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Easy Smoked Salmon Dip for All Occasions

Smoked Salmon Dip is a mainstay of holiday party appetizer spreads. It’s rich and flavorful and everyone loves it!

low angle shot of smoked salmon dip with crackers and veggies

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I serve my creamy Smoked Salmon Dip with baguette slices, crackers, bagel chips, or cucumber slices as an appetizer for game day parties, dinner parties, or cocktail spreads.

Because it’s soft and spreadable, It’s also great as a smoked salmon spread for bagels at brunch.

I love to make Smoked Salmon Dip for just about any holiday—Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day, Easter, and more. It’s one of those easy recipes that are perfect for all sorts of special occasions.

I also love that it is super easy to make, so I can throw it together quickly and then get on with preparing my other dishes. You can even make it 2 or 3 days ahead if you are that organized! Just keep it in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

I love to use homemade Smoked Salmon in this easy smoked salmon dip, but you can certainly use store-bought smoked fish or even leftover cooked fresh salmon. I prefer hot smoked salmon in this dish over lox style.

Overhead shot of the ingredients needed to make smoked salmon dip

What ingredients do you need to make this Smoked Salmon Dip recipe?

This healthy smoked salmon dip is made with a short list of simple ingredients, but it is full of flavor.

  • Smoked salmon: Use homemade Smoked Salmon or a high quality smoked salmon that you’ve purchased. I like the smoked salmon from Costco.
  • Cream cheese: I prefer using whipped cream cheese it’s soft texture makes it easier to mix and spread.
  • Sour cream: This adds a nice tang and extra creaminess to the mix.
  • Lemon juice: Freshly squeezed lemon juice adds just the right hit of acid to balance the richness of the other ingredients.
  • Garlic: Minced garlic is optional, but adds some nice pungent flavor.
  • Fresh dill: A touch of green herbs really brings all of the flavors together. See below for ideas for other herbs to add or substitute.
  • Salt and Pepper

How do you make it?

This recipe is so easy! Here’s how to make it:

  1. Combine the cream cheese, sour cream, lemon juice, garlic, dill, salt and pepper in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to a chunky consistency.
  2. Transfer the cream cheese mixture to a mixing bowl and stir in the flaked salmon. Mix gently until the salmon is incorporated.
  3. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  4. That’s it! Serve this easy dip chilled with baguette slices or crackers for dipping or serve it as a spread with bagels, sliced red onion, sliced tomatoes, and capers.

Variations

This simple recipe can stand up to lots of variations. Here are a few of my favorite ideas:

  • Add a spoonful of horseradish along with the chopped salmon.
  • Try it with other fresh herbs like green onions, parsley, chervil, dill and chives.
  • Garnish with lemon slices.
  • Or add freshly grated lemon zest or a spoonful of capers.
  • If you don’t like sour cream, you can omit it and substitute full-fat plain yogurt.
  • If you don’t have smoked salmon, substitute canned salmon, cooked salmon, or even smoked trout.
low angle shot of a bowl of smoked salmon dip

What do you serve with it?

This Smoked Salmon Dip is delicious spread on bagels. Try this dip garnished with a bit of chopped dill and offer capers, sliced tomatoes, and sliced red onion for building sandwiches. Or serve it with Latkes for a special Hanukkah brunch!

This is also the best smoked salmon dip recipe to serve as an appetizer. I offer baguette slices, crostini, bagel chips, or crackers and it always disappears fast.

Low angle shot of smoked salmon dip with crackers and crudite.

More appetizers you’ll love

Round out your party spread with Instant Pot Hummus and Homemade Pita Bread, Air Fryer Jalapeno Popper Bites, Potato and Pea Samosas, Fried Wontons, Arepas con Queso, or Air Fryer Empanadas.

More seafood recipes you’ll love

If you love fish and seafood recipes like this one, I’ve got lots more where that came from! Try my Lemony Trout Spread, Sardine Salad, Miso Glazed Salmon, Fish Tacos, and Thai Fish Cakes. For seafood lovers, check out my Camarones a la Diabla, Szechuan Shrimp, White Clam Pizza, Har Gow Shrimp Dumplings, and Bang Bang Shrimp.

Yield: Makes about 3 cups

Smoked Salmon Dip

low angle shot of a bowl of smoked salmon dip with baguette slices and crackers

This smoked salmon dip is easy to make and the perfect appetizer for any holiday or special occasion.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Additional Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 8 ounces smoked salmon, flaked

Instructions

  1. Combine the cream cheese, sour cream, lemon juice, garlic, pepper, dill, and salt in a food processor and pulse to a chunky consistency.
  2. Transfer the cream cheese mixture to a mixing bowl and add the salmon. Stir to mix well.
  3. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
  4. Serve chilled with baguette slices, crackers, bagel chips, or cucumber slices for dipping or serve as a spread with bagels, sliced onions, sliced tomatoes, and capers.

Nutrition Information

Yield

12

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 127Total Fat 11gSaturated Fat 6gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 4gCholesterol 35mgSodium 470mgCarbohydrates 2gFiber 0gSugar 1gProtein 5g

Nutrient values are estimates only. Variations may occur due to product availability and manner of food preparation. Nutrition may vary based on methods of preparation, origin, freshness of ingredients, and other factors.

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By on November 5th, 2021

ABOUT ROBIN DONOVAN

Hi, I’m Robin! I am a full-time food blogger, recipe developer, and cookbook author. I spend my days cooking, writing about, and photographing food.

I’m the author of more than 50 cookbooks, including Ramen for Beginners5 Ingredient Cooking for TwoSushi at HomeThe Baking Cookbook for Teens, and the bestselling Campfire Cuisine.

My food writing has also been featured in major print and online pubications including Cooking Light, Fitness, San Jose Mercury News, San Francisco Chronicle, and others. → More about Robin

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