Add sweet and tart flavors and beautiful color to your grilled salmon with an easy four-ingredient cherry glaze.

Grilled Salmon with Cherry Glaze.

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Salmon is considered a super food, because it’s packed with omega-3 fatty acids, selenium and vitamin B12. Nutritionists recommend eating it at least twice a week.

This easy grilled salmon recipe is one you’ll want to keep on your weekly rotation. And the cherry glaze can be changed up to add variety.

For even more recipes, check out my ultimate guide to grilled fish.

What to look for when buying salmon

There are a few different ways to purchase salmon. First, you can buy a full filet, which is usually more than 12 inches long and includes skin on one side.

From these full filets, butchers cut smaller pieces that are usually 2-3 inches wide.

grilled salmon with cherry glaze near green beans.

You may also be lucky enough to find darne at your fish monger, which is a cross-section of the fish that includes a portion of the spine. It makes a pretty presentation, but be careful. It contains bones.

In addition to how the fish is cut, you’ll likely want to decide if you prefer wild-caught salmon or farmed salmon. There are pros and cons to both wild and farm-raised salmon.

Personally, I’m cool with either. farm-raised tends to be a little less expensive, so I often choose that.

You may also see “color added” on some labels or at fish counters. Fish farmers are allowed to feed the salmon astaxanthin, which is a nutrient that makes the salmon flesh redder.

Last but not least, you’ll see the terms fresh, frozen or previously frozen. With any fish I plan to grill, I always try to buy fresh, never frozen. This way you can control the moisture better.

When frozen fish thaws, it takes a lot to remove the excess moisture. You will need to pat it dry with several paper towels. If you don’t fully dry your fish it will steam instead of forming nice grill marks.

If you want to really nerd out on salmon, hop on over to Girl Carnivore. There, they have tons of details about Copper River Salmon, which is one of the tastiest types of salmon I’ve ever had.


Salmon filets, cherry jam, soy sauce, red wine vinegar and garlic.
  • Salmon Filets or Darne: This recipe can be made with individual fillets or darne of salmon. If you buy a whole fillet, slice it into 2-3-inch wide pieces.
  • Cherry Jam: Look for this in your jelly aisle. Cherry is usually a flavor made by the more gourmet brands.
  • Soy Sauce: This adds umami, rich flavor.
  • Red Wine Vinegar: The vinegar balances out the sweetness of the jam.
  • Fresh Garlic: You’ll need two cloves, minced.
  • Oil: Fish can tend to stick to the grill. Use a high-heat vegetable oil like canola oil or avocado oil to grease the grill, so the fish doesn’t stick.
  • Salt and Pepper
Substitutions: Change things up by trying different flavored jams as the base. Orange marmalade, pepper jelly and apricot jam also work well in this recipe. 

Instead of fresh garlic, you can substitute 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder.

See the full recipe card below for servings and a full list of ingredients.

How to grill salmon

Make this recipe on a gas grill, charcoal grill, pellet grill or Ninja Grill.

If using a gas grill or Ninja grill, heat your grill to medium-high heat with a direct heat zone. With a pellet grill, you likely don’t have a direct heat zone, so set the temperature to 400F degrees.

PRO TIP: Not all gas grills are the same. Some of the higher-end gas grills like the Aspire by Hestan and DCS, get really hot. When I cook on these grills, I set the temperature to medium-low.

If using a charcoal grill, heat the grill until the coals ash over and you can hold your hand over them for 3-4 seconds.

To add smoky flavor, try cooking with alder wood chunks, pellets or chips. It goes great with fish.

  1. STEP ONE: Season your salmon filets with kosher salt and coarse ground black pepper.
Salmon filets seasoned with salt and pepper.
  1. STEP TWO: In a small bowl or skillet, combine the cherry jam, soy sauce, vinegar and fresh garlic. You can either heat it in the microwave for 30 seconds, or set the skillet on the grill. You want the jam to liquify.
Cherry glaze in a skillet on grill.
  1. STEP THREE: Clean the grill grates with a grill brush. Then, oil the grill grates with high-heat oil or carefully spray with cooking spray. When using cooking spray on a hot grill, use short bursts to prevent the flame from reaching the can.
  1. STEP FOUR: Spoon some of the cherry glaze over the flesh side of the filet.
Spooning cherry glaze on salmon.
  1. STEP FIVE: Place salmon on the hot grates, cherry side down. Grill for 5 minutes. Before closing the grill lid, season the skin side with salt and pepper and add a spoonful of cherry glaze.
  1. STEP SIX: After 5 minutes, flip the salmon over and cook for 4-6 more minutes, to an internal temperature of 145F degrees. If you don’t have an instant-read thermometer, you can tell that it’s done when the white albumin excretes from the sides.
salmon on grill with char marks.
PRO TIP: If the salmon sticks, use a fish spatula to gently release it from the grates. Then, use tongs to hold it together and flip it over. 

How to serve grilled salmon

Transfer the delicious salmon to a serving plate and garnish with the remaining cherry glaze.

grilled salmon glazed with cherry jam alongside long green beans.


Store leftover grilled salmon in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Enjoy it warm or cold. You can also freeze leftover salmon for up to 1-2 months.

GCG Pro Pitmaster Tips

  • Oil your grill grates
  • Use cherry jam as a base for the glaze
  • Fish is cooked through when a meat thermometer reaches 145F degrees

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does salmon need to be on the grill?

It depends on the thickness of your salmon, but most salmon filets will take 10-12 minutes to fully cook through on the grill.

Do you wrap salmon in foil when grilling?

There is no need to wrap the salmon in foil when grilling it. You can cook it right on the grill grate. Just oil them first, so the fish doesn’t stick.

Can you eat grilled salmon skin?

Absolutely. If you cook the salmon right you’ll end up with crispy skin. It’s really tasty and crunchy when eaten right away. If you let it sit too long after grilling, it’s still edible, but will get soggy.

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5 from 3 votes

Grilled Salmon with Cherry Glaze

Add sweet and tart flavors and beautiful color to your grilled salmon with an easy four-ingredient cherry glaze.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4


  • 1/4 cup cherry jam
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 2 tsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 salmon filets or darne of salmon
  • salt and pepper


  • Prep Grill: Heat grill to medium-high (400-425F). Oil grates.
  • Make Glaze: In a small bowl, combine the jam, soy sauce, red wine vinegar and garlic. Microwave for 30 seconds. Reserve 2 tablespoons of glaze.
  • Season: Sprinkle salt and pepper on the flesh side of the salmon.
  • Glaze: Brush glaze on top. Place glazed-side-down on hot grill. Season the skin side with salt and pepper and brush glaze on top.
  • Grill: Close the grill lid. Grill 5 minutes. Flip. Grill 4-5 more minutes, until cooked through.
  • Serve: Remove to platter. Drizzle with reserved glaze.


Calories: 104kcalCarbohydrates: 15gProtein: 6gFat: 2gSaturated Fat: 0.3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 16mgSodium: 478mgPotassium: 169mgFiber: 0.3gSugar: 10gVitamin A: 11IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 11mgIron: 0.4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Did you try this recipe?Be sure to rate it, leave a comment and save it so you can make it again. Show off your awesome results on social by tagging @girlscangrill

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Hey BBQ Family

I’m Christie, the head cook and award-winning competitive pitmaster for Team Girls Can Grill. I have won multiple grand championships and top 10 category finishes. I’m an expert grill reviewer for BBQ Guys, and I have appeared on the Food Network and Ninja Woodfire Grill infomercials. I established this website in 2015 to share my BBQ tips and recipes.

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