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This smoked salmon salad is the ideal quick dinner: no cooking involved! It’s fresh, healthy, and full of big flavor.

Smoked Salmon Salad
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Here’s a genius trick that makes a fast dinner or healthy lunch with no cooking required. That’s right, no need to grab your pan and spatula. Try this Smoked Salmon Salad! It’s healthy, fresh, and 100% cook free. Imagine: savory smoked salmon, fresh greens, fluffy goat cheese dollops and a tangy shallot vinaigrette. It’s ideal for a meal al fresco or fast lunch: and it comes together in 15 minutes flat.

Components in smoked salmon salad

Sometimes we forget about the magic of smoked salmon for making fast meals, so we’re remedying that with this recipe. Smoked salmon salad is the type of lifesaver meal you can throw together while kids are screaming or when you don’t have energy to think. Of course, you’ll need to have a few ingredients on hand:

  • Smoked salmon: Either cold smoked (lox) or hot smoked work; find it in the refrigerated section near the meat counter.
  • Fresh greens: Mixed spring greens make for color and texture contrasts.
  • Goat cheese: Chevre adds creamy, savory notes: substitute feta if desired.
  • Homemade shallot vinaigrette: This homemade dressing is easy to mix up.
  • Red onion slices: Onion or shallot add savory notes.
Smoked salmon salad

Using hot vs cold smoked salmon

You can use either cold smoked or hot smoked salmon in this salad recipe. What’s the difference? Hot smoking flavors the salmon and cooks it at the same time, whereas cold smoking imparts flavors without fully cooking it. Cold smoked salmon (lox) has a buttery, smooth texture, whereas hot smoked salmon is flaky and cooked through.

You can use either type of salmon in this salad recipe. Cold smoked has a very strong, smoky flavor and that signature buttery texture. But hot smoked salmon works great here with its flaky texture! If you have an outdoor smoker, you can make homemade hot smoked salmon to really take this fish to the next level.

Smoked salmon

Optional ingredients and variations

This smoked salmon salad is totally customizable, based on what you have on hand in your refrigerator. Use it as a “clean out the fridge” concept and add any veggies, nuts or seeds you like. A few ideas that would go well:

  • Tomatoes
  • Cucumber
  • Radishes
  • Sesame seeds or pepitas
  • Almonds, walnuts, pecans, or hazelnuts

Mix up a homemade shallot vinaigrette

The star of this smoked salmon salad, other than the salmon itself, is the dressing! This homemade vinaigrette comes together quickly and has the perfect tangy flavor. It stars shallots, small onions that have a delicate flavor. They’re one of our favorites to use in salad dressings! Here’s what to know about the dressing:

  • Whisk the olive oil in gradually to get the perfect emulsion. We like to do it about 1 tablespoon at a time. The Dijon mustard is also a key component to getting a creamy consistency.
  • Dressing stores up to 2 weeks. The dressing can solidify in the fridge because of the oil, so bring to room temperature before serving.
Shallot vinaigrette

Dressing variations for smoked salmon salad

Of course, you can use any other type of dressing you like for this smoked salmon salad. The quality greatly affects the final flavors. So if you use store-bought, make sure it’s best quality! Here are a few more delicious go-to homemade salad dressing recipes that would work well here:

More easy salmon recipes

Salmon is a weeknight dinner hero, in our book! Smoked salmon is ever better, since you don’t have to cook it! Here are a few more salmon recipes where this lean protein makes a delicious lunch, brunch or dinner:

This smoked salmon salad recipe is…

Pescatarian, dairy-free and gluten-free.

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Smoked Salmon Salad

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5 from 5 reviews

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 salads 1x


This smoked salmon salad is the ideal quick dinner: no cooking involved! It’s fresh, healthy, and full of big flavor.



For the salad

  • 10 ounces greens (2 to 3 cups per plate)
  • 8 ounces smoked salmon
  • 4 to 6 large sprigs fresh dill, torn into pieces
  • 4 ounces soft goat cheese
  • ¼ cup red onion slices
  • Sesame seeds, for the garnish

For the vinaigrette dressing

  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons finely minced shallot (1/2 medium shallot)


  1. Make the vinaigrette dressing: In a medium bowl, whisk together the white wine vinegar, Dijon mustard, honey, kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper. Whisk in the olive oil 1 tablespoon at a time until a creamy emulsion forms. Stir in the shallots. Store refrigerated and bring to room temperature before serving (keeps at least 2 weeks).
  2. Make the smoked salmon salad: Place the greens on a plate. Add pieces of smoked salmon, torn dill, goat cheese dollops, and sliced red onions. Drizzle with dressing and serve.
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: No Cook
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Gluten Free

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes for memorable kitchen moments! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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  1. Ch says:

    Made this with a few variations based on what I had.
    Cucumbers, tomatoes, red onion, basil, dill, mozzarella, and lox.
    The vinaigrette was absolutely incredible…my family raved about this light, lovely salad. It is already on a recipe card and on my computer.
    Well done!!

    1. So glad to hear that! Thank you for making :)

  2. Best Recipe List says:

    This smoked salmon salad looks like a delicious and healthy meal option! I love the combination of flavors and textures in this dish, from the crisp greens to the creamy avocado and tangy dressing. Thanks for sharing this recipe — can’t wait to try it out myself!

  3. Camila Wilson says:

    This recipe is absolutely delicious and definitely one of my new favorite dishes! Thank you for sharing this amazing recipe, I will definitely be making it again and again. Keep up the good work!

  4. Alyssa says:

    This recipe is so simple, yet so incredible! My husband and I love it!

  5. Glenn Necklen says:

    Had some leftover Salmon after the Thanksgiving holiday and searched Pinterest for a salad and there was your’s. Your description is dead on. It was easy, fresh, and super flavorful. The goat cheese made the dish. A definite winner. Thanks!

    1. Sonja Overhiser says:

      That is so kind, thank you!!! It’s one of our favorites as well. Thank you!