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Smoked salmon pasta

Smoked Salmon Pasta

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4.7 from 7 reviews

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings 1x


This smoked salmon pasta is easy and irresistibly tasty, pairing the smoky fish with a creamy sauce, lemon and fresh dill.


  • 12 ounces penne (or other short-cut pasta like rigatoni, farfalle, etc.)
  • 1/2 cup cream cheese (1/2 8-ounce block)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 6 to 8 ounces smoked salmon*, flaked into pieces with a fork
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill


  1. Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta until it is al dente, testing a few minutes before the package instructions indicate. Using a glass liquid measuring cup, reserve 1 cup of the hot pasta water, then drain the pasta.
  2. Return the pasta to the pot. Add the cream cheese (broken into dollops), olive oil, grated Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, onion powder, kosher salt and a few grinds black pepper. Pour in 1/2 cup of the pasta water and toss until a creamy sauce forms; adding a splash of additional water as necessary to come to a creamy consistency.
  3. Add the smoked salmon (flaked into pieces with a fork), lemon zest, and fresh dill. Gently mix, adding another splash of pasta water so that it’s creamy. Serve immediately. (Leftovers store up to 3 days refrigerated, but you’ll notice the texture becomes drier. You can reheat the pasta with a splash of water on the stovetop, and revive the flavors with a pinch or two of salt.)


*Use either cold-smoked salmon (aka lox, with a soft texture) or hot-smoked (which is flaky and more like cooked fish).

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Pasta