A smoked salmon platter makes an easy and elegant appetizer or brunch spread. Dress it up with as many or as few toppings as you’d like. Dill, capers, and something creamy (cream cheese, sour cream or crème fraîche) is classic, but let your imagination run wild! Use what you have on hand and what’s in season.

large white platter filled with smoked salmon, mini buckwheat pancakes, dill cream cheese, chives, and caper. Set on an orange table with mimosas and a bottle of sparkling wine

Ingredients you’ll need:

Make this board as simple or as involved as you like. I prefer a more simple and streamlined approach with only a handful of classic toppings. Not only is it easier on you as the cook, but it’s refined, elegant, and easier to eat.

  • Buckwheat blini, mini bagels, or crackers: blini and mini bagels are classic and make for a great brunch spread. If you’re serving this as an appetizer, opt for blini, water crackers, or bagel chips. 
  • Smoked salmon: plan for about two ounces per person as an appetizer and three ounces per person as a brunch spread. Use cold-smoked salmon or lox. 
  • Cream cheese, sour cream or crème fraîche: use whichever you like! Creme fraiche is a bit more elegant, while cream cheese and sour cream are more familiar. For a healthier option, use labneh (thick strained yogurt spread, or “yogurt cheese”).  
  • Chives, shallot or red onion: every great salmon platter needs some form of onion. Use what you like or have on hand. 
  • Capers: something briny at the very least. Capers are classic but cornichons, olives, or even pickled onions would be a great addition. 
  • Fresh dill: dill and salmon just go together. Parsley is also great, but it’s not quite the same.
small buckwheat pancakes topped with cream cheese, salmon, capers and dill on a brown plate

Optional additions:

Adapt this board to include toppings you like. Consider what’s in season and what you already have on hand.

  • Fresh fruit (berries, oranges, watermelon)
  • Lemon wedges
  • Sliced cucumbers (English or Persian)
  • Cooked bacon
  • Soft cooked eggs (jammy 6-minute eggs)
  • Minced hard boiled eggs
  • Avocado 
  • Fresh sweet corn
  • Sliced radishes
  • Butter
  • Jam
  • Honey or maple syrup

Make it a menu and serve this smoked salmon board with these stunning Ginger Blood Orange Mimosas!

Tips for making the best smoked salmon platter

  • Use a large platter so everything can be all in one place. 
  • Add something sweet whether that be fresh fruit or jam to balance out all of the savory flavors.
  • Use high-quality lox or cold-smoked salmon. Avoid any packages where the salmon has appeared to brown around the edges. Always check the best by date on the package and opt for smoked salmon with few additives and little added sugar.
  • Always add something fresh. Smoked salmon is bold in flavor and benefits from fresh veggies and herbs. 

You may also like…

If you love salmon, be sure to check out my go-to Pan Seared Salmon and these delicious Salmon Poke Bowls.

small buckwheat pancakes topped with cream cheese, salmon, capers and dill on a brown plate

If you give this Smoked Salmon Platter a try, be sure to let me know! Leave a comment with a star rating below. You can also snap a photo & tag @zestfulkitchen on Instagram. I love hearing about and seeing your ZK creations!

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large white platter filled with smoked salmon, mini buckwheat pancakes, dill cream cheese, chives, and caper. Set on an orange table with mimosas and a bottle of sparkling wine

Smoked Salmon Platter with Blini

  • Author: Lauren Grant
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 46 servings 1x
  • Category: Appetizer
  • Method: no-cook
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Gluten Free


This smoked salmon platter makes an elegant appetizer or gorgeous brunch spread. Mix and match the toppings by using what’s in season and what you have on hand. 


  • 8 ounces plain cream cheese, crème fraîche or sour cream
  • 1 heaping tablespoon chopped fresh dill, plus more for serving
  • Freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 (2–3-ounce) jar capers, drained
  • 1 recipe buckwheat blini (or bagels/crackers of choice)
  • 12 ounces cold-smoked salmon or lox
  •  ⅓ cup chopped chives

Optional add-ons

  • Fresh orange segments or berries
  • Minced shallot or red onion
  • Soft boiled eggs (6-minute eggs) or minced hard boiled eggs
  • Avocado
  • Sliced cucumber
  • Bacon
  • Salted butter
  • Jam/honey/maple syrup


Combine cream cheese, dill, and ½ teaspoon black pepper; season with additional dill and black pepper to taste. Transfer cream cheese to small serving bowl and set on larger platter. Add capers to separate small bowl and arrange on platter.

Cook blini according to recipe instructions. Arrange blini (or bagels/crackers), smoked salmon, and chives on platter around cream cheese. Garnish platter with fresh dill. (Add orange segments, if using to a small bowl and arrange on platter). 


Gluten-free: make blini with oat flour or 1:1 gluten-free flour blend. Or serve with gluten-free crackers.

Cook time listed includes blini cook time. If you opt for crackers or bagels, the cook time will be 0 minutes and this recipe will be ready in 10 minutes. 


  • Serving Size: ⅙ of the recipe
  • Calories: 495
  • Sugar: 5g
  • Sodium: 1245mg
  • Fat: 26g
  • Saturated Fat: 12g
  • Carbohydrates: 19g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Protein: 39g
  • Cholesterol: 123mg

Keywords: smoked salmon platter, smoked salmon appetizer, salmon platter, salmon recipe, salmon appetizer

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About The Author

Lauren Grant is a professional culinary food scientist, food writer, recipe developer, and food photographer. Lauren is a previous magazine editor and test kitchen developer and has had work published in major national publications including Diabetic Living Magazine, Midwest Living Magazine, Cuisine at Home Magazine, EatingWell.com, AmericasTestKitchen.com, and more.

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