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Easy Smoked Salmon Dip Recipe

smoked salmon dip in a cast iron pan with bagel bites

This extremely easy smoked salmon dip recipe could also be a lox and bagel appetizer. It’s inspired by one of my favorite bagels from a local coffee shop in San Diego, and it’s a huge hit every time I make it.

There are plenty of tweaks that can be done to this recipe, and I’ll get into those later. Try this smoked salmon dip recipe as a base and then make any adjustments YOU like.

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hot smoked salmon dip in a cast iron skillet

What Makes This Smoked Salmon Dip Easy?

For years I have been making this dip by smoking a whole salmon filet, chunking it up, and then incorporating it into the dip. That’s not terribly hard, but it’s time consuming and depending on where you get your salmon, it can get expensive.

What makes this smoked salmon dip recipe so easy is using canned salmon. Using canned salmon cuts both time and cost, significantly. Generally not a fan of canned proteins, I recently discovered Safe Catch and couldn’t be more impressed.

cans of Safe Catch salmon on a cutting board

Safe Catch is the LOWEST mercury seafood on the market, and they’ve tested more than 7 million fish to date. Using their proprietary technology they test each and every tuna and salmon they sell. In short, this salmon just tastes clean. That’s the best way to describe it; clean.

Can I Make Smoked Salmon Dip Without a Smoker?

In short, absolutely. I prefer to use the smoker and the flavor from the natural wood smoke will be better; but you can 100% make this without the use of a dedicated smoker.

With the addition of smoked paprika, and a dash of liquid smoke, along with subbing smoked sea salt for kosher salt, this recipe can be made in the comfort of your kitchen, without ever firing up the grill or smoker.

What To Serve With the Dip

The sky is the limit here. I typically serve it with some grilled toast points, or some crackers. Having said that, I have recently switched that up a bit.

toasted bagel pieces for dip

Try toasting your favorite bagels (onion bagels work perfectly) and cutting them up into bite sized pieces. They make the perfect companion to this smoked salmon dip.

Fun Substitutions For The Recipe

Heat It Up: If you like a little heat, try adding some red pepper flakes to the smoked salmon dip recipe.
Double Down: If you’re eating this recipe, chances are you’re a fan of seafood. Try adding in one teaspoon of Old Bay.
Extra Smokey: I love to add a teaspoon of smoked paprika to this dip, adding another level of smokiness.
Cheesy: Depending on my mood, I will sometimes add some grated cheddar cheese to the mix. It brings a sharpness to the dip.

Tap Below For Other Amazing Appetizers

How To Make Smoked Salmon Dip

Serves: 8 | Prep time: 10 mins.| Cook time: 35 mins.

Ingredients
2 cans Safe Catch Atlantic Salmon, drained
8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup sour cream
1/4 cup red onion, finely chopped
2 tbsp capers
2 tbsp fresh dill, finely chopped
2 tbsp prepared horseradish
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp fresh black pepper

Garnish
1 tbsp fresh dill, finely chopped
1 tbsp red onion, finely chopped

Step 1: Light your grill or smoker and set up for indirect heat, establishing temperature at 375°F. Add a chunk of pecan wood to the hot coals in order to create clean smoke.

Step 2: While the grill is preheating, reserve one can of salmon and mix all other ingredients in a medium sized mixing bowl.

ingredients for smoked salmon dip being added to a bowl

Step 3: Once mixed thoroughly, gently fold in the remaining can of salmon, being careful not to break up the larger pieces.

salmon being folded into smoked salmon dip

Step 4: Transfer the cream cheese mixture into an oven safe vessel, cast iron works well as do disposable aluminum pans.

smoked salmon dip ingredients in a skillet

Step 5: Place smoked salmon dip on the grill over indirect heat. Close the grill’s lid and allow the dip to smoke for 35 minutes, or until the dip is bubbling.

salmon dip smoking on a grill

Step 6: Remove the dip from the grill, top with dill and red onions. Serve with crackers, toast points, or toasted bagel pieces.

toasted bagel scooping up smoked salmon dip
smoked salmon dip in a black skillet

Easy Smoked Salmon Dip

4.75 from 8 votes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 8

Ingredients

  • 2 cans Safe Catch Atlantic Salmon
  • 8 oz cream cheese room temperature
  • cup mayonnaise
  • cup sour cream
  • ¼ cup red onion finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp capers
  • 2 tbsp fresh dill finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp prepared horseradish drained
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp fresh cracked pepper

Garnish

  • 1 tbsp fresh dill finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp red onion finely chopped

Instructions

  • Light your grill or smoker and set up for indirect heat, establishing temperature at 375°F. Add a chunk of pecan wood to the hot coals in order to create clean smoke.
  • While the grill is preheating, reserve one can of salmon and mix all other ingredients in a medium sized mixing bowl. Once mixed thoroughly, gently fold in the remaining can of salmon, being careful not to break up the larger pieces.
  • Transfer the cream cheese mixture into an oven safe vessel, and place it on the grill over indirect heat. Close the grill's lid and allow the dip to smoke for 35 minutes, or until the dip is bubbling.
  • Remove the dip from the grill, top with dill and red onions. Serve with crackers, toast points, or toasted bagel pieces.

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