You’ll be pleasantly surprised by this nearly-effortless miso-poached salmon… made in the slow cooker!
Your slow cooker has prepared its fair share of lip-smacking-good stews, sumptuous pot roasts, and pulled meats.
With all of your favorites – like vegetarian chili, shredded chicken teriyaki, and pork roast – made countless times in the slow cooker over the years, you know this dependable appliance is more than qualified to produce hearty comfort food.
But just when you think you know your trusty kitchen bestie inside and out, like the back of your hand, I’m throwing you a major Crock-Pot curveball.
This versatile appliance can also be used for delicate culinary techniques, like poaching fish!
It’s the perfect vessel for this style of easygoing cooking, and can gently poach salmon in a warm broth as easily as it can tenderize tough short ribs.
Creating the broth will be the most time-consuming portion of preparing this recipe, as the ingredients cook together for about 90 minutes to build flavor before adding the fish fillets, which take about thirty minutes to poach.
If time is on your side, dedicating a little over 2 hours total from initial prep to final plating will be no issue at all for a relaxed dinner enjoyed at home.
Most of that time will be your appliance’s responsibility, not yours – you don’t even need to be in the kitchen for most of the time!
This recipe only requires some basic prep with simple knifework, placing the ingredients in your appliance, and letting them cook away, with minimal cleaning afterwards.
As soon as the fish has finished poaching, serve each fillet in a bowl that can hold a cupful of broth – why let that lovely liquid go to waste when it naturally doubles as a key component of your dinner?
Add soba noodles or rice to make your meal complete – these starches are excellent for soaking in all that tasty goodness.
When you’re sitting at the kitchen table, sipping on savory broth and pulling off tender flakes of fish, inspiration is sure to strike you with another bold question:
What else can I make in my slow cooker?
Delicious poached seafood awaits.Print
Want to use your slow cooker for more than stews and roasts? Make these miso-poached salmon fillets in your favorite appliance.
For the Poached Salmon:
- 4 cups vegetable stock, fish stock, or dashi
- 1/4 cup white miso
- 3-inch knob ginger, peeled and sliced
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
- 4 scallions, white and green parts, halved crosswise
- 4 6-ounce skinless salmon fillets
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
- 1 scallion, green tops thinly sliced
- Cooked soba noodles or rice
- Whisk together the stock and miso in the slow cooker insert until completely incorporated.
- Add the ginger, garlic, and scallions. Whisk to combine.
- Cover and cook on high heat for 1 1/2 hours. Remove the lid and whisk to reincorporate the ingredients.
- Submerge the salmon fillets in the hot broth in a single layer. Cover and cook on low heat until the flesh is firm and opaque, and flakes easily with a fork, about 30-40 minutes.
- Transfer each piece of salmon to a separate bowl. Strain the broth to remove the aromatics, and ladle about 1 cup of the broth into each bowl. Garnish with sesame seeds and sliced scallion tops, and serve immediately with soba noodles or rice.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 2 hours
- Category: Fish
- Method: Slow Cooker
- Cuisine: Seafood
Keywords: salmon, poached, miso, slow cooker
Cooking by the Numbers…
Step 1 – Prep and Measure
Peel and slice the ginger into rough slices. Peel and crush the garlic cloves. Trim and roughly slice the scallions in half crosswise. All of these ingredients will be used to infuse the broth, and will not be consumed – no need to spend too much time with your knifework here!
Did you order skin-on salmon, or a large piece of salmon instead of fillets? Remove the skin and slice the salmon into four even, 6-ounce portions. Keep the salmon covered in the refrigerator until the broth has finished cooking.
Step 2 – Combine and Warm the Broth
Pour the stock in the insert of your slow cooker. A 6- or 7-quart slow cooker will be the ideal size for this amount of salmon and poaching liquid.
Add the miso paste, and whisk to combine. You may need to break up the paste with your whisk as you stir.
Add and stir in the ginger, garlic, and halved scallions.
Secure the lid and cook the broth on high heat until it is hot and aromatic, about 1 1/2 hours.
Step 3 – Cook the Salmon and Prep Garnishes
Remove the lid, whisk the broth briefly to reincorporate the ingredients, and place the salmon in a single layer in the broth. The fillets should be fully submerged in the liquid.
If the fillets are not fully covered in the liquid, you can add more stock – or water will do! Add 1/8 cup at a time until the fillets are fully covered.
Cook the salmon fillets until firm and cooked through. The flesh of the thickest piece should be opaque and should easily flake with a fork. This will take about 30 to 40 minutes.
As the salmon is cooking, this is the smartest time to prep your garnishes, and any sides you wish to serve. Trim and thinly slice the green tops from one scallion. Measure the toasted sesame seeds. Prepare your rice or soba noodles.
Step 4 – Serve
Using a wide spatula, transfer each piece of salmon to a separate bowl. Strain the broth into a large serving bowl to remove the aromatics.
Ladle about one cup of broth into each bowl and garnish with the sesame seeds and sliced scallion. Serve and enjoy while it’s hot!
Equally Easy Serving Suggestions
Don’t you just love an adaptable recipe that can be enjoyed on its own, but that you can also have some fun with if you want to add a few tasty sides?
As suggested, you can serve this recipe with soba noodles or rice. You can choose to serve them on the side, or you can serve them in the same bowl with the broth and fish. If you choose to serve the noodles or rice in the same bowl, plate them first.
There are so many varieties of rice that would work well here, and you can take your pick! Floral jasmine or stunning forbidden rice are my top choices, and both can be prepared in the electric pressure cooker, another nifty appliance with a multitude of cooking possibilities.
While I recommend serving this brothy poached salmon with soba noodles or rice, these are not your only options for easy, healthy side dishes.
Do you have your own serving suggestions for this recipe? What are some other fun seafood dishes that you’ve tried in your slow cooker? Serve up some ideas by leaving a comment below.
If you’ve already played with poaching and are craving some other ways to cook your favorite fish, try one of these salmon recipes for your next freshly prepared, home-cooked meal:
- Grilled with Creamy Dill Sauce
- Burgers with Green Goddess Dressing
- Broiled with Shiitake Mushrooms and Parmesan Grits
Photos by Nikki Cervone, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published on August 14, 2012. Last updated on January 13, 2023.
Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.
About Nikki Cervone
Nikki Cervone is a full-time cheesemonger and specialty foods buyer living in Pittsburgh. Nikki holds an AAS in baking/pastry from Westmoreland County Community College, a BA in Communications from Duquesne University, and an MLA in Gastronomy from Boston University. When she's not nibbling on her favorite cheeses or testing a batch of cupcakes, Nikki enjoys a healthy dose of yoga, wine, hiking, singing in the shower, and chocolate. Lots of chocolate.