Cheesy Baked Salmon – Красная Рыба Под Сырной Шубой

A whole salmon fillet baked in the oven under a melted and golden cheese crust, with a layer of ultra thin slices of onion in  between the fish and the cheese. Stunning presentation, comforting flavors – this is a very popular main course in the Russian community. Cheesy Baked Salmon-1-8

Something magical happens when you top food with mayonnaise and cheese and then bake it. It forms this amazingly crisp but still creamy crust. If you’ve got any Slavic blood in you, you’re very familiar with this combination.

I am a huge fan of seafood and it’s a very common dish on our dinner table. This is a winner on many counts – it comes together relatively quickly, looks impressive and is absolutely, lip smackingly delicious.

As you take a bite of the juicy, flaky salmon with the tender onions and creamy and crisp crust, don’t be surprised if you find yourself closing your eyes with pleasure. Seriously delicious. Add a layer of sweet and juicy tomatoes and a smattering of fresh herbs to elevate the salmon to an even higher level of perfection. 

Preparing the Salmon

Cheesy Baked Salmon-1Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.

Place the salmon fillet on the prepared baking sheet.

What Fish Is Best To Use For This Recipe?

It’s best to use one whole side of salmon. However, if your grocery store doesn’t have a whole fillet, get two smaller pieces and put them together. Since we are topping the fish with onions, it will need enough time for the onions to cook through and become tender. Try to choose a thicker fillet, if possible. All of this is to make sure that the salmon will be juicy on the inside and still have a golden crust.  

IMG_1923-2 (500x334)

Season with salt and pepper. Season liberally, since the fish is very thick and the salt need to penetrate all the way through to the center. 

Layer the thinly sliced onion on top of the fish, so they cover the surface of the fish completely.Cheesy Baked Salmon-1-2

Tomato and Herb Flavor Variation For the Cheesy Baked Salmon

You can also thinly slice or chop some tomatoes and place them on top of the onions and sprinkle with some fresh herbs. Now that would be delicious too. If you don’t like onions, feel free to omit them.

In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, lemon juice, mustard and garlic. The mixture should be thin enough to easily spread over the onions. Cover the surface of the onions with the creamy mayo mixture and spread it out evenly.

Cheesy Baked Salmon-1-3

Cheesy Baked Salmon-1-4Top with the finely grated cheese.

Cheesy Baked Salmon-1-5

Baking the Salmon

Bake in the preheated oven for 15-18 minutes,then  broil for  2-5 minutes, until the cheese is golden brown.

Cheesy Baked Salmon-1-7


When you line the baking sheet with aluminum foil, it makes it so much easier to transfer the salmon onto your serving platter. Cheesy Baked Salmon-1-6Can you see how juicy and moist the fish is on the inside? Let me tell you, this dinner is AMAZING.

Cheesy Baked Salmon-1-8

Prepping the Cheesy Baked Salmon in Advance

You can prep the salmon fillet completely in advance and store it in the refrigerator. When you are ready to bake it, bring the fish to room temperature for about 15-20 minutes and bake per above instructions.


Cheesy Baked Salmon

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5 from 8 reviews

A whole salmon fillet baked in the oven under a melted and golden cheese crust, with a layer of ultra thin slices of onion in between the fish and the cheese. Stunning presentation, comforting flavors – this is a very popular main course in the Russian community.

  • Author: Olga's Flavor Factory
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Main Course


  • 1 salmon fillet (2 lbs)
  • 1 large onion (thinly sliced)
  • salt (ground black pepper, to taste)
  • 1/41/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/21 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 12 garlic cloves (minced)
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese (finely shredded)
  • 1/31/2 cup Mozzarella cheese (finely shredded)


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.
  2. Place the salmon fillet on the prepared baking sheet. Season with salt and pepper. Layer the thinly sliced onion on top of the fish, so it covers the surface of the fish completely.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, lemon juice, mustard and garlic. The mixture should be thin enough to easily spread over the onions. Cover the surface of the onions with the creamy mayo mixture and spread it out evenly. Top with the finely grated cheese.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes,then broil for 2-5 minutes, until the cheese is golden brown.

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  • Marysya

    yum yum! Olga, can I substitute a different fish like flaky flounder? Or do you think the recipe will lose its touch. Hubby and I aren’t fans of salmon no matter how we try but this looks so delish.

    great recipe, as always

    • olgak7

      I would recommend using thicker fish. Flounder is quite thin and by the time the onions are cooked through, the fish will be dry. You can leave the onions out and it would be perfect with any.
      Another thing you can do is to cook the onions in a skillet first, before placing them on top of the fish.
      Fish overcooks SO quickly, and this way, you will have perfectly moist fish and the onions will be cooked through.

  • Dina

    Looks delish, I make a similar version with out the onions. I will def try your version. I am so thankful for your blog Olga. God bless your family and I hope your wishes will come true one day!

