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Best Easy Fish Recipes

Best Easy Fish Recipes

Easy Fish Shopping Tips

A fresh fish should not smell fishy nor have milky, opaque eyes; it should have bright red gills, firm flesh, and a tight anal cavity.

Easy Fish Cooking Tips

Whole fish should be stored upright in ice in the refrigerator.

Wine Pairing

Most white wines (especially albariño) and rosé with most fish dishes. Muscadet, sancerre, or New Zealand sauvignon blanc with cold fish dishes; chardonnay, pinot gris/grigio, or pinot blanc with grilled or roasted fish; sauvignon blanc or gewürztraminer with baked fish; grüner veltliner with fish pâté; vintage or non-vintage champagne or sparkling wine with light fish dishes; fino or manzanilla with small fried fish; junmai, junmai-ginjo, or junmai-daiginjo with teriyaki fish.

45 Easy Seafood Recipes to Try for Dinner Tonight

The best seafood dishes are healthy and impressive, from salmon to shrimp to tuna.

You know you should be eating more seafood, since some types of fish have high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids that help reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke. Most Americans, however, fall short of the recommended two servings per week. But with these seafood recipes, it&rsquos easier (and tastier!) than ever to get in a serving any night of the week &mdash whether you&rsquore featuring frozen seafood, canned fish, or fresh fillets from the fishmonger.

You don&rsquot have to be pescetarian or observing Lent to enjoy the tasty &ldquomeats&rdquo of the sea. From salmon burgers to white wine mussels to a fish chowder bake, these recipes just how delicious and versatile things like salmon, shrimp, clams, tuna, and tilapia can be. So get inspired by these recipes and experiment with cooking both frozen and fresh fish at home. After all, there&rsquos a whole world ocean out there.

How to Smoke Fish & Three Easy Recipes

Smoking is one of the oldest methods of preserving fish. Long before there were refrigerators and freezers, our fishing ancestors learned to use a combination of salt and smoke to keep fish from spoiling. Today, smoking fish is no longer necessary, but it remains a popular method of preparation to add flavor to fish such as salmon, tuna, trout, sturgeon and catfish.

Large batches of fish can be smoked, refrigerated and used in a variety of tasty recipes. photo from Food Network

In pre-refrigeration days, smoked fish were heavily cured and smoked fairly dry for storage at room temperature or in a cellar. Today's cures are lighter, so most forms of fish smoked at home need to be refrigerated until use. You can freeze smoked fish for even longer storage.

Today's cook has a variety of smokers from which to choose, and all can be used to prepare excellent smoked fish. Many cooks prefer inexpensive, vertical charcoal smokers such as Smoke Canyon Vertical Smoker with Offset Firebox. These utilize a water pan inside for moist cooking.

Smoke Canyon Vertical Smoker
with Offset Firebox

Tip: Large batches of fish can be smoked, refrigerated

Smokers that run on propane are popular for use in fishing camps and at home. The Masterbuilt Sportsman Elite 40" Extra Wide Two-Door Propane Smoker, for example, has a push-button ignition and features 2,000-square-inches of cooking space, adjustable gas controls and extra large viewing window in the smoker door. There is a separate door for wood and water beneath the door to the smoking chamber, this smoker lets you add wood and water without opening the cooking chamber thus allowing you to maintain a more constant cooking temperature.

Electric smokers are great for preparing delicious fish, too, and come in many varieties, from inexpensive basic models such as the Bradley Electric Water Smoker to high-tech products like Masterbuilt Gravity Series 560 Digital Charcoal Grill and Smoker with advanced digital circuitry that allows you to precisely control the time, temperature and smoke level for succulent results every time.

Bradley Smoker Electric Smoker

If you plan to cook for a crowd, and want to invest in a smoker that will last a lifetime, you also may want to consider some of the big fabricated-steel smokers on wheels such as those available from Horizon smokers found at

Tip: Large batches of fish can be smoked refrigerated and used in a variety of tasty recipes.

