Grilling on a Cedar Plank

Grilling on a Cedar Plank

Grilling on a cedar plank says “Summer is here!” Especially when you pair it with a crisp chilled French Rose! Our favorite fish to grill on a cedar plank is salmon. Our favorite type of salmon is King Salmon, but other types of salmon will work, as well.

We decided to up our game by adding small lobster tails to the plank. It’s summer – why not?! Top your fish with a compound garlic herb butter for amazing results.

Cooking salmon on a cedar plank is one of the easiest ways to infuse a soft smoky flavor. The salmon stays tender on the inside because you are cooking it over indirect heat, but has a lovely roasted flavor on the outside. You can substitute the salmon or lobster with jumbo scallops, jumbo shrimp, cod, or halibut. Don’t hesitate to try it with pork, chicken, or large cuts of vegetable such as zucchini or tomatoes.

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Preparing your cedar plank:

We normally soak the cedar plank in a combination of water and a little white wine, cider or sake to give it a little extra dash of flavor. You will need to plan slightly ahead and soak the plank for 30-minutes to 2 hours.

Cedar planks are available online, at hardware stores, or at some grocery stores. We get ours on Amazon:

Compound butter is one of the easiest ways to upgrade any recipe. You can make a big batch of compound butter and freeze it, so you will always have some on hand. For today we made just enough for this recipe. Make sure your butter is softened ahead of time. This recipe also uses a Potlatch seasoning that really amps up the flavor. Sprinkle this on any type of chicken or fish for a zesty flavor. Click here for the full Potlatch recipe:

The amount of time your salmon is on the grill depends on the size and thickness of your fillet. We have had the best results with a larger piece, that you cut later, but if you only have smaller fillets on hand just cook for a shorter amount of time.

Suggested Wine Pairings

This dish pairs well with a full-bodied white wine like a Chardonnay, or a crisp fruity Rose, and a lively fruity Pinot Noir. Look for any available vintages of the following:

Your weekday wine:

  • Chateau de Fabregues Costieres de Nimes Rose, France

Your weekend wine:

  • Rock Angel Rose, France
  • Testarossa Santa Lucia Highlands Chardonnay, California

A special occasion wine:

  • Cristom Louise Pinot Noir, Oregon
  • Cakebread Reserve Chardonnay, Napa Valley
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5 from 5 votes

Grilling on a Cedar Plank Recipe

Grilled salmon is an easy summertime recipe and an easy way to infuse a soft smoky flavor to any type of fish. We added a few small lobster tails but these are optional, of course, and a garlic compound butter to finish. The Potlatch seasoning pairs well with the salmon.
Prep Time2 hrs 20 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Includes 2 hours of soaking for cedar plank15 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 240kcal
Author: Cyndy Ufkes – The Art of Food and Wine


  • Cedar plank
  • Grill


  • 16-20 ounces Salmon fillet, Skin on
  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 2 tbsp Potlatch Seasoning, or herb of your choice
  • 1 tsp Lemon Zest, freshly grated
  • 2 cups water, white wine, sake or cider, for soaking the plank
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tbsp black pepper, freshly ground
  • 2 small Lobster tails, Optional

Compound Butter

  • 1/2 cup Butter, softened
  • 1 tbsp Garlic, crushed
  • 1 tsp Fresh rosemary or other herbs, finely chopped
  • 1 medium Lemon, cut into wedges for the tables


  • Soak the cedar plank for 2 hours by completely submerging plank in water, wine or cider. You can use a combination of water and wine/cider. Pat dry before using.
  • Heat a charcoal or gas grill to about 350 F, or medium-high. While the grill is heating up make the compound butter by combining the softened butter with the garlic and herbs. Set aside.
  • Lightly coat the salmon with a thin layer of olive oil on each side. Place salmon skin-side down on the plank. Rub Potlatch seasoning or herbs, lemon zest, salt, and pepper into salmon to coat. Add the lobster tails to the plank and brush lightly with remaining olive oil.
  • Place plank on grill and cover. Start checking for doneness after 12 minutes. Salmon is cooked through when it is uniformly pink in the center. Remove the plank and allow to cool slightly on a cutting board.
  • Cut the salmon into four equal pieces. Remove lobsters from tails and cut into bite-size pieces. Drizzle with compound butter and a squeeze of lemon over the top. Serve with remaining lemon wedges.

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