A Spicy Perspective

How to Smoke Trout

How to Smoke Trout – This easy recipe features tips for making the perfect brine and a deliciously tangy, creamy smoked trout dip from scratch.

smoked trout recipe

The Best Smoked Trout Recipe

Smoky, salty brined trout is so delicious and healthy as a snack or main dish. But, the good stuff is also fairly expensive… Luckily, you can buy wild-caught trout and easily smoke it yourself!

Homemade Smoked Trout is fabulous to enjoy on its own or served with flavorful accoutrements. It’s also perfect for using to make a rich, creamy, and bright Smoked Trout Dip from scratch!

Smoking trout at home is super easy. However, you do need to brine it first. Although this does take a bit of time (1+ hour), with one bite you’ll taste exactly why every minute was well worth the wait. Give this recipe a try and I promise you will never miss the store bought stuff!

smoked trout fillets

Ingredients You Need

This basic brined trout recipe requires just 5 simple ingredients. To brine fresh trout for smoking you need:

  • Trout filets – wild-caught if available
  • Salt
  • Light brown sugar
  • Water
  • Cracked black pepper

For the homemade Smoked Trout Dip you need:

  • Prepared trout filets – cooled to room temperature
  • Cream cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Spicy whole grain mustard
  • Capers
  • Fresh dill
  • Onion powder
brined fish

How to Brine and Smoke Trout

Follow these 3 simple steps to brine and smoke perfectly flaky, tender and flavorful trout at home:

  1. Prep. Set out a 9X13 inch baking dish and a large measuring pitcher. Measure the salt and brown sugar in the pitcher. Then pour in 4 cups warm water. Stir to dissolve. 
  2. Brine. Pour the brine over the trout fillets. Add additional water, if needed,  to make sure they are completely covered. Cover the dish with plastic and refrigerate for 1-4 hours. When ready to smoke, drain off the brine.
  3. Smoke. Heat a smoker to 180 degrees F. Place the trout fillets on the grates and sprinkle with cracked black pepper. Close the lid and smoke for approximately 90 minutes, until the thickest parts of the fillets are firm to the touch.

Serve warm filets right away, or allow to cool to room temperature before storing. Place the smoked fish in a sealed container and keep in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.

To freeze, wrap the individual filets in plastic wrap before placing together in an airtight container. Store in the freezer for up to one year.

How to Make Smoked Trout Dip

First, brine and smoke the trout as instructed above and in the recipe below. Then peel the skin off 4 of the fillets, use a fork to break the fish into small pieces, and place in a mixing bowl. Then mix in the softened cream cheese, sour cream, mustard, capers, dill, and onion powder. Stir well to completely combine and make sure the trout is in small chunks.

Serve the homemade Smoke Trout Dip with crackers or fresh cut veggies, or enjoy on bagels or toast.

Keep the dip stored in a sealed container in the fridge and use within 5 days. Because of the cream cheese and sour cream, I do not recommend that you freeze.

Get the Complete (Printable) Recipe for How to Smoke Trout Below. Enjoy!

recipe for smoked trout dip

Classic Accoutrement for Smoked Trout

Smoky, flaky pieces of homemade Smoked Trout are wonderful when topped with salty capers, thin slices of sweet red onion, and/or more fresh chopped dill.

Additional Serving Suggestions

Delicious, salty brined and smoked fish is fabulous on this Smoked Trout Salad, with bagels and cream cheese, on eggs Benedict, and on sandwiches with homemade Tartar Sauce.

Let me know in the comments your favorite way to enjoy this incredibly flavorful fish dish!

trout with tartar sauce

Looking for More Delicious Fish Recipes?

How to Smoke Trout (Smoked Trout Recipe, Brine & Dip)

Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
How to Smoke Trout – This easy recipe features tips for making the perfect brine and a deliciously tangy, creamy smoked trout dip.
Servings: 8 filets

Ingredients

For the Smoked Trout –

For the Smoked Trout Dip –

Instructions

For Brining and Smoking the Trout:

  • Set out a 9X13 inch baking dish and a large measuring pitcher. Measure the salt and brown sugar in the pitcher. Then pour in 4 cups warm water. Stir to dissolve.
  • Pour the brine over the trout fillets. Add additional water, if needed, to make sure they are completely covered. Cover the dish with plastic and refrigerate for 1-4 hours. When ready to smoke, drain off the brine.
  • Heat a smoker to 180 degrees F. Place the trout fillets on the grates and sprinkle with cracked black pepper. Close the lid and smoke for approximately 90 minutes, until the thickest parts of the fillets are firm to the touch. Serve warm or cold.

For Smoked Trout Dip:

  • Brine and smoke the trout as instructed above. Then peel the skin off 4 fillets. Break the smoked trout into small pieces and place in a mixing bowl. Mix in the cream cheese, sour cream, mustard, capers, dill, and onion powder. Serve with crackers or fresh cut veggies.

Notes

Serve warm filets right away, or allow to cool to room temperature before storing. Place the smoked fish in a sealed container and keep in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.
To freeze, wrap the individual filets in plastic wrap before placing together in an airtight container. Store in the freezer for up to one year.
Keep the dip stored in a sealed container in the fridge and use within 5 days. Because of the cream cheese and sour cream, I do not recommend that you freeze.
Classic Smoked Trout Accoutrement: shaved red onion, dill, capers, tartar sauce.

Nutrition

Serving: 1fillet, Calories: 304kcal, Carbohydrates: 13g, Protein: 35g, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 99mg, Sodium: 7172mg, Potassium: 633mg, Sugar: 13g, Vitamin A: 97IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 92mg, Iron: 3mg
Course: Appetizer, Condiment, Dip, Snack
Cuisine: American, Swedish
Author: Sommer Collier

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2 comments on “How to Smoke Trout”

  1. So, now I have the best reason to buy a smoker. TY!

  2. Some of the best smoked trout that I have come across!