Norwegian Salmon Gravlax with Dill Mustard Sauce

There are a few very wonderful things about my job as a food and lifestyle blogger. Not only do I get to develop amazing healthy recipes that fuel us with sustainable energy. I also get to take pretty pictures of it.

Another bonus? I get connected with food adventurers and connoisseurs around the globe. Recently I was contacted by the folks at salmon from Norway. If you have been visiting here for a while you would know that salmon is my all time favorite lean protein. When 7 pounds of the freshest Norwegian Salmon arrived at our door life became even more *blissful*

So what’s a girl to do with all of this gorgeous pink fleshed fish. Make gravlax!


Homemade gravlax recipe with Marine Harvest salmon from Norway


Well really the first thing I did was quickly sauté some for lunch. I knew it was going to take a few days for this recipe to cure & I needed to try this fish immediately. My mother in law happened to be staying with us so she got to enjoy some for lunch as well. I like to treat my house guests right…

After the lunch feast, I prepared gravlax.


Homemade gravlax recipe with Marine Harvest salmon from Norway with rice crackers


Growing up in NY we always enjoyed smoked salmon on toasted bagels with loads of cream cheese. The traditional gravlax recipe did not call for that smoky flavor. In order to achieve that I pulled out my favorite smoked paprika. This added the perfect amount of smokiness.


Homemade gravlax recipe with Marine Harvest salmon from Norway with rice crackers


Since I am not into refined white sugar I used organic sucanat instead to delicately balance the sea salt and dill in the brine.

Sucanat means “sugar cane natural.” The salmon is supposed to cure in the fridge from 3-4 days. I let ours cure for 5.

The flavor was among the best I have ever had and the texture is creamy & melts in your mouth.


Homemade gravlax recipe with Marine Harvest salmon from Norway


Admittedly, I was a bit concerned to take such beautiful filets to make a new recipe when I was unsure what the outcome was going to be. I used 2 pounds of Norwegian salmon for my experiment. Not only is homemade gravlax one of the simplest recipes to prepare but it is among the best ways to preserve the true flavors of the fish.

You need to use the freshest, center-cut, not previously frozen fish you can find. In this case my shipment was thankfully the perfect delivery to make this recipe.


Dill mustard dipping sauce for homemade gravlax recipe


I served our gravlax with gluten free rice crackers and cream cheese. Also with a side of Dijon mustard dip. The dip has a touch of sweetness that balances the fish perfectly.


Gluten free rice crackers from Trader Joe's


These days you can find gluten free crackers just about everywhere. These are some of our favorites from Trader Joe’s. They have a great snap and crunch!


Homemade gravlax recipe with Marine Harvest salmon from Norway with rice crackers


No Norwegian lunch would be complete without one of Norway’s most distinctive dishes, gravlax. The name literally means “Grave-Salmon” and refers to the medieval practice of curing the raw fish by burying it in the sand above the high tide level…

Since most of us don’t live on the beach, curing in your refrigerator is the next best option!


For Recipe Details Click Here


Gravlax Recipe Links

~ Marla Meridith

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47 thoughts on “Norwegian Salmon Gravlax with Dill Mustard Sauce

  1. mmmm…i love gravlax!! I’ve always wanted to make it but have always been intimidated by it!! This actually looks easy to try!!! thanks for sharing your recipe!! 🙂

  2. “The salmon is supposed to cure in the fridge from 3-4 days. I let ours cure for 5. ” — That’s great but did everything just reek of salmon for that nearly week?! Lol. I know when I make things like this it just stinks up the fridge and then every time you open it, it’s like a huge PUFF of scent that lingers over the kitchen. Not a bad thing if you salmon but ya know.

    Seriously though, this is the prettiest, most beautiful salmon post…ever. Marla, you should be so proud of your photography!!! And of your recipe development.

    Scott, being Jewish, would love love love for me to cure salmon at home. And while I’m at it I could churn my own butter and make cream cheese. But sigh….hasn’t happened…yet 🙂 I could inhale!! that dill mustard dip you made though. Wow.

