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Learn to Cook: Broiled Fish

Seafood can be mystifying territory for us land dwelling creatures.

Well, let’s get one thing settled right now: cooking fish at home can be very easy!

One of the best things about cooking seafood is its versatility — it can be grilled, broiled, poached, baked or cooked in a pan.

We’ll help you learn how to broil fish and then you can expand your horizon.

Broiled Fish with Citrus and Herbs

Get the health benefits of fish and the budget benefits of cooking at home by using these simple instructions.

Feel free to substitute with other ingredients such as water and lemon juice or white wine for the orange juice, dried dill weed for the herbs, and capers or toasted crushed nuts or seeds for the olives.

3/4 cup 365 Everyday Value® Orange Juice

1/2 minced shallot

1/4 tsp dried tarragon

4–6 oz mild fish fillet(s) such as sole, tilapia or arctic char

1/2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil

Salt and ground black pepper, to taste

3 chopped pitted Kalamata olives (optional)

Combine juice, shallot and tarragon in a small saucepan and simmer until thickened, 15–20 minutes; cover and set aside.

Heat broiler. Sprinkle both sides of fish with oil, salt and pepper. Place on a foil-lined baking sheet and broil 5–6" from heat, just until fish is opaque and flakes easily with a fork, about 5 minutes per half inch of thickness.

Use a wide spatula to transfer fillet to serving plate, spoon sauce on top and sprinkle with olives.

Hungry for More?

See? There’s no need to fear cooking fish! Here are a few tips to help as you try other fish recipes.

  • Seafood steaks or fillets thicker than ½” should be turned over halfway through cooking time. Fish less than ½” thick does not need to be turned.
  • When grilling or pan frying, place fillets skin side down (the skin will remove easily after cooking).
  • If fillets are rolled or stuffed, measure temperature at the thickest point to determine doneness.
  • Add five minutes to the overall cooking time for fish that is covered in a sauce or wrapped in foil.
  • Double your cooking time if starting with unthawed, frozen fish.

Now try these cooking methods and recipes:

Poaching: Simmer fillets or steaks in stock using a pan with a lid to retain heat. Turning is not necessary. Baste occasionally by spooning stock over the fish.

Try Poached Halibut with Ginger and Cilantro.

Grilling: Place steaks or fillets on an oiled grill over medium-hot coals. If covered, cook without turning. If uncovered, turn halfway through cooking.

Try Grilled Chili-Garlic Swordfish and Bok Choy.

Try Baked Southwestern Tilapia.

Baking: Preheat oven to 450°F. Bake uncovered, basting if desired.

Pan Sautéing: Heat a small amount of marinade or oil in a heavy skillet and add the fish. Turn thick fillets or steaks halfway through cooking.

Try Salmon with Sautéed Swiss Chard.

 Do you have a favorite, simple way to cook fish? Let us hear about it!

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Dave Beaulieu says …

I like to bake fish, but often it's just a bit slow for me, and I'll turn to searing it right on the stove top. While you can't walk away and just let it cook, it only takes about 7 minutes to cook a couple inch thick filet, and you get a great crispy sear on both sides. Check out how to do it on this Halibut and Butternut Squash dish: http://www.noreciperequired.com/recipe/halibut-butternut-squash-hash

Margaret says …

I bake fish - salmon is really good this way. I put sesame oil and tamara sauce on each steak or fillet and then sprinkle a little garlic and herbs on top. The fish is delicious and if I cook extra it goes well on a salad the next day.

Don says …

Love the article. Broiling is fast and produces a nice crust, and I look forward to using this method more in the future. You can't say enough about fish and its nutritional benefits. Great tips, Whole Foods!

John says …

Thanks for this nice advice! Here are 2 more easy ways to cook fish: 1. Steamer Bowl: Roughly, put raw fish (firm, diced), cooked grain, raw green, and sauce in a glass bowl. Then put the glass bowl in a pot with about 1" of water in it. The pot needs to be big enough to fit the bowl and a cover. Next, boil the covered pot (w/ the bowl in it!) for about 10 minutes. This is meant for 1-2 servings. For more people, use a bigger pot and more bowls. 2. Fish baked in a foil packet (w/ veggies and some liquid) is nice too. That works well with a more delicate fish too. I don't remember the recipe, but your favorite search engine can help.

Karen says …

Makes preparing fish sound easy as well as healful. I really enjoyed reading the recipipes and can't wait to experiment. Thanks so very much. Karen Cypers

Laura says …

I make foil pouches for my fish and it always comes out moist. I spray a good size piece of foil and then add any variety of ingredients. I like Cod with spinach and artichokes. Put the fish over the spinach then the chokes on top. A little salt, pepper and a drizzle of EVOO. Fold and Pinch the foil to make a sealed tent, and in the oven @350 for 8 -12 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fish. Great for any type of fish and with any ingredients you love.

SewIsabel says …

This article was very helpful and not overwhelming. The recipe ingredient list is not very long with hard to find ingredients. It sounds delicious and I would like to try it. Fish is brain food and has omega3 fatty acids. In the past I have steamed fish and placed a rub on the fish. Although this sounds like it would taste better. I like the easy and flavorful tips.

Ricardo King says …

Understanding how to buy at weight and fresh, quality fish, in the industry. How?