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There are lots of great reasons to add fish to your dinner rotation. From the rich flavor and the many different types available to the associated health benefits of adding omega-rich food to your diet, fish is a staple for a lot of reasons. It is also versatile in how you prepare it! Here are a few different ways fish can be prepared to suit any preference.

Baking

This is one of the most popular options for a few reasons. Baking helps keep the nutrients locked in over frying as the cooking method. When looking at different ways fish can be prepared, baking is ideal because it uses minimal oil and lower temperatures than frying for a delicious meal that is still healthy. Another benefit of baking is that it is ideal for just about any type of fish.

  • Heat oven to 450°F as the general setting. If you are cooking thinner cuts, you may reduce it as needed.
  • Using either a nonstick cooking spray or a little bit of olive oil, spray or thinly coat either a baking sheet or shallow baking dish before placing the fish to avoid it sticking.
  • Place the fish on a baking sheet or in a baking dish in a single layer for an even cook throughout.
  • Season as desired. Do not cover.
  • Bake for around 10 minutes per inch of thickness to fully cook.
  • Check that the internal temperature of the finished fish is at least 140-145°F before serving.
  • Using either olive oil or butter to fill a pan, heat until melted over medium or medium-high heat.
  • Prepare fish as desired. A common choice is to dip the fish in beaten eggs and roll it in breadcrumbs, but you may also simply season and sauté without this step.
  • Cook fish about 5 minutes per side until done.
  • Check the internal temperature before serving.
  • The key to this method is the basting. You will want to baste the fish thoroughly before you start and regularly while cooking.
  • Oil the pan lightly before placing about 4 inches from the heating element in the oven. If you are cooking thinner fish, you should place them 2 inches from the heat source.
  • Broil for around 8 minutes per inch of thickness and do not turn over if the fish is less than 1 inch. If you turn a thinner cut, it will overcook and dry out.
  • Take the temperature ensuring 140-145°F is the internal temperature of the fish before serving.
  • Using a microwave-safe dish, coat the inside of the dish with cooking spray to avoid the fish sticking.
  • Arrange fish in the dish so that the thicker center portions are located near the outside edge of the dish for better cooking. Never layer the fish in the dish as it can lead to uneven cooking.
  • Cover the dish with plastic wrap, cutting a few holes for ventilation.
  • Cook the fish about 3 minutes per pound on high or until it reaches the required 140-145°F before serving.
  • Heat the grill for either 30 minutes (charcoal) or 10 minutes on high (gas) as recommended based on your grill type.
  • Make sure grate is 4-6 inches away from the fire and brush the grate with oil so fish doesn’t stick during cooking.
  • In a single layer, place the fish directly on the grill grate.
  • The cook time will depend on whether you are cooking with direct heat method or indirect heat method. For direct, aim to cook fish 5-6 minutes each side over medium-high heat until proper temperature is reached. For indirect cooking, cook 15 minutes or so with the lid on over the cool grate on the side of the grill.
  • Check temperature before serving.
  • Pour the desired liquid in a pan until it covers the fish. Common liquids are wine, water, fish stock, or even milk.
  • Cover the pan and cook the fish to just below a boiling point for the liquid.
  • Generally, you will need to cook fillets around 8-10 minutes in this method, depending on the thickness. A whole fish will take around 20 minutes when poached.
  • Get the right oil temperature. When deep-frying, if oil is too cold, the food will be soggy, and the fish will taste like grease. On the flip side, oil that is too hot will lead to the outside burning before the inside cooks properly. The ideal temperature for oil when deep-frying fish is around 375°F to allow for proper cooking without fish burning.
  • Heat the oil to the right temperature and use a candy thermometer to check the temperature.
  • If you have thicker fish fillets, cut them so they will cook more evenly.
  • Lightly bread the fish by dipping it in eggs and your desired breading.
  • Cook the fish for about 4-5 minutes until it is browned.
  • Drain fish on a paper towel before serving as desired.

Pan-fry/Sauté

Pan-fry or sauté is a method where fish is cooked in a pan on the stovetop using a little bit of healthy oil such as olive oil. It results in a crispier texture than baking or broiling while giving an easier way to cook options such as shrimp, scallops, and tail cuts. While it is great for smaller fish options, it can also be used when larger fish cuts such as cod or halibut are cut into smaller fillets or strips. This method is also noted as healthier than deep-frying since it uses less oil to cook the fish while still giving a similar texture and taste.

