Go Back
+ servings
Bagel and lox platter (how to make lox)
Print Recipe
5 from 4 votes

How to Make Lox

Do you love lox?  Did you know it's easy to make it yourself at home?  This How to Make Lox tutorial will walk you through making your own lox, step-by-step!
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time1 d 8 hrs
Total Time1 d 8 hrs 30 mins
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Diet: Gluten Free
Servings: 8 people
Calories: 161kcal


  • 2 lbs salmon, skin on (Use commercially frozen fish. Use a fatty salmon such as Atlantic, King, or Coho)
  • ¾ cup sea salt or Kosher salt
  • 2 TB smoked salt (optional)


  • Place salmon fillets, skin side down, on a sheet of aluminum foil large enough to completely wrap around the salmon. 
  • Cover salmon with a thick layer of the sea salt. Use more salt as needed, depending on the size of your fillets.  If using smoked salt, sprinkle it evenly over over the salmon.
  • If using multiple fillets, sandwich them together, skin side out. Wrap foil around the fillets. Wrap them again with another piece of foil.
  • Set wrapped salmon on a baking sheet or any lipped container-- the juices will leak out, so you want them contained. Set the salmon and lipped container inside refrigerator. Set something heavy on top of the salmon- such as a cast iron pan or brick.
  • Leave salmon to cure for 24 hours, and then remove from foil. Rinse the salmon for several minutes to remove salt.
  • Use a fillet knife to slice salmon as thinly as possible, cutting across the top of the fish in long thin slices, removing the skin with the last cuts. 
    Your knife blade should be parallel to the grain of the fish, not perpendicular.  If your fish is falling apart as you cut-- you're probably cutting it from the wrong direction. 
    If you're cutting a whole side of salmon- you should be cutting head-to-tail instead of side-to-side. 
    If you don't have a fillet knife, dice the salmon instead.
  • Place salmon slices in a covered dish, and put back in the fridge for at least eight hours to allow the salty flavor to balance out.
  • Salmon will keep in the fridge for about 2 weeks.



Yields About 2 lbs Lox, and 8 4oz servings.
Recipe Variations: If you want to try making Gravlax, pour 2oz gin or vodka over the salmon before adding the salt.  Optionally, add ¼ cup sugar to the salt mixture.  Top salmon liberally with herbs, grated horseradish, or juniper berries.
Note: Keep in mind that store-bought lox is typically cut by a machine.  Your homemade lox will likely be slightly less perfect than store-bought, but it will still be delicious!  


Calories: 161kcal | Protein: 22g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 62mg | Potassium: 555mg | Vitamin A: 45IU | Calcium: 20mg | Iron: 1mg