how to defrost salmon for sushi

How to Defrost Salmon For Sushi

If you are planning to make salmon for dinner and forgot to thaw your salmon beforehand. Then you have come to the right place as we will discuss how you can defrost salmon for sushi correctly.

The defrosting process is different for all kinds of meat. Some meat goes bad when you dry to thaw them by submerging it in water because of bacteria. Similarly, fish left to thaw at room temperature can go bad and smelly.

What is the best way to defrost salmon for sushi?

Perhaps the best way to defrost salmon is to keep it in the fridge. Remove the packaging, and place the salmon fillet on a plate over a few kitchen towels. Make sure to cover it with cling film. Place the fish in the fridge for 12-24 hours or until fully defrosted. This method keeps the fish fresh and draws away any excess moisture from the fillet.

Let’s discuss some other methods you can use to defrost sushi salmon. I will also cover some frequently asked questions regarding the topic, so you have all the information you need.

How To Defrost Salmon For Sushi? [3 Methods]

Defrosting salmon is a little different from other types of meat. That is because you want to make sure the fish does not absorb too much water, or else it will go bad. Here are 3 best methods to defrost salmon fish for sushi:

1. Defrosting in the refrigerator

The best method as described above is to defrost the fish in the fridge. Just follow the steps below:

  • Remove the packaging of the fish and place the fillet on a plate.
  • Make sure to keep 5-6 kitchen towels underneath the fillet.
  • Cover the fillet with a cling film and leave it in the fridge for 15-24 hours or until it is fully defrosted.

2. Defrosting With Cold Water

Another way to defrost salmon is by submerging it in cold water. It is a quick way to defrost the fish for dinner. Just follow the steps below:

  • Take the salmon fillet and put it in a resealable bag. Make sure the bag is sealed properly so water does not get inside.
  • Take a large bowl and add cold water.
  • Submerge the bag with fish in the water.
  • Leave it to defrost for 30 minutes or more until defrosted.
  • Make sure to check the salmon after every 30 minutes. If it isn’t completely defrosted, change the water.
  • Once the fish is defrosted, dry off the excess water using a kitchen towel before cooking sushi.

3. Defrost in the Microwave

You can also defrost salmon in the microwave if you are running late. Just follow the steps below:

  • Remove the packaging and place the fish fillet in a microwave safe plate.
  • Use the defrost function on your microwave.
  • Check after every 60 seconds and turn the fish over if necesary.

Which Desfrosting Method is the Quickest for Salmon?

defrosting sushi salmon

The quickest way to defrost salmon is by dunking it in the cold water in a sealed bag. You can defrost the sushi using this method within 30 minutes. It yields satisfactory results and does not compromise the quality of the fish.

This process is great if you are planning to cook the salmon immediately. Make sure to dry the excess water from the fillet before cooking, otherwise the fish will turn out too soggy.

I don’t recommend thawing fish at room temperature, especially in summers. It tends to spoil within 30 minutes. You can use the same method to make salmon crunch roll.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to know if your sushi grade salmon is defrosted correctly?

You can tell that your sushi-grade salmon is defrosted correctly if there is no excess liquid and the fish has a consistent texture.

Can I defrost sushi grade salmon with hot water?

No, sushi salmon should not be thawed with hot water as it effects the texture of the fish. Cold water should be used to defrost the fish as it will not affect its texture.

How do you defrost salmon quickly for sushi?

Thawing salmon in water is the quickest way to defrost the fish if you don’t have enough time to place it in the fridge.


If your fish is of good quality, you can use frozen fish for sushi. But if you are using salmon, the best way to defrost it is by placing it in the fridge for 12-24 hours. If you are short on time, you can thaw it using cold water, or by using a microwave.

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