Smoked Salmon Cream Cheese

In my family, my mom and I have always been outnumbered by men. One adult male and two growing boys meant that anytime my mom put out a platter of smoked salmon & cream cheese for a party, there would be no smoked salmon left by the time it was our turn to get some. I think their mental cue for leave some for the rest of the party was always dominated by the how much salmon can I pile on top of this bagel cue.

After many years of suffering with measly smoked salmon scraps, I finally found the solution! Take away the plate of sliced smoked salmon and put the salmon IN the cream cheese. Dudes will still want to load it onto their bagel, but I'm pretty sure you'll find some cream cheese left by the time you get to the appetizer table. There's nothing worse than spending a ton of money on smoked salmon when you never get to try it.

This cream cheese is also PACKED with flavor and perfect for a party because you can do it ahead of time. The last thing you want is the stress of fanning out salmon slices when someone shows up to your party ridiculously early. Am I right?


And we're off!

Ingredient gathering.

Cream cheese, lemon juice,onions, capers, horseradish & Greek yogurt go into a mini food processor. BLEND.

Chop up the smoked salmon. Divide it in half.

Add one half of your smoked salmon to the blended cream cheese.

BLEND until smooth & creamy.

Add the other half of the salmon to the dip and top with parsley. STIR.

Add a little lemon wedge on top and a few sprinkles of parsley. DONE.

Here's Casey's combo on an everything bagel. He doesn't like tomatoes on sandwiches.

Serve the cream cheese with crackers or bagel chips and call it a dip.

Add this to your appetizer arsenal. You won't regret it!

Smoked Salmon Cream Cheese

makes 1 1/2 cups

(recipe adapted from Everyday Food Magazine)

  • 6 oz. cream cheese
  • 2 tablespoons greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon capers, drained & rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon red onion, diced
  • 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon prepared horseradish
  • 4 oz. smoked salmon, coarsely chopped & divided
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley for garnish
  • lemon slice for garnish


In a small food processor, process cream cheese, yogurt, capers, red onion & lemon juice until well incorporated. Add 2 oz of chopped smoked salmon and continue processing until smooth. Transfer cream cheese to a serving bowl and stir in the remaining 2 oz. chopped smoked salmon. Garnish with chopped parsley and add a slice of lemon on the top.

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  • This is basically my brunch dream come true <3

  • April 18, 2012

    I could eat smoked salmon all the day long! This looks sooo good! Mmmmm, with freshly cracked black pepper on top..... I'm now in a dream like state! Thanks!!

  • April 18, 2012

    Great idea! Now I want smoked salmon and a bagel. Damnit...

  • April 18, 2012

    Looks delishhhh. What a great idea! Totally doing this for brunch soon.

  • Iraida Elena.
    April 18, 2012

    Perfect picnic idea. Yesterday I heard for the first time a podcast from TableSet (is that how's called?), and tI chose the one about picnics, even though this is the worst time to plan anything outdoors here in Merida Venezuela.... there's mad rain and it isn't officially rainy season yet! But still... lovely recipe for any sunny or rainy day!

  • I've been meaning to make up some of this and I love your recipe even more than the one I had brewing in my head! I think I even have everything to make this ... yes! ... oh and btw I'm totally pinning this to the BEST food blogger recipe Pinterest board :)

    • Tracy
      April 18, 2012

      hey! thanks much!

  • Kelsey
    April 18, 2012

    I love this plan.

  • April 18, 2012

    AND it's pink. Boo yah.

    • Tracy
      April 18, 2012

      Totes. I wonder if that might prevent dudes from piling it on thick...

      • April 18, 2012

        Oh good call ladies! In dire cases where the pink isn't enough then you can surround the dip with flowers, mini horse figures and pictures of Ryan Gosling (drool) ...glitter might also be needed (obvi not IN the deliciousness)

        • Tracy
          April 19, 2012

          omg. YES.

  • April 18, 2012

    this is brilliant! you just made my life better!

