Smoked trout is such a delicacy and when you stuff it with lemon slices and fresh herbs, it becomes something satisfying beyond words. I especially love these fresh golden trout that I smoked up here for this recipe.

Helpful Information
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Brine Time: 2 hours
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Smoker Temp: 225°F
  • Meat Finish Temp: 145°F
  • Recommended Wood: Alder or Apple
What You'll Need
IMG 0244Please note that my rubs and barbecue sauce are now available in 2 formats– you can purchase the formulas and make them yourself OR you can buy them already made, in a bottle, ready to use.

Step 1: Brine the Trout

Make enough brine to cover the number of fish you are smoking. Brine is easy and cheap to make so I usually just make a gallon unless I know for sure that I don't need that much.

Basic Brine Recipe

  • 1 gallon of water
  • 1 cup of coarse kosher salt
  • 1 cup of brown sugar (Dark is best, light will work)
  • ¼ cup of lemon juice (2 lemons squeezed, approx.)

Add the coarse kosher salt and lemon juice to the gallon of water in a large pitcher and mix until the salt is dissolved. Add the brown sugar and mix thoroughly.

Place the trout into a lidded bowl or a zip top bag

IMG 6478

Pour enough brine over the fish to cover completely.

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Seal the bowl or bag and place it in the fridge for about 2 hours.

Once the fish are done brining, rinse them under cold water to remove any residual salt.

Step 2: Season and Stuff the Trout

Brush olive oil onto the entire inside flesh of the fish. This makes the Texas rub (Purchase formula here | Purchase bottled rub) stick to the fish really well and helps to keep the fish moist while it cooks.

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Hold the trout open and sprinkle a good hefty portion of my Texas style rub (Purchase formula here | Purchase bottled rub) into the inside of the fish.

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Stuff the inside of the fish with equal portions of the oregano and chives.

I used about 2 teaspoons of each one per fish.

Don't be stingy with it!

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Place about 3 slices of lemon into each fish

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The fish are now ready to smoke.

Step 3: Smoke the Trout

Set up your smoker or grill with indirect heat maintaining 225°F and a light flavored wood such as alder or apple.

Once the smoker is ready, place the fish directly on the oiled grate.

Note: To make sure the trout do not stick to the rack or grate, you can place each fish on a piece of parchment paper cut to the basic footprint of the fish. Usually about 3 inches wide and 10-12 inches in length will work great for “good eating size” fish.

I often use a pan/rack to make it easy to transport the fish to and from the smoker. This time I simply used a bradley rack over a foil pan as a makeshift setup and it also works just fine.

A pan also catches the fish juices to keep my smoker clean (highly recommended).

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The USDA recommends cooking the fish until it reaches an internal temperature of 145°F. I usually shoot for about 140°F or a little less at my house to end up with a much better product and since I know the fish will keep cooking for a few minutes after it's removed.

At this point the meat of the fish will flake easily and it will be perfectly done.

This will usually take about an hour.. mine took 1 hour and 5 minutes.

Use a high quality, quick instant read thermometer such as a Thermapen for things like this. Well worth the investment!

My Thermapen reads in a mere 2-3 seconds so I can take quick accurate readings without holding the door open very long and this is super important.

Thermapen Mk4 Orange

Thermapen Mk4 by ThermoWorks

Step 4: Finishing Up

Once the trout is smoked and ready, remove it from the smoker right away.

Serve the trout immediately for best results.

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Jeff’s Smoking Meat Books

smoking-meat-book-coverSmoking Meat: The Essential Guide to Real Barbecue – The book is full of recipes and contains tons of helpful information as well. Some have even said that “no smoker should be without this book”!

With more than 1000 reviews on Amazon.com and a rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars, it comes highly recommended and is a Bestseller in Barbecuing & Grilling books on Amazon.

AmazonBarnes & Noble | German Edition

smoke-wood-fire-book-coverSmoke, Wood, Fire: The Advanced Guide to Smoking Meat – Unlike the first book, this book does not focus on recipes but rather uses every square inch of every page teaching you how to smoke meat. What my first book touched on, this second book takes it into much greater detail with lots of pictures.

It also includes a complete, step-by-step tutorial for making your own smoked “streaky” bacon using a 100 year old brine recipe.

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Printable Recipe

smoked trout with herbs and lemon 575x384 1
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Smoked Trout with Lemon and Herbs

Smoked trout is such a delicacy and when you stuff it with lemon slices and fresh herbs, it becomes something satisfying beyond words. I especially love these fresh golden trout that I smoked up for this weeks newsletter.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time1 hr 5 mins
Total Time1 hr 20 mins
Servings: 4 -6

Ingredients

  • 1 trout per person ((cleaned and sliced open from head to tail))
  • Olive or vegetable oil
  • Jeff’s Texas style rub
  • Oregano ((chopped))
  • Chives ((chopped))
  • Lemons

Instructions

Step 1: Brine the Trout

  • Make enough brine to cover the number of fish you are smoking. Brine is easy and cheap to make so I usually just make a gallon unless I know for sure that I don’t need that much.
  • Make my basic brine recipe using 1 gallon of water, 1 cup of coarse kosher salt, 1 cup of brown sugar (Dark is best, light will work), ¼ cup of lemon juice (2 lemons squeezed, approx.)
  • Add the coarse kosher salt and lemon juice to the gallon of water in a large pitcher and mix until the salt is dissolved then add the brown sugar and mix thoroughly.
  • Place the trout into a lidded bowl or a zip top bag
  • Pour enough brine over the fish to cover completely.
  • Seal the bowl or bag and place it in the fridge for about 2 hours.
  • Once the fish are done brining, rinse them under cold water to remove any residual salt.

Step 2: Season and Stuff the Trout

  • Brush olive oil onto the entire inside flesh of the fish. This makes the rub stick to the fish really well and helps to keep the fish moist while it cooks.
  • Hold the trout open and sprinkle a good hefty portion of my Texas style rub into the inside of the fish.
  • Stuff the inside of the fish with equal portions of the oregano and chives.
  • Place about 3 slices of lemon into each fish
  • The fish are now ready to smoke.

Step 3: Smoke the Trout

  • Set up your smoker or grill with indirect heat maintaining 225°F and a light flavored wood such as alder or apple.
  • Once the smoker is ready, place the fish directly on the oiled grate. Note: To make sure the trout do not stick to the rack or grate, you can place each fish on a piece of parchment paper cut to the basic footprint of the fish. Usually about 3 inches wide and 10-12 inches in length will work great for “good eating size” fish.
  • Cook the fish until it reaches an internal temperature of 145°F. At this point the meat of the fish will flake easily and it will be perfectly done. This will usually take about an hour.

Step 4: Finishing Up

  • Once the trout is smoked and ready, remove it from the smoker right away.
  • Serve the trout immediately for best results.