Since seafood can go from underdone to overcooked and dry in a matter of seconds, it's easy to be intimidated by how to cook fish. Our Test Kitchen is here with cooking temperature and preparation tips to help you avoid overcooked fish once and for all.
From baking to grilling to frying, you can customize the texture of your seafood using many cooking methods. Keep reading to learn how to master them all.
Thaw fish or seafood, if frozen. Place fish fillets in a well-greased grill basket. For fish steaks and whole fish, grease grill rack. Thread scallops or shrimp on skewers, leaving a 1/4-inch space between pieces. For a charcoal grill, place fish on grill rack directly over medium coals for the ideal grilled fish temperature. Grill, uncovered, until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork (seafood should look opaque), turning once halfway through grilling. If desired, brush fish with melted butter or margarine after turning.
Note: For a gas grill, preheat grill. Reduce heat to medium. Place fish on grill rack over heat. Cover and grill as above.
Get the recipe: Grilled Fish Tacos with Chipotle Cream
Baking fish is both fast and easy, but with the incorrect cooking temperatures or times, your fillets can quickly end up becoming overcooked fish. To ensure a delicious dinner every time, follow our instructions for calculating the right baking fish temperature and time.
1. Prep the Fish
2. Calculating cooking time
How long to cook fish depends on the cut. Because fish cooks quickly and dries out if overcooked, use these guides to estimate minimum cooking time for fish. The cooking temperatures may also change depending on what type of fish you're preparing.
Get the recipe: Lemon Baked Fish with Dill Panko Topping
These 25 seafood recipes will help you beat the dinner clock, no matter how busy your day is. (Psst: They taste amazing, too.)
Pan-frying is just as tasty as deep-frying, but with a little less fuss and fat. Start with your favorite fillet and coating, then follow these instructions for pan-frying fish:
Get the recipe: Pan-Fried Fish with Peppers and Pecans
If you're craving crunchy deep-fried fish, click here for how-to instructions.
After shrimp, salmon and tuna are tied as the second most common fish option on American menus. Salmon ranks high with our Test Kitchen since it's rich in omega-3 fatty acids (for joint and skin health), protein (one four-ounce serving offers more than half of your daily requirement of the muscle-builder), and selenium (a mineral that helps fight heart disease, among other ailments).
Not sure what temperature to cook salmon at or how to know when salmon is done? We can help! We have tips for how to grill, bake, and saute salmon (even how to grill salmon on a cedar plank), so your fillet will come out perfectly every time.
Now that you know exactly how to tell if fish is done, you can prepare each of these recipes just right! Whether you're in the mood for fish tacos or pan-fried tilapia, a restaurant-worthy dinner awaits.