  • Heat oven to 450°F as the general setting. If you are cooking thinner cuts, you may reduce it as needed.
  • Using either a nonstick cooking spray or a little bit of olive oil, spray or thinly coat either a baking sheet or shallow baking dish before placing the fish to avoid it sticking.
  • Place the fish on a baking sheet or in a baking dish in a single layer for an even cook throughout.
  • Season as desired. Do not cover.
  • Bake for around 10 minutes per inch of thickness to fully cook.
  • Check that the internal temperature of the finished fish is at least 140-145°F before serving.
  • Using either olive oil or butter to fill a pan, heat until melted over medium or medium-high heat.
  • Prepare fish as desired. A common choice is to dip the fish in beaten eggs and roll it in breadcrumbs, but you may also simply season and sauté without this step.
  • Cook fish about 5 minutes per side until done.
  • Check the internal temperature before serving.
  • The key to this method is the basting. You will want to baste the fish thoroughly before you start and regularly while cooking.
  • Oil the pan lightly before placing about 4 inches from the heating element in the oven. If you are cooking thinner fish, you should place them 2 inches from the heat source.
  • Broil for around 8 minutes per inch of thickness and do not turn over if the fish is less than 1 inch. If you turn a thinner cut, it will overcook and dry out.
  • Take the temperature ensuring 140-145°F is the internal temperature of the fish before serving.
  • Using a microwave-safe dish, coat the inside of the dish with cooking spray to avoid the fish sticking.
  • Arrange fish in the dish so that the thicker center portions are located near the outside edge of the dish for better cooking. Never layer the fish in the dish as it can lead to uneven cooking.
  • Cover the dish with plastic wrap, cutting a few holes for ventilation.
  • Cook the fish about 3 minutes per pound on high or until it reaches the required 140-145°F before serving.
  • Heat the grill for either 30 minutes (charcoal) or 10 minutes on high (gas) as recommended based on your grill type.
  • Make sure grate is 4-6 inches away from the fire and brush the grate with oil so fish doesn’t stick during cooking.
  • In a single layer, place the fish directly on the grill grate.
  • The cook time will depend on whether you are cooking with direct heat method or indirect heat method. For direct, aim to cook fish 5-6 minutes each side over medium-high heat until proper temperature is reached. For indirect cooking, cook 15 minutes or so with the lid on over the cool grate on the side of the grill.
  • Check temperature before serving.
  • Pour the desired liquid in a pan until it covers the fish. Common liquids are wine, water, fish stock, or even milk.
  • Cover the pan and cook the fish to just below a boiling point for the liquid.
  • Generally, you will need to cook fillets around 8-10 minutes in this method, depending on the thickness. A whole fish will take around 20 minutes when poached.
  • Get the right oil temperature. When deep-frying, if oil is too cold, the food will be soggy, and the fish will taste like grease. On the flip side, oil that is too hot will lead to the outside burning before the inside cooks properly. The ideal temperature for oil when deep-frying fish is around 375°F to allow for proper cooking without fish burning.
  • Heat the oil to the right temperature and use a candy thermometer to check the temperature.
  • If you have thicker fish fillets, cut them so they will cook more evenly.
  • Lightly bread the fish by dipping it in eggs and your desired breading.
  • Cook the fish for about 4-5 minutes until it is browned.
  • Drain fish on a paper towel before serving as desired.

Broil

Broiling is a great choice for thicker cuts of fish, at least one inch thicker or more. You want to avoid broiling with thinner cuts because it can lead to drying out the fish as it cooks. It also removes the need for using oils or butter which can help cut down on calories.

