Smoked Cod [Easy Barbecue Fish Recipe]


Slow-cooked smoked cod over applewood for a delicious serving of grilled white fish. Find out how to smoke this delicious seafood today.

Pieces of smoked code served on a plate

Smoked cod is the best way to enjoy this classic white fish. This quick and easy smoked fish recipe is prepared with a simple dry brine before being hot smoked for under an hour. It ‘s perfect for a quick snack or camping meal on the go.

The natural flavors of the cod fillets are brought out while offering subtle layers of smoke and salt. If you have seafood skeptics in your party, this is the perfect way to change their minds.

From dry brine to fish fillets and smoking temperatures to the best woods, find out how to smoke code today.

Cod smoked white fish over hot coals in fish baskets

Buy code

Always buy fresh fish. Even when frozen, the quality of fish deteriorates faster than any other type of meat, and the difference in taste is noticeable even after a day.

This is of course a clear advantage for people who live on or near the coast, but today there are more and more new options in the markets or online delivery services.

Buying frozen can be tempting, but ice chips can rupture the fish’s cell membranes and ruin the fish’s texture upon thawing.

Dry brine

Because white fish is low in fat and high in water, dying on the grill can cause problems. However, due to their high water content, they are good at absorbing salt, so we use dry brine to strengthen the fish for the smoker.

Simply dust all sides of the cod fillets with brown sugar and kosher salt and refrigerate for an hour. 60 minutes for curing may seem like a short time, but cod’s water content means that even this significant short time can improve the flavor of the fish.

Smoking wood

Due to the delicate nature of whitefish, it’s important to use a soft fruitwood like apple or walnut and avoid heavy woods like hickory and mesquite. For me apple is the best wood for smoking cod. It’s subtle and slightly sweet, so it pairs perfectly with the cod as it slowly cooks and caramelizes.

Smoking time and temperature

Cod takes 15-30 minutes per pound of fish at a temperature of 107°C (225°F) to reach an internal temperature of 60°C (140°F).

Quick tips

  1. Cod is a smooth, lean white fish with very little fat (less than 0.5%!). It must therefore be treated gently when grilling. Cooked over mild smoke for a short time to keep the wood and embers from being overpowered.
  2. After grilling, clean the inside of your smoker or grill. Fish oil can get anywhere and spoil the flavor of your future cured meat dishes.
  3. Prevent cod from sticking to the grill by using a fish basket or by applying a very thin mayo to the fish
Pieces of smoked code served on a plate

Ideal to serve

Not sure how to get the most out of your grilled fish? Here are some ideas of what to eat with smoked cod.

  1. Fish Tacos –   Cut fillets into small pieces to make easy grilled fish tacos . Served with lime juice and pico de gallo dressing, these mini tortillas are packed with tangy flavors.
  2. Coleslaw: The tangy flavors of a fresh coleslaw pair perfectly with white fish. Pro tip: Finish your salad in the smoker for 1-2 minutes to give it a delicious barbecue flavor.
  3. Cauliflower Steaks – Prepared in a dry, smoked dressing and cooked to tender , these grilled cauliflower steaks make more than your average side dish.

Smoked cod

Slow-cooked smoked cod over applewood for a delicious grilled whitefish platter
Main course course
American cuisine , BBQ
Cooking time 40 minutes
Dry brine 1 hour
Total time 1 hour 40 minutes
Serving 4


  • Applewood chips


  • 4 code fillets

Dry brine

  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • cup kosher salt


  • Sprinkle the fish with salt and dry brine in the refrigerator for an hour.
  • Remove from the fridge and pat the fish dry with paper towels.
  • Turn your smoker on to 107°C (225°F) or set your grill for 2-zone cooking. Add wood chips to the coals.
  • Coat the cod fillets with non-stick spray or a light coating of mayonnaise. This will prevent the steaks from sticking to the smoker grates.
  • Place code on smoking racks. Cook until the internal temperature is 60°C, about 40 to 60 minutes.
  • Serve and enjoy immediately

Leave a Comment