This Salmon Cream Cheese Spread Is Totally Retro and Dairy Free

Sometimes you just need a simple but elegant appetizer that comes together quickly. This Salmon Cream Cheese Spread, although retro, is just that and it has absolutely no dairy in it. So it’s perfect for those following a Paleo or Whole30 lifestyle.

What is Salmon Cream Cheese Spread?

Circa 1970’s almost every appetizer was something combined with cream cheese which was then stuffed or plopped onto something else. This recipe certainly fits that description, but retro or not, cream cheese is delicious. Combining it with other equally delicious ingredients like salmon, capers and walnuts just makes it moreso.

How is This Dairy Free?

While all of the 1970s recipes featured Philadelphia cream cheese, I created this recipe using Kite Hill brand cream cheese. This spread is so delicious and is the perfect dairy-free sub for cream cheese. It has a very similar texture to whipped cream cheese so it’s not quite as firm and needs some partners to make something like a cheesecake but for spreads it is perfect.

What Kind of Salmon Should I Use?

Canned salmon is the easiest. I happened to have Safecatch salmon pouches in my pantry so that’s what I used. If you don’t have canned salmon, you can used cooked salmon as long as it’s not grilled. Smoked salmon will work, too, it will just have a smoky flavor. (Duh, right?)

Best Ways to Serve

While I’m featuring it on here as a topping for cucumber slices, you can serve it several ways:

  • Stuff it in an avocado or tomato
  • Serve it on a bed of arugula with avocado, sprouts, tomatoes and cucumbers
  • Stuff it in potato skins
  • Spread it on a cracker or bagel (not Whole30)

How to Make Salmon Cream Cheese Spread

It’s so easy. You simply mix together all the ingredients and let them chill for 30 minutes or up to 3 days. The only caveat is to leave out the nuts and stir in just before serving. They will get very soggy if they sit for longer than a few hours then you will miss the crunch.

Dairy-Free Salmon Cream Cheese Spread

This Salmon Cream Cheese Spread is Whole30 friendly and has all the creamy, savory elements of the traditional recipe without any dairy.


  • 6 oz canned salmon (or pouch salmon)

  • 6 oz dairy free Kite Hill chive cream cheese

  • 1 tbsp prepared horseradish

  • 1 tbsp chopped capers

  • 1 tsp dill weed

  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions

  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts, optional


  • Mix all ingredients together and chill for 30 minutes or up to 3 days. If chilling for more than a few hours, reserve nuts and add just before serving.

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  1. Crystal E. on September 5, 2022 at 12:37 pm

    I am loving your blogs and recipes! I have and continue to use many of them. I love that they are so deliscious AND healthy😀. Do you have a cookbook yet? Or did I miss that?

    • Christi Flaherty on October 17, 2022 at 4:36 pm

      Thanks, Crystal. No, I don’t have a cookbook out yet. I’m planning that for the coming months. I would like to at least have a mini-book out in 2023 if not a full cookbook.

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