Whole30 Dinner: Spice Rubbed Salmon with Avocado Salsa

Right out of the gate, I knew I needed to wow my husband with something familiar and very tasty to make sure he was “sold” on our healthy eating plan. Whole30 compliant foods in my arsenal were avocados, eggs and bacon. In the first few meals I prepared, I made sure to include at least one of these items to ensure husband approval. 

This dish fulfills the criteria with the avocado factor in a creative way. In our house, guacamole is something of a religion (we are San Diego transplants, after all). However, the chunkier texture of this salsa went perfectly with the salmon and I was actually able to use some of the leftover salsa and convert to guacamole for another dish later in the week. It’s a great weeknight meal because the prep is very quick and you can use the leftovers for the following day’s lunch.

Active Time: 10 minutes | Cooking Time: 15 minutes

Difficulty: Easy

I didn’t end up using the tomatoes for this dish and I’m glad I skipped it this time.


  • 2 lbs salmon (optional, cut into 4-6 equal portions for a prettier finish on each piece)
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • Sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper, to taste (I used about 1/2 tsp of each for the salmon and the salsa)
  • 1.5 tbsp oil of choice (I used ghee)
  • 2 avocados, peeled and diced, pits reserved*
  • 1 small red onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded and finely diced (I am a huge whimp when it comes to spicy foods, so one jalapeño is plenty for me – feel free to add more to taste)
  • 2 tbsp avocado oil
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 2 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped


Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.

Prepare your spice rub by combining the cumin, paprika, onion powder, salt and pepper in a small bowl (I like to use a small ramekin). 

Lay the salmon down in a 13×9″ casserole greased with your cooking oil of choice. Before placing the salmon in the casserole, sprinkle half of your spice rub Over the bottom side of the salmon (whichever side is less pretty). Move the salmon, spice side down to your casserole and sprinkle the remainder of the spice mixture over the top. Move the casserole to the oven and bake for 12-15 minutes or until salmon is firm to the touch and s corner flakes easily with a fork. 

While the salmon bakes, prepare your avocado salsa. In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients except the avocado. Mix well. Once combined, gently fold the avocado into the mixture (this is to preserve the chunks). Store the prepared salsa in the refrigerator with the avocado pits in an airtight container until the salmon is ready to serve.

Serve the salmon topped with the avocado salsa and enjoy!



* To remove the pit of the avocado, simply cut the fruit in half vertically, rounding your knife around the pit. Gently pull the halves together and hold the half with the pit still in tact. Using your knife, carefully give the pit a gentle “karate chop” to wedge it into the pit. You should then be able to turn the avocado in your hand to loosen the pit from the fruit. Reserve it to keep your avocado from turning brown after cutting it open. 

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