Smokehouse Recipes

Original Smoked Trout Recipe

Written By: Smokehouse Products

Nearly identical to our Original Smoked Salmon Recipe this recipe is perhaps the best smoked trout recipe that works great for rainbow trout, brown trout, kokanee, steelhead, brook trout, cutthroat trout, sea run trout and all the rest of the trout species. Smokehouse Products has been using this smoked trout recipe for over 40 years since when we began making our Big Chief and Little Chief Electric Smokers back in 1968. The recipe is basic, it’s simple, and it consistently makes absolutely mouth-watering smoked trout. With just two ingredients, salt and brown sugar, (or use our premixed Smokehouse Trout and Salmon Brine Mix and just add water) it couldn’t be any easier to produce the best smoked trout recipe you’ve ever made. And with the optional step at the end, you can season a batch of smoked trout with a variety of flavors all from the same brine mix. Whether you’ve been smoking trout all your life, or it’s your first time, give this recipe a try, we’re sure you will love it! A special thanks to salmon fishing legend Herb Good for sharing this classic smoked trout recipe.


  • 10 lbs. of salmon fillet
  • 3/4 to 1 cup plain, non-iodized salt
  • 4 heaping cups of brown sugar
  • Melted honey (optional to taste)
  • Cracked pepper, Garlic Salt, or Teriyaki Sauce (optional to taste)

What else you need:

  • Big Chief or Little Chief Electric Smoker
  • One 1.75 lb. bag of Smokehouse Products Alder Wood Chips
  • 1 bowl to mix ingredients
  • 1 flat bottom glass or plastic container (or crock) with cover
  • 1 electric fan


Directions: Add salt and brown sugar to the mixing bowl and mix thoroughly. Line the flat bottom container with trout fillets or whole trout (gutted) leaving space for the brine to cover all sides of each piece. Cover the first layer generously with the salt/brown sugar mixture. Continue to add additional layers on top and cover each layer generously with the salt/brown sugar mixture. Cover the container and place it in the refrigerator for 4-5 hours. Remove from the refrigerator and mix the trout fillets around in the brine. Recover and place container back in the refrigerator for a total brine time of at least 14 hours and up to 3 days depending on when you have time to start the smoking process.

Remove the trout fillets from the brine and squeegee each fillet with your hand, removing any excess brine. Place the fillets on the Smokehouse Drying Screens, then on top of the grills in your Big Chief or Little Chief Electric Smoker. The Drying Screens will eliminate the fish sticking to the grills. Use the fan to blow dry the trout until it has a shiny dry paper looking finish. Then begin smoking the fish by adding 2-3 pans of Smokehouse Alder Wood Chips (one immediately after the other) to your Big Chief or Little Chief smoker. Each pan will last about 45 minutes in the smoker. Finish the trout by using only the heat from the smoker (no more wood).

Generally, the trout will take anywhere from 3-8 hours (varies widely based on ambient temperature, wind, size of the fish fillets and other factors). This may even require up to 20 hours in cold temperatures with thick fillets. Allow the smoker to dry the fish to your favorite level of dryness and texture, then remove. OPTIONAL: For added flavor, heat the honey in the microwave or on stovetop. Brush the honey on the trout and add cracked pepper (or other seasoning) to your taste on top of the honey. For a teriyaki flavor, add a little teriyaki sauce to the honey then brush it on the fish. Place the trout back in the smoker for 20-30 minutes more, then remove the fish when it is done to your taste. SHARE AND ENJOY!

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Created on Posted by WIll SOmerton Comment Link

I’ve used this recipe quite a few times. I love it and it turns out great every time. I made one change to the recipe though I added half a lemon " squeezed" into the brine mix. Turned out great as well.

Created on Posted by Smokehouse Products Comment Link

We would recommend sticking to Brown Sugar for this recipe.

Created on Posted by Mike Adams Comment Link

Do you think this will work substituting Sugar in the Raw for Brown Sugar

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