Mastering the Art of Grilling Whole Fish
Sep 02, 2023 By Cassandra Bailey

Putting a whole fish on the grill is a great way to add seafood to any dish and gives the dish an air of sophistication. Learning the right way to cook a whole fish could make a big difference in the quality of your backyard cookout, whether you are a seasoned grill master or just starting. You can grill fish with a golden crust on the outside, and it is soft and tasty on the inside if you follow some basic rules and use the proper methods. It's possible that hearing how the method works might make you decide not to use it.

With the help of this detailed guide, you can pick the right kind of fish, prepare it for the grill, season it just right, and cook it to perfection. If you choose the right fish and grill it correctly, everyone at your next outdoor party will talk about the fish you cooked. Get ready to impress your guests with your grilling skills, and get ready to be blown away by the taste of a whole fish that has been perfectly grilled.

What Fish are best for grilling?

The answer is to get whole fish that are small enough to cook on your grill and then continue with the cooking process. However, only a few fish types are easy to buy and do well in this setting. We should eat these fish.

  • We have a Branzino in front of us. The well-known fish can be bought in its whole form at several stores for an average of about ten dollars per item. On the outside, they get a nice crunch; on the inside, they are soft but still hefty.
  • Let's call it a salmon if you like. People who fish use traditional tools. When you can, grill whole fish over an open flame to make it taste the best and stay fresh.
  • Bass. The taste of grilled lesser bass is hard to beat. It might be hard to find whole bass in my area, but if you do, you won't be surprised by the quality.

How to Know When Whole Fish Is Cooked:

Put an instant-read thermometer in the fish's most significant part, usually behind the head. This is the best way to get an accurate reading. The temperature on the thermometer should be set to 135 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, the skin near the head can be looked at. Once the water gets cloudy, you can eat the fish without worrying about getting sick.


  • Two whole branzini, including the heads and tails, weighed between 1.5 and 2 pounds.
  • Oil made from vegetables that is used to clean.
  • Freshly ground salt and pepper that has a hard texture.
  • To the amount of six tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil, with the following measurements:
  • Soak two small-diameter wooden sticks or six toothpicks in water for 30 minutes.

Dill & Lemon Filling:

  • You can add more dill leaves to your dish as a garnish if you want to.
  • One lemon is cut in half along its length, with one half thinly sliced and the other half cut into small pieces.

Basil, Lime & Chile Filling:

  • Each of the three whole Thai or serrano peppers has had its length cut in half.
  • Cut one lime in half so that one half can be used for slicing and the other for segmenting.
  • At least three fresh basil leaves, with more sprigs kept on the side to decorate.


  • Add salt, pepper, and olive oil to make the taste more pleasant.
  • While the grill is getting hot, set it up for direct cooking over medium-high heat. While the grill is getting hot, do this. During this time, prepare the fish by putting one tablespoon of olive oil inside each and then seasoning the inside with coarse salt and freshly ground pepper.
  • One of the best ways to keep the fish's natural wetness when cooking a whole fish is to stuff aromatics into the fish. Slices of lemon and dill should be stuffed into the flesh of one fish, and slices of lime, basil, and Thai chilies should be stuffed into the flesh of the other fish. If you only use one filler, multiply the amounts given by two to get the correct sum.
  • Skewers can be used to plug holes. Just stick, or a wooden skewer dipped in something to stop sparks from flying. Not only does this make cooking the fish more accessible, but it also lets the fish's natural flavors come through. When using skewers to secure the cavity, it is best to start at the back and move forward through the tail to the front of the cavity. This will make it easier to keep the fillers in their proper places.
  • With a cutting knife, make long cuts on both sides of the fish in a zigzag pattern that are 1/4 inch deep and 2 inches apart. You can be sure that the fish will be cooked all the way through if you follow these steps. Step 5 will show you how this lets any spices on the skin get into the meat.
  • Season the fish again by rubbing it with salt, pepper, and olive oil. Make sure to get it in the cuts and on the top and bottom of the fish as well. You can eat the fish’s head and tail, but the cooked tail tastes the best.
  • Fish has usually been grilled by brushing hot grill plates with vegetable oil. Let the fish cook for five to seven minutes with the lid off or until the meat along the gills and skin looks burned. Use half an onion to spread the oil around the pan uniformly. This will make it easier to season your food and clean your grill.
  • If you use two giant spatulas, it shouldn't be too hard to flip the fish. It should only take a few seconds for the skin to get burned enough so that you can take them off without any residue. It will take another five to seven minutes to blacken the other side of the fish and cook it until it is clear all the way through.
  • Citrus fruits like lemon and lime, as well as different herbs, go well with fish. Before you serve the fish, cut the piece away from the top of the fish and slide it off with a spoon. You must take out the bones first to get the rest of the steaks.


To summarize, frying a whole fish is a great way to cook seafood because it makes a delicious and satisfying dinner. If you use the methods in this lesson as a guide, you can be sure that the fish you grill will be fully cooked and have a lot of taste if you do as you are told. Start with a fresh, high-quality fish, then scale and gut it, then marinate it before broiling so the skin gets red and the meat stays soft. Also, don't be afraid to try out different marinades, sauces, and toppings to get the taste of the grilled fish just right.

You could try this way of cooking by putting some fish on the grill at your next outdoor party. Your guests will be impressed no matter what fish you serve them. So, turn on the grill, admire the beauty of a whole fish, and enjoy the delicious taste of grilled seafood, which will take your taste buds to a tropical beach paradise with every delicious bite.