Instant Pot caramel salmon

Vietnamese caramel salmon in the Instant Pot

This Vietnamese Instant Pot caramel salmon recipe comes with a warning. You are likely to attempt to lick your fingers off while making it because it’s that delicious. It takes 10 minutes to make from start to finish and therefore one of the easiest things you can whip up for a quick supper. It’s also something you could quite easily make to impress. The sauce is packed with so many flavour aromatics and has a nice bite from the ginger and chilli, but you can leave this out if you prefer it completely mild.

One of the things I love about the Instant Pot, other than how much cooking time it reduces, is that you can simply set it all up and completely leave it while the cooking and steam releasing happens. I also love how all the flavour is locked in with that high-pressure steam action going on.

I enjoy this Vietnamese caramel salmon recipe served with steamed basmati or jasmine rice to soak up all that wonderful sauce, extra coriander (cilantro), chopped spring onions and lime wedges.  Add some steamed greens on the side such as bok choi, green beans or sugar snap peas to complete the meal. Anything will do really and you are in for a treat.

Vietnamese caramel salmon recipe in the Instant Pot

Vietnamese caramel salmon recipe in the Instant Pot

Vietnamese caramel salmon recipe in the Instant Pot

Vietnamese caramel salmon recipe in the Instant Pot

Vietnamese caramel salmon recipe in the Instant Pot

For my other recipes in the Instant Pot:

Instant Pot cheesecake with caramel

Lamb shanks braised in red wine & rosemary

Lamb shanks with red wine, rosemary & bay leaves in the Instant Pot

Gammon with ginger beer & rooibos

Gammon with ginger beer & rooibos tea cooked in an Instant Pot

Confit duck legs with cherry sauce

Confit duck legs with cherry sauce made in the Instant Pot

A few of my other favourite salmon recipes:

Herb & fennel crusted salmon with garlic roasted sweet potatoes

Creamy salmon pasta with spinach & capers

Jamie Oliver’s fantastic fish pie

Roasted salmon with a miso & orange glaze

Miso salmon & cucumber salad

Salmon poached in lapsang souchong tea, with ginger,  lemon and honey

Smoked salmon omelette with chive crème fraiche

Salmon burger on a black brioche bun

Recipe – Serves 4 – Adapted from  by Melissa Clark

Instant Pot caramel salmon

The most delicious quick and easy Vietnamese caramel salmon made in an Instant Pot
Print Recipe
Vietnamese caramel salmon in the Instant Pot
Prep Time:10 minutes
Cook Time:5 minutes


  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 1/3 cup + 2 Tbsp light brown sugar
  • 3 Tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 Tbs + 2 tsp 25ml Soy sauce
  • 1 thumb size piece of ginger peeled and finely grated (1tsp)
  • Finely grated zest & juice of 1 lime
  • ¼ tsp freshly ground white pepper
  • 3 Tbsp water
  • 3 garlic cloves very finely slices
  • ½ - 1 red chilli finely sliced optional
  • 4 middle cut salmon fillets skin on or off 180gm -230gms each, pin-boned
  • Chopped spring onions to serve
  • Fresh coriander to serve
  • Extra wedges lime


  • You can either leave the skin on the salmon or take it off. If you leave it on and want to pre-cook it first, heat a large non-stick skillet and when it's smoking hot, add a little olive oil and sear the salmon fillets skin side down for 1 minute. Alternatively, proceed straight to the Instant Pot cooking stage.
  • Set the Instant Pot to Sauté. Add the olive oil, sugar, fish sauce, soy sauce, ginger, pepper, lemon zest and juice and the water cook for about a minute until the sugar is dissolved and bubbling. Add the garlic and chilli and cook for a further 30 seconds. Push Cancel to turn the Instant Pot off.
  • Place the fillets of salmon with the skin side facing up and spoon some sauce over. Put the lid of the Instant Pot on and set it to Sealing.  Select Pressure Cook and change the level to Low Pressure for 1 minute (remember to take it off the Keep Warm setting).  Allow a 5-minute natural release of pressure and then turn the sealing vent down to manually release the remaining pressure. If your salmon is underdone, cook it to your preference using the Sauté function.
  • Remove the pieces of salmon carefully and arrange flesh side up on a platter. Put the inner pot with the sauce back into the Instant Pot and heat on the Sauté function.  Cook the sauce for a minute and until the sauce has thickened. Spoon this over the salmon and garnish with sliced spring onions, fresh coriander and additional lime wedges.
  • Serve with steamed jasmine or basmati rice and any other cooked Asian greens such as bok choi.
Servings: 4
Author: Sam Linsell

*This post is proudly sponsored by Instant Pot SA


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  1. Hi Sam
    The recipe for the salmon looks delicious. Could it be made without an instant pot and if so what would the method be to follow?
    Love your blog and beautiful photos.

  2. I always look out for more recipe ideas for my instant pot. I think my family would love this caramel salmon. Looks beautiful!

  3. Awesome and I’m so happy top hear that.

  4. Hi Linzi, I haven’t tested it but I think this would work:

    To make it on the stove top, first, sear the salmon skin side down. Then remove from pan. Put all the sauce ingredients in and cook as per recipe. Then add the salmon back in with skin side up and cook until cooked to your liking. You could put a lid in. I haven’t tested it but I’m sure this will work, otherwise google other stove top caramel salmon recipes and adapt the method to my recipe ??

  5. this looks fabulous. I don’t have an instapot. It would have come in handy when my kiddos lived at home, but no need to get one now! They do seem really helpful and versatile, I just don’t need to save time when I cook. I cannot wait to make this – I’ve never heard of it! So thank you!

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