Fish smoking methods vary, but all are based on a few common principles. The following are very generic steps you can use to smoke your own fish. You may want to experiment a little with some different ingredients to create your own brine. Start with the basic brine solution listed under Step 1, then add what you like to it. Additions to try include lemon juice, garlic cloves, rum, soy sauce, onion salt, garlic powder or other ingredients whose taste you like.

Step 1 - Prepare Fish

Place small pan-dressed (gutted, head removed) fish, fillets of fish or pieces of boneless fish with the skin left on one side, in this basic brine solution:

Stir the ingredients together until the salt and sugar have dissolved. Then place the fish in a bowl, completely cover the pieces with the brine solution and refrigerate. Fish pieces one inch or more thick should be in brine eight to 12 hours. For thinner pieces, six to eight hours is sufficient.

Step 2 - Pat Dry Fish

Remove the fish from the brine, and rinse each piece under cold water. Gently pat dry with paper towels, and lay the pieces on a waxed paper to air dry for about one hour.

Step 3 - Smoking the Fish

Smoke the fish for two hours in a smoker heated to 200 degrees. Use your favorite wood chips or chunks when smoking. You can cut and dry your own wood or buy prepackaged materials like Western Wood Smoking Chips or Jack Daniel's Wood Smoking Chips. Experiment to find the taste you like most. Good woods for flavoring smoked fish include hickory, alder, apple and cherry. Add more wood chips during the smoking process if necessary, depending on how much smoke taste you want.

Tip: Get the most out of your grilled or smoked dishes by knowing which foods are enhanced by each of the three categories of smoke. Learn more Get the Most Out of Your Grilled or Smoked Dishes.

With some types of smokers, you also can add flavor using prepared smoker ingredients such as Bradley Smoker Flavor Bisquettes or if your experimenting on flavor and want to your options try the Bradley Smoker Flavor Bisquette Variety Pack.

Smoked fish is delicious alone, or can be used in a wide variety of recipes, including those that follow.

1. Smoked Fish Dip

What You'l Need

  • 1-1/2 cups crumbled smoked fish
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup finely minced onion
  • 1 stalk celery, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
  • 3 teaspoons sweet pickle relish
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Cayenne, salt and pepper to taste

Put the smoked fish in a medium bowl and add the milk. Cover and chill for 30 minutes to an hour. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Cover and chill for 2 to 3 hours until flavors have blended. Serve with your favorite crackers.

Smoked Fish Cakes. Photo courtesy of

2. Smoked Fish Cakes

What You'll Need

  • 12 ounces smoked fish
  • 1/4 cup sweet pickle relish
  • 1/2 cup unseasoned bread crumbs
  • 1 red bell pepper, minced
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh dill
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • Butter for frying

In a food processor bowl fitted with a steel blade, pulse the fish, relish, bread crumbs and bell pepper until finely chopped. Scrape into a bowl and mix in the soy sauce, mayonnaise, eggs, dried herbs, dill and pepper. Add more bread crumbs, if necessary, to make a firm fish mixture. Form into twelve or so (three inch) patties.

In a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, heat enough butter to generously coat the bottom of the pan. Arrange the fish cakes, not touching, in the pan and cook until brown on both sides, turning once (about four minutes per side). Cakes should be moist but not mushy inside. Top with a dollop of tartar sauce or your favorite fish sauce.

3. Smoked Fish Omelets

What You'll Need

  • 12 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • Butter
  • 6 oz. smoked fish, chopped
  • 4 tablespoons chopped red onion
  • 8 tablespoons whipped cream cheese

Whisk eggs, salt and pepper in a large bowl to blend. Melt two teaspoons butter in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Ladle 3/4 cup of the egg mixture into the skillet. Cook until eggs are softly set, stirring often and lifting the edge of the eggs to allow the uncooked portion to run under, covering skillet if necessary to help set the top. Place 1/4 of the smoked fish on half of the omelet. Sprinkle with one tablespoon onion and top with two tablespoons cream cheese. Fold omelet in half and slide out onto a plate. Repeat with the remaining ingredients to make three more omelets.

