Smoked Trout

Trout Season is a spring ritual in the Hudson Valley. What better way to enjoy trout, than to try your hand at smoking it and preserving it for later? This recipe is great with a salad of cucumbers, but it is versatile, so you can even add it to a bagel with cream cheese or toss it with some scrambled eggs for breakfast.

Prep Time: 20-30 minutes4| Cook Time: 7 to 10 minutes | Oven Temperature: 200F degrees | Special Equipment: Spice grinder | Yield: 4 filets


  • 2 whole trout, filleted, skin on, pin bones removed
  • 2 cups applewood chips
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 2 teaspoons mustard seed
  • 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 cup salt
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup dill, chopped
  • 1/4 cup tarragon, chopped
  • 1/4 cup thyme, chopped
  • 1/2 bay leaf, chopped

Step by Step

  1. Grind the coriander, mustard seeds, pepper and fennel seeds in a spice grinder
  2. Next, combine this spice mixture with the salt and sugar in a small bowl
  3. Season the trout generously with the mixture
  4. Combine the chopped dill, tarragon, thyme and bay leaf in a small bowl
  5. Sprinkle the herbs over top of the trout
  6. Refrigerate the seasoned trout to let it “cure” for 8 hours

Farm2ChefsTable Tip: Place the trout on a non-reactive plate, such as glass or glazed ceramic.

  • After the trout has cured, rinse the filets under cold running water to remove the seasoning
  • Place the trout back on the non reactive plate and refrigerate overnight, unwrapped

Farm2ChefsTable Tip: This creates a “pellicle” on the surface of the meat so the smoke adheres better.

  • In a medium bowl, soak the applewood chips in cold water for 10 minutes
  • Adjust one oven rack as close to the heating element as possible, and move the other rack as far away from the heating element as possible

Farm2ChefsTable Tip: This is important, because one rack will hold the trout, which you want to cook at a very low temperature away. The other rack (closest to the heating element) will keep the smoke going.

  1. Preheat your oven to 200F degrees
  2. Once your wood chips are done soaking and the oven is preheated, preheat a large heavy-bottom pan on your stove over high heat
  3. Be sure to open the windows and turn on your exhaust fan because it’s going to get smoky
  4. Once the pan is preheated, add the soaked wood chips and begin to smoke them
  5. As you wait for the wood chips to start smoking, place the trout in a pan set over a pan of ice
  6. When the chips begin to smoke, move them to the rack closest to your oven’s heating element
  7. Next, move the trout (still on the pan) and ice pan to the rack furthest from the heating element
  8. Cook the trout until it is thoroughly done, about 7 to 10 minutes

Farm2ChefsTable Tip: Be sure the smoke is billowing as you cook the trout.