Forget bagels- Smoked Salmon English Muffins are the best! You can use lox, nova, or your favorite smoked salmon for this easy, 5-minute recipe with cream cheese, capers, onions, and tomatoes.
Whenever I make goals around healthy eating, I tend to try to eat more healthy things. Not fewer bad things. At the top of my list is to eat more fish, especially salmon.
One of my favorite, easy, fast ways to eat salmon is when it’s smoked or cured. When combined with cream cheese, briny capers, spicy red onions, and juicy tomatoes, the combination is perfection!
And best of all? It’s a 5-minute meal that’s perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Boom!
In this post, I’ll explain what kinds of smoked (or cured) salmon you can use and the difference between smoked salmon and lox, how to make these smoked salmon english muffins, and variations on the basic recipe.
Smoked salmon, lox, nova, gravlax… which one can I use?
For this recipe, you can use ANY kind of smoked or cured salmon you want. But if you want to know a little more about the differences, I’ll tell ya!
In a nutshell, there are two kinds of cured salmon: lox and nova. Lox is cured with a salt mixture, and is actually super easy to make yourself. Nova goes a step further and is cold-smoked after curing, at such a low temperature that it doesn’t actually cook the fish but just adds a woody, smoky flavor to it.
Hot smoked salmon is what you’d get if you smoke the fish in the same way you’d smoke a brisket or turkey in a smoker, and will actually look (and be) cooked through.
Cold smoked or cured salmon is not technically cooked with heat, but the curing with salt technique removes much of the bacteria that cause food-borne illness, similar to ceviche (which is how it differs from something like sushi or tartar, which is 100% raw).
There are many variations in lox and nova, which have to do with the location it’s made and the kind or part of salmon used. The one thing they have in common: they’re all DELICIOUS, and all can be used for this recipe!
So there you go! You can read more about the differences here.
How to make smoked salmon english muffins
This is one of those recipes that is borderline not a recipe at all, because it’s SO easy. It’s like making a sandwich- just pile some things on an english muffin and you’re all set!
It’s SO EASY to make this in only 5 MINUTES.
Just layer cream cheese, followed by tomatoes, with smoked salmon, red onions, and capers on top of that. DONE!
One note on the red onions: I recommend very thinly slicing them, or dicing them finely, and not using too many. If you get too much raw red onion in one bite, it will overpower. And if you really aren’t a fan of raw onion, I recommend macerating them for a couple of minutes (read more about that in this recipe for panzanella).
English muffins vs. bagels: You can use a bagel for this! Traditionally, smoked salmon or lox is served in this style on a bagel. You can find this at almost any Jewish deli.
But I actually prefer an english muffin, and here’s why: good bagels don’t usually exist in a grocery store. English muffins are readily available, and they are a bit smaller to help control the portion with a lower amount of carbs.
Caper substitutions: The capers are optional, but are absolutely delicious. If you want to substitute them, you can do so with another briny ingredient, like chopped pickles or olives. You could even add some pickled jalapeños, if you want a little spice!
Add a poached egg: Adding a poached (or scrambled, or fried) egg on top will make it more hearty. I recommend adding a poached or fried egg with a runny yolk, and eating the whole thing with a fork and knife. YUM.
Add dill or spices: Fresh dill and smoked salmon is a match made in heaven. If I had any available in my garden, I would have added it to this recipe. Throw some on there if you want a fresh, bright flavor! Everything bagel seasoning would be AMAZING sprinkled on these, too.
Other Easy Salmon Recipes:
- Smoked Salmon and Caper Cream Cheese Toast (very similar to this recipe, but smaller and wonderful as an appetizer!)
- Garlic Butter Sheet Pan Salmon and Veggies
- Chipotle Salmon Tacos with Cilantro Lime Crema
- Salmon Burgers with Lemon Caper Aioli
- Salmon, Arugula, and Feta Frittata
- Mandarin Orange Glazed Salmon
- 15-Minute Perfect Poached Salmon with Chive Butter
Finally, don’t feel limited to these smoked salmon english muffins just for breakfast or brunch! They’re a delicious, easy thing to make for dinner, too, especially with a salad on the side.
Did you make these Smoked Salmon English Muffins? Please comment below and Rate this Recipe
Smoked Salmon English Muffins
- Spread two tablespoons of cream cheese on each half of the toasted english muffin.
- Add the tomato slices and smoked salmon evenly on top of the two english muffin slices.
- Add the red onions and sprinkle evenly with the capers. Eat immediately for best results.
- This recipe is for one serving. It's easy to double or triple or quadruple it for how many people you have! If it helps, you can change the servings above to change the ingredient amounts.
- Money Saving Tip: If you don't have capers, you can use any other briny ingredient you have lying around, like chopped pickles or olives, or omit them entirely, rather than buying a whole jar. You can also make your own lox with some planning ahead.
- To make this a heartier meal, top each half of the english muffin with a poached or fried egg and eat with a fork and knife.
- Not a fan of raw onions? Try macerating them for a few minutes by mixing them with a little vinegar and salt (read more about that in this panzanella recipe).
- The provided nutrition information does not include any added sodium from seasoning to taste, any optional ingredients, and it does not take brands into account. Feel free to calculate it yourself using this calculator or by adding the recipe to Yummly.