Appetizer, Breakfast, Seafood

DIY – Lox at Home

Comments are Disabled

For many American Jews and for many Americans in general, lox is the luscious topping to their Sunday morning bagel and schmear (generous serving of cream cheese).

Lox is always made from salmon and is very expensive. In this regard, it is different from many other iconic Jewish foods, like gefilte fish and herring, which are made from ingredients that are easy to acquire and cheap.

However, it is now easy, while still not cheap, to purchase sustainable, wild-caught salmon at specialty stores, or at Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods. Though you’ll spend on the fish, you can save money by learning to cure it yourself.

The easiest way to make homemade lox is to follow the Scandinavian form of Gravlax, which is cured salmon in a salt-sugar solution. This process skips the smoking step, an unrealistic task for most home cooks.

Follow this recipe and in just a few days you can enjoy delicious lox that you made yourself. Start the fish Thursday and by lunch on Shabbat you will have the perfect showpiece for your Shabbat table — or better yet, wait one more day for the perfect Sunday brunch.

Also, it is an excellent appetizer over a Everything Cracker from Mary’s Gone Crackers, with a piece of avocado. 

Enjoy – Cheers

Making Lox at Home

Course: Breakfast, AppetizersCuisine: Jewish, SeafoodDifficulty: Easy
Prep time



The classic Jewish brunch food is more affordable -- and surprisingly easy -- when you make it at home.


  • 1 cup kosher salt

  • 1 1/2 – 2 lbs salmon filet, boneless, with the skin on

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 1/2 bunch dill, stemmed and leaves washed

  • 1/4 cup mixed color peppercorns


  • Rinse salmon filet and make sure all pin bones are removed. To do this, take small pliers or tweezers and pull the small bones out in the same direction they face. There are pin bones more often in wild salmon than in farmed salmon.
  • Cut the salmon in half, to make two equal-sized pieces.
  • Mix the salt and sugar in a bowl. On a plate or in a shallow dish, pile half of the mixture onto each half of the salmon. It will seem like there is extra mixture, but just pile it on. The salmon will absorb the mixture during the curing process. Next, place the dill on top. Sandwich the two pieces of fish together and wrap tightly with plastic wrap.
  • Place the fish into a gallon-sized Ziploc bag and push out all of the air. Now place in a shallow dish, such as a Pyrex baking dish.
  • Refrigerate, with weights on top, which is crucial. Use another heavy dish, bottles of wine–anything to weigh down the fish.
  • The lox will take 2-3 days to cure. At the end of each day, drain any liquid that has been extracted from the salmon and flip the salmon over, so that both sides are evenly weighed down. You can begin tasting it after 2 days. When it is cured to the desired taste, remove fish from plastic and rinse well.
  • To eat, slice thin on a bias, leaving the skin behind. Eat with your favorite cream cheese and bagel, and enjoy.


  • The cured lox freezes very well. Simply wrap well in plastic and place in a freezer bag to keep.
  • Next time, you can change the flavor–make it Mexican with chili powder and limes; Greek with lemon and oregano; Israeli with zaatar… the possibilities are limitless!

Comments are closed.