Kippers: Delicious Recipes and Serving Suggestions

Are you looking for inspiration on what to do with kippers? Look no further! Kippers are a type of smoked fish that have been enjoyed in the UK for centuries. They are versatile ingredients that can be used in a variety of dishes, from breakfast to dinner.

scottish breakfast fried kippers scrambled egg
Fried kipper with scrambled eggs. Credit: canva

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Kipper and egg breakfast: This is a classic British breakfast that is easy to make and delicious. Simply grill or fry a kipper and serve it with poached or scrambled eggs. Add some toast and butter for a complete meal.
  • Kipper pâté: This is a great way to use up leftover kippers. Simply blend the kippers with cream cheese, lemon juice, and herbs to make a delicious spread that can be served with crackers or bread.
  • Kipper Kedgeree: This is a traditional Anglo-Indian dish that is perfect for brunch or dinner. It consists of rice, smoked fish, hard-boiled eggs, and spices. It’s easy to make and can be customized to your taste.
  • Kipper and potato hash: This is a hearty and filling breakfast or brunch dish that is easy to make. Simply fry some diced potatoes and onions in a pan, add some chopped kippers, and cook until everything is crispy and golden.
  • Kipper and spinach salad: This is a healthy and flavorful salad that can be served as a light lunch or dinner. Simply mix together some baby spinach, sliced kippers, cherry tomatoes, and a vinaigrette dressing. Add some croutons or toasted nuts for extra crunch.

These are just a few ideas to get you started. With a little creativity, you can come up with many more delicious ways to use kippers in your cooking. So why not give them a try?

What are Kippers?

Smoking kipper cabinet. Credit: canva

If you’re not from the UK, you may be wondering what kippers are. They are made by smoking and salting herring, and they have a distinctive, strong flavor.


This breakfast dish has a bold, unique taste and pairs perfectly with buttery toast or eggs.


They were first introduced in the 16th century when fishermen began smoking and salting fish to preserve it for longer periods of time. Kippers became especially popular in the 19th and early 20th centuries when they were a common breakfast food.

Today, kippers are still a popular food in the UK, although they are not as commonly eaten as they once were.

How are Kippers Made?

Kippers are made by smoking and salting herring. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. The herring is gutted and cleaned.
  2. The fish is then salted and left to cure for several hours.
  3. After the fish has been cured, it is rinsed and hung up to dry.
  4. The fish is then placed in a smoker and smoked for several hours.

Nutritional Information

They also contain vitamins B12 and D, as well as minerals like calcium and phosphorus.

Here are some other nutritional facts about kippers:

  • A 100-gram serving of kippers contains approximately 180 calories.
  • Kippers are low in carbohydrates, with only 1 gram per serving.
  • Kippers are a good source of selenium, which is important for thyroid function.
  • Kippers are also a good source of niacin, which is important for energy metabolism.

How to Eat Kippers

Here are some ideas:

  • Serve kippers for breakfast with buttered toast or eggs.
  • Use kippers in a salad or sandwich.
  • Add kippers to a pasta dish or risotto.
  • Make a kipper pâté by blending kippers with cream cheese and herbs.

No matter how you choose to eat them, kippers are delicious and nutritious food that is worth trying.

How to Cook Kippers?

kippers breakfast with toast
Grilled kipper with toast. Credit: canva

If you’ve never cooked kippers before, don’t worry! In this section, we’ll cover four different methods for cooking kippers: simple, fried, poached, and grilled.

Simple Kipper Recipe

If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to cook kippers, try this simple recipe.


  • Kippers
  • Butter
  • Bread


  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F.
  2. Place your kippers on a baking sheet.
  3. Add a pat of butter to each kipper.
  4. Bake the kippers for 10-15 minutes, or until they are heated through.
  5. Serve with bread and enjoy!

Fried Kippers

Here’s how to make them:


  • Kippers
  • Oil
  • Onion


  1. Heat some oil in a skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add sliced onion to the skillet and cook until it is soft and translucent.
  3. Add the kippers to the skillet and cook until they are crispy and golden brown.
  4. Serve hot and enjoy!

