You know exactly what time of the year it is again. We are right in the middle of Spring and moving steadily towards the Summer season and everyone knows what that means. It means it is time to whip out the barbecue grill that you have been hiding in your garage from the last few rainy days and once again commence your annual barbecue traditions in the comfort of your own home or even at your favorite beach, park, etc.! As you ring in the new Spring and Summer season and celebrate the beginning of the barbecue dinners and parties, it is only fair that we leave you with some new recipes and tips to keep your barbecue reputation safe. Yes, while I have no doubt that the barbecue recipes that you proudly displayed last year were a hit amongst your family and friends, I can say with utmost certainty that to uphold your title as the ultimate barbecue master, you need to keep your audience on their tippy toes and waiting for something new and unique to bite into! Ditch the recipes you did last time (those are so last year) and check out these brand-new fish grilling recipes! While you may have your doubts at first, I can guarantee you that upon reading these recipes and tips for the ultimate fish grilling experience, you will see that fish definitely deserves more of a spotlight on the barbecue dinner table!
Essential Tips for the Best Grilled Fish
In addition to the awesome grilled fish recipes that I will be throwing your way, I think it is only fair that I do not leave you in the dark about some common fish grilling mistakes. It is super important that you keep these tips in mind when grilling up your own fish, for way too many people lose good fish to these rookie mistakes. Do not be that person!
Do Not Flip Flop
For some reason, it is almost innate for us to want to to consistently flip our fish back and forth on the grill. We leave it for a couple of minutes on one side and then we get antsy and flip it over onto the other side. We wait a couple of seconds before doing another flip and then another flip, and soon before we know it, we end up with mush on a grill. That is because fish is a very delicate meat and too much flipping of the meat creates even more of a possibility for the fish to stick on the grill grates. The sticking will cause your fish to inevitably turn into a pile of messed up fish meat that has the skin ripped off on some parts and the meat all over the place. Remember that with grilling fish or any meat in general for that matter, patience is key.
Grill One Side Longer Than the Other
To accurately grill your fish to utmost perfection, you should first begin by grilling the first side for much longer than the second side. Be sure that when grilling your fish, you keep the habit of grilling it with the grill lid closed. This is important because if you end up grilling the fish on the first side for a bit longer (and the grill closed), naturally the other side of the fish is already starting to cook up a bit, therefore the second side never needs as much time on the grate. So be sure to keep that in mind!
Be Sure Not to Get Crazy with It
It is important to remember that fish and seafood have quite a different muscle structure and firmness than the meat that comes from four legged creatures. With that in mind, you should remember that while marinating other kinds of meat for hours and really putting a lot of marinade on them is beneficial for them, when it comes to fish this is actually not the case. Since fillets and steaks have a firmer structure, they need the help of the marinade to quickly break down this structure. When it comes to fish, stick to less marinade and limit the amount of marinating time you designate to your fish. This will help to prevent against a mushy textured fish.
Do Not Be Afraid of the Fire
You really want to aim for high temperatures when cooking your fish. Having a higher temperature is more beneficial than a lower one because the high heat can actually help form a bit of a crust on the surface of the fish and this crust can help release the fish from the cooking grates when need to be. This means that you do not have to worry about your fish falling apart on the grill.
Skin is Best
When a recipe calls for the fish skin to be removed than it is okay as long as you are baking the fish. If you are planning to grill up your fish (which you are) than skin is the best buddy that you need to keep intact as you go through that process. Grilling is known be an “action” cooking method which means that you have to interact with the food a little bit more in order to ensure that you can get it cooked just right. By choosing to leave the skin on the fish you can help prevent the fillets from falling apart upon flipping them. They are wonderful at holding the fish together and keeping it intact in one piece. In a lot of cases, upon grilling the fish with the skin, many people choose to eat the skin with the fish because it provides wonderful flavor and a delicious crispy crunch. This is especially true for cases such as trout or mackerel. Yet the same cannot be said for fish like salmon and halibut which are tougher-skinned. They are best enjoyed with the skin is off, so after the grilling process feel free to peel off the skin!
Steam Your Fish
This might sound extremely odd, but there is actually a great method to this. Steaming fish is actually helpful in keeping the fish moist. The best part is that the process is super easy to do on the grill. You simply just need to grill it in a foil packet. To do this start by stacking two 20-inch sheets of foil and coat the center of the top layer with cooking spray. Layer up all of the ingredients within the foil and fold the foil over, pinching it up in order to seal it. Place the foil packets over the grill at medium heat (for a gas grill) or a charcoal grill in which the fish is located about 4-6 inches from medium coals. Cover the grill and cook all of the contents of the packet until they are done. Then proceed to open the ends of the packet to allow the steam to be let out. Voila! You have delicious, steamed fish ready to go!
