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Smoked Salmon Appetizer Recipe

Smoked Salmon Appetizer Recipe

An easy-to-assemble appetizer that is wonderful served both at evening cocktail parties, or for mid-day feasts. You can make the dressing in advance to save time the day of your event.


  • 1 cup crème fraîche or sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons whole grain mustard
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Thin pumpernickel bread slices, for serving
  • Smoked salmon, thinly sliced
  • Salmon caviar, optional


To make the dressing, whisk all ingredients together. To assemble, slather dressing on toasted pumpernickel bread thins, top with sliced smoked salmon, and garnish with salmon caviar, if desired.

5 Smoked Appetizers You Need to Make for the Big Game

If you’re hosting for the big game or going to a tailgate party, you’re gonna need some tasty food there. These 5 smoked appetizers are some of the most popular recipes on

Elegant Healthy Smoked Salmon Appetizer Ingredients:

Smoked Salmon: The smoked salmon is the star here so buy the best one you can afford and like the taste of. If you need help picking out a good one, ask the person who works at the fish counter in your store. I like wild-caught, but there are newer ways of sustainable fish farming and those can be a good option.

Smoked salmon is made by—you guessed it—smoking the salmon to preserve it. Smoking is a preservation technique that’s been used for centuries. The fish is placed above a smoker, so the smoke permeates the entire fish without actually cooking it, which kills pathogens and preserves the fish. Different types of wood chips are added to the smoker to produce different flavors. How healthy smoking is—the preservation technique, not the cigarettes—is debated in the health community. On one hand, it’s been used for centuries in healthy world populations. On the other, some think the smoke is unhealthy. I’m split, but since smoked salmon is pricey, it’s usually only consumed occasionally anyways. Salt preservation techniques are often used in conjunction with smoking, so smoked salmon will have high amounts of salt. Salmon has a lot of health benefits, including high amounts of protein and omega-3 fats, but since smoked salmon has an excessive amount of sodium, use it an occasional treat and not an every day health food. Like everything, read the ingredients and get the best you can afford.

Cucumber: A thin slice of cucumber makes an excellent base here. It needs to be thick enough that someone can pick it up, but not so thick that it’s the only thing people taste. Slice your cucumber into about 1/4-inch slices. English cucumbers have thin green skins and work really well here.

Yogurt: Creme fraiche—France’s favorite form of cream—is often used with smoked salmon because it’s tang and texture pair really nicely with the strong salmon flavor. However, creme fraiche can be really pricey and not available in all stores. Plain unsweetened yogurt is healthier and better priced. If you want to splurge on creme fraiche for a holiday, do it. If not, use Greek or Iceland-style yogurt like I used here. If you allow your yogurt to sit in a coffee filter over a jar for an hour or two, you can remove even more of the liquid from it and it will pipe through a piping bag to look pretty on your plate. A little lemon zest adds delightful flavor to the yogurt. To make this dish completely dairy-free, you can use a vegan cream cheese instead. Whatever you use, just use a small dab—about 1/4 of a teaspoon—on each appetizer. It’s meant to be a compliment, not a main flavor. You can use a small spoon if you don’t have a piping bag, but the piping bag with a star tip makes a for a really pretty appetizer.

Fresh dill: It’s possible that God made fresh dill to go with salmon. They’re perfect together. And yes, use fresh dill. It tastes much better and has a distinct flavor over dried. Fresh dill is also loaded with antioxidants so use as much as you like. Use leftovers to add wonderful flavor to your mixed green salads.

Capers: Capers are berries that have been pickled, and they’re used to add tang and a salty zip to dishes. It’s really used for decoration here, so if you don’t have any on hand or can’t find them you can skip it. But use them if you can—it makes the dish more interesting.

Recipe Summary

  • 3 tablespoons sliced green onions
  • 1 ½ teaspoons finely shredded lemon peel
  • 4 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • 4 teaspoons capers
  • 1 ½ teaspoons anchovy paste (optional)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 4 ounce piece smoked salmon, cut 1/2 to 1 inch thick
  • Pitted Nicoise olives or olive medley, cut up (about 24 olives)
  • Coarsely chopped roasted red sweet peppers
  • 6 hard-cooked eggs, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • Crackers or toasted pita wedges

In a small serving bowl stir together green onion, lemon peel, lemon juice, olive oil, capers, anchovy paste, garlic, and ground pepper.

To assemble, place salmon on a serving plate. Surround with small bowls of olives, roasted red pepper, egg slices, and caper mixture. Serve with crackers and/or toasted pita wedges.

