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Basic Broiled Fish: Quick, Easy, Healthy and Delicious

Updated on October 16, 2012
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I strive to provide helpful information, including smart and fun methods for solving everyday problems. Be smart; have fun!

Basic broiled fish served with fresh sugar snap peas and Cajun dirty rice.
Basic broiled fish served with fresh sugar snap peas and Cajun dirty rice. | Source

An Easy Recipe for Healthy Broiled Fish

If you're looking for quick and healthy dinner ideas, fish fillets are one delicious, simple dinner to try. Fresh or frozen fish that has been cleaned, skinned and deboned is available at any grocery store or super center. Because it is already cleaned, it's super quick and easy to prepare. Broiling cooks it up quickly and brings out the flavor of the fish.

The recipe I'm sharing here is simple and quick to prepare, quick to cook, low in fat and full of lean protein. The lemon pepper seasoning adds just the right amount of tang and spice.

When I broil fish at home for my family, I usually prepare a mild white fish, such as tilapia, flounder, cod, scrod, mahi mahi, orange roughly, hailbut or sole. I'm always trying to save money, so I typically buy whichever fish has the best rice per pound. My grocery store almost always has a competitive price on large bags of fish fillets that have been individually frozen in vacuum-sealed pouches. These are great becuase they not only have the lowest price per pound, but they allow me to thaw just the amount of fillets I need and save the rest for another dinner. The Individual fillets also thaw very quickly, which has saved me more than once when I've discovered at 5 p.m. that I don't have anything to cook up for dinner that's not frozen solid as a rock.


  • 4-6 fish fillets, or any number that you need
  • 2-4 Tablespoons melted butter, amount depends on number and size or filets
  • Lemon pepper, I prefer the salt-free variety
Fish fillets have been placed on a foil-covered pan, brushed with butter and lightly sprinkled with lemon pepper. Yes, the prep is that easy!
Fish fillets have been placed on a foil-covered pan, brushed with butter and lightly sprinkled with lemon pepper. Yes, the prep is that easy! | Source

How to get that fishy smell out of your house

Some people avoid cooking fish because they believe it stinks up their home. Unfortunately these people are correct, but the smell is not so bad that you cannot easily get rid of it, especially if you are using precleaned fish from the store as opposed to cleaning your own fish, which tends to make a bigger, smellier mess.

There are a variety of methods you can use to eliminate the fishy smell from your home, from no-brainers like opening the windows to boiling a pot of lemon pieces on your stiove. You can read about those methods and more in my article, "How to Get Rid of Fish Smell In Your House."


  1. Cover a shallow baking dish wirth foil and spray the foil surface with nonstick spray. A jellyroll pan or a cookie sheet with a raised lip on all four sides works well and keeps juices from making a mess in your oven.
  2. Place the fish fillets on the pan in one layer.
  3. Brush melted butter over the top of each fillet, covering the top surface entirely. I use a pastry or BBQ brush for this, but in a pinch you can use the back of a small spoon to spread metled butter onto the fillets.
  4. Sprinkle with lemon pepper.
  5. Place pan on the middle rack of your oven and set the control to broil. Broil for approximately 5 minutes per half inch of thickness. I tend to like mine with a little bit of browning around the edges, which some people feel is overcooked. Cook to your preference. Fish is done when it is no longer pink and it flakes easily with a fork.

More quick-to-fix week-night homemade dinners

Everyone knows the benefits of family dinners. The key for me to putting more family dinners on the table is having a stable of recipes I can turn to that are delicious but not a huge production to make and get on the table. Basic Croiled Fish is one of those. As are these:

Serving Suggestions

If you're going for healthy and low-fat, you can't beat basic broiled fish. The little bit of butter I call for isn't enough to add much fat or calories, but is enough to keep the top of the fish from drying out and becoming tough. I typically serve broiled fish with a big heap of steamed vegetables and Zatarain's Dirty Rice. Zatarain's Dirty Rice is a packaged mix that is easy and quick to make, and is full of yummy Cajun spice. To keep it healthy, I do not add the ground beef or butter the instructions call for, yet the rice is still is spicy, delicious and the perfect accompaniment to the fish. In fact, it kind of tricks my husband and I into thinking we're eating at our local Cajun restaurant, which has a menu full of decadent (meaning fat-laden) fish dishes with fancy sauces.

I usually eat my broiled fish without sauce. I love the taste of the lemon pepper, and I love the little browned spots that the broiler produces on the fish. I don't wish to cover those tastes up or add additional calories. My husband is a sauce person. Sticking with the Cajun (but healthy) theme, he douses his fish with his favorite brand of Tabasco-type hot sauce, Cajun Chef. It adds lots of flavor and basically zero fat or calories.

More saucy serving ideas: Try a bit of...

  • Lemon butter
  • Tartar sauce
  • Cocktail sauce
  • Traditional salsa, hot or mild
  • Fruity salsa, such as mango, peach or pineapple salsa
  • Hollandaise sauce
  • Butter sauce
  • White sauce

Recipe Notes

I prefer to use Bolner's Fiesta Salt-Free Lemon Pepper seaoning to keep sodium levels down. Unfortunately, salt-free lemon pepper can be difficult to find. On this page I was hoping to list the Bolner's Fiesta version of it for sale from Amazon, but was unable to find it or any salt-free lemon pepper in their inventory. I listed the next best thing, which is a huge bottle of Bolner's Fiesta Lemon Pepper at a great price. Unfortunately, though, it is not the salt-free version.

Did you make this recipe? Let me know how you liked it!

5 stars from 1 rating of Basic Broiled Fish


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    • SmartAndFun profile image

      SmartAndFun 5 years ago from Texas

      Hi MayG, I'm sorry I'm just now responding to your question. I changed the wording to say the middle rack. I don't know what possessed my to specify the lowest rack. I usually broil fish on the middle rack because I'm always multi-tasking (cooking veggies, setting the table, etc.) and I'm less likely to accidentally let it burn if it's not on the top rack. You can broil it on the highest rack if you like, but watch it carefully as it will be done sooner. Thanks for reading!

    • MayG profile image

      May Galnou 5 years ago from Melbourne, Australia

      Hi SmartandFun, Thanks for the recipe - I'm always looking for good fish recipes as I know we need to eat more fish. Do you really mean when you're broiling that the tray goes right on the bottom rack of the oven? I've never broiled anything that far away from the heat at the top.

    • gmwilliams profile image

      Grace Marguerite Williams 5 years ago from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York

      SmartandFun: I am a lover of all types and kinds of fish. This is a great recipe. I also broil my salmon and catfish with butter and sour cream and chives. Muy delicioso!

    • SmartAndFun profile image

      SmartAndFun 5 years ago from Texas

      Thanks, vespawoolf and SKeetyD for your comments. This recipe is nothing revolutionary but is so easy, healthy and yummy, I thought I'd share it for anyone who thinks that cooking fish is something difficult or mysterious.

    • profile image

      SkeetyD 5 years ago

      Good hub! Sounds like a tasty dish

    • vespawoolf profile image

      vespawoolf 5 years ago from Peru, South America

      What a great idea: economical and healthful fish. I like the details about the spices you use and where to get them. Voted up!