38 New Ways to Prepare Fish and Seafood

In the mood for seafood? Try these simple and delicious dinner recipes.

From grilled salmon to indulgent chowders, discover a new way to enjoy fish and seafood.

Why have one type of seafood when you can have them all?! (We're talkin' mussels, shrimp, and white fish.)

A spicy cornmeal breading gives fried cod, shrimp, and clams a crispy kick.

Stuffed with Gruyère cheese and crab meat, these pop 'ems will be gone in a flash.

Grab a bag of Utz and get crushing&mdashthese potato chip encrusted fillets seriously bring the crunch.

Get more tang for the buck with this quick and easy recipe for in-season grapefruit.

This combination of shrimp and buttered noodles will quickly earn a spot in your weekly dinner rotation.

You can't beet this dish. (Sorry, we couldn't resist.)

Get dinner on the table quick (and keep dirty dishes to a minimum) with these simple fish packets.

Crisp, vibrant snap peas and their edible pods are in the spotlight during the spring. Bring a little snap to the table with this quick and easy dinner.

Fire up the grill! Prepare shrimp in foil packets for easy clean-up.

Pasta night just got a whole lot more delicious.

This hearty salad has all of the fixings of a shrimp taco&mdashwithout the calories.

Cajun seasoning gives your usual shrimp dinner a spicy kick.

Nothing says "home cooking" quite like a hearty gumbo. Grimes adds Coca-Cola and black coffee to her version.

The time-honored tuna casserole comes to the table with a brand-new look. Our makeover secret? Separating the pasta from the fish.

If possible, use freshly caught fish from a local purveyor for this dish.

Spiced with crushed red pepper and cayenne, tomato sauce becomes a zesty accompaniment for sauteed shrimp.

This elegant casserole was inspired by the tuna-noodle childhood favorite. It can be baked in individual casseroles or in one large dish and served buffet style.

This sandwich bursts with fresh flavors, from tart Granny Smith apple to crisp, spicy fennel.

Sweet and salty flavors combine to glaze this melt-in-your-mouth salmon fillet.

NOW: For mini seafood rolls, thaw, then chop frozen cooked shrimp. Use enough mayonnaise to coat shrimp, then salt and pepper to taste. Season with fresh lemon juice. Stuff rolls, garnish with parsley.

LATER: Divide any leftover shrimp into meal-size portions while still frozen and store in freezer. To make weeknight meal prep easy, defrost and sauté shrimp for pasta dishes, or add to stir-fried vegetables.

Cornmeal-Coated Catfish Fingers take a piquant touch from the addition of cayenne pepper.

The Shouldn’t-Be-This-Easy Seafood Boil

While I love a come-one, come-all, once-a-year extravaganza featuring a comically oversized pot and bushels of sea creatures, an intimate, Dutch-oven scaled affair is a lot more manageable—and can happen a lot more often. You can pull off this seafood boil on a weeknight, packed with any quick-cooking veg you’ve got—think snow peas, broccolini, carrots, and favas. Serve with white rice for sopping up that delicious jus. —Lauren Schaefer, Kitty’s Market, Hudson, NY

This recipe is part of Short Is Sweet, our collection of summer dishes that deliver a whole lot of deliciousness in 30 minutes or less.

All products featured on Bon Appétit are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through the retail links below, we earn an affiliate commission.

Easy, Healthy Seafood Dinner Recipes Your Entire Family Will Enjoy

If you ask us, everyone should prepare more seafood at home. Fish and shellfish are healthy and cook quickly, and there are so many ways to make them the central ingredient in an easy meal. Sautéed and fried fish may be your go-to recipes, but it's time to widen your horizons. Our goal is to encourage you to try a few different types of readily available fish and cook your current favorites in different ways. (And if you're not sure how to start cooking fish at home, check out our helpful guide to fish cooking techniques.)

