Cooking Fresh Fish Article -
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Cooking Fresh Fish

What's your favorite way to cook fish?

We have tips and top recipes for frying, grilling, poaching, and baking fish.


For the best possible pan-fried fish, make sure your fillets are well coated with batter and the oil or butter is hot (but not quite scorching).


Grilling is one of the tastiest ways to cook fish. But watch out! Unlike other meats, fish lose much of their moisture when cooked, and on an open grill the juice just drips straight into the coals.

To preserve a fish's moisture, try these simple steps.

  • Coat the fish with oil. Oil will seal some of the moisture inside.
  • Keep careful watch over the fillets and flip them as soon as the fish is cooked at least ½ way through.
  • Watch the fillets closely after flipping and remove the fish from the grill as soon as it is cooked through.

Another option is to wrap the fish in aluminum foil--or simply place the fish on top of the foil--which captures moisture and lets the fish marinate in its own juices while cooking. To prevent sticking, try placing parchment paper between fish and foil.


Prepare the marinade, preheat the oven, and then pop in the fish, being sure to check in on its progress from time to time to prevent overcooking.


Poaching gently cooks fish in broth or water. It's a simple and healthy way to cook fish that works best with firm fish like salmon.

Jun. 24, 2009 7:24 am
i have been grilling fish successfully for a while doing it right on the grate, but i do have a question if anyone has an answer. when grilling fish in/on foil, how do you keep it from sticking to the foil? ive tried scales down and oil but seems that it always gets stuck and falls apart when i try to take it off. any help?
Jul. 1, 2009 11:25 am
Try placing thin slices of lemon between the foil and fish.
Aug. 2, 2009 9:18 pm
Use that reynolds wrap non stick foil. I've never had anything stick to it. It does have a side that is not stick so be sure to have the fish touching that side.
Aug. 8, 2009 7:05 pm
Use parchment paper on top of the foil, it won't stick!
Aug. 18, 2009 4:37 pm
My neighbour's husband went fishing and gave us a few fresh fish (not sure what they're called but they're small). Now, I'm not into fish but would like to give them a try and I need a tasty, easy recipe. Any ideas?
Sep. 10, 2009 11:40 am
I suggest you try Parmesan cheese and Mayo for baking your fish.herman told me about it and we love it.
Sep. 10, 2009 11:43 am
Priyanka, My son-in-law cooks fingerlings in lemon butter and they are wonderful.
Oct. 28, 2009 6:28 pm
Good day! I would just like to request for an affordable recipe for catfish or pangasius fish.
Dec. 23, 2009 8:16 pm
Salt encrusted fish
Jan. 13, 2010 10:33 am
I am looking for a recipe for northern pike or walleye fish. I like to either bake or grill them, but they still taste too "fishy" Julie
Feb. 21, 2010 9:43 am
This is to Danaleotx, even though the trout are long gone by now... there is a restaurant that prepares open trout grilled "Italiano" style. I think it is just Italian dressing and grated parmesan cheese. Maybe it wasn't quite a dressing, maybe just oil and vinegar. I haven't tried it in a long time, but it is so good!!!
Jun. 26, 2010 6:17 am
Sticking to the foil is no problem for us as we just cut the foil around the fish and foil and fish go to our plate. We eat the fish and leave the skin stuck to foil
Jun. 26, 2010 1:07 pm
Julie1961, walleye and pike is easy. Use an acidy marinade, such as a lemon juice and cracked pepper, or apple cider vinegar, brown sugar and honey glaze. The acids break down the fishy flavor and accents the natural flavor of the fish without over powering. And good fresh fish wont have an overly fishy smell or taste. You can also grill with lemon slices between the fish and foil, and baste every 5 minutes with a lemon juice or orange juice, brown sugar, herbs of your choice mixture for a citrusy dish.
Jul. 30, 2010 10:24 am
I do a blackend pan seared trout fillet. I season the trout both sides with blackened seasoning (store) then put about 2 tbsp of olive oil in hot skillet. Place trout skin side down and do not touch. You will see the top go opaque. And think the skin is burning. Let it go till you think it is burnt. Then turn once for another just a few minutes. Remove to serving dish. You can even eat the skin it is so crisp and trout is deliscous.
Aug. 22, 2010 3:44 pm
I'm from Minnnesota, and Norwegian, pike and trout will always be best on planks (cedar). Marinade the planks in orange juice or lemon juice for about an hour prior to grilling, and use the same juices to marinade. I have never had an issue with fishy taste from fresh or even frozen fish. Happy grilling.
Aug. 25, 2010 6:47 pm
