Branzini, Porgy, Arctic Char, Red Snapper and Sea Bass all turn out amazing with this simple approach to grilled whole fish – a healthy and delicious dinner option for family or guests!
Here are some tips you will find helpful for grilling a whole fish if you never tried it before:
- First, Whole Foods and some other grocery stores will prepare your fish for you, doing the descaling and cleaning while you wait so you don’t have to mess around with that at home. Make sure you ask about this at your local fish market!
- Second, I always try to cook a whole fish within a day of purchasing it, preferably the day of, because fish really is so much better fresh, not frozen.
- Third, DON’T PUT YOUR FISH ON THE GRILL STRAIGHT OUT OF THE FRIDGE. A cold fish is more likely to stick to the grill. You want to pull your fish out of the fridge and let it sit on the counter for at least 20 minutes while you are heating the grill and prepping lemons and garlic, as when you cook a steak.
- Finally, grilling on an outdoor grill is amazing in Summer, but you can also grill whole fish on a rack in your oven using same recipe, and they will come out just as delicious.
Ingredients for the Fish:
- 2 whole fish (1-1.5lbs each), scaled and gutted
- 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
- Sea salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 2 garlic cloves, sliced
- 1/2 lemons, sliced into discs
- 1-2 sprigs oregano or thyme
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
Ingredients for the Oregano Infused Oil for drizzle:
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 sprig oregano
- Remove your fish from the fridge and let it stand at room temperature for 20 minutes. Rinse and pat dry with paper towels.
- Lightly drizzle the fish all over with the olive oil and season generously, inside and out, with salt and freshly ground pepper. Stuff the cavity of the fish with the lemon discs, garlic cloves, and oregano or thyme sprigs. Sprinkle with dried oregano.
- Grill your fish!
- If using a grill: Preheat the grill to medium-high heat and use tongs to brush the cleaned, preheated grill grates with an oil drenched paper towel. Carefully transfer the fish to the grill so the aromatics don’t fall out and grill for 6-8 minutes over medium-high heat, without moving the fish. When the first side is lightly charred on the bottom and the skin releases easily from the grill, flip the fish over and grill until cooked through and the flesh is white throughout, another 6-8 minutes.
- If cooking in the oven: Prep a rack over a baking sheet and heat your oven to 420 degrees on Roast or Convection Roast. Place the fish on the rack and roast for 18-20 minutes, without flipping the fish over. While the fish is cooking, combine the ingredients for the infused olive oil in a small sauté pan and simmer over low heat for 8-10 minutes. Carefully remove the fish from the grill or oven and place on a platter. Drizzle with the oregano infused olive oil and serve with fresh lemon wedges.