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This recipe was created by chef Todd Ginsberg of Atlanta restaurant The General Muir. Applesauce is a classic topping for potato pancakes, but all sorts of flavors pair wonderfully with fried potatoes, including this creative topping of smoked salmon with herbed sour cream. This simple but elegant recipe would be right at home at a Hanukkah gathering but it would also work for a cocktail party or a special breakfast or brunch. Ginsberg uses fresh chives, tarragon, and parsley that have been pureed in a blender in his sour cream sauce. To preserve the bright color and flavor of the herbs, he blanches them in boiling water with a bit of baking soda and salt for a few minutes, then immediately transfers the herbs to an ice bath to shock them. Our Test Kitchen raved about the dish, saying, “The herbed sour cream is light, refreshing, balanced, and the perfect accompaniment to the crispy latkes and salty smoked fish.” Ginsberg prefers frying latkes in clarified butter, but this recipe will work just as well with canola or vegetable oil. If you're cooking latkes for a crowd, you might get overwhelmed making them to order. This recipe is easy to make in advance. Simply cook the latkes up to 4 hours ahead of time, and don't refrigerate. A half hour before serving, crisp up the latkes on the griddle and then transfer them to a baking sheet with a thin layer of clarified butter on the bottom. Place them in a 400˚F oven for 3 to 5 minutes. Serve immediately.

Ok so with this one we are moving very far away from traditional Irish recipes, however, Irish smoked salmon works exceptionally well with pasta so if you have it in your kitchen, I highly recommend you give this recipe a shot!

There are several ways to make pasta and smoked salmon and many involve cream. However, I prefer the version that does without, as I feel it gives more justice to the flavor of this delicious fish.

Simply sautee finely chopped onion, smoked salmon shredded into small pieces and cherry tomatoes cut in half into a large pan and use this as a sauce for your pasta. Super easy to make, quick and delicious: sprinkle with fresh parsley for an extra touch!

Great Ways To Serve Salmon Finger Food With Delicious Spreads

If you are looking for new salmon appetizer ideas to serve at your upcoming event, you will love this salmon appetizer recipe. Slicing up a smoked fillet and putting on a cracker is a no brainer, but you can transform this boring idea into a fabulous treat for the senses with a unique spread. Serving a salmon cracker appetizer doesn’t have to be boring when you use our easy to prepare salmon spread or salmon mousse recipe.

Making a salmon spread appetizer at home is really easy. All you need is smoked salmon, cream cheese, and your favorite herbs. The easy to follow recipe is below:

What you need:

  • 8 ounces of softened cream cheese
  • 6 ounces of chopped smoked salmon
  • 1/4 cup of capers
  • 2 tablespoons of chopped green onion
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of chopped fresh dill
  • 1/4 cup of heavy whipping cream
  • A dash of Worcestershire sauce
  • Fresh lemon juice from ½ of a lemon

You can whip the cream cheese by hand to soften it completely, or you can use a food processor. Once the cream cheese is whipped, add all of your ingredients and incorporate well. If using a food processor, make sure not to over mix or your salmon bits will turn to mush. You can use the spread on top of crackers, fresh vegetables, or even on sliced cucumbers.

Creating a salmon mousse appetizer is also a quick and simple affair. Follow the recipe below and wow your guests with a mouth-watering delight.

What you need:

  • 1 lb of boneless salmon (cooked)
  • 8 ounces of puréed tomato
  • 1/2 cup of fresh diced celery
  • 3 Tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
  • ¾ of cup cold water
  • 4 teaspoons of unflavored and unsweetened gelatin
  • 1/2 cup of fresh diced green pepper
  • 1/2 cup of fresh plain yogurt
  • 8 oz package of softened cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup of fresh finely chopped onion
  • 3 Tablespoons of chopped fresh dill
  • 1/2 cup of mayonnaise

To prepare, add your salmon, celery, onion, green pepper, mayonnaise, dill, yogurt, and lemon juice. Mix it together well until there are no lumps and everything is incorporated. Set aside and let’s make the sauce for smoked salmon appetizer.

Take a saucepan, and melt the cream cheese over a medium flame. Add in your tomato puree and stir until the mixture has a thick, soup-like consistency. For a bit of a kick, you can add a dash of Tabasco sauce or chili flakes. Once it is creamy, remove from the flame and add the salmon mixture. Stir well and set aside.

To make the gelatin, add cold water and gelatin into a pot and stir until the granules are dispersed. Place the pot over a low flame and keep stirring until all of the gelatin is dissolved. Add to the salmon mix and incorporate completely. Pour the mix into serving bowls and then place inside of the refrigerator for at least six hours. Once it is firm, you are ready to serve smoked salmon appetizer to your friends and family!

30 Delicious Smoked Salmon Recipes

You can use it in casseroles, salads, sandwiches, brunch dishes – you name it, smoked salmon is a great ingredient to incorporate into your cooking.

