Salmon has never tasted better than in this amazing (and easy recipe!). This orange coconut salmon is easy to make and kid-approved. Let’s just say, you’ll likely not have leftovers!
Salmon is a go-to in our house and this orange coconut salmon has become our favourite option. Everyone loves it and it takes no time to throw it together and on the grill. It pairs beautifully with rice or quinoa and a quick salad. I love that it includes common ingredients that you likely have on hand, yet tastes like a salmon dish that you’d order at a fancy restaurant. The blending of sesame, orange, garlic, soy sauce, maple syrup and coconut is the perfect savory-sweet combination!
Salmon is incredibly nutritious, boasting omega-3 fatty acids, protein, calcium, Vitamin D, Iron and much more–all important nutrients for everyone, but especially growing kiddos and expectant moms.
The importance of Omega-3 fat (particularly DHA and EPA)
Omega-3 is extra-important- it’s an umbrella term for a few different fatty acids, and these are essential for good health during pregnancy and in babies, kids, and adults. The most important types of omega-3 fat are called DHA and EPA, and they are found in oily fish like salmon. They are important for proper brain, eye, and nerve development. Omega-3 ALA is found in plant-based foods such as walnuts, chia, flax, hemp, soy oil, and supplements, but ALA does not have the same health benefits for brain, eye, and nerve development as DHA and EPA do. While some of the ALA you consume is converted to DHA and EPA by the body, research suggests it is less than 1%.
Sources of DHA/EPA
Omega-3 DHA and EPA are found mainly in fish and seafood such as salmon, low-mercury skipjack tuna, herring, Atlantic mackerel, and rainbowtrout. Some eggs also contain DHA. If you hate fish (or your child refuses to eat it consistently), have a fish allergy, or follow a vegetarian or vegan diet, you need to find DHA and EPA elsewhere. You can get them from fish oil or from algal oil supplements (there are toddler and child versions too!)—a vegan alternative to fish oil.
How much DHA/EPA do kids need?
According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, your child should get about 150-200 milligrams per day. If your child eats salmon that contains 500 milligrams of EPA and DHA (omega-3) combined, that will account for a few days’ worth of intake (neat hey?!). The 150-200 milligrams per day rule can be spaced out over the week, where 2 servings of fatty fish can suffice.
This orange coconut salmon makes great left-overs
If you do happen to have leftovers, I highly suggest flaking the leftover salmon and combining with a bit of mayonnaise to serve in a wrap, with crackers or on toast with a bit of melted cheese. It will be the best salmon melt you’ll ever taste!
Orange coconut salmon is great for baby too!
This salmon is great for babies in the process of starting solids too! I would definitely cut back on the soy sauce or maple syrup, and make sure that there are no bones, but salmon is the perfect first food because it contains so many of those essential nutrients for baby. You can offer in a whole piece, mash or puree!