The easiest way to get dinner on the table in less than 30 minutes is to sauté fish fillets. You should look for translucent flesh that is free of unappetizing odor. Flash-frozen fish fillets are a good choice, especially for fish with a short harvesting season. You'll want any flaky white fish with a thin skin that will get super-crispy in the pan be sure to slash the skin's underside so when it's placed into the pan, it'll cook evenly without curling up. For the sea bass pictured here, the skin was scored in two-inch intervals to allow uniform heat to gently cook the filet.

Shopping for good fish might be the most challenging aspect about preparing it at home. Heading to a local fishmonger for domestic, sustainably caught seafood is the best option, but you could also strike up a conversation with the staff at your grocery store's seafood department: Ask them how the fish was caught, and be sure to describe the recipe you have in mind to make sure your purchase is a good fit. When buying whole fish, look for clear eyes, red gills, and shimmering skin, which are all signs of optimal freshness. And always check Seafood Watch for guidance on sustainable seafood choices.

Reviews ( 20 )

I made this for company. It was good but the clams and mussels that we bought a Santa Monica Seafood didn't open - no clams opened but about half the mussels did. i doubled the sauce per a review and that was a good thing. I would add more crushed red pepper next time. To simplify, I mixed red pepper, tom paste, diced tomato and clam juice together ahead. So to start, i sauteed the onion and garlic, added the tomato mixture and then all the seafood a once when the sauce had simmered a bit, covered and waited for the shellfish to open. Still really good!

Couple of helpful tips that I would consider next time I make this.-I took the tails off beforehand. The presentation isn't as nice, but it's easier to eat. -I prefer Sea Scallops over Bay Scallops. Better flavor and more tender. And even though they're more expensive, you have other shellfish in the dish, so you don't need that many.-Buy an extra can of diced tomatoes. (I used diced San Marzano for this recipe obviously). I wouldn't use all of it, but maybe another half can. I had barely enough sauce to cover the pasta, but you always want a little extra for dipping the bread in!-I used Buitoni fresh pasta (in the cheese aisle) instead of boxed pasta. Big difference and cooks much quicker!

I think I've discovered that me and my family do not care for mussels. The clams were good though. My market did not have bay scallops so I substituted some fresh cracked dungeness crab added at the last minute. 1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes is too hot for this, IMO. It really takes away from the seafood. I think I'd also use a whole cup of clam juice as the sauce was pretty thick after draining the tomatoes. I think more of a brothy consistency would be better here. Would make again with these changes.

I made this a couple of months ago and it was the bomb. I added calamari with lots of tentacles. I also used the big Bay Scallops. The broth/sauce was absolutely delicious. Since I don't like a lot of heat I used 1/4 teaspoon of crushed red pepper. Everyone LOVED it. I'm going to make it again and perhaps add some lobster.

excellent dish! must get good bread to seep up the sauce. a definite keeper!

This recipe was delicious. I couldn't use my mussels because I did something wrong but even without them it was delicious. I added a little corn starch to thicken the sauce and it was a hit. Even my 10 year old picky eater said it was the best recipe I've made.

OMG, this is "Fantastic" and quick. My hubby said he would eat it the following night! We are having friends over on Valentine's Day, what a great dish. It is also fun to watch the videos. I love to cook and bake, what a pleasure to be in the kitchen, really.

I'd give this one 10 stars if I could, it's that good. Mostly followed the recipe but used more garlic, a lot more shrimp, and served over half regular/half spinach linguini. 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes is a decent amount of heat and a nice thing about this recipe is that all the components can be adjusted to suit your own taste without compromising the overall flavor. Use more or less of each of the seafood, more/less garlic, red pepper, etc. Just enough left over from two dinner size servings for two appetizer portions tonight. I served it with an arugula salad dressed only with a lemon juice/olive oil dressing and a whole grain Italian bread. Delicious! Should have taken a photo, just to prove that it turned out exactly the way it looks here. I'll definitely be making this again and again.

