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Quick & Easy Salmon Pâté with Hot Smoked Salmon [Keto]

Salmon Pâté with Hot Smoked Salmon is a perfect make-ahead appetizer or snack for all your dinner parties – especially served with a side of butter fried bread… Just be ready to share the recipe with your friends they will ask for it!

salmon pâté with hot smoked salmon in a bowl topped with lemon slices
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Quick & easy – you know that’s always a winner in my book. And that’s one of the reasons I love using things like hot smoked salmon – half the job is already done for you! Another reason? It’s so filled with flavor – smoky, salty & the perfect consistency for almost melting into sauces and dips.

Now this hot smoked salmon pâté is one of my favorite dinner party starters – one you can serve as your guests are arriving and mingling around, or as a “real” appetizer while sitting down at the table. This year, I’m even including it as part of my Christmas Smörgåsbord – and I know it will be the first dish to finish.

Looking for some more quick, easy, snackable starters to go with this? Check out these bacon wrapped dates, feta stuffed dates or make it a salmon feast with a rum-spiked smoked salmon tartare.

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Why this recipe works

  • It uses a classic favorite flavor combo – lemon, red onion, salmon and créme fraîche is a classic combo, and for good reason! These flavors go so well together, and while the créme fraîche makes the dip rich and creamy, the lemon ensures it doesn’t get too heavy.
  • Lemon zest gives the dip a distinct lemon taste, and while the lemon juice adds a bit of acidity you get loads of lemon flavor without too much acidity.
  • The hot smoked salmon falls apart and almost melts in with the créme fraîche, for a cohesive dip.
  • It’s super quick & easy to make – so you can whip it up just 15 minutes before your guests arrive, refrigerate and then serve just as they arrive…
  • or make it the day before – the flavor only gets better with storing.

How to make Salmon Pâté with Hot Smoked Salmon

Start by prepping: chop your red onion and hot smoked salmon, zest your lemon and then squeeze it. And then we’re ready to get started!

collage showing step 1 to 4 of making hot smoked salmon pâté

Now bring out a bowl that will hold all your ingredients – and for less dishes, make it the one you want to serve your dip in. Add in the hot smoked salmon, red onion, lemon zest and black pepper.

Follow with lemon juice and mix. Then add the créme fraîche and mix well.

collage showing step 9 of making hot smoked salmon pâté

And when your salmon pâté looks like this – all pink and creamy and cohesive – taste test, adjust as needed (but don’t add any salt yet!) and place in the fridge for 15 minutes. Bring out just before serving, taste test and add salt if needed. Enjoy!

top down view of finished hot smoked salmon pâté

Expert tips

  1. Hold the salt! Hot smoked salmon is inherently salty, and while you might want to add some salt anyway (I always do) – wait until just before serving. Otherwise you might end up with a dip that’s far too salty after sitting for awhile.
  2. Taste test, taste test, taste test – and make it your own. Our palates are all different and you might want to add more or less red onion, lemon juice, lemon zest, pepper or salt. Just taste test as you go, and adjust to your liking. Just remember tip #1 – and hold the salt until just before serving.
  3. Refrigerate longer if you can – the flavor will just get better if it stays in the fridge for a day or so.

Great tools for making Salmon Pâté

The links in the collage below are Amazon affiliate links. If you buy something through one of them, I receive a small commission (at no extra cost to you).

Frequently asked questions

How do I make salmon pâté dairy free?

It’s easy to make this salmon pâté dairy free – just use dairy free créme fraîche and that’s it.

Is salmon pâté healthy?

I consider salmon pâté a healthy choice – unless you serve it with butter fried bread that is. It is pretty low in calories (105 kcal for one serving as a starter), low in carbs and high in fat and protein – and with lots of good fat from the salmon. This makes it a great keto dish – just be careful what you serve with it.

How long will salmon pâté last?

Salmon pâté will last for 5-7 days in the fridge.

Can you have salmon pâté when pregnant?

Recommendations can vary, but it is generally not recommended that pregnant women have smoked fish. Therefore, this salmon pâté would also be off limits.

Can I use cold smoked salmon instead?

Yes, you can absolutely use cold smoked salmon instead. It will not fall apart as much, but it will still be a delicious dip.

a piece of bread being dipped in hot smoked salmon pâté

How to serve salmon pate

This salmon pâté makes such a great and versatile dinner party dish! Serve as finger food before people sit down to eat, make canapés, or serve as a real sit-down appetizer.

Either way, this salmon pâté is great as a dip or spread for butter fried bread. If you don’t want to go through the trouble of frying the bread, then serve it with plain baguette, crostini, crackers or even vegetable sticks – cucumber, bell peppers and carrots go great with it. Leave it as a dip or spread for your guests, or serve it already spread on top of your companion of choice.

a piece of bread that has been dipped in hot smoked salmon pâté

When will you try this hot smoked salmon pâté? Thanksgiving, Christmas, or just your next dinner party? Let me know in the comments below! And while you’re there – I would LOVE for you to leave a rating and let me know how I’m doing.

All the love!

Emmeline

salmon pâté with hot smoked salmon in a bowl topped with lemon slices

Salmon Pâté with Hot Smoked Salmon

5 from 7 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Appetizer, Starter
Cuisine: European, Northern European, Swedish
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Resting time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 4 starters
Calories: 105kcal

Ingredients

  • 140 g hot smoked salmon chopped
  • 0.5 red onion finely chopped
  • 1 lemon zested
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice fresh squeezed
  • 1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 dl créme fraîche
  • salt according to taste
  • lemon slices optional, for decoration

Instructions

  • Mix your hot smoked salmon, red onion, lemon zest, lemon juice and fresh ground black pepper in a bowl.
  • Add in the créme fraiche and mix well. Taste test and adjust seasoning if you like, but do not add any salt at this point.
  • Place in the fridge for at least 15 minutes.
  • Just before serving, bring out the salmon pâté from the fridge and taste test. Add salt and more of any of the other seasonings if needed, then serve.

Notes

Expert tips

  1. Hold the salt! Hot smoked salmon is inherently salty, and while you might want to add some salt anyway (I always do) – wait until just ebfore serving. Otherwise you might end up with a dip that’s far too salty after sitting for awhile.
  2. Taste test, taste test, taste test – and make it your own. Our palates are all different and you might want to add more or less red onion, lemon juice, lemon zest, pepper or salt. Just taste test as you go, and adjust to your liking. Just remember tip #1 – and hold the salt until just before serving.
  3. Refrigerate longer if you can – the flavor will just get better if it stays in the fridge for a day or so.

How do I make salmon pâté dairy free?

It’s easy to make this salmon pâté dairy free – just use dairy free créme fraîche and that’s it.

How long will salmon pate last?

Salmon pâté will last for 5-7 days in the fridge.

Can I use cold smoked salmon instead?

Yes, you can absolutely use cold smoked salmon instead. It will not fall apart as much, but it will still be a delicious dip.
Nutrition Facts
Salmon Pâté with Hot Smoked Salmon
Amount Per Serving
Calories 105 Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value*
Fat 7g11%
Saturated Fat 3g19%
Cholesterol 21mg7%
Sodium 296mg13%
Potassium 154mg4%
Carbohydrates 5g2%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 7g14%
Vitamin A 186IU4%
Vitamin C 18mg22%
Calcium 42mg4%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Nutritional information is approximate and automatically calculated, and should only be viewed as an indication.

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