Julie1961, I don't care for "fishy" tasting fish either. If you soak/marinade your fillets in milk the enzyme that gives fish it's "fishiness" bonds with the milk. Remove the fillets from the milk and cook. When cooked your fish will not be fishy. The house won't smell either. I usually dump the milk. This has made others that don't like fish become fans.
Sep. 5, 2010 10:34 am
my friends coming back from mexico with a bunch of tuna and different types of fish. Any ideas on cooking the fish? I want to do one big dish for the fix, and then I want to do small intimate dinner with it too.
Oct. 16, 2010 9:18 am
Reynolds has a non-stick aluminum foil in the stores Seth. May even be able to purchase at the dollar store.... but it must say NON-STICK on the package. Hope this helps
Oct. 16, 2010 9:30 am
If your fish has been frozen... when you take it out of the freezer, and will be cooking it when it thaws out. Cover the frozen fish with water and add a shot glass of vinegar to the water, then when it is almost thawed out, cut off all the yellowish/ whiteish which is ( freezer burn). The redish is ( fat which goes rancid when frozen) and mud line, deep red cut off or out. That will make for a better tasting fish . Lots of fish recipes available on
Dec. 27, 2010 11:43 am
The text above on my recipie page says; "To prevent sticking, try placing parchment paper between fish and foil."
Dee Black 
Jan. 16, 2011 5:52 am
Does anyone have a recipe for a deboned Bangus? It's a Philipine fish.
Jan. 21, 2011 12:18 pm
its a nice comment. caravan sales
Mar. 23, 2011 11:22 am
I was surprised and disappointed that I was not able to find more haddock or flounder baking recipes.
May 18, 2011 5:43 am
One of the things I LOVE about this website is the reader comments. I have been cooking for years, and my grandson is a chef, but nearly every time I log in a learn something from other posters. Never thought of putting parchment paper over foil on the grill, and didn't know about non-stick foil. I've definitely become a better cook as a result of sites like allrecipes. Thanks everyone
Dec. 6, 2011 10:10 am
How many fish en papillote can I place in the oven together? I need to do 6. Does that add to the cooking time?
Jan. 2, 2012 2:21 pm
have you tried non stick cooking spray and butter
Feb. 18, 2012 6:34 pm
Great information from very helpful people!
Nasreen A Ghori 
Feb. 23, 2012 3:21 am
Dee Black I have been to Philippines last year to visit our daughter and she cooked the Bungus. For 1 kg of deboned thick pieces, take 2 medium onions chopped, 1 tbsp garlic paste 1 tbsp ginger paste, 1 tbsp cumin powder, salt and chillies to taste. 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice or tamarind paste. Put oil in an skillet, fry onion for 5 minutes, add ginger and garlic paste, salt and chillies and fry on medium fire for 5-10 minutes, keep stirring. Add fish pieces and coat with the masala. Add lemon juice or tamarind paste. Cook covered for 10 minutes on medium flame. Serve with boiled rice.
Feb. 23, 2012 4:02 am
The new Reynolds wrap non stick foil is great. Absolutely nothing sticks to it. It is a bit expensive so find some coupons and wait until it's on sale. Definitely worth the money.
Swallow Conrad 
Apr. 6, 2012 3:46 pm
For some reason, I have NEVER been able to cook fish properly. Thanks for the advise. I can't wait till I cook up the Salmon.
May 10, 2012 5:01 pm
my husband cought a pike, anybody know of any good way to cook it?.
Jun. 9, 2012 8:01 pm
carol...pike, to me, is one of the best tasting fish. We generally cook it in a cast iron frying pan with enough oil to cover the bottom of pan. We dip the pike fillets in a mixture of flour, cornmeal, salt and pepper. Hope this helps! Enjoy
Jul. 29, 2012 6:26 pm
Hi I just try the recipe of nasreen a is really quick n good.l like it.
Jun. 2, 2013 4:41 am
I have cooked fish for many years. Our favorite is walleye. The best way I have found to prepare it is to dip fillet in beaten egg then potato buds. Fry in oil and season with salt and pepper after removing from pan. This gives a crispy coating, ENJOY
Jun. 2, 2013 5:06 am
Oh, add to above. Try tihis for "tartar sauce". 1/2 cup real mayonnaise and 1 teaspoon mustard. I have tried adding spices and other add ons but it doesn't improve on just the simple combination
Aug. 28, 2014 4:54 pm
when we cook a whole salmon on the bbq I have a sheet of foil covered by a sheet of parchment paper. In the middle I spread enough mayo with lemon slices, s&p, dill, and sprinkle of brown sugar to fit the fish and place it one side down. Stuff inside with lemons & dill - on top of salmon more mayo,s&p, lemon slices, dill & brown sugar. Bring up foil & parchment paper to the middle and fold like you wrap a gift box. Seal the ends up well. Carefully turn half way and then poke two small holes in the top. Perfect every time and the mayo disappears and just keeps the fish moist. Do not overcook - about 15 minutes on each side over a medium heat usually does the trick.
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