Easy Fish Baked in Parchment

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Steaming fish in parchment paper is a healthy, tasty way to cook it, and it’s so simple you can have it ready in less than 30 minutes. Impress dinner guests by presenting them with their very own parchment pouches. As you cut through the parchment, a puff of steam rises. Oohs and ahs ensue.

What to buy: Parchment paper can be purchased at most grocery stores.

Game plan: You can prepare the parchment package ahead of time and refrigerate it for up to 6 hours. Then cook as directed.

To see this recipe with illustrated steps, check out The Basics: How to Make Fish Baked in Parchment.

Southern Fried Fish

I love to eat my fried fish with tartar sauce. Make your own quick tartar sauce or buy a quality one and let's not forget about wheat bread. Slather the tartar sauce over each slice of wheat bread (or your choice of bread).

I always add tartar sauce onto both sides, a bit more on one side and minimal tartar sauce on the other slice of bread. Add the fried crispy fish on top of the tartar sauce with bread then drizzle on the hot sauce.

I'm telling you if you haven't tried frying whiting fish, nows your chance. This recipe uses frozen whiting fish but if you can get your hands on fresh whiting..Omg it' even better!

Sardines For Dogs: An Easy Raw Recipe

Our dogs need omega-3s in their diets. What’s the best way to get them?

Many people turn to fish oil, but if you want to boost the essential fatty acids, is that the only option?

Nope, you don’t have to use fish oil to do it. Just use fish: mackerel, herring and sardines for dogs are some of my favorites.

This is a healthy treat that your dog will really enjoy. It’s packed full of those omega-3s your dog needs. And it’s a great way to get greens in too.

Why Your Dog Needs Fish In His Diet

Whole fish is a great addition to the diet. Not only is it high in omega-3 fats, it also contains a lot of important minerals and trace minerals like protein, calcium, selenium and niacin.

But it’s really those omega-3s that pack a punch.

  • Reduce inflammation
  • Help fight heart disease and cancer
  • Regulate cell activity and healthy cardiovascular function
  • Improve brain function and normal eye health

In fact, research shows that Omega-3s can help prevent and reduce the symptoms of arthritis.

But you need to make sure you don’t feed fish from the Pacific because of radiation concerns … and all fish will contain heavy metals and toxins. Look for small fish that only feed on phytoplankton, not fish that eat other fish, because they’ll contain more toxins. That’s why I like fish like anchovies and sardines for dogs.

Cooking With Sardines For Dogs (Sort Of …)

This is a great recipe my dogs (and clients) love.

My favorite fish to use are Wild Alaskan red sockeye salmon, mackerel, sardines or herring. When I was in Massachusetts I was able to get fresh sardines! But, don’t worry, canned sardines for dogs work just as well though if you can’t get fresh.

To make a batch of these treats, you’ll need:

  • 1 small tin of sardines in spring water
  • 2 eggs
  • A handful of whatever greens you want (combine them or just use one – and change them up):
    • Nettles
    • Spinach
    • Kale
    • Dandelion greens
    • Spirulina

    Note: If you use a large can of sardines, double the recipe.

    I’ll usually lightly steam the greens. I’ll sometimes add the water to the recipe. For the spirulina, I grind it with a pestle and mortar.

    You can also use the water from the fish. If you’re concerned about BPA (the alternatives to BPA free are as bad or worse), just leave it out. You can also add turmeric, Ashwagandha or any herbs you want to include in your dog’s diet. Powdered herbs are great for this recipe.

    Mix the ingredients together.

    How To Feed This Tasty Treat

    There are several ways to feed this tasty treat:

    • Raw
    • Lightly bake to the consistency of an omelet (350 degrees for a few minutes)
    • Freeze them

    When I bake it, I use a glass dish that you can add grass-fed butter, a bit of ghee or coconut oil to for more healthy fats. Baking it is great for ready-made food for traveling. They love it either way.

    If you’re looking for a way to add fish to your dog’s diet, start with sardines (or any small fish). They pack a nutritional punch!