How Long Should You Smoke Salmon For?


For many chefs and foodies alike, perfectly smoked salmon is considered a delicacy. Not only is this delicious fish is healthy and nutritious, it serves as a great alternative to red meat, game, pork, or poultry. There is, however, a trick to smoking the perfect salmon. It takes not only the right amount of smoking time, but also the right ingredients, process and smoking equipment.

Preparing Salmon for Smoking

  • Before a definitive smoking time can be established, first the salmon must be prepared to remove anything on its outside service that might impeded the process. The fish must also be filleted by splitting it from top to bottom vertically, leaving the skin in tact. Remove all of the bones and then cut it into equal pieces or strips that are roughly ¾ to 1 inch in depth.

Brining the Salmon

  • The salmon must be brined to ensure its natural flavor will be retained while smoking. Basic brine is made up of salt and water, with a ratio of three cups kosher salt to each gallon of bottled water. Other flavors can be introduced into the brine if desired. Make sure there is enough brine to completely cover the salmon.

Curing the Salmon

  • Lay the salmon in the brine and refrigerate for at least 5 to 8 hours and no longer than 24 hours. Proper curing cuts down on the amount of smoking time required.

Drying the Salmon

  • Take the salmon fillets out of the brine and rinse them thoroughly. Place them on a drying rack in a cool area between 30 to 40 degrees Fahrenheit for no less than 3 hours and no more than 7. The drying process helps to build a pellicle coating over the fish. It will keep moisture locked inside the salmon during smoking, making it possible to smoke the salmon for a longer period, if desired.

Smoking the Salmon

  • Choose hard wood chips like alder, cedar, hickory, mesquite and oak for smoking salmon. They give the fish a sweet, smoky flavor. Put the salmon onto a sheet of aluminum foil with small holes punched throughout. Lay that inside the smoker. Set smoking equipment at a low temperature to begin. Raise the temperature slowly at 50- to 75-degree increments over a 2-hour time frame. Check the salmon periodically to prevent overcooking. It is nearly ready when its internal temperature reaches 150 degrees Fahrenheit. Leave the temperature setting where it is and let the fish cook another 20 to 30 minutes for a maximum smoking time of six to seven hours. Once the fish is smoked you can serve it right away or keep wrap it and keep it refrigerated for up to 3 months in a vacuum-sealed bag.

Related Searches


  • Salmon University
  • Better Homes and Garden Cookbook
  • Fish Specialist at Langley AFB Commissary
Promoted By Zergnet



You May Also Like

  • How Long Can You Keep Smoked Salmon in the Fridge?

    Salmon is commonly hot smoked or cured through a brining method. Both methods preserve the fish very well and will add to...

  • How Long Does Smoked Salmon Last?

    Smoked salmon is a nice addition in egg dishes or spread over bagels and cream cheese, but storing leftovers might be confusing....

  • How to Smoke Salmon

    Smoking enhances salmon's natural flavor while adding deep smoky notes. Although the process itself is relatively simple, especially if you have an...

  • How to Smoke Salmon Fillets

    Smoked salmon is one of the great delicacies prepared from the sea, a mouthwatering combination of aromatic smoke and soft, flaky texture,...

  • How to Brine Salmon Before Smoking

    Brining is a term used for the process of lightly salting meats, fish or poultry to impart flavor and improve texture. The...

  • Smoked Salmon Instructions

    Smoking a salmon need not be complicated. Follow correct smoking temperatures during the smoking process and utilize a proper brine. If these...

Related Searches

Check It Out

13 Delicious Thanksgiving Sides That'll Make Turkey Insignificant

Is DIY in your DNA? Become part of our maker community.
Submit Your Work!