  • Jessica
    April 18, 2012

    I'm on the verge of getting up from my desk without explanation and going and getting the things I need to make this. My mouth is seriously watering for this...

  • April 18, 2012

    Um, I am dying. ABSOLUTELY DYING.

    The sexy kind.

    • Tracy
      April 18, 2012

      Sexy dying! What does that looking like?

  • April 18, 2012

    looks yum and photos are great!

    • Tracy
      April 18, 2012

      Thanks, J!! xo

  • Steffi
    April 18, 2012

    I know this is a weird question to ask...but how long do you think this will last in the fridge?? :)

    • Tracy
      April 18, 2012

      Hmm. I would say a 2-3 days. I know the salmon is smoked and all, but I feel weird about seafood not being used right away in general.

      • Jessica W
        April 18, 2012

        I'm lazy and buy it at the amazing bagel shop down the street and the sell buy date is usually about a week from when I buy it. They mix it up at the shop....but I guess I've never looked to see what is in it besides smoked salmon and cream cheese, so that could make a difference in shelf life.

        ps - so pumped about this recipe because one of these days I won't live so close to the amazing bagel shop...and that will be a sad day....but this recipe will help. :)

  • Sarah
    April 18, 2012

    This looks fantastic.

    I also like to add oven roasted tomatoes, and basil to my cream cheese. Or I roast jalapenos, cook up some bacon, and grate a little sharp cheddar to add to my cream cheese. Bagel mornings at our house are pretty exciting! It's not traditional, but it is delicious.

    • Tracy
      April 18, 2012

      wow. bacon in cream cheese.

  • April 18, 2012

    Smoked salmon is my absolute favorite food.
    This is my favorite post on the internet.
    Clear winning all around.


  • my most favorite bagel spread ever ever ever! maybe i should learn how to smoke a salmon too. heh heh... thanks for the recipe!

  • April 19, 2012

    will be doing this very soon. onion or everything bagel with this? i am now hungry. thanks.

  • Brit
    April 19, 2012

    Did you pick the winner of the juicer from the give away last week?

    • Tracy
      April 19, 2012

      yup. announcing tomorrow on my i love lists, friday!

  • April 19, 2012

    In the words of Liz Lemon - "I want to go to there"

  • Smoked salmon is destined to fit with cream cheese. I can imagine what happens when you mix them! Yum!!

  • Tempa
    April 20, 2012

    I keep coming back to this post and staring at your amazing photos. So lovely! The colors, the lighting... just. Wow!
    BTW - I am totes making this for breakfast on Sunday!
    Thx Tracy!

  • April 20, 2012

    i do love eating smoked salmon on its own, but this makes transporting to work an easier task. ;) i usually carry individual ingredients to work! what was i thinking?

    ps - great layout!

  • April 21, 2012

    Whoa! I want this in my mouth immediately.

  • April 29, 2012

    I like your moves Tracy, I like your moves. The redesign of your blog is seriously great. Good work girl!

    • Tracy
      April 30, 2012

      Thaaaaaaaaaaaaaanks Gwen!!

  • May 1, 2012

    Did I miss who won the Juicer!?? Please oh please tell me I did, and that it was me! :)

    • Tracy
      May 1, 2012

      it was announced on one of my I love lists fridays! (not you, sad face)

      • May 1, 2012

        bummer, thank you for response! :)

  • May 20, 2012

    Oh yum! I never even thought of making this by scratch! This looks great!

  • tara
    December 6, 2012

    Very delish! I threw in some dill and didn't have the yogurt so added cottage cheese instead and it worked beautifully! Thank you!

  • April 5, 2013

    Thanks for this! I recently tried smoked salmon trim because it's so much cheaper, but found out it's kind of sinewy and stringy. Yuck. So I thought about blending the remainder into cream cheese, and was looking around for proportions. I also like that you blend in Greek yogurt, and I've been buying that new Greek cream cheese.

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