Poached Kippers

Here’s how to do it:


  • Kippers
  • Water
  • Lemon
  • Salt


  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil.
  2. Add the kippers to the pot and let them simmer for 5-7 minutes.
  3. Remove the kippers from the pot and place them on a plate.
  4. Squeeze some lemon juice over the kippers and sprinkle with salt.
  5. Serve hot and enjoy!

Grilled Kippers

Here’s how to grill kippers:


  • Kippers
  • Oil
  • Lemon
  • Pepper


  1. Preheat your grill to medium-high heat.
  2. Brush the kippers with oil and season with pepper.
  3. Place the kippers on the grill and cook for 5-7 minutes on each side.
  4. Remove the kippers from the grill and squeeze some lemon juice over them.
  5. Serve hot and enjoy!

They can be used in a variety of dishes, such as kedgeree, pâté, and warm salads. So next time you’re at the fishmonger, pick up some kippers and try out one of these delicious recipes!

Assorted canned smoked fish: sardines, mackerels, and kippers (Source: olenayeronemkophotos/Canva)

Health Benefits of Kippers

Not only are they tasty, but they also offer a range of health benefits.

Nutritional Value

Kippers are packed with nutrients, including protein, vitamins, and minerals.

  • Energy: 245kcal
  • Fat: 17.6g (of which saturated fat is 3.74g)
  • Protein: 21.7g
  • Omega-3 fatty acids
  • Vitamins D and B12
  • Niacin
  • Riboflavin

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Kippers are a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential for good health. These healthy fats can help to reduce inflammation, improve brain function, and lower the risk of heart disease.

Eating kippers regularly can help you to get more omega-3s in your diet.

Vitamins and Minerals

  • Vitamin D: Kippers are one of the few food sources of vitamin D, which is essential for strong bones and teeth.
  • Vitamin B12: This vitamin is important for maintaining healthy nerve cells and red blood cells.
  • Selenium: Kippers are a good source of selenium, which is important for immune function and thyroid health.
  • Phosphorus: This mineral is essential for strong bones and teeth.
  • Potassium: Kippers are a good source of potassium, which helps to regulate blood pressure and support heart health.

Other Health Benefits

In addition to the nutrients listed above, kippers may offer a range of other health benefits. For example:

  • Protein: Kippers are a good source of protein, which can help to keep you feeling full and satisfied.
  • Low in calories: Kippers are relatively low in calories, making them a great choice for those watching their weight.
  • Boost energy levels: Kippers are rich in B vitamins, which can help to convert food into energy and keep you feeling energized throughout the day.

Whether you’re looking to boost your omega-3 intake, get more vitamin D, or simply enjoy a tasty meal, kippers are a great choice.

Different Types of Smoked Fish

Kipper vs. Smoked Haddock

Kippers are made from whole herrings that have been split, gutted, salted, and cold-smoked.

Smoked haddock, on the other hand, is made from fillets of haddock that have been hot smoked. It has a milder flavor and a firmer texture than kippers.

Canned Smoked Fish

Canned smoked fish is a convenient and affordable option for those who don’t have access to fresh or smoked fish. It is available in many different varieties, including salmon, mackerel, and sardines. 

However, it is important to choose high-quality canned fish that is packed in oil or water, not syrup or other sweeteners.

Smoked Mackerel

Smoked mackerel is a popular choice for those who enjoy strong, flavorful fish. It is made from fillets of mackerel that have been hot-smoked and can be eaten hot or cold.

Smoked mackerel is often used in recipes like pâté, fish cakes, and salads. It is also a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are important for heart health.


Smoked and canned sardines are a great choice if you’re looking for a tasty and nutritious snack; they provide plenty of protein, omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, and vitamin D. You can enjoy them straight out of the can or incorporate them into recipes like pasta dishes and sandwiches. They’re also very popular in Mediterranean cuisine.

In conclusion, there are many different types of smoked fish to choose from, each with its own unique flavor and texture.

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