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Smoked salmon slices

Smoked Salmon with Brine Recipe

  • Author: Sarah
  • Total Time: 8 hours, 10 minutes


This brine recipe is easy to make and uses ingredients you likely have on hand. It creates the perfect balance of sweet and spicy and takes under 10 minutes of prep time. Use this brine with any size salmon filet and any variety of salmon, such as sockeye or king salmon. You’ll have the perfect smoked fish for your next gathering!


Units Scale
  • 1 1/2 pound salmon fillet, skin-on
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 cups low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 2/3 cup white wine
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp hot sauce
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice


  1. Add all ingredients (aside from the fish) to a large bowl and whisk to combine thoroughly.
  2. Pour a small amount of the brine into a 9 X 13 pan, enough to coat the bottom of the pan.
  3. Lay the salmon in the pan skin side down and pour the rest of the brine solution over the salmon, ensuring the fish is fully submerged.
  4. Refrigerate for 4-8 hours, uncovered. Leaving the fish uncovered ensures that a seal, called a pellicle, forms on the fish to lock in moisture and help the fish smoke.
  5. Prepare your smoker according to the manufacturer’s instructions and smoke at 225°F until the internal temperature reaches 145°F, which takes 3 to 4 hours.
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Brine Time: 4 hours
  • Cook Time: 4 hours


  • Serving Size: 3 ounces
  • Calories: 159kcal
  • Sugar: 3g
  • Sodium: 1067mg
  • Fat: 6g
  • Saturated Fat: 1g
  • Carbohydrates: 4g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Protein: 25g
  • Cholesterol: 31mg