  • Milana

    I can’t wait to make this tonight!! I’m salivating looking at these pictures. Good job Olga once again. Thank you for sharing another out of the park recipe. Keep them coming for all of us fans. 🙂

  • Nina

    Hi, Olga,
    Today we had a very good lunch with my family after church service. I cooked “Cold Beet Holodnik” and “Cheesy Baked Salmon” from your blog. I also made your “Coleslaw”. Everyone liked all the dishes.
    Anyway I changed a little bit Salmon recipe and I would like to share with you because I cooked minced onion with little canola oil covered and then layer it on the top of the fish and sprinkle chopped fresh rosemary ( that very good match with fish). I really liked the taste because its take less time to cook and absolutely delicious. Try this way I think you will love this improvement” 🙂
    Olechka, may I ask you a question? You usually mixed Parmesan cheese with Mozarella or other kind of cheese. What is the benefit of mixing cheeses?

    I LOVE YOUR BLOG!!!!!!
    Thanks much and be blessed.

  • Yana

    This salmon recipie is awesome!!! I never made salmon that was so juicy and tasty, in the past I have always made salmon and it would be too dry or way too soft and falling apart, this recipie is so simple yet soooo delicious!!! Thank you for your hard work!!

  • Nelli

    Hello Olga,
    Thank you so much for such a delicious recipe! My husband is very particular about his salmon, it has to be seasoned right, and taste right in order for him to eat it. Let me tell you, he just loved this cheesy salmon, and said this was the best one he’s ever tasted! Thank you so much, and May God Bless you, I think you have made many husbands happy through your recipes!!!

  • Regina

    Spasibo vam Olechka, i love your web!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    menja zovyt Regina, ja zhivy v MN, yes far from you!!!
    i love you web!!!

  • veronika

    I made it today, it was so juicy and so good, I couldn’t get enough of it. My husband said I made the best salmon I ever made. Thank you so much for your help. Keep the nice work.

  • Natalka

    Olga thank you so much, made it last week, and people said what did you add to this fish, it was super super super delicious. Thanks a lot

  • Luba

    I made a teeny tiny piece of this, because I wasn’t sure it would go well with my family. 🙂 But, after my first bite, I definitely know I will be making it again! What beautiful taste! Thanks so much for sharing the recipe 🙂

  • Vikyula

    Just wanted to let you know I tried this dish for tonight’s dinner AND it was wonderful!! This recipe is def a keeper!! Thank you so much for posting it and may your website continue to flourish. … small issue though easily fixed :)….. My onions which were thinly sliced, at 20mins were a little crunchy, I did see the tip about sautéing them first, maybe ill need to do that next time. I had my salmon right at 20 mins but I decided to bake hubby’s a little longer (10 extra mins or so ) and his came out perfect! :). Love you website and many Blessings!!!!

    • olgak7

      Yay! That’s awesome to hear. Thank you so much for writing.
      Yes, the onions need to be REALLY, really thin. I cut mine to be almost paper thin, otherwise they won’t cook through and will have some crunch. I don’t like the fish to be dry, so I don’t like cooking it longer. I’m glad you and your family enjoyed it:).

  • Natalie

    This is absolutely delicious – I’ve already made it several times! Just a quick question, would it turn out the same if I chopped the onions into small pieces and layer them on top?

    • olgak7

      I’m thrilled to hear that you are enjoying this Salmon.
      You can certainly mince the onions, but be sure to mince it really small, or the onions might not cook through all the way.

  • Darlene

    I made this today for Christmas dinner. While it tasted good the cooking time was off. I baked it for 20 minutes at 400° then under the broiler for 3 minutes. It was raw under the onions and half way down into the fillet. I covered it with foil and baked it at a higher temp. (450°) for 20 more minutes and it was finally cooked through. My fillet wasn’t super thick, but maybe some of your readers may want to take note and plan accordingly for dinner. Happy holidays!

    • olgak7

      Thanks for taking the time to write, Darlene and sharing your experience. I’ve made this dish many, many times, because it’s one of our favorites, but it’s never taken me 40 minutes. Did you preheat the oven? Also, did you slice the onions paper thin? If there is a thick layer of onions, they won’t cook through in that amount of time for sure. Of course, ovens cook differently too. I’m sure others will find your comment helpful.

  • Yuva

    Hi Olga,

    I was surfing and came across your recipe. It looks deliciously tempting, hence have asked my wife to try it.

    Happy new year and may god bless us all.


  • Maryana

    This is my second time making this yummy recipe. I had a leftover red pepper that I sauteed with the onions and pulsed a few times in food processor before spreading under the mayo and it turned out delicious. Such a versatile recipe. Thanks again! This recipe has returned my love for salmon.

