Baked entirely on one sheet pan and smothered in flavorful arugula pesto, this bursting tomato pesto salmon and zucchini is the perfect weeknight dinner to use up an abundance of veggies!
Easy dinners that get you in and out of the kitchen FAST are the name of the game in the summertime! This sheet pan salmon ticks all those boxes.
It’s quite literally just a whole pan full of summer too! Can’t really go wrong with a mess of bursting tomatoes, tender zucchini, buttery salmon, and homemade pesto smothering the whole thing.
You guys love the easy, no-mess dinners around here and I’m 100% with ya on that one! This salmon will fit perfectly into your summer dinner rotation.
It’s the homemade arugula basil pesto that really seals the deal on this sheet pan dinner. It’s herby, peppery, and just tastes like summer.
We’re making a BIG batch of it and spreading a healthy layer on each salmon fillet and tossing the rest in the zucchini and cherry tomatoes. Big pesto flavors here today!
This Bursting Tomato Pesto Salmon features…
- Tender, juicy baked salmon
- Herby bursting cherry tomatoes
- Tender zucchini + summer squash
- Flavorful arugula basil pesto
- Only 1 sheet pan and 35 minute prep time
Making the Bursting Tomato Pesto Salmon
(scroll to the bottom of the post for the full recipe!)
Ingredients You’ll Need
- Pine nuts (almonds or walnuts also work!)
- Olive oil
- Parmesan cheese
- Cherry tomatoes
- Zucchini/summer squash
Choosing Your Salmon
You will need around 1.5 lbs of a boneless salmon fillet. You can buy a whole side of salmon and cut it into smaller fillets or you can buy it pre-cut.
We typically opt to purchase a whole side of salmon and cut it ourselves so we have more control over cutting uniform slices. It’s important all your salmon fillets are roughly the same size so they cook at the same rate!
How to Make Pesto
Pesto made at home is a dinner game-changer. Yeah, it’s typically an easier thing to just pull out a jar of pesto, but TRUST ME when I say that homemade pesto is worth the extra little bit of effort!
You will need either a blender or food processor to make the pesto.
Combine baby arugula, basil, pine nuts, garlic, and Parmesan in blender or food processor, then slowly drizzle olive oil through top while blending until pesto is smooth.
That’s it! The pesto stores well in the fridge up to around 6 days.
Tips for Perfect Bursting Tomato Pesto Salmon
- Cover salmon with layer of pesto – while it bakes, the pesto will form a bit of a crust encasing the tender fish and it is DELICIOUS!
- Bake salmon at high temperature – we will be baking the salmon at a high temp of 400F and the fish + vegetables will cook quick because of that.
- Temp check salmon – I recommend temping the salmon with a kitchen thermometer around the 10 minute mark. The ideal temperature for a perfect medium-rare salmon is 125F. If you find that your salmon has already reached this temp and your veggies aren’t done yet, remove the salmon from the sheet pan and continue baking the veggies an extra few minutes.
- Top salmon with additional basil – this adds an extra little herby pop of flavor!
Make Ahead Instructions
- Make pesto and store in refrigerator up to 6 days.
- Slice zucchini/summer squash and store in refrigerator up to 2 days.
- When ready to bake, assemble sheet pan and bake as recipe directs.
What to Serve with Salmon
We love serving this salmon alongside crispy roast potatoes (watch for a new potato recipe later this week!) or light buttered noodles.
If you want to keep dinner on the light side, this salmon is definitely hearty enough to stand on it’s own!
It’s the homemade pesto that really seals the deal on this salmon, y’all! The salmon is impossibly tender and just bursting with herby pesto flavors.
Pair that alongside sweet bursting tomatoes and tender zucchini and it’s impossible to not be obsessed.
This is just going to be one of those go-to weeknight dinners you find yourself turning to on busy summer nights! Summer sheet pan meals for the win.
More incredibly easy sheet pan recipes!!
- Sweet Corn Summer Squash Breakfast Hash
- Honey Mustard Chicken Thighs
- Lemon Dill Salmon with Baby Bok Choy
Sheet Pan Bursting Tomato Pesto Salmon with Zucchini
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- 1 cup firmly-packed baby arugula
- 1/2 cup firmly-packed basil leaves
- 1/3 cup pine nuts (or almonds or walnuts)
- 2 medium cloves garlic, peeled
- 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
- 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
Salmon + Zucchini
- 4 salmon fillets (about 1-1/2 lbs) skin removed
- Salt and pepper
- 1 pt cherry tomatoes
- 1 medium zucchini, cut into 1/4-in thick slices
- 1 medium summer squash, cut into 1/4-in thick slices
- Additional fresh basil for serving
- In a food processor or blender, combine arugula, basil, pine nuts, garlic, Parmesan, and salt + pepper to taste. Process pesto on medium speed while drizzling olive oil through top until pesto is smooth, scraping down sides as necessary. Store pesto in fridge until ready to use.
Salmon + Zucchini
- Preheat oven to 400F. Line a large sheet pan with parchment paper OR spray well with pan spray.
- Arrange salmon in a single layer on 1/3 of pan, followed by cherry tomatoes on 1/3 of pan, and zucchini/summer squash on remaining 1/3 of pan.
- Season salmon and vegetables with salt and pepper. Spread a bit of pesto over each salmon fillet, then toss remaining pesto into cherry tomatoes and zucchini. Season sheet pan with additional salt and pepper.
- Roast salmon and vegetables at 400F 10-15 minutes until salmon reaches your desired doneness (125-130F for medium-rare) and vegetables are tender.
- To serve salmon, arrange salmon fillets, zucchini, and bursting tomatoes in serving bowls and top with additional basil. Serve hot and enjoy!