassium: 564mg | Fiber: 0.03g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 57IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 16mg | Iron: 1mg

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Let’s Get You Cookin’,
Chef Alli

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Chef Alli

Chef Alli is a home-grown Kansas girl on a mission to strengthen families through enabling kitchen confidence, educating the family cook, and encouraging better food relationships. She believes with her whole heart that time spent with our loved ones and our overall quality of life is greatly enhanced by nutritious food made at home with simple, wholesome ingredients. She loves being able to connect and share this passion with others through her website, her social media presence, and her coveted speaking engagements.

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