  • Lilly

    I LOVE this recipe! Made this dish today for lunch it’s so good yummy!!!! Thank you Olya for great recipes!

  • yulia amin

    Olga!!!!!!! O.M.G Your amazing!!!! i tried this recipe and i absolutely love it!!!! salmon was gone in 2 min, it was so juicy not dry! tasty! Thank You so much for what you do!!!

  • michelle

    SIMPLY AMAZING i didnt have salmon so i used tilapa fish, and i cut up my onions and put on top, also didnt have diyun mustard so i used ground was sooo goood!!!

  • WendyLady

    I can’t wait to try this! We had something very similar at a home in Russia when we visited St. Petersburg a couple of years ago. It was scrumptious. 🙂

  • Valentina

    Made this last night for dinner.. and it came out amazing! My husband said he liked it even better cold because you could taste all of the flavors. Thank you for the recipe! Will be making again!

  • Billie

    This recipe looks yummy..
    My son and husband caught blue fin tuna on a fishing trip and wondering if it would be good to use for this…

  • Nata

    Hi Olga, first of all I want to congratulate you on your pregnancy! You are definitely a living testimony and your faith is an inspiration to many people. God’s blessings for your family!

    Moving on to the salmon, how much would it alter the end result if I omitted the onions? Hubby doesn’t like them and I don’t want to omit them if it will take away too much from the taste of the dish..

    • olgak7

      It will definitely alter the flavor and texture of the dish, Nata, but we love onions. Since your husband doesn’t like onions, I’m sure you are an expert on adjusting recipes to his liking, so it’s hard for me to tell. Leave out the onions. If you leave them in and he hates the dish, there’s really no point in cooking it, right?

  • Kim

    Had this for dinner tonight and added thinly sliced tomatoes. Fantastic recipe! Also very versatile. You could use other fish such as basa or even use sliced potatoes instead of fish. I think this might even work with skinless chicken breast. Thanks Olga. I really enjoy your blog.

    • olgak7

      There is no goat cheese used in this recipe, Cathy. You can use whatever cheese you like. I usually use Mozzarella and Parmesan, just like I have listed in the ingredients.

  • Galina

    Olga, I’ve made this fish twice now (including on thanksgiving), and both times it was a huge hit!!! It was incredibly juicy and tender/flaky. One guest described it as “the bomb!” lol. Thank you for all your great recipes. Keep doing what you do 🙂

    • olgak7

      Yay! I’m thrilled to hear that.
      My husband often requests me to make it and I often make it for special occasions for him, like his birthday, because he loves it so much.

  • tammy

    Hi Olga.. im planning to make this salmon for my kids birthday party with family and was wondering how many hours ahead can i make this and store in frig? or can i make it ahead at all? maybe you already answered this question for someone but i dont have time to read through all the comments. Thanks alot and thanks for sharing your passion with us.

    • olgak7

      You can certainly prep the salmon ahead of time, even up to a day in advance. Bring it to room temperature for about 20-30 minutes before baking it though.

        • olgak7

          The cooking time really depends on your oven and the thickness of the fish, Tammy. You can check for doneness by poking it with a fork. If it flakes easily, it’s done. You can do this carefully and then cover it back up and no one will be able to tell that you peeked:).

  • Nachiar

    Hi olga! Loved this recipe.. so easy to put together. I did take the tip from the previous writer on sautéing the bell peppers and onions and pounding them. turned out great 🙂 Thank you for sharing 🙂

  • Sue

    We’re dieting so I am going to try this mixing half Hellman’s Light and half Greek yogurt instead of all mayonnaise. I’ll let you know how it turned out. It looks really yummy.

    • olgak7

      I’m not sure, Patty. I don’t count calories. I’m sure there are many tools online where you can plug in the ingredients and it will tell you how many calories it is.

  • Liliya

    This is by far the most delicious way to make salmon! My husband and my 4 year old son absolutely loved it, there were no leftovers. Even my 15 month baby tried it and was asking for more! ☺

    Olga, I tried several recipes from your blog and they all are very delicious and easy to make. When I try new recipes, it is a hit and miss with other food blogs out there, but never with yours! (Maybe we have same palate?) Thank you for your hard work!

    • olgak7

      Thank you so much, Liliya!
      I really appreciate your kind words. I’m so pleased that you are enjoying my recipes. Thank you for taking the time to write and for visiting my website.

  • Georgina

    I have enjoyed your blog for quite some time now and have tried a few of the recipes. This has become our favourite salmon recipe and we have it often. Tonight we tried something different – we grilled it on a cedar plank (after soaking the plank for a couple of hours) using a coal BBQ. It took a little longer to cook, but it was just as delicious.

  • Nazli

    Great recipe. made it years ago at a lunch party and people loved it. can I leave out the onions or substitute it with something else? thanks:)

    • olgak7

      Yes, Nazli, you can omit the onions and leave it with just the cheese crust, or you can also add some thinly sliced tomatoes with some fresh herbs. You can also use mushrooms or chopped walnuts.