We all know that salmon is packed with heart-healthy Omega-3 fatty acids and we should be getting more of it in our diets. Below are 30 fantastic recipes, created by expert food bloggers, that will help you create more dishes with smoked salmon. Enjoy!

If you make a recipe below, we’d love to hear your impressions and results in the comments section below this post!

Smoked Salmon, Mushrooms & Egg Breakfast

This smoked salmon, mushroom and egg dish is a great way to incorporate more healthy Omega-3 fatty acids into your diet. With mushrooms and poached eggs, this dish is umami goodness on a plate!

Smoked Salmon Quiche with Leeks and Cottage Cheese

This Smoked Salmon Quiche with Leeks and Cottage Cheese is the perfect dish for brunch, to take to work in your lunchbox or to enjoy as a light dinner.

Smoked Salmon Pasta

This simple Smoked Salmon Pasta salad makes a great make-ahead lunch, or it is perfect for a summer picnic or pot luck.

Smoked Salmon Salad

This Smoked Salmon Salad features flavorful smoked salmon, tender baby spinach, crisp apples, chewy raisins and toasted almonds all tossed in lemon vinaigrette. So easy to make and amazingly delicious!

Smoked Salmon Pate

This homemade smoked salmon pate is made with double cream, lemon juice, salt and pepper. It couldn’t get any easier to make. Just pop the ingredients in a blender and enjoy the results.

Everything Bagel Smoked Salmon Quiche

Quiche is a great way to use smoked salmon, but this recipe elevates it with cream cheese, and everything bagel seasoning, baked in a flaky crust. It’s a perfect twist for breakfast!

Swedish Smörgåstårta Sandwich Cake

This Swedish Sandwich Cake makes a wonderful appetizer for your next party! This recipe is so easy to make as it uses a loaf of bread and just a few fillings.

Eggs Royale: Smoked Salmon Eggs Benedict

This Eggs Royale is a seafood twist on the classic Eggs Benedict. It’s made with smoked salmon, poached eggs, and a creamy yogurt sauce, and is a lighter take on the breakfast classic!

Cottage Cheese, Kale & Smoked Salmon Frittata

This herb-packed cottage cheese, kale and smoked salmon frittata is low in calories, but full of flavour. Serve cold for breakfast or with a light salad for lunch.

Smoked Salmon, Spinach and Egg White Wraps

These 10-minute smoked salmon, spinach and egg white wraps make the perfect quick, easy and healthy meal! Packed full of protein and healthy fats, they’re super filling, and also paleo, gluten-free and keto-friendly.

Pineapple Salsa with Smoked Salmon

This quick and easy pineapple salsa recipe takes little effort to make, and the addition of the smoked salmon makes it a real treat for the taste buds.

Pasta with Smoked Salmon

This creamy pasta with smoked salmon is impressive, as well as delicious, and the best part is that it requires minimal ingredients and takes only 20 minutes to throw together.

Smoked Salmon and Cream Cheese Dip

A recipe that always shines at a party is the smoked salmon cream cheese dip. It’s always a hit, and it’s so simple to make. This easy recipe should be on your party quick list.

Smoked Salmon Croissant Strata

For brunch, try this smoked salmon croissant strata that adds a bit of elegance and excitement to the breakfast table. This dish combines smoked salmon, cream cheese, capers and dill with croissants into a delightful baked dish.

Smoked Salmon Caprese Salad

This is a super simple, fresh salad that can be served at parties, or even as a meal. It includes vibrant tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and smoked salmon as a special twist on the classic.

Smoked Salmon Pasta Carbonara

A healthy and simple smoked salmon pasta carbonara recipe, made with just five simple ingredients and ready in 10 minutes. It’s creamy (without any cream), luxurious and packed full of flavor.

Smoked Salmon Sandwich with Avocado

Smoked salmon sandwich makes for the perfect epic lunch sandwich. Packed full of veggies such as arugula, alfalfa, avocado and cucumber this one of the best sandwiches of all time. Gluten-Free & Dairy Free.

Smoked Salmon Sushi Bowl

Sushi bowl with smoked salmon, avocado, cucumbers, edamame and rice makes for the perfect Japanese themed meal that is ready in under 30 minutes. All the flavors of a sushi roll but none of the fuss. Gluten Free and Dairy Free too.

Smoked Salmon & Asparagus Fried Rice

Smoked salmon and asparagus add a fancy touch to fried rice in this 20 minute meal. It’s a great way to use up leftover rice and it really delivers on flavor.

Smoked Salmon Cheesecake

You’ve probably never thought to put smoked salmon in a cheesecake before. But this creative, savory recipe will change your mind. This savory cheesecake is flavored with smoked salmon, Gruyere cheese, and dill.

