Can You Freeze Smoked Salmon? 5 Simple Steps

Can you freeze smoked salmon? Yes, and it takes minutes to wrap it up and pop it into the freezer. We’ll show you how to get the job done in 5 simple steps.


Freeze-Ability Index
Freezability Index of Five

Best Stored In…
Airtight container OR freezer bag, wrapped in plastic wrap & tinfoil

How to Thaw
Fridge

What to Expect
No change

Can I Re-Freeze?
Not recommended


Can Smoked Salmon Be frozen?

Yes, smoked salmon can be frozen. It freezes well, and its taste and texture won’t change after thawing if you wrap it well. Poorly-wrapped smoked salmon may become freezer burned, which can affect the fish’s taste and texture.

You can put an unopened package of smoked salmon directly into the freezer. This is technically the fastest, easiest method.

Now, we’ll show you what to do if you opened the package of smoked salmon and have leftovers that you want to save for later. You smoked salmon should be frozen within 3 days of opening its package.

How to freeze smoked salmon
Don’t fret if you opened a package of smoked salmon and you didn’t use most of it. It’s easy to freeze and thaw.

How To Freeze Smoked Salmon In 5 Simple Steps

This how-to guide will show you how to freeze smoked salmon in 5 easy steps using either an airtight container OR a freezer bag.
Prep Time 10 mins
Total Time 10 mins

Equipment

  • Freezer-safe cling wrap
  • Tinfoil or aluminum foil
  • A resealable, plastic freezer bag OR an airtight, freezer-safe container
  • Freezer labels
  • A permanent marker
  • Space in the back of your freezer

Instructions
 

  • Layer 2 to 3 slices of smoked salmon on the plastic wrap and wrap it up tightly, but keep it flat.
  • Wrap the smoked salmon in another layer of plastic wrap.
  • Place the package of plastic-wrapped smoked salmon onto a sheet of tinfoil and wrap it up.
  • Slide the smoked salmon wrapped in plastic wrap and tinfoil into a freezer bag, or place it in a freezer-friendly, airtight container. Fill the bag or container with as many wrapped smoked salmon “packages” as you can fit in.
  • Write today’s date on a freezer label and stick it to the freezer bag or the container. Store the smoked salmon at the back of the freezer.
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The Best Airtight Containers (Glasslock)

• Over 3,700 Reviews
• 4.5 out of 5 Stars

These airtight glass containers from Glasslock don’t leak or absorb food smells, they’re oven-safe, freezer-safe, microwavable, and affordable.


Freezing Smoked Salmon – FAQ

Here are a few questions about freezing different types of smoked salmon or smoked salmon recipes that we get asked often:

Can You Freeze Cooked Smoked Salmon?

Yes. As you would with fresh smoked salmon, wrap 2 – 3 pieces of smoked salmon tightly in cling wrap and then in tinfoil. Place these smoked salmon “packages” into a freezer bag or airtight, freezer-friendly container, and store them deep within your freezer for up to 6 months.

Can You Freeze Fresh Smoked Salmon?

Yes. As you would with cooked smoked salmon, tightly wrap a few pieces of smoked salmon in cling wrap and tinfoil. Once you’ve wrapped a few smoked salmon “packages” like this, pop them into a freezer bag or airtight, freezer-friendly container. Store deep in your freezer for up to 6 months.

Can You Freeze Smoked Salmon Mousse?

Yes. Just allow the mousse or pâté to cool, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, pop it into a freezer bag, remove all the air and store it deep in your freezer. You can freeze smoked salmon mousse for up to 3 months.

Best Practices for Freezing Smoked Salmon

  • If you have a large piece of smoked salmon, slice it thinly before you freeze it.
  • Smoked salmon should be frozen within 3 days of opening its package.

How Long Can You Freeze smoked salmon?

Smoked salmon can be frozen for up to 6 months. For better results, try to defrost and eat the smoked salmon within 3 months.

How Do You Thaw Frozen smoked salmon?

There are 2 ways to safely thaw frozen smoked salmon: in the refrigerator (the easiest, slowest, and safest way) or in cold water (a slightly faster way.)

Do not do thisHow NOT to Defrost Smoked Salmon

  • Don’t allow frozen smoked salmon to thaw on the counter. You’ll risk bacterial contamination and bacteria can multiply fast at room temperature.
  • Don’t defrost smoked salmon in the microwave.
How do you thaw smoked salmon?
If you’re thawing an unopened package of smoked salmon in the fridge, pierce the package first to prevent botulism. The likelihood of becoming sick is pretty rare, but you shouldn’t take any chances.
Fridge

How To Defrost Smoked Salmon In The Fridge

Important: if you're defrosting sealed smoked salmon in its original packaging, pierce the package before you put it on a plate and into the fridge to defrost. This stops bacteria from forming, which could lead to botulism.
Defrost Time 1 d
Total Time 1 d

Equipment

  • A plate

Instructions
 

  • Take the wrapped or sealed packages of smoked salmon out of the freezer.
  • Place the wrapped smoked salmon on a plate in the fridge. Don't unwrap it. Let it defrost overnight.
  • Take the smoked salmon out of the fridge, unwrap it, place it on a plate, and serve.
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Defrosting in cold water

How to Thaw Frozen Smoked Salmon in Cold Water

If you're short on time, you can defrost frozen smoked salmon safely in cold water.
Prep Time 5 mins
Defrost Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 5 mins

Equipment

  • A large bowl OR a clean sink
  • A resealable plastic bag

Instructions
 

  • Take as many wrapped or sealed packages of smoked salmon as you need out of the freezer. Place the wrapped packages into another resealable, plastic bag.
  • Fill your sink with cold water (not warm). Put the bag(s) in the water.
  • Set a timer for 30 minutes.
  • When the timer ends, check the wrapped smoked salmon to see how thawed it is. Replace the water with fresh, cold water if needed and re-set the timer for 30 minutes. Repeat this step as often as needed until the salmon feels soft.
  • When it's completely thawed, unwrap smoked salmon, place it on a plate, and serve.
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Equipment Shopping list

I made this quick list for you in case you noticed that you were low on freezer bags, labels, or you feel like picking yourself up a little present.

I’ve either used these tools or added them to my own shopping list because they’re affordable and they get great reviews. Add them to your next Amazon order!


The Best Extra Heavy Duty Aluminum Foil (Reynolds Wrap)

• Over 1,000 Reviews
• 4.5 out of 5 Stars
• Superior strength, clean cutting edge

The Ultimate Freezer Bags (Hefty)

• Over 2,000 Reviews
• 4.5 out of 5 Stars
• Tough and easy to fill

The Handiest Freezer Labels (Chinco)

• Hundreds of Reviews
• 4.5 out of 5 Stars
• Water-resistant, easy to remove, no residue

The Clingiest Plastic Wrap (Freeze-Tite)

• Hundreds of Reviews
• 4.5 out of 5 Stars
• Amazon’s Choice


What to Expect After Thawing Smoked Salmon

Defrosted smoked salmon should look, smell, and taste the same after freezing, If it smells really fishy, sour, or looks colorless, throw it away.

If you keep smoked salmon in the freezer for 6 months or more, it’ll lose its flavor and texture.

Eat thawed smoked salmon within 2 to 3 days and always keep it in the fridge.

Can smoked salmon Be Refrozen?

Re-freezing smoked salmon will weaken its flavor and texture.

With this in mind, yes, you can re-freeze it since it’s kept in the fridge and freezes well. But, it’s better to take portions out of the freezer and only thaw what you need.


Do you know a better way to freeze smoked salmon? Or are you looking for info on something else? Leave a comment below or email us—we’d love to hear from you!


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