  • Heat oven to 450°F as the general setting. If you are cooking thinner cuts, you may reduce it as needed.
  • Using either a nonstick cooking spray or a little bit of olive oil, spray or thinly coat either a baking sheet or shallow baking dish before placing the fish to avoid it sticking.
  • Place the fish on a baking sheet or in a baking dish in a single layer for an even cook throughout.
  • Season as desired. Do not cover.
  • Bake for around 10 minutes per inch of thickness to fully cook.
  • Check that the internal temperature of the finished fish is at least 140-145°F before serving.
  • Using either olive oil or butter to fill a pan, heat until melted over medium or medium-high heat.
  • Prepare fish as desired. A common choice is to dip the fish in beaten eggs and roll it in breadcrumbs, but you may also simply season and sauté without this step.
  • Cook fish about 5 minutes per side until done.
  • Check the internal temperature before serving.
  • The key to this method is the basting. You will want to baste the fish thoroughly before you start and regularly while cooking.
  • Oil the pan lightly before placing about 4 inches from the heating element in the oven. If you are cooking thinner fish, you should place them 2 inches from the heat source.
  • Broil for around 8 minutes per inch of thickness and do not turn over if the fish is less than 1 inch. If you turn a thinner cut, it will overcook and dry out.
  • Take the temperature ensuring 140-145°F is the internal temperature of the fish before serving.
  • Using a microwave-safe dish, coat the inside of the dish with cooking spray to avoid the fish sticking.
  • Arrange fish in the dish so that the thicker center portions are located near the outside edge of the dish for better cooking. Never layer the fish in the dish as it can lead to uneven cooking.
  • Cover the dish with plastic wrap, cutting a few holes for ventilation.
  • Cook the fish about 3 minutes per pound on high or until it reaches the required 140-145°F before serving.
  • Heat the grill for either 30 minutes (charcoal) or 10 minutes on high (gas) as recommended based on your grill type.
  • Make sure grate is 4-6 inches away from the fire and brush the grate with oil so fish doesn’t stick during cooking.
  • In a single layer, place the fish directly on the grill grate.
  • The cook time will depend on whether you are cooking with direct heat method or indirect heat method. For direct, aim to cook fish 5-6 minutes each side over medium-high heat until proper temperature is reached. For indirect cooking, cook 15 minutes or so with the lid on over the cool grate on the side of the grill.
  • Check temperature before serving.
  • Pour the desired liquid in a pan until it covers the fish. Common liquids are wine, water, fish stock, or even milk.
  • Cover the pan and cook the fish to just below a boiling point for the liquid.
  • Generally, you will need to cook fillets around 8-10 minutes in this method, depending on the thickness. A whole fish will take around 20 minutes when poached.
  • Get the right oil temperature. When deep-frying, if oil is too cold, the food will be soggy, and the fish will taste like grease. On the flip side, oil that is too hot will lead to the outside burning before the inside cooks properly. The ideal temperature for oil when deep-frying fish is around 375°F to allow for proper cooking without fish burning.
  • Heat the oil to the right temperature and use a candy thermometer to check the temperature.
  • If you have thicker fish fillets, cut them so they will cook more evenly.
  • Lightly bread the fish by dipping it in eggs and your desired breading.
  • Cook the fish for about 4-5 minutes until it is browned.
  • Drain fish on a paper towel before serving as desired.

Microwave

When looking at the different ways fish can be prepared, many people are shocked to learn the microwave is a viable option. This works well with various boneless fish fillets to give you a quick way to enjoy your favorite fish.

