How to Spot Undercooked Salmon? Is it Okay to Eat?

Some food dishes contain raw salmon on purpose so does this mean it’s okay to eat salmon that is undercooked? In this article, we’ll explore the dangers of consuming undercooked salmon, the signs your salmon is undercooked and how to ensure your salmon is cooked properly.

Is Undercooked Salmon Safe?

The short answer is no. Undercooked salmon can contain harmful bacteria, parasites, and viruses that can cause food poisoning. Eating undercooked salmon can lead to symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever. In severe cases, it can also lead to more serious illnesses such as salmon poisoning disease, listeria, and salmonella. Undercooked salmon is more dangerous than raw salmon as warm temperatures that are not hot enough to kill bacteria actually help bacteria grow. If the uncooked areas of the salmon have never reached 145°F instead of being killed the bacteria will have multiplied in the heat.

Telltale Signs of Undercooked Salmon

Undercooked salmon can pose a risk to your health and well-being, as it may contain harmful bacteria, parasites, and viruses that can cause food poisoning. To help you identify undercooked salmon, here are several key signs to look out for:

  1. Raw Appearance: The flesh of undercooked salmon might appear translucent and raw, rather than opaque and fully cooked.
  2. Soft Texture: Undercooked salmon will have a softer texture than fully cooked salmon. It will not flake easily and will have a more mushy consistency.
  3. Raw Flavor: The taste of undercooked salmon will be raw and uncooked, with a distinct fishy flavor that may be unpleasant to some.
  4. Cooked Edges: If only the edges of the salmon appear to be fully cooked while the center is still raw, this is a clear sign that the salmon has not been cooked thoroughly.
  5. Cold Centers: Touching the center of the salmon with a thermometer will reveal if it is undercooked. If the thermometer does not register 145°F, the salmon should be cooked further.

How to Cook Your Salmon to Ensure it is Fully Cooked?

There are several methods for cooking salmon that can ensure that it is fully cooked and safe to eat. Some of the most popular methods include grilling, baking, pan-frying, and steaming.

Grilling salmon is a quick and simple method that results in a delicious, crispy crust. It is important to brush the salmon with oil before grilling to prevent it from sticking and to monitor the internal temperature of the salmon to ensure it reaches 145°F.

Baking salmon in the oven is another popular method that can result in a perfectly cooked fillet. It is important to line the baking dish with parchment paper or aluminum foil to prevent the salmon from sticking and to season it with herbs, spices, and lemon for extra flavor.

Pan-frying salmon is another quick and easy method that can result in a crispy crust and moist, flaky flesh. It is important to use a non-stick pan and to monitor the internal temperature of the salmon to ensure it reaches 145°F.

Steaming salmon is a healthy method that results in a delicate, flaky texture. It is important to use a steamer basket or to wrap the salmon in aluminum foil and steam it in a pan with a small amount of water.


In conclusion, undercooked salmon can be harmful to your health and should be avoided. By taking the steps outlined in this article, you can ensure that you are consuming salmon safely and avoiding any health risks. If you have any concerns about the safety of your salmon, it is always best to err on the side of caution and cook it thoroughly.