    And those TJs crackers…why havent I tried those. Must pick up!

    1. Averie, that is an excellent question and I am sure many folks will have the same one. Here is the GREAT news…the salmon did not smell up the fridge at all. Not one bit. That said, I just added to the post that mine was wrapped tightly in plastic wrap during the curing process. It was not until I sliced into it & stored it for a few days in containers that I started to smell it. By that time it is all sealed & tucked away anyways! I even stored some portions in the freezer (I had soooo much) I hear it freezes really well. We shall see. I think Scott would agree that this is one of the most enjoyable recipes for cured salmon! Let me know if try it!
      Trust me on this…I was freaked to try doing this at home. Now I know how simple it really is & safe too. I was worried about the raw fish thing.

  3. What’s a girl to do with all that salmon you ask! I’ll tell you invite your friend over ….. Me! We love salmon!!!! Beautiful photos Marla. Looking forward to another year of family fresh cooking! Merry Christmas! You’re the bomb!

  4. Beautiful! Thanks for sharing the history of the Norwegian salmon and how to prepare gravlax. I’m a big fan of salmon.

  5. So Beautiful! We are planning on having a smoked salmon feast for Christmas Dinner and I have been debating on buying vs. curing. I have always been intimidated by the process but you really made it seem easy! Very exciting – Thanks 🙂

    1. Alyssa, you totally need to try making gravlax on your own. The flavor is even better than store bought- perhaps that has something to do with the fact that you can take pride in the process 🙂

  6. Marla – I can’t eat gravalax after an ex boyfriend ate so much of it it put me off for life – something about the dill and the smell – that said I LOVE fresh grilled salmon and smoked salmon…

    1. Lucy, that is unfortunate & I always love your honesty. Thankfully you still have a passion for salmon. If not then we would need to sit down for a long talk 😉

  7. Yay, Marla. Love this. Of course they contacted you..who else would they touch base with. By the way, these photos are beautiful. I think my favourite yet. And love the recipe.

    1. Mike…your favorite yet? Wow! Now I know I am on the right track because I am so in love with your photography. Your critical eye means a great deal to me. These photos are a bit more simple & clean compared to a lot of my other ones. Perhaps something I will focus on a bit more…

  8. I’ve wanted to try doing this for a long time but the process seemed daunting. I’m surprised to read how easy it is. One question – what if we can’t find *organic Sucanat*? Is there a substitute?

    1. Nikkie, feel free to use any sugar. Brown sugar, white sugar or even maple syrup would be great. You can stick with the 1 tablespoon quantity. Let me know how it turns out if you try 🙂

  9. Now I want some salmon really badly! 😉

    And love all the discussion of Norway. It’s a life dream to go there someday…even better…to live there!

  10. 1. I LOVE Norway. I’ve been there and eaten their fish and it is spectacular.
    2. I LOVE your recipes here and this mustard sauce! I’m a fan of making home cured salmon and will definitely make this sauce too next time.
    3. They need to bring you to Norway next since you’re so great with the snow! We want your photos from the salmon front!
    4. xox

  11. Your post is beautiful!!! I was sooo thrilled when the salmon arrived at my house! That would be so awesome if we got to travel to Norway!!!!

    1. Leslie…a trip to Norway with the pals would be more than blissful! I am so happy to hear you got this salmon too. Need to check out your post 🙂

  12. Hello there.

    Your salmon looks delicious.

    But if you ever make it again, my suggestion is that you use white pepper instead of black. You can either use them whole or just slightly crushed. The white pepper flavor goes so well with graved salmon.
    Though I must say, I have never tried black pepepr for graving, it could be interesting. I have actually never even heard of the black-pepper version.

  13. Nice article and photos!
    Marine Harvest you should send you 100 Lbs more salmon 🙂 With a turnover of 2 billion USD, I’m sure they can afford it…

    I have my own blog, with many various topics, mostly in Norwegian.
    This article about gravlax also have an English translation:
    Maybe you you find some useful tip there too.