  • Heat oven to 450°F as the general setting. If you are cooking thinner cuts, you may reduce it as needed.
  • Using either a nonstick cooking spray or a little bit of olive oil, spray or thinly coat either a baking sheet or shallow baking dish before placing the fish to avoid it sticking.
  • Place the fish on a baking sheet or in a baking dish in a single layer for an even cook throughout.
  • Season as desired. Do not cover.
  • Bake for around 10 minutes per inch of thickness to fully cook.
  • Check that the internal temperature of the finished fish is at least 140-145°F before serving.
  • Using either olive oil or butter to fill a pan, heat until melted over medium or medium-high heat.
  • Prepare fish as desired. A common choice is to dip the fish in beaten eggs and roll it in breadcrumbs, but you may also simply season and sauté without this step.
  • Cook fish about 5 minutes per side until done.
  • Check the internal temperature before serving.
  • The key to this method is the basting. You will want to baste the fish thoroughly before you start and regularly while cooking.
  • Oil the pan lightly before placing about 4 inches from the heating element in the oven. If you are cooking thinner fish, you should place them 2 inches from the heat source.
  • Broil for around 8 minutes per inch of thickness and do not turn over if the fish is less than 1 inch. If you turn a thinner cut, it will overcook and dry out.
  • Take the temperature ensuring 140-145°F is the internal temperature of the fish before serving.
  • Using a microwave-safe dish, coat the inside of the dish with cooking spray to avoid the fish sticking.
  • Arrange fish in the dish so that the thicker center portions are located near the outside edge of the dish for better cooking. Never layer the fish in the dish as it can lead to uneven cooking.
  • Cover the dish with plastic wrap, cutting a few holes for ventilation.
  • Cook the fish about 3 minutes per pound on high or until it reaches the required 140-145°F before serving.
  • Heat the grill for either 30 minutes (charcoal) or 10 minutes on high (gas) as recommended based on your grill type.
  • Make sure grate is 4-6 inches away from the fire and brush the grate with oil so fish doesn’t stick during cooking.
  • In a single layer, place the fish directly on the grill grate.
  • The cook time will depend on whether you are cooking with direct heat method or indirect heat method. For direct, aim to cook fish 5-6 minutes each side over medium-high heat until proper temperature is reached. For indirect cooking, cook 15 minutes or so with the lid on over the cool grate on the side of the grill.
  • Check temperature before serving.
  • Pour the desired liquid in a pan until it covers the fish. Common liquids are wine, water, fish stock, or even milk.
  • Cover the pan and cook the fish to just below a boiling point for the liquid.
  • Generally, you will need to cook fillets around 8-10 minutes in this method, depending on the thickness. A whole fish will take around 20 minutes when poached.
  • Get the right oil temperature. When deep-frying, if oil is too cold, the food will be soggy, and the fish will taste like grease. On the flip side, oil that is too hot will lead to the outside burning before the inside cooks properly. The ideal temperature for oil when deep-frying fish is around 375°F to allow for proper cooking without fish burning.
  • Heat the oil to the right temperature and use a candy thermometer to check the temperature.
  • If you have thicker fish fillets, cut them so they will cook more evenly.
  • Lightly bread the fish by dipping it in eggs and your desired breading.
  • Cook the fish for about 4-5 minutes until it is browned.
  • Drain fish on a paper towel before serving as desired.

Grill

Grilling is a revered cooking method that most people prefer. There are few things in life more enjoyable than a meal prepared over an open flame. While any fish can be grilled, it is especially successful when grilling larger cuts such as fish steaks of salmon, tuna, or halibut.

  • Heat oven to 450°F as the general setting. If you are cooking thinner cuts, you may reduce it as needed.
  • Using either a nonstick cooking spray or a little bit of olive oil, spray or thinly coat either a baking sheet or shallow baking dish before placing the fish to avoid it sticking.
  • Place the fish on a baking sheet or in a baking dish in a single layer for an even cook throughout.
  • Season as desired. Do not cover.
  • Bake for around 10 minutes per inch of thickness to fully cook.
  • Check that the internal temperature of the finished fish is at least 140-145°F before serving.
  • Using either olive oil or butter to fill a pan, heat until melted over medium or medium-high heat.
  • Prepare fish as desired. A common choice is to dip the fish in beaten eggs and roll it in breadcrumbs, but you may also simply season and sauté without this step.
  • Cook fish about 5 minutes per side until done.
  • Check the internal temperature before serving.
  • The key to this method is the basting. You will want to baste the fish thoroughly before you start and regularly while cooking.
  • Oil the pan lightly before placing about 4 inches from the heating element in the oven. If you are cooking thinner fish, you should place them 2 inches from the heat source.
  • Broil for around 8 minutes per inch of thickness and do not turn over if the fish is less than 1 inch. If you turn a thinner cut, it will overcook and dry out.
  • Take the temperature ensuring 140-145°F is the internal temperature of the fish before serving.
  • Using a microwave-safe dish, coat the inside of the dish with cooking spray to avoid the fish sticking.
  • Arrange fish in the dish so that the thicker center portions are located near the outside edge of the dish for better cooking. Never layer the fish in the dish as it can lead to uneven cooking.
  • Cover the dish with plastic wrap, cutting a few holes for ventilation.
  • Cook the fish about 3 minutes per pound on high or until it reaches the required 140-145°F before serving.
  • Heat the grill for either 30 minutes (charcoal) or 10 minutes on high (gas) as recommended based on your grill type.
  • Make sure grate is 4-6 inches away from the fire and brush the grate with oil so fish doesn’t stick during cooking.
  • In a single layer, place the fish directly on the grill grate.
  • The cook time will depend on whether you are cooking with direct heat method or indirect heat method. For direct, aim to cook fish 5-6 minutes each side over medium-high heat until proper temperature is reached. For indirect cooking, cook 15 minutes or so with the lid on over the cool grate on the side of the grill.
  • Check temperature before serving.
  • Pour the desired liquid in a pan until it covers the fish. Common liquids are wine, water, fish stock, or even milk.
  • Cover the pan and cook the fish to just below a boiling point for the liquid.
  • Generally, you will need to cook fillets around 8-10 minutes in this method, depending on the thickness. A whole fish will take around 20 minutes when poached.
  • Get the right oil temperature. When deep-frying, if oil is too cold, the food will be soggy, and the fish will taste like grease. On the flip side, oil that is too hot will lead to the outside burning before the inside cooks properly. The ideal temperature for oil when deep-frying fish is around 375°F to allow for proper cooking without fish burning.
  • Heat the oil to the right temperature and use a candy thermometer to check the temperature.
  • If you have thicker fish fillets, cut them so they will cook more evenly.
  • Lightly bread the fish by dipping it in eggs and your desired breading.
  • Cook the fish for about 4-5 minutes until it is browned.
  • Drain fish on a paper towel before serving as desired.