Smoked Salmon Cheese Ball

Up your cheese ball game with this Smoked Salmon Cream Cheese Ball! This unique cheese ball will be the star of your party.

Smoked Salmon Pastry Cups

These Smoked Salmon Pastry Cups with mascarpone & fresh dill may look fancy, but they are a breeze to throw together and perfect for any gathering. [See the Recipe]

Smoked Salmon & Summer Vegetable Risotto

This smoked salmon and summer vegetable risotto is made with cauliflower rice making it perfect for a light summer lunch.

Smoked Salmon Appetizer with Goat Cheese and Avocado

This easy smoked salmon appetizer combines delicious smoked salmon, creamy goat cheese and avocado. Made in under 15 minutes!

Smoked Salmon Deviled Eggs

These smoked salmon deviled eggs looks so luxurious and delicious, and they’re so easy to make that they belong on every party menu. Everyone loves a good deviled egg and the smoked salmon in these make them irresistible.

Chive & Tarragon Smoked Salmon Sandwich

No more boring lunches with this creamy Chive and Tarragon Smoked Salmon Sandwich on a multigrain and seeded bread with fresh veggies.

Smoked Salmon Okonomiyaki

Smoked Salmon Okonomiyaki is a Japanese cabbage pancake with smoked salmon, drizzled with Japanese mayonnaise and okonomi or ‘brown’ sauce.

Smoked Salmon & Lobster Bisque

This smoked salmon and lobster tail bisque is as delicious as impressive looking. Best of all, it comes together in only 30 minutes. It’s a perfect starter course for New Year’s Eve, a dinner date or any special occasions.

Smoked Salmon Rice Salad with Lime Dressing

Smoked Salmon Rice Salad With Lime Dressing is a twist on the classic pairing of smoked salmon, capers, and red onion. A flavourful, chilled salad, with a tart, tangy dressing, it would make a fabulous side dish for summer barbeques or potlucks any time of year.

Smoked Salmon Tart with Herbed Quinoa Pastry

This smoked salmon tart with herbed quinoa pastry, cream cheese and capers is a classic combination of flavours sure to please everyone. Serve warm from the oven with a fresh side salad for a sensational lunch, or enjoy it for a picnic on a warm sunny day.

Smoked Salmon Mousse

This delicious smoked salmon mousse is so quick to prepare. Just a few minutes in the blender and its done. Its wonderful served as a canapé, or as a dip. Its even delicious simply spread on a cracker for a snack!

Now that you’ve got dozens of fantastic smoked salmon appetizer ideas, it’s time to get cooking! Serving these appetizers at a party or gathering will surely win you praise. Tried one of these appetizers?

We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments section.

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(Note: This is a collection of recipes from other fantastic food bloggers. All photography was provided courtesy of the recipe owner.)

Laura is a home cook who loves making new recipes and finding new favorite things to eat, whether at home or abroad. She also runs a popular travel blog and spends a lot of her time traveling for food.

You only need 5 ingredients for this easy smoked salmon appetizer!

Ingredient notes

  • Smoked salmon. I used Kvaroy Arctic’s sustainably-raised cold smoked salmon, but you may use your favorite!
  • Cream cheese. I used full fat cream cheese, but you may lighten up this recipe by using low fat or non fat, or substitute part of the cream cheese with Greek yogurt.
  • Cucumber. If you’re not a fan of cucumber, use your favorite crackers or bread as the base.
  • Dill. I highly recommend using fresh dill as it really makes the flavors in the cream cheese shine. You may substitute the dill with fresh parsley or your favorite herbs.

Making the smoked salmon and dill appetizer

The baguette that I used was an Italian 5 grain bread that Publix makes. First, you slice this pretty thin and toast it. Do it like you are in Italy, put olive oil on the bread and toast it in a skillet and you have got a crostini. Simple. Next comes the cream cheese.

I’ve seen similar appetizers where they mix up different ingredients in the cream cheese spread, but I keep it real simple. Just spread some plain old softened cream cheese on the crostini.

Believe me, there are enough flavors running through these couple of mouthfuls to keep your taste buds entertained. You really don’t need any more.

After that, lay on a sprig of fresh dill and place a few capers on the cheese. Fold up a slice of smoked salmon and push it into the cheese. Add a few more capers here and there…take pictures!…then eat.

The nice crunch of the toasted baguette compliments the softness of the cream cheese and moist salmon. The bit of saltiness from the capers and flavor of the fresh dill makes this a great appetizer.

This is really great for any occasion.

Hey. Did you make this recipe? Let me know if you liked it in the comment section below. Also, drop a photo on your Instagram and hashtag #joeshealthymeals. I love seeing what you guys are making.

If you are big into different appetizers, you may like to try these too:

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