Cooking the catch - how to hot smoke fish

For many, one of the most rewarding parts of fishing is getting to enjoy the fruits of their labour – some freshly cooked fish at the end of a long day!

Hot smoking your catch is easy to do with the right equipment and has delicious results, makes very little mess and is healthy. You can choose to cook your catch anywhere, but where is more perfect than the river bank or a scenic spot close to where you caught your fish.

Preparing your catch

Keep your fish cool until you are ready to cook, and visit our guide to gutting fish which makes light of this task.

Setting up your smoking oven

To hot smoke, you will of course need smoking wood chips or dust. When choosing your smoke chips or dust, it really comes down to personal preference as different kinds of chips/dust result in different flavours. However, never use soft wood chips as this gives your fish a resin-like taste – meaning that all your hard work has been in vain!

Tip: Using lots of smoke dust does not enhance the taste or quicken the cooking process, use the recommended amount (1-1.5 tablespoons of dust for a small smoker).

For the best results, you should light your smoking oven ahead of time and gradually increase the temperature. Depending on your catch it should be around 160-200°C.

Smoked fish recipes

The possibilities really are endless when it comes to smoking fish, depending on your own preferences, tastes and, of course, your catch! However, if you are stumped for ideas, here is one of ArdMoor’s favourites, which is easy and requires few ingredients – perfect for the great outdoors:

Hot Oak Smoked Salmon


(For 4 salmon fillets)

50g of fine sea salt
2 tablespoons of brown sugar
1 tablespoon of oak shavings or dust


  1. Mix the salt and sugar and spread evenly over the salmon fillets.
  2. Add the oak shavings or dust to the base of your smoker, arrange the salmon on the smokers wire rack and set the smoker to a medium heat.
  3. Put on the lid of your smoker, once you see wisps of smoke appear reduce the temperature and continue to smoke your salmon for twenty minutes.
  4. Turn off the heat, after a few minutes remove the lid and check that your salmon is smoked through.
  5. Enjoy!

For any further enquiries, please do not hesitate to get in touch!

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