Poached

This is a great choice for a juicy cooking method to keep the fish from drying out. It is also a preferred cooking method when trying to maintain high levels of vitamin D and omega fats. Best of all, it works well with just about any type of fish.

  • Heat oven to 450°F as the general setting. If you are cooking thinner cuts, you may reduce it as needed.
  • Using either a nonstick cooking spray or a little bit of olive oil, spray or thinly coat either a baking sheet or shallow baking dish before placing the fish to avoid it sticking.
  • Place the fish on a baking sheet or in a baking dish in a single layer for an even cook throughout.
  • Season as desired. Do not cover.
  • Bake for around 10 minutes per inch of thickness to fully cook.
  • Check that the internal temperature of the finished fish is at least 140-145°F before serving.
  • Using either olive oil or butter to fill a pan, heat until melted over medium or medium-high heat.
  • Prepare fish as desired. A common choice is to dip the fish in beaten eggs and roll it in breadcrumbs, but you may also simply season and sauté without this step.
  • Cook fish about 5 minutes per side until done.
  • Check the internal temperature before serving.
  • The key to this method is the basting. You will want to baste the fish thoroughly before you start and regularly while cooking.
  • Oil the pan lightly before placing about 4 inches from the heating element in the oven. If you are cooking thinner fish, you should place them 2 inches from the heat source.
  • Broil for around 8 minutes per inch of thickness and do not turn over if the fish is less than 1 inch. If you turn a thinner cut, it will overcook and dry out.
  • Take the temperature ensuring 140-145°F is the internal temperature of the fish before serving.
  • Using a microwave-safe dish, coat the inside of the dish with cooking spray to avoid the fish sticking.
  • Arrange fish in the dish so that the thicker center portions are located near the outside edge of the dish for better cooking. Never layer the fish in the dish as it can lead to uneven cooking.
  • Cover the dish with plastic wrap, cutting a few holes for ventilation.
  • Cook the fish about 3 minutes per pound on high or until it reaches the required 140-145°F before serving.
  • Heat the grill for either 30 minutes (charcoal) or 10 minutes on high (gas) as recommended based on your grill type.
  • Make sure grate is 4-6 inches away from the fire and brush the grate with oil so fish doesn’t stick during cooking.
  • In a single layer, place the fish directly on the grill grate.
  • The cook time will depend on whether you are cooking with direct heat method or indirect heat method. For direct, aim to cook fish 5-6 minutes each side over medium-high heat until proper temperature is reached. For indirect cooking, cook 15 minutes or so with the lid on over the cool grate on the side of the grill.
  • Check temperature before serving.
  • Pour the desired liquid in a pan until it covers the fish. Common liquids are wine, water, fish stock, or even milk.
  • Cover the pan and cook the fish to just below a boiling point for the liquid.
  • Generally, you will need to cook fillets around 8-10 minutes in this method, depending on the thickness. A whole fish will take around 20 minutes when poached.
  • Get the right oil temperature. When deep-frying, if oil is too cold, the food will be soggy, and the fish will taste like grease. On the flip side, oil that is too hot will lead to the outside burning before the inside cooks properly. The ideal temperature for oil when deep-frying fish is around 375°F to allow for proper cooking without fish burning.
  • Heat the oil to the right temperature and use a candy thermometer to check the temperature.
  • If you have thicker fish fillets, cut them so they will cook more evenly.
  • Lightly bread the fish by dipping it in eggs and your desired breading.
  • Cook the fish for about 4-5 minutes until it is browned.
  • Drain fish on a paper towel before serving as desired.

