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Brown Sugar Rub For Smoked Salmon

This Brown Sugar Rub For Smoked Salmon is the perfect rub to make for smoked salmon! Use cedar planks to add to the flavor and moist fillet as well! This is easy to make on your pellet grill or electric smoker! You can use freshly caught salmon or salmon fillets.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time2 hrs
Course: dinner
Cuisine: American, BBQ
Servings: 12 Servings
Author: Guy Who Grills


  • Cedar Planks
  • Salmon
  • 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 Tsp Paprika
  • 1/4 Cup Sugar
  • 2 Tbsp Salt
  • 1 Tbsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 Tsp Chili Powder



  • In a large bowl combine all of the rub ingredients.
  • Remove your salmon from its packaging, mine was fresh and frozen caught here in Puyallup, Wa! But if you don't have access to fresh salmon.
  • Keep the skin on the fillets.


  • Soak your cedar planks in a  pan or clean sink of water for at least one to two hours before you are ready to start smoking your salmon.
  • Why do cedar planks need to be soaked before using on the grill or smoking? You soak the planks to allow them not to burn while smoking or grilling with them.  The moisture of the wood will also help to keep the salmon moist as well. 
  • Start your smoker rolling smoke.
  • Layout your fillet's skin side down on the wet cedar board.
  • Rub down the skin as well as with the brown sugar rub and then rub over the fillet part of it.
  • I smoked my brown sugar salmon at 200 degrees for 1 hr and 250 degrees for 1 more hour. 
  • Be sure to use a meat thermometer to ensure your salmon is cooked to 145 degrees for food-safe cooking temperatures.
  • Serve and enjoy!