Cedar-Planked Salmon Sliders

A fully dressed salmon slider.

These Cedar Plank Salmon Sliders grilled with Kingsford® Original Charcoal are a great game-day or tailgating alternative to the standard and they’re much healthier than most cookout fare. This cedar plank salmon recipe has a spicy BBQ sauce and quick pickled onions and cucumbers for a fresh, delicious and satisfying bite!

This post has been sponsored by Kingsford®. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

kettle grill and charcoal bag for the barbecued seafood.

Cedar Plank Salmon Sliders For Game Day Entertaining

Last weekend, friends came to the house for a game day cookout. It was one of those half-in/half-out kind of parties… You know where people migrate from the living room to the patio, back to the kitchen… a constant in and out. Of course, whenever you fire up the big kettle grill with Kingsford® Original Charcoal, it attracts a crowd. When serving more than the average tailgating fare, it ups the “WOW” factor even more. The fish for my cedar plank salmon sliders was provided by ButcherBox for a truly epic pairing of trusted brands.

Must Haves For Cooking Salmon On A BBQ

  • Charcoal Grill
  • Kingsford® Charcoal
  • Chimney Fire Starter
  • Wood Planks (or chips)
  • Grilling Tongs
  • Grilling Mitts or Gloves
coals before lighting and when they're burning embers. Kingsford charcoal has ridges for the best tailgate food.

Want The Best Tailgate Food? Use The Best Coals

Consider the coals. Kingsford® charcoal has more edges and surface area to catch the flames quickly and the grooves provide air channels for fast heating and even burning. Just look at those embers. It’s perfect for backyard parties or tailgates, infusing an authentic smoky, wood-fired flavor into everything from beef, chicken and pork to barbecued seafood and vegetables.

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Butcher Box salmon filets for salmon sliders. Great barbecued seafood.

Salmon Filets From Butcher Box

I have to be honest, this cedar plank salmon recipe, is less of a recipe and more of a leisurely way to entertain your friends and family for a few hours, especially when the protein is delivered right to your door, like these salmon slider filets from Butcher Box.

as the charcoal really emits smoke from the chimney. The charcoal makes the best tailgate food.

Some might think that the game is the main focus, but my experience tells me that it’s really the grill… There’s something about the methodical building of fire and cooking over an open flame that speaks to all of our primal lizard brains and Kingsford® charcoal makes it effortless. 

Ingredients For Cedar Plank Salmon Recipe

  • Skin-On Salmon Fillets – I like the skin-on because the skin will stick to the plank, and it’s easy to scoop just the fish fillet onto the bun.
  • Spicy Guava BBQ Sauce (or your favorite)
  • Pink Pickled Onions is a super easy (and quick) recipe.
  • Quick Pickled Cucumbers – You can make them a few hours ahead, or use your favorite pickle chips.
  • Slider Rolls – from the bakery or use King’s Hawaiian

Ingredients For Cedar Plank Salmon Recipe

using cedar planks for smoking the fish and brushing the cedar plank salmon recipe with BBQ sauce.

How To Cook Cedar Plank Salmon Sliders

  1. Soak the wood plank.
  2. Light the charcoal using a chimney fire starter.
  3. When charcoals are hot and white, arrange the embers in the center of the grill.
  4. Place the grilling grate over the coals and add the soaked plank to preheat.
  5. When the plank starts to smoke, place the fish on the plank.
  6. Cover with the lid.
  7. Cook until not quite done, and brush with BBQ sauce. Cover again with a lid.
  8. Transfer fish to a heat-proof tray and serve.
serving barbecued seafood as the best tailgate food (or homegating).

How Long To Grill Salmon On A Cedar Plank

I wish I could say “cook for exactly 3 minutes per side”, but I can’t. It will depend on the thickness of your salmon filets, how hot your grill is, not to mention how you like your salmon cooked… we prefer just barely “done”,  but some of my friends like it cooked longer.

On average, 1/2” to 3/4” salmon filets (cut into slider portions) should take between 6 and 10 minutes. (We cooked ours for around 8).

spicy guava bbq sauce is the perfect accompaniment to cedar plank salmon recipes.

What To Garnish Barbecued Seafood With

For the best tailgate food, instead of plain lettuce and tomato, I like to amp up the flavors with a little spice, a little tang, and a bit of sweet.

Spicy Guava BBQ Sauce is easy to make in advance and it’s got a tongue-tingling tropical flavor. Layered with spices, this sauce enhances the delicate flavor of the smoked fish without overpowering.

pink pickled onions and pickled cucumbers are delicious add ons for the best tailgate food.