Cheat the System by Using a Plank
This tip is for all of my people out there who want delicious grilled fish with less skill or work. If you want an amazing grilled fish experience, but do not think that your skills could handle the delicate methods that are utilized for fish grilling, then read up! This tip may be the one for you. You can use what is known as a grilling plank in order to get that juicy, delicious fish that you desire. There are no hard tricks with this one and you simply only need to soak the wooden plank within water for at least 2 hours before you begin grilling. Other than that, no other complicated methods or tips are required. You essentially just place your fish over the pre-soaked plank and then cover your grill. Soon the grill will do all the work for you and there is no flipping required. The only skill necessary is needing to possibly position the plank over lesser heat if you feel as if grill is too hot and fish is not done cooking. Yet other than that the plank does the work for you and the best part is that the wooden plank offers a delicious subtle, smoky flavor. I think it’s a yes.
The Legendary Grilled Fish Recipes
Now as I have breezed over some important and crucial tips before you step out there and make that grill your own, it is only fair that I do not let you part without some recipes to help get your creativity going and give you a nice head start. If you incorporate some innovative recipes like these, then your reputation as a barbecue connoisseur is absolutely solid.
Creamy Herb Grilled Salmon (tasteofhome.com)
- ½ cup of sour cream
- ¼ cup of ranch salad dressing
- ¼ cup of minced fresh chives
- ¼ cup of snipped fresh dill
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 3 tbsp of minced fresh parsley
- ½ teaspoon of pepper
- ½ teaspoon of seasoned salt
- 1 teaspoon of olive oil
- 1 salmon fillet (about 1 pound)
- First begin by mixing together the sour cream, chives, dill, salad dressing, minced fresh parsley, garlic clove, and seasoned salt in a bowl. Brush both sides of the salmon with oil.
- Proceed to place the salmon over a greased grill rack with the skin side down and spread the sour cream mixture you made earlier over the fish. Grill and cover over medium heat for about 12-14 minutes or until you have noticed that the salmon flakes easily with a fork.
Honey-Lime Tilapia and Corn Foil Pack (delish.com)
- 4 limes that are thinly sliced
- 2 ears of corn that are shucked
- 2 tbsp of honey
- 4 fillets tilapia
- 2 tbsp of fresh cilantro leaves
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ cup of extra virgin olive oil
- First begin by heating the grill to high. Cut about 4 sheets of foil that are each 12 inches long.
- Top off each piece of foil with a tilapia and proceed to brush the tilapia with honey. Then top it off with lime, cilantro, and corn. Next drizzle the olive oil and season it with salt and pepper.
- Grill the tilapia up until it is cooked through and the corn has become tender. This will typically take around 15 minutes.
Party Shrimp Boil (delish.com)
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 ½ pound of shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 2 ears of corn, each cut crosswise into 4 pieces
- 2 smoked andouille sausage, thinly sliced
- 2 tbsp of extra-virgin olive oil
- 1-pound red bliss potatoes, chopped into 1-inch pieces
- 1 lemon sliced into thin wedges
- 3 tsp of Old Bay seasoning
- 4 tbsp of butter, melted
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tbsp of chopped fresh parsley leaves, divided
- Begin by preheating the grill to medium-high heat.
- Then add in the potatoes to a medium saucepan, cover it with water and season with salt. Bring the water to a boil and then simmer the potatoes until they are tender.
- Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, be sure to combine shrimp, olive oil, garlic, 1 tbsp of parsley, and 2 tsp of Old Bay seasoning. Then toss the shrimp until they are evenly cooked and allow it to marinate for 15 minutes.
- In another separate bowl, combine cooked potatoes, corn, melted butter, 1 tsp of Old Bay, and 1 tbsp of parsley.
- Thread the shrimp, lemon, sausage, corn, and potatoes on metal or wooden skewers and grill the skewers until the shrimp has become opaque and the lemon has turned charred. This is equivalent to about 4-5 minutes total. Be sure flip once halfway.
These were only a few of the vast options you have when it comes to creating a unique grilled fish experience for all of your friends, family, or even yourself. Whether you want to incorporate salmon, tilapia, shrimp, halibut, mahi mahi, or more you can easily snag up a recipe that will make your fish absolutely divine. Upon trying these simple recipes, you can see how grilled fish can truly be a new experience for you to experiment with in the upcoming summer. Do not be afraid to get out of your comfort zone of steaks, chicken, and pork and see all the possibilities that a hearty grilled seafood dinner can do for you!