April 27, 2023

Cinco de Mayo Sockeye Salmon Tacos


Cinco de Mayo is just around the corner, and what better way to celebrate than with some delicious salmon tacos! This year, try something new and make Alaskan wild-caught salmon the star of your Cinco de Mayo meal. Not only is salmon packed with protein and omega-3 fatty acids, but it's also versatile and delicious. Here are some tips and a recipe for making the best salmon tacos for Cinco de Mayo. But first, what is Cinco de Mayo?

What is Cinco de Mayo?

Cinco de Mayo celebrates the Mexican army's victory over the French in 1862, The Battle of Puebla. In Mexico it is celebrated with parades, food and dancing. The schools are closed nationwide and the town of Puebla is closed for holiday. California also started observing at this time, as the state has a large Mexican community. In the 1980s Cinco de Mayo started to be observed in the country as advertisements promoting  liquor, beer and wine sales. Anyway, back to our delicious wild caught sockeye salmon tacos, the star of the show!

Choosing the Right Salmon

When it comes to making salmon tacos, the type of salmon you choose matters. We recommend using Alaskan wild-caught salmon, specifically sockeye salmon. Not only is sockeye salmon flavorful, but it's also one of the healthiest types of salmon you can eat. It's high in protein, low in fat, and packed with omega-3 fatty acids, which are great for heart health.

Sockeye salmon has a bright, reddish-orange color and a firm texture, which makes it ideal for grilling or pan-searing.

Salmon Taco Marinade

When it comes to making salmon tacos, the seasoning and/or marinade is key to creating a delicious and flavorful dish. The sockeye salmon coating we recommend combines the rich, earthy flavor of cumin with the slightly sweet and bitter notes of cacao. These flavors are inspired by the vibrant and diverse cuisine of Central America, where spices and seasonings are used to create bold and complex flavors.

To make the sockeye salmon coating, simply follow the recipe below. Then, coat the salmon pieces in the spice mixture before cooking. The result is a perfectly seasoned salmon that is packed with flavor and pairs perfectly with the fresh and tangy Pico de Gallo.

But don't be afraid to experiment with different seasonings and flavors! You can add a touch of smokiness to your salmon tacos by using smoked paprika or chipotle powder in the seasoning mix. Alternatively, you can add some heat with a dash of cayenne pepper or crushed red pepper flakes. The possibilities are endless, so don't be afraid to get creative and try new things.

Salmon Taco Topping Varieties 

Salmon is a wonderfully versatile protein that can be used in a variety of different dishes, including tacos. When it comes to making salmon tacos, the options for toppings and garnishes are endless, allowing you to get creative and experiment with new flavor combinations.

For a classic and simple salmon taco, all you need is some thinly sliced radish, fresh cilantro, and a squeeze of lime. The crunchy, slightly spicy radish adds a nice texture and flavor to the dish, while the cilantro and lime brighten up the flavors and bring a touch of freshness.

If you're looking to mix things up a bit, try adding some tropical fruit to your salmon tacos. Pineapple and mango are both great options that pair perfectly with the rich and flavorful sockeye salmon. You can also add some crunch and creaminess to your tacos by topping them with a slaw made from shredded cabbage, carrots, and a tangy dressing.

Another great way to add some variety to your salmon tacos is to experiment with different types of Pico de Gallo. Traditional Pico de Gallo is made with diced tomatoes, onions, and jalapenos, but you can mix things up by adding in other ingredients like mango, avocado, or cucumber. The key is to balance out the flavors and textures so that each bite of your taco is full of delicious and complementary flavors.

No matter how you choose to top your salmon tacos, the most important thing is to use high-quality ingredients, such as Alaskan wild caught salmon, to ensure that your dish is both delicious and healthy. So, next time you're in the mood for a tasty and nutritious meal, try making some salmon tacos and get creative with your toppings!

Now let’s get to the good part, our delicious versions of the salmon taco with a classic Pico de Gallo and a fruity salmon taco.

[[ recipeID=recipe-8lgv7ld2o, title=Sockeye Salmon Tacos ]]

Chef Nicole outside sitting in front of a tree line and lake

Author Profile 

Nicole is a Recipe Developer and Food Photographer from Allentown, Pennsylvania with an Associate degree from The Culinary Institute of America. Her first memories are of planting seeds with her father and grandfather in their elaborate gardens and sharing their abundant harvests with friends and neighbors. The spark of both pride and joy she felt when sharing this food with others and seeing the happiness it brought them was what inspired her to pursue the culinary arts from a young age. Nicole has spent time exploring the Hudson Valley and Philadelphia food scenes, but her current home in the rolling hills of Central PA is where she most enjoys combining her two passions; exploring the outdoors, and good food.

Tags: alaska salmon

Sockeye Salmon Tacos

With a base of our rich traditional sockeye salmon you can take these tacos to the next level with two delicious options for toppers: the classic and the fruity.



  • Prep Time: 1 hours 0 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hours 20 mins




Sockeye Salmon Seasoning

  • 1 Sockeye Salmon fillet
  • ¼ cup white onion
  • ¼ cup cilantro stems
  • ½ tbsp of cacao powder or 1 tbsp of cacao nibs
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp thyme
  • ½ tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • ¼ tsp chili powder
  • 1 ½ tsp kosher salt
  • 1 lime, zested

The Classic Taco: Topper Ingredients

  • Shaved red/green cabbage
  • Radish, sliced thin
  • Sliced jalapenos
  • Pico de Gallo (recipe below)
  • Cilantro leaves
  • Lime Wedge

The Classic taco: Pico de Gallo

  • ½ cup white onion, minced
  • 1 jalapeno, minced
  • 3 small tomatoes, diced
  • 1 tbsp cilantro
  • ¼ cup lime juice
  • salt to taste

The Fruity Taco: Topper Ingredients

  • Shaved red/green cabbage
  • Avocado crema (recipe below)
  • Sliced jalapenos
  • Diced pineapples
  • Cilantro leaves
  • Crumbled queso fresco
  • Lime wedges

The Fruity Taco: Avocado Crema

  • ½ cup of Greek yogurt
  • 1 avocado
  • salt to taste


Salmon Prep

  1. Rough chop the white onion and cilantro stems
  2. Combine all the ingredients in to a mortar and pestle and mix until paste
  3. Spread on sockeye salmon fillet
  4. Place in fridge for 1 hour (while you prepare and dice all tacos toppings)
  5. Preheat oven to 400, Cook fillet for 10-12 minutes

The Classic Taco: Pico De Gallo

  1. Mince white onion and jalapeno
  2. Small dice tomatoes
  3. Add to bowl, rough chop cilantro
  4. Season with lime juice and salt, mix well

Assembly of the Classic Taco

  1. Warm up taco shells in the oven, stove top or the grill 
  2. Place shaved cabbage on the shell, seasoned and cooked Pride of Bristol Bay sockeye salmon, Pico de Gallo, jalapeno, radish, cilantro and juice from lime wedge

The Fruity Taco: Avocado Crema

  1. Mash the avocado until smooth
  2. Fold the mashed avocado in to the Greek yogurt and season with salt

Assembly of the Fruity Taco

  1. Warm up taco shells in the oven, stove top or the grill 
  2. Place shaved cabbage on the shell, seasoned and cooked Pride of Bristol Bay sockeye salmon, avocado crema, jalapeno, pineapple, queso fresco and juice from lime wedge
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