Pan Seared Salmon in a Blood Orange SaucePan Seared Salmon in a Blood Orange Sauce
(This recipe is part of  “The Healthier Side of Life”)

The Winter “Blaaah’s”

Is anybody else out there battling the winter “blaaah’s?” I landed in the middle of them a couple days ago and have been looking for a way out ever since. It is a scientific fact we have to deal with mood changes and feelings of depression in the winter. And no wonder, the days are significantly shorter, a gray haze blankets us with a smothering effect, and the biting cold chills us to the bone.

Pan Seared Salmon in a Blood Orange Sauce

Energy Is Hiding in the Doldrums of my Soul

It’s frustrating because I love being productive with an energy and excitement to accomplish whatever task is before me. But lately, those traits have been hiding in the doldrums of my soul. I need some motivation from my inner cheerleader but I can barely even hear the whisperings of a “Rah, Rah!”

Pan Seared Salmon in a Blood Orange Sauce

Mood-Lifting Chemical Called Serotonin

The lyrics of the song “Sunshine on My Shoulders Makes Me Happy” keeps playing over and over in my head. There is actually a mood-lifting chemical called serotonin that is released in our brains on sunny days. As I tend to spend more time hibernating in my home with the glare of the computer or tv screen, life can easily take on a more discouraging ambiance. And if I couple that with being socially secluded and eating things that are just not good for me, my body and soul begin to scream for a new reality.

Pan Seared Salmon in a Blood Orange Sauce

So I’m reminded of a few things that can help
  1.  Exercise – it can relieve stress, help me sleep better and improve my overall mood. I know! Who likes getting bundled up and going to the gym in frigid temperatures? It is a love-hate relationship with me. It’s like pulling teeth to get me there. Once I’m done with my workout though, I love it. Love the way I feel physically, love that I have disciplined myself for another day and love the motivation for productivity that comes with it. Also, it always makes me want to eat better.
  2. Socializing – inviting friends over for an evening of playing board games or sitting around the fire with cocktails catching up on each other’s lives can help alleviate the wintery humdrum. Life is too short to miss out on a whole season of engaging with good friends. Get dressed up and go out on the town, attend a good production or have a nice meal out with live music. Adding some fun to our lives can lift our moods on so many levels.
  3. Get out in the Sunshine whenever it is possible – here in the Midwest the temperature may be frigid but you would never know it looking out my window. There are many days even in these winter months that the sky is a clear blue and the sun is shining. Getting out of the house can be uplifting especially if you’re like me and work from home. So, I layer my clothing, put leashes on my two golden doodles and venture out into the neighborhood for a nice little stroll. It’s good for me and these puppies of mine.
Vitamin D Found in Fatty Fish Like Salmon

One other thing that can help tremendously is adding more Vitamin D to our diets. Remember above when I talked about serotonin levels. Well, Vitamin D is a good way to help release this mood-boosting “neurotransmitter” into our system (okay, now I’m just trying to sound scientific). One of the best sources of Vitamin D is found in fatty fish such as Salmon.

Pan Seared Salmon in a Blood Orange Sauce

Pan Seared Salmon in a Blood Orange Sauce

That is why I am sharing this Pan Seared Salmon in a Blood Orange Sauce. Not only does it help provide additional Vitamin D into our diet, it tastes fabulous. The sweet flavors of orange and honey in combination with the saltiness of the salmon will definitely leave you wanting more. I normally serve this on a bed of brown rice with a side of asparagus. A wonderfully healthy meal!

Pan Seared Salmon in a Blood Orange Sauce

Super Easy and Quick Recipe

The beauty of cooking up this Salmon is how easy and quickly it comes together. Four minutes on one side with an additional two minutes on the other and you are done! Making the glaze for the fish to swim in takes all of eight minutes. It is one of the simplest recipes that I have in my repertoire of meals to make.

Pan Seared Salmon in a Blood Orange Sauce

Now I’m gonna go boost my mood by enjoying this Pan Seared Salmon in a Blood Orange Sauce.

This recipe was inspired by Cooking Classy.


Pan Seared Salmon in a Blood Orange Sauce

Pan Seared Salmon in a Blood Orange Sauce

This pan seared salmon is both beautiful and nutritious. The sweet and tart blood orange creates a lovely red glaze that is flavored with garlic and fresh herbs and is cooked to a flaky perfection.

  • Author: Kristy Murray
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings


  • 4 – 6-8 ounce Sockeye Salmon
  • Kosher Salt, to taste
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 6 large Garlic Cloves, minced
  • 4 large Sprigs of Thyme
  • 2 large Sprigs of Rosemary
  • 1 cup Dry White Wine
  • 3 tablespoons Triple Sec
  • 3 teaspoons orange zest
  • 1 cup freshly squeezed juice from Blood Oranges
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed Lemon Juice
  • 3 tablespoons Raw Honey
  • 1 tablespoon of Fresh Herbs (Rosemary & Thyme), chopped
  • 2 teaspoons Cornstarch mixed with 3 tablespoons of orange juice mixture from the pan
  • 1 Blood Orange with skin, sliced for garnishment (optional)
  • Small Rosemary Sprigs for garnishment (optional)


  • Remove salmon from the refrigerator, pat dry with paper towels and let sit for about 10 minutes before cooking. Generously salt and pepper on the flesh side.
  • Heat a large cast iron pan over medium-high heat until very hot, add the olive oil. Place the salmon skin side down and sear for 4 minutes, turn over and cook for another 2 minutes. Remove the salmon from the pan to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.
  • Reduce the heat to medium, add the garlic, thyme, and rosemary to the pan and cook for 1 minute. Add white wine and triple sec, reduce the heat to low and simmer until the liquid has been mostly reduced.
  • Add the orange zest, orange juice, lemon juice, honey and chopped herbs. Remove about 3 tablespoons of orange juice from the pan and whisk in 2 teaspoons of cornstarch. Add the cornstarch mixture to the pan, bring to a boil, whisking continually until the mixture thickens. Remove from the heat and add the seared salmon back to the pan and spoon the orange glaze over the salmon.
  • Garnish with orange slices, cut in half, and small rosemary sprigs, optional.
  • Serve with brown rice and asparagus.


  • The seafood counter was nice enough to cut me 4 beautiful center cut salmon steaks. They’ve always been extremely helpful whenever I tell them what I need.
  • I used blood oranges because they are in season, but regular oranges work just a good.
  • Begin searing the salmon with the skin side down as this will help hold the shape of the salmon much better when you flip it.


  • Serving Size: 1 Salmon Steak
  • Calories: 356
  • Sugar: 30 g
  • Sodium: 427 mg
  • Fat: 6 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1 g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 2 g
  • Trans Fat: 0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 33 g
  • Fiber: 1 g
  • Protein: 29 g
  • Cholesterol: 81 mg