  • Irina

    At first I thught I’d skip onion. After I read review’s, I dedecided to give it a try.
    Well, I want to say the fish turned out so, so good. My husband and kids enjoyed it as much as I did. No crunchy onion was found! I served it with rice and vegetables. THANK YOU OLGA))

    • olgak7

      Yay! I’m so glad you enjoyed this meal. It’s a favorite in our family. Thank you so much for taking the time to write. I really appreciate your kind words.

  • Alison

    Thank you so much for this recipe. It was so good and definitely will be making again. Never thought onions with salmon would be so good. It’s a keeper.

  • Melissa

    Hi! I really want to make this dish but my husband despises mayo – if I make it and he doesn’t know there is mayo, is it easy to taste it or tell that it’s in the recipe? Thanks!

  • Nelya

    Planning to go to Costco tomorrow and then make this 👍🏼 Do you think I could spread the mayo mixture, THEN season, and then add the onion? Just thinking it might be easier to spread without having the onion there…

    • olgak7

      I think the onions won’t cook through properly, since they sort of “steam” under the blanket of mayo and cheese. Plus, the mayo helps the cheese adhere to the salmon. I actually put the mayo in a small ziplock bag, snip off a corner and drizzle to over the fish. When you add the lemon juice and mustard to the mayo, it thins it out and it’s actually really easy to spread, even if you do use a spoon. However, you can try it, it’s up to you.

  • Cassie

    Hi Olga!

    I know this is one of your older recipes but I just wanted to let you know that it’s still one of my favorites to this day. I first tried it around 2013 or 2014, when me and my college roommates were testing out our newly bought oven in our condo. A bunch of freshmen with 0 ability to cook led to multiple disasters thrown in the trash every weekend. But this recipe was unforgettably the first successful dish we were able to bake and it tasted amazing! From what I recall, we went crazy with the cheese and even added some shredded cheddar on it. We scarfed it down in one sitting. We were 16 then and we’re all 22 now, but every time we have a chance to meet up, this dish is always brought up as one of our most fond memories 😂 It’s also become a permanent fixture in my house ever since I told my mom about it 6 years ago haha thank you for the recipe, it truly is simple but delicious!!

  • Mliss

    I made this on Easter & again yesterday with some organic Irish salmon. Both times, along with the regular salmon lovers, several people who say they hate salmon, ate it & loved it.
    Such a simple & outstanding dish, I’m wondering why I haven’t had it more often.
    Thank you for sharing such unique & delicious recipes.

  • Tonya

    Tried this recipe for the first time today and it was a hit!!! I added tomatoes as well. Thanks for sharing the recipe!!!

  • Irina

    Hi Olga,

    Lovely recipe and pictures, can’t wait to make it. I was wondering if it’s possible to use regular mustard instead of dijon. Would it be the same measurement? Thank you!

  • Svetlana

    Absolutely love this recipe!!! Use it for many family parties and get togethers. It’s always a big hit. Thank you for sharing the recipe!!!

  • Kathleen Bergstrom

    I never cook fish, but I’m thinking of learning how. This recipe looks very good, but sounds like it is only for a large piece of salmon. My husband and I no longer eat as much as we did when we were younger. How much fish should I buy for the two of us? Any advice will be appreciated.

  • Dmitry Fridman

    Hi Olga, this sounds so easy and looks so delicious I really want to try!
    Couple of questions – do you think it will work if I grind the onions first? (That was I’ll conceal the texture from my family who #sadface “hates” onions)
    Which cheese would you recommend? Would you use feta? Swiss? American? More or less spicy?
    Спасибо за рецепты и вдохновение!

    • olgak7

      I think grinding the onions will make the flavor much more intense. If your family hates onions, I would just omit them from the recipe completely.
      I recommend using Mozzarella, provolone, havarti, romano, parmesan cheddar, colby, monterey jack cheese.

  • Vera

    This combination of ingredients and preparation is unbelievably delicious. So moist, delicious and perfect, I wouldn’t change a single thing about it. Made it twice, husband and kids loved it and were so excited about it the second time around. Thank you Olga for such a family pleaser recipe🌷🌷🌷🌷

  • Gordon

    Excellent 👍👍👍👌👍
    Loved it. Cooked salmon fillets for 22mins at 180°c.
    Moist and very tasteful.
    Loved it.

  • Jennifer

    We absolutely LOVE this recipe- have made it many times over the years. My husband has recently taken up BBQ/smoking and we were thinking of trying it in the smoker- any tips?

  • Sarah

    This was delicious! I didn’t have the onion and garlic put used several shakes of powder in their place. So yummy! Thanks for a quick, easy recipe.

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