Deep-Fried

While this is one of the least healthy ways to cook fish, it is also one of the tastiest! It is ideal for fish that is ½ inch thick or less since thicker cuts have a harder time reaching the right temperature.

  • Heat oven to 450°F as the general setting. If you are cooking thinner cuts, you may reduce it as needed.
  • Using either a nonstick cooking spray or a little bit of olive oil, spray or thinly coat either a baking sheet or shallow baking dish before placing the fish to avoid it sticking.
  • Place the fish on a baking sheet or in a baking dish in a single layer for an even cook throughout.
  • Season as desired. Do not cover.
  • Bake for around 10 minutes per inch of thickness to fully cook.
  • Check that the internal temperature of the finished fish is at least 140-145°F before serving.
  • Using either olive oil or butter to fill a pan, heat until melted over medium or medium-high heat.
  • Prepare fish as desired. A common choice is to dip the fish in beaten eggs and roll it in breadcrumbs, but you may also simply season and sauté without this step.
  • Cook fish about 5 minutes per side until done.
  • Check the internal temperature before serving.
  • The key to this method is the basting. You will want to baste the fish thoroughly before you start and regularly while cooking.
  • Oil the pan lightly before placing about 4 inches from the heating element in the oven. If you are cooking thinner fish, you should place them 2 inches from the heat source.
  • Broil for around 8 minutes per inch of thickness and do not turn over if the fish is less than 1 inch. If you turn a thinner cut, it will overcook and dry out.
  • Take the temperature ensuring 140-145°F is the internal temperature of the fish before serving.
  • Using a microwave-safe dish, coat the inside of the dish with cooking spray to avoid the fish sticking.
  • Arrange fish in the dish so that the thicker center portions are located near the outside edge of the dish for better cooking. Never layer the fish in the dish as it can lead to uneven cooking.
  • Cover the dish with plastic wrap, cutting a few holes for ventilation.
  • Cook the fish about 3 minutes per pound on high or until it reaches the required 140-145°F before serving.
  • Heat the grill for either 30 minutes (charcoal) or 10 minutes on high (gas) as recommended based on your grill type.
  • Make sure grate is 4-6 inches away from the fire and brush the grate with oil so fish doesn’t stick during cooking.
  • In a single layer, place the fish directly on the grill grate.
  • The cook time will depend on whether you are cooking with direct heat method or indirect heat method. For direct, aim to cook fish 5-6 minutes each side over medium-high heat until proper temperature is reached. For indirect cooking, cook 15 minutes or so with the lid on over the cool grate on the side of the grill.
  • Check temperature before serving.
  • Pour the desired liquid in a pan until it covers the fish. Common liquids are wine, water, fish stock, or even milk.
  • Cover the pan and cook the fish to just below a boiling point for the liquid.
  • Generally, you will need to cook fillets around 8-10 minutes in this method, depending on the thickness. A whole fish will take around 20 minutes when poached.
  • Get the right oil temperature. When deep-frying, if oil is too cold, the food will be soggy, and the fish will taste like grease. On the flip side, oil that is too hot will lead to the outside burning before the inside cooks properly. The ideal temperature for oil when deep-frying fish is around 375°F to allow for proper cooking without fish burning.
  • Heat the oil to the right temperature and use a candy thermometer to check the temperature.
  • If you have thicker fish fillets, cut them so they will cook more evenly.
  • Lightly bread the fish by dipping it in eggs and your desired breading.
  • Cook the fish for about 4-5 minutes until it is browned.
  • Drain fish on a paper towel before serving as desired.