Russian Herring Under a Fur Coat Salad (Shuba Salad) is a layered salad made with herring, vegetables, eggs, and mayonnaise. Loaded with flavor, this colorful appetizer is a must-have at your next celebration.Jump to Recipe
Herring under a fur coat recipe
This is not your ordinary salad! Russian Herring Under a Fur Coat Salad (Shuba Salad) is a show-stopping appetizer or side dish your guests won’t be able to stop talking about. Made with layers of shredded vegetables, pickled herring, eggs, mayonnaise, and dill, it’s perfect for any special event or weeknight dinners at home.
Shuba salad takes about 30 minutes to assemble before it’s left to chill in the fridge for 4 to 6 hours. This recipe does require some elbow grease, but once you see all of those colorful and flavorful layers put together, you’ll be so glad you put in the time. No worries if you’re in a rush – most of the layers in this work of art can be prepared days ahead of time.
If you’re getting ready for the holidays or have a special celebration coming up, you need this shuba salad recipe in your life. It’s a signature Russian party food that’s guaranteed to get your guests talking. Pair it with an extravagant Russian charcuterie board and a cocktail or two, and you’ll have some happy party guests!
What is a shuba salad?
Fur coat salad (AKA shuba salad, dressed herring, selyodka pod shuboy, and herring under a fur coat) is a layered salad made from pickled herring, beets, carrots, onions, potatoes, mayonnaise, eggs, and dill. The name, “fur coat salad” comes from the direct translation (“shuba” means “fur coat” in Russian) and because the layer of shredded beets on top is like a warm, protective coat over the herring and other layers.
Shuba salad recipes are popular throughout Russia and Ukraine, traditionally being served for the holidays or celebrations. Make it for New Year’s parties, to serve at Christmas dinner, or even for weddings!
- Pickled herring – Make sure you buy herring filets packed in oil. Herring is an oily fish with a flavor similar to sardines… you either love it or hate it. If you aren’t a fan of herring, go ahead and use smoked salmon instead.
- Vegetables – You’ll need onion, Yukon gold potatoes, beets, and carrots to give this salad its distinct colorful layers. Feel free to experiment with different varieties of vegetables, like red potatoes or golden beets, or add in shredded apples or raisins for sweetness. There’s plenty of room to be flexible here.
- Dill – Sprinkle fresh dill throughout the salad to give it fresh flavors and gorgeous specks of green.
- Hard boiled eggs – You can use my Keto Deviled Eggs recipe if you’ve never made hard boiled eggs before.
- Mayonnaise – Take your Russian salad up a notch by making it with homemade mayonnaise.
How to make a Russian herring under a fur coat salad
Begin by cooking the carrots and potatoes in the same pot of boiling water. You’ll know they’re ready when they’re fork tender. Peel the skin once they’re cool enough to handle, then grate each one into different bowls.
Repeat the same process with the beets. They’ll take about an hour to cook and be fork tender. Again, peel the beets when they’re cool to the touch (wear gloves to prevent stains!) and grate them into another bowl.
Go ahead and chop the herring, onion, and dill while you wait for the veggies. Mix them all together in a bowl, then set it aside.
Next, make the hard boiled eggs. Cool them in an ice bath immediately after coming out of the boiling water, then peel the shell and cut each one in half.
Now it’s time to assemble. Shuba salad is often made in a casserole dish but I prefer to use a springform pan to keep the layers compact and to give it a perfectly round shape. This is how it’s done:
- Add a layer of grated potatoes to the bottom of the pan and spread it out to the edges.
- Next, spread the herring, onion, and dill mixture on top.
- Add a layer of carrots, then spread half of the mayo on top.
- The beets are next. Add the rest of the mayo.
- Add a layer of shredded hard boiled eggs next. You might end up with leftovers, so feel free to use them up in an easy tuna egg salad.
- Finish with more fresh dill.
Shuba salad needs to chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours or overnight for the best results. When it’s time to serve, release the springform pan and slice it up!
Make ahead tips
The preparation can be time-consuming in this recipe but thankfully, you can prepare most of the layers ahead of time:
- Cooked, peeled, and shredded vegetables: Once your vegetables are completely prepped, store them in separate airtight containers in the fridge for 1 or 2 days.
- Hard boiled eggs: Store the hard boiled eggs with the shells on in a sealed container in the fridge for 4 or 5 days.
- The assembled salad: The salad can be made and assembled up to 2 days in advance.
Another great feature of preparing and pre-chilling the ingredients ahead of time? The salad won’t need to chill in the fridge for as many hours, meaning you can serve it sooner.
Any leftover salad can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Looking for more Russian and Ukrainian recipes?
- Syrniki Recipe (Ukrainian Cheese Pancakes)
- Easy Olivier Salad
- How to Build a Russian Charcuterie Board
- Potato Vareniki (Ukrainian Pierogi Recipe)
Did you try this Russian Herring Under a Fur Coat Salad recipe? Let me know what you think! Leave a comment or rate this recipe below. Don’t forget to take a picture and tag me on Instagram! I love to share all of your recreations.
Russian Herring Under a Fur Coat Salad (Shuba Salad)
- 17.6 oz package herring, chopped into 1/2 in cubes or 1 lb smoked salmon
- 1 small sweet onion or half large one, finely chopped
- 4 medium yukon gold potatoes, boiled and peeled
- 3 medium beets, boiled and peeled
- 4 medium carrots, boiled and peeled
- 2 tbsp fresh dill plus a few sprigs for garnish
- 4 large eggs, hard boiled and peeled
- 1 1/2 cups homemade mayo or store bought
METHOD FOR PREP
- In one pot, place beets in boiling water (enough water to cover the beets). Boil 1 hour, or until soft when pierced with a knife. The cooking time varies depending on your beets. Some will cook sooner than others, so test all of them. When cooked, remove from boiling water and let cool to room temperature. Peel the cooked beets (I use gloves for this sometimes to prevent from your hands getting stained). Use a cheese grater, grate into a bowl. In a separate pot, boil whole potatoes and carrots about 25-35 minutes, or until smooth when pierced with a knife. Don’t overcook. When cooked, remove from boiling water and let cool to room temperature. Peel the cooked potatoes and carrots. It’s easiest to peel carrots by putting a slit down the length of the carrot and peeling in a circle around the carrot. Grate into separate bowls.Place 4 eggs in another pot of salted cold water and bring them to a boil. Once the water is boiling, cook for 10 minutes. When timer is done, place eggs in a ice bath. Let eggs cool to room temperature. Peel the eggs. Cut in half.While veggies cook, take each herring filet and cut into 4 strips, then cut into 1/4 in cubes. Add into a bowl. Chop the onion as well and add to the same bowl. Finely chop 2 tbsp fresh dill, add to bowl and mix well. Set aside until ready to layer your salad.
STEPS FOR LAYER ORDER:
- Using a springform without the bottom part, place it on top of a plate that is slightly larger than the springform.Add the grated potatoes, spreading evenly to the edges, but don’t press down too hard.Add in the herring, onion and dill mixture. Using the spoon spread it to the edges of the springform.Add the grated carrots, spoon on half of the mayo, spreading evenly on top.Add the grated beets, spoon on the other half of the mayo, spreading evenly on top.Carefully grate the egg white part of the hard boiled eggs over the mayo layer, spreading evenly as you grate. Then grate in the egg yolk, you might have some eggs leftover, which is fine.Garnish with fresh dill. Refrigerate for at least 4-6 hours or over night to chill the salad before serving. Release and remove the springform. When serving, cut like you would cut a cake and enjoy. Goes well with a cold beer.