Pink Pickled Onions are super easy to make with just 5 ingredients (one of them being water) and they can be made ahead of time. The pickling tames the fire of these onions while adding a nice tartness that will pucker your mouth.

Quick Pickled Cucumbers are based on the same recipe as the onions, but I slice the English cucumbers VERY thinly, so you can pile on a bunch of these lightly brined beauties. (Be warned, people LIKE these ALOT. You might need a second batch.

overhead shot of the best tailgate food and overreaching party. Hannah loves the cedar plank salmon recipes.

Best Tailgate Food

These Cedar Plank Salmon Sliders were gone in an instant and whether you’re gathering for a game-day watch party at home or want the best tailgate food at the stadium, this recipe fits the bill because most of the prep is done in advance. Our friends, loved the smoked flavor of the fish and the BBQ sauce and pickled veg. We rounded out our game day barbecue with cold drinks, chips, coleslaw, fresh fruit and cookies for dessert. But I’ve got more suggestions below.

cedar plank salmon sliders on a plate with extra pickles. This is delicious barbecued seafood.

What To Serve With Cedar Plank Salmon Sliders

More Barbecued Seafood Recipes:

Check Out 107 Recipe Ideas For Labor Day (or any other grill-fest).


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5 from 21 votes

Cedar Plank Salmon Sliders Recipe

Lightly smoked salmon on slider rolls with pickled onions and cucumbers, with homemade guava infused barbecue sauce!
Author: Lisa Lotts
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword grilled salmon, sandwich, sliders
Dietary Restrictions Dairy-Free
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Servings 8


  • Chimney Charcoal Starter
  • Several Sheets of Newspaper
  • Kingsford® Original Charcoal
  • 2 Cedar Planks
  • Charcoal mitts or gloves (for protection)





  • Soak the cedar planks in water for at least one hour before starting. The wood will naturally want to float, so weigh them down with something heavy in order to keep them submerged. (I filled the sink with water, added the planks and then filled a saucepan with water and set it on top of the wood. Keep them soaking until you’re ready to start smoking.


  • Make sure the grill is in an open area away from brush or anything flammable and on a stable surface, like a concrete patio.
  • Remove the top grate from the grill and set aside. Crumble up the newspaper into loose bunches and insert into the bottom portion of the charcoal starter. Fill the top of the chimney with Kingsford® Original Charcoal Briquets. Light the newspaper with a fire starter or matches. The newspaper will burn and start to ignite the briquets. Let the coals burn until the embers are white and the fire is hot.
  • Wearing the charcoal mitts or gloves, carefully tip the fiery embers into the grill and spread them in an even layer.


  • Replace the top grate over the embers and add the soaked cedar plank. Cover with the lid, making sure the vents are slightly open. 


  • While the plank is heating, prepare the salmon. Depending on the size of your buns, you’ll want to cut the filets into pieces that roughly match. For me that meant halving the salmon. If you’re using a whole filet, just cut it into 2-3 inch diameter pieces.


  • When the cedar plank is emitting a good smoke, add the salmon filets to the plank (skin side down) and cover tightly with the lid.
  • Smoke the salmon on the cedar plank for about 7 minutes. Brush the salmon filets with Spicy Guava BBQ Sauce and replace the lid to smoke for an additional minute or two (depending on the thickness of the salmon and doneness you’ve achieved.
  • Wearing the barbecue mitts transfer the wood plank to a heat resistant platter or cutting board to serve.


  • Place a slider on the bun, add additional BBQ sauce and top with pink pickled onions and quick pickled cucumbers. Enjoy!


YouTube video


Calories: 347kcal | Carbohydrates: 36g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 62mg | Sodium: 408mg | Potassium: 1012mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 32g | Vitamin A: 290IU | Vitamin C: 8.7mg | Calcium: 85mg | Iron: 2.8mg

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  1. Trish Bozeman says:

    5 stars
    So cool that Butcher Box delivers protein right to your door! We are always having family gatherings at our house and I know these salmon sliders would be a huge hit. Perfect recipe for a cool, fall night on the deck with the fam.

  2. 5 stars
    Oh gosh Lisa. You KNOW I’m obsessed with salmon, I’m sure. These look incredible. I’ve always been intrigued by ButcherBox and now, even more so. I love that it’s sustainable, too. Bristol Bay salmon is fabulous salmon. And I’ll have to tell my husband about Kingsford coal! He could use those in his smoker or charcoal grill. Good coal really does make a difference.

  3. Jenni LeBaron says:

    5 stars
    These cedar-planked salmon sliders look marvelous! I love the sound of the spicy guava bbq sauce as well. Can’t wait to devour these!