Spiced Salmon Skewers with Lemon for extra zing

A Norwegian-American summer grilling adventure

Spiced Salmon Skewers

Spiced Salmon Skewers come together in just 20 minutes and are on the table in 30 minutes for a perfect summer family dinner for your family and guests.

Kristi Bissell
Taste of Norway Editor
The Norwegian American

These Spiced Salmon Skewers with Lemon have earned a well-deserved spot as a family summertime favorite since they first appeared in Bon Appetit magazine back in 2013. They come together in only 20 minutes and are on the table in 30, making them a perfect quick weeknight meal. And yet they are elegant enough for company! Yes, these salmon skewers do it all.

I haven’t changed much from the original recipe other than doubling the amount of spice rub (this seems to be a common theme for me) as I love the flavor it brings to the salmon and the way it intermingles with the lemon. The combination of sesame seeds, fresh oregano, cumin, and red pepper flakes might seem unusual but trust me…. it works.


I’ve really got just one tip for Spiced Salmon Skewer success: Clean and oil the grill grates generously before you put the skewers on. Salmon has a tendency to stick and we don’t want that. Right before the skewers go on, I scrape the hot grill well with a wire grilling brush and use a pair of long tongs to rub a canola oil-soaked paper towel over the grill grates several times. This will help keep the salmon skewers from sticking.


I usually keep my sides simple: maybe some whole-wheat couscous or quinoa tossed with olive oil and fresh herbs from the garden. A barley salad would also be a nice choice. Grilled zucchini or asparagus rounds everything out nicely and is just another thing to throw on the grill next to the salmon. Easy!

Please give these Spiced Salmon Skewers with Lemon a try before grilling season ends. You won’t be disappointed and maybe you’ll just find a new summertime favorite to look forward to every year.

Spiced Salmon Skewers With Lemon

Makes 4 skewers

Fresh oregano leaves, fresh lemon, and a special selection of spices give your Spiced Salmon Skewers a certain Nordic summer zing.


  • 2 lbs. salmon, skinned and cut into 1¼-inch cubes
  • 3 tbsps. chopped fresh oregano leaves
  • 4 tsps. sesame seeds
  • 2 tsps. ground cumin
  • ½ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2-3 lemons, sliced thin
  • 1-2 tbsps. olive oil
  • Coarse salt
  • Canola or vegetable oil for oiling the grill


  • Four 6-inch bamboo skewers soaked for at least an hour in water


  1. Heat grill to medium-high. Combine oregano, sesame seeds, cumin, and red pepper flakes in a small bowl. Set aside.
  2. Thread salmon cubes and lemon slices (folded in half) onto skewers, alternating as you go and starting and ending with salmon.
  3. Brush or rub salmon skewers with olive oil and sprinkle oregano mixture evenly over both sides. Season with coarse salt.
  4. Generously oil the grill and reduce heat to medium. Grill skewers until salmon is just opaque throughout, about 3 minutes per side. Serve.

Photos by Kristi Bissell

This article originally appeared in the July 2023 issue of The Norwegian American.

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Kristi Bissell

Kristi Bissell is the founder of True North Kitchen, a Nordic food blog designed for the American home cook. She enjoys creating recipes that celebrate her Scandinavian heritage and that approach traditional Nordic ingredients in a modern, fresh and approachable way. Kristi is a native of Minneapolis and currently resides in Omaha, Neb. When she’s not cooking and baking in her cozy kitchen, Kristi teaches private and corporate yoga classes and leads Scandinavian cooking and baking workshops. For more information, visit her blog, www.true-north-kitchen.com.