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Fettuccine with Salmon Dill Cream Sauce made with smoked salmon, fresh dill, lemon and heavy cream is an insanely delicious and easy to make pasta dinner.

Fettuccine with Salmon and Cream Sauce in pan with lemon and dill

Why this recipe works:

  • Well, not only does it taste absolutely heavenly, but it is super easy to make. The total cooking time from start to finish is under 20 minutes!
  • This dinner works with either store bought fettucine noodles or you can really go the extra mile and make your own homemade pasta.
  • The cold smoked salmon isn’t raw and can be eaten as is, but when warmed in the dill cream sauce it takes on the texture of cooked salmon but is still packed with that delicious smoky flavor.
  • It does not taste too fishy. Fresh salmon can sometimes taste very fishy, especially to people who don’t exactly love fish. The smoked salmon certainly tones down the fishy flavor but makes up for it with a fantastic salty and smoky taste.

Very few ingredients are needed:

In addition to the pasta, the sauce is made with cold smoked salmon, fresh dill, heavy cream, a bit of butter, diced onion, and lemon juice.

Everything is readily available at any grocery store and I have some recommendations below if you have never bought cold smoked salmon.

cold smoked salmon, fresh dill, half a lemon

How to make Pasta with Salmon Cream Sauce:

The sauce starts with some onion that is sauteed in butter.

Then, the heat is reduced and the cold smoked salmon, fresh dill, and heavy cream are added. You can use your spoon or spatula to break the salmon into smaller pieces while the flavor infuses into the cream.

The final step is to add a generous squeeze of lemon juice.

The sauce is made while the pasta is cooking, making this a super quick and easy dinner.

salmon cream sauce for pasta

Pro tips and recommendations:

  • Smoked salmon: There are lots of varieties out there with varying prices. I always make sure the smoked salmon I buy is wild caught and only use high quality ingredients that I can pronounce. It might cost more but it’s worth it.
  • Cream sauce: Readers always ask if they can substitute the heavy cream with milk or half and half. It will work as far as being edible, but the sauce won’t be the same and certainly won’t be as rich and creamy.
  • Onion: They’re not always in season or available, but if you’re able to get a sweet yellow onion like a Vidalia or Walla Walla, they work great with this dish. Any time you saute an onion in butter, it will get more sweet and mild, but a sweet onion is even better!
  • Dill – I’m vague on the amount of dill because you can add a little or a lot and it completely depends on your preference. If you aren’t sure, start with a small amount, taste the sauce, and continue to add more until it suits your liking.
  • Pasta water: Any time I make a pasta dish with a sauce, I always grab a scoop of the pasta water right before I drain the pasta. If the final sauce needs to be thinned a bit, adding a bit of pasta water will do the trick without sacrificing flavor.

serving scoop of fettucine with cream sauce an salmon

Love smoked salmon?

  • You can make your own hot smoked salmon with a fresh filet if you have a smoker.
  • Smoked Salmon Dip is a quick and easy dip made with hot smoked salmon, cream cheese, dill, bacon, and a few other goodies. Perfect as a dip or a spread on bagels!
  • Smoked Salmon Crostini uses cold smoked salmon and is an elegant yet extremely easy appetizer.
  • I always make my Salmon Patties with canned salmon, but you can make them with hot smoked salmon if you have a bunch on hand!
  • Smoked Salmon Asparagus Goat Cheese Omelet – this is an over the top flavorful breakfast that is actually super easy to make. Perfect in the Spring when asparagus is in season.

I love to hear from my readers, so please let me know if you make this recipe in the comment section below. Enjoy!

Fettuccine with Salmon Dill Cream Sauce

Prep5 minutes
Cook15 minutes
Total20 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Fettuccine with Salmon Dill Cream Sauce made with smoked salmon, fresh dill, lemon and heavy cream is an insanely delicious and easy to make pasta dinner.

Ingredients 

  • 1/2 large sweet onion like Vidalia or Walla-Walla, diced
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 large bunch of dill de-stemmed and chopped
  • 8 ounces cold smoked salmon
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1-2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 8 ounces linguini

Instructions 

  • Cook the pasta in plenty of water until it is done. Consider not adding salt to the water this time, since the salmon sauce may be on the salty side.
  • To make the salmon dill cream sauce, sauté the onion in butter over medium high heat until golden brown. Reduce heat a bit and add the dill, salmon and cream. Gently heat until the cream is infused and stir until the salmon flakes. Add the lemon juice and stir.
  • Gently toss the pasta in the warm sauce and voila! Ready to serve.

Notes

Pro tips and recommendations:

  • Smoked salmon: There are lots of varieties out there with varying prices. I always make sure the smoked salmon I buy is wild caught and only use high quality ingredients that I can pronounce. It might cost more but it's worth it.
  • Cream sauce: Readers always ask if they can substitute the heavy cream with milk or half and half. It will work as far as being edible, but the sauce won't be the same and certainly won't be as rich and creamy.
  • Onion: They're not always in season or available, but if you're able to get a sweet yellow onion like a Vidalia or Walla Walla, they work great with this dish. Any time you saute an onion in butter, it will get more sweet and mild, but a sweet onion is even better!
  • Dill - I'm vague on the amount of dill because you can add a little or a lot and it completely depends on your preference. If you aren't sure, start with a small amount, taste the sauce, and continue to add more until it suits your liking.
  • Pasta water: Any time I make a pasta dish with a sauce, I always grab a scoop of the pasta water right before I drain the pasta. If the final sauce needs to be thinned a bit, adding a bit of pasta water will do the trick without sacrificing flavor.

Nutrition

Calories: 521kcal, Carbohydrates: 47g, Protein: 19g, Fat: 28g, Saturated Fat: 16g, Cholesterol: 102mg, Sodium: 499mg, Potassium: 319mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 1030IU, Vitamin C: 4mg, Calcium: 65mg, Iron: 1.3mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Did you make this? Leave me a comment below

This post was originally published in July 2016 and has been updated with more information and cooking tips. Don’t worry – I wouldn’t dare change the recipe!

Fettuccine with Salmon Dill Cream Sauce made with smoked salmon, fresh dill, lemon and heavy cream is an insanely delicious and easy to make pasta dinner.

Hi! I’m Krissy.

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7 Comments

  1. 4 stars
    I loved this recipe! I made for 8 servings and had two portions left over for tomorrow with three of us. I substituted equal parts of full fat yogurt and milk since I didn’t have heavy cream. I also added 1 1/2 tsp of tomato paste to add a little zip and I seasoned with salt and pepper at the end to taste. It was absolutely delicious! Thanks for the great addition to a meal rotation in my home!

  2. 5 stars
    made home made fettuccine added a little Italian seasoning to the flour.
    Used smoked Salmon. When I sauted the onions I used a 1/4 cup of dry white wine and reduced it before adding the cream and other ingredence.
    Very good

  3. 5 stars
    I love how how you said this isnt too fishy tasting..thats great and it looks fabulous! Going on my ‘must make” list!

  4. 5 stars
    Wow! Such a delicious recipe! Easily has become a new family favorite dish in our home; can’t wait to enjoy this again later this week!

  5. 5 stars
    Have made this.. But I did use packaged pasta.. Plus,, white pizza sauce.. These items were purchased online.. The shrimps were 12/14 per pound… Fresh dill was gottttten from market.. Dried this in oven for about 2 hours then put through a grinder. then sprinkled throughout the prep time.. !! DO NOT ADD SALT !! You can control the salt after plating..