How to Store Smoked Salmon Properly

by iupilon

How Long Does Smoked Salmon Last?

Do you have to refrigerate smoked salmon?

Refrigeration is the best method of storing smoked salmon. It is also the safest because smoked salmon isn’t immortal. Smoked salmon can spoil quickly if the smoking method is inadequate. So if you are planning to try smoking salmon at home, be sure to follow the proper cooking guidelines and the safety methods for storage to avoid any foodborne illnesses.

How long is smoked salmon good for?

Smoked salmon can last for two weeks at the bottom of your refrigerator, where the temperature is lowest.

How long does smoked salmon last in the fridge?

If you aren’t planning to consume your smoked salmon immediately, we recommend that you not open it yet. Store immediately in the refrigerator and open only when you are ready to cook and consume it. If you have opened your pack of smoked salmon for partial consumption, the opened pack will last seven days at your refrigerator’s bottom area.

To ensure that your pack of smoked salmon does not spoil quickly, remember to fold the package’s edge and seal with tape if you can. The package has been partially destroyed or ripped; you can always use a large zip lock bag to store your smoked salmon. It always places it at the bottom tray, so it receives the most cooling from the refrigerator.

The ideal temperature of refrigeration of cooked and uncooked fish is at least 38°F or 3°C. Cooked fish, in general, should be consumed immediately. Any fish that has been out in the open for more than two hours should be considered suspect, as bacteria can quickly proliferate on the surface of cooked proteins. Food safety is of paramount importance if you want to consume many fish and seafood at home.

How to Store Smoked Salmon? How do you preserve smoked salmon?

There are several methods of preserving smoked salmon. If you want to store cooked smoked salmon, allow the fish to cool down for about two hours after cooking. This is the maximum as after two hours, and bacteria may already form on the cooked fish’s surface. Inversely, we do not recommend storing any cooked fish while the fish is still hot, as this can also cause spoilage. Still-hot fish is still diffusing moisture into the air, and this can easily condense in the container. A moist container is terrible news for cooked seafood and fish, always.

You can use any of the following containers for leftover-cooked fish: airtight containers with covers, aluminum foil or cling wrap. If you want to use just plastic wrap, we recommend transferring the fish to aluminum foil first, and then you can use cling wrap to make the aluminum foil leak-proof. Be sure to drain away most of the fish’s moisture to ensure that the fish will keep longer. While you can double-wrap the fish in cling wrap, there is no need for this at all.

Always label containers with cooked fish, so you will remember when they were stored. Keep in mind that the three to four days is plenty of time for cooked and uncooked fish. If you go a week straight, be extra careful with such preserved fish as some of them may have already gone bad within that period.

When reheating cooked fish from refrigeration, you still need to check the internal temperature of the protein. The target temperature is 275°F, or 135° C. Reheat any refrigerated fish for at least fifteen minutes in the pan or the oven. It doesn’t truly matter what method of heating you use, as long as the target temperature is reached. Feel free to use an instant-read thermometer on the cooked smoked salmon.

Can I Freeze Smoked Salmon?

Smoked salmon can be frozen. Right next to refrigeration, freezing is the second-best option as it can preserve the salmon for up to three months. The downside is if you are going to consume the salmon, you will have to thaw it first.

On the brighter side, though, smoked fish tastes just as good as un-frozen fish, so this method of preservation shouldn’t impact the flavor of the salmon at all, provided that you consume it within the safety period, which is two to three months. Also, keep in mind that freezer-weight bags have to be used when storing smoked fish. 

If you want to freeze your smoked salmon, wrap the salmon in several layers of aluminum foil and create a sealed pouch for the fish. Be sure to mark each pouch of fish with the date of the freezing, so you will know which ones you will have to remove and throw away later on. This is extremely important because frozen meats and seafood often go unnoticed for months, and we don’t want you to end up eating fish that can be potentially spoiled already, even if the fish is frozen.

Also, remember to store your fish pouches horizontally, so the juices don’t leak out. They are easier to organize this way, too.

When you are about to cook your frozen fish, always remember that you need to thaw out your proteins before preparing them properly. Frozen fish does not accept salt and seasoning properly, which can also cause issues with your cooking.


Preserving smoked salmon is just like preserving any seafood. You need to be aware of how temperatures affect the hardiness of both cooked and uncooked fish. It’s also essential for homemakers to know how long they can keep cooked at room temperature, as bacteria can quickly increase. With the right combination of techniques, you will never have to deal with spoiled fish at home. For long term storage, freezing appears to be the best option as smoked salmon can last for up to three months when adequately frozen.

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