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Grilled cilantro lime halibut is so easy to make and doesn’t taste fishy at all. Just fresh, flaky, and fantastic! You will love the fresh flavor combinations!
Feautred with this recipe
All I can say is… BEST. HALIBUT. EVER. This recipe, with fresh lime and zesty cilantro, brings out the flavor of the halibut. It is really easy to make and doesn’t taste fishy at all. It is just fresh, flaky, and fantastic! Plus, it is low fat and healthy too!
Flaky halibut is such a mild fish that you can season it up pretty much however you like. I love the citrus flavor of lime and the zesty herbal flavor of cilantro. It just brings out the freshness of the fish. Start with salt and pepper, then use simple seasonings like garlic, lime zest, and fresh lime juice. This fish is so delicious, light, healthy, and flavorful.
Grilled Halibut Ingredients
Only six ingredients to make this halibut recipe just the right way! It is tender and flaky with all the flavor. This is a great source of protein and tastes amazingly delicious in every bite!
- Fresh halibut filets – Always recommend using the freshest fish you can find. If you are not a coastal resident, I like to use frozen halibut fillets that you can find at the grocery store. Fish counters at the grocery store have delicious options too, so just do a little looking and you’ll soon have your hands on some fresh fish to toss on the grill.
- Garlic – Every dinner recipe needs garlic! This adds that extra flavor everyone loves.
- White wine or chicken stock – The liquid is there to sear the fish in and give is moisture.
- Fresh cilantro – Chop cilantro to add a lemony and pepper flavoring.
- Lime juice and zest – A sweet and tangy juice that is refreshing and adds to the flavor. If you prefer lemon juice that will work too!
- Olive oil – This is used throughout the recipe to help keep the fish from sticking on the barbeque to searing in a pan. It gives the halibut a nice crisp outside edge.
How to Make Grilled Halibut
Grilling halibut is a special occasion and always a delicious dinner! It is light, flavorful, and delicious. Simply sear the halibut then grill it on the barbecue. It is an easy meal that comes together quickly and easily!
- Marinade – Season halibut with salt and pepper one hour before cooking. Place in refrigerator.
- Sear – Lightly oil a non-stick pan with canola or vegetable oil. Over high heat, sear each side of the halibut filets for five seconds each.
- Cook – Remove halibut from the pan and turn the heat down to medium. Add olive oil and garlic to the pan and cook for 2 minutes. Add wine or chicken stock, cilantro, lime juice, lime zest, and olive oil to the sauté pan and heat until hot but not boiling.
- Baste – Remove sauce from heat and baste fish on both sides.
- Grill – Cook on a barbecue grill for 3 minutes per side on medium heat, basting constantly while cooking. Serve immediately.
Tips for Grilling Halibut
Searing the filets will cook a fine layer on the outside of the fish so that it will not stick to the barbecue. Because of the moistness and flakiness of halibut, this will prevent the halibut from sticking and falling through the grates of your barbecue grill. This is a great tip when barbecuing all types of fish, but works especially well with halibut.
- Sear fillets – Our biggest tip to grilling halibut is to sear the fillets in a non-stick pan (oiled of course) over high heat on the stovetop before you even fire up the grill. Searing the fillets will give them a nice crust that will help prevent the halibut from sticking and falling through the grates of your barbecue grill.
- Oiling grill – Prep your grill too by oiling the cooking grate or grill before you transfer the fish from the stovetop to the grill. The whole trick is to keep that delicate flaky fish from sticking.
- Halibut steaks – Steaks that have been cut across the grain have a lesser chance of sticking to the grill, so you can choose halibut steaks instead of fillets if you wish.
“Made the Cilantro-Lime Halibut last night and it was GOOD! Skewered some veggies for the BBQ and a slice of garlic toast and we had an excellent dinner 🙂. The tip about searing the fish first – really worked well!”-Monica
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes! To ensure even cooking, it is best to flip the halibut on the grill. Grill the halibut about 2 minutes on each side over medium-high heat. Then reduce the temperature until the halibut is warmed through.
If you are worried about the halibut on the grill rack, you can place the halibut in a grill basket that is nicely oiled with cooking spray. This will contain the halibut while it is cooking and easy to flip without getting stuck to the grill.
You can sear the halibut before grilling or even bake the halibut on a baking sheet in the oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Once the halibut is opaque and flesh flakes when cut with a fork, the halibut is cooked through. This takes about 15 to 20 minutes depending on the thickness of the halibut.
Before grilling, pat the fish dry with a paper towel. Clean and oil the grill grates before grilling halibut. Place fish on the grill skin-side down first.
Grill the fish for about five to seven minutes long. Flip and close the lid to finish cooking. Once the internal temperature reads 145 degrees Fahrenheit the halibut will be cooked through. The fish flakes will be opaque.
Storing Leftover Halibut
Place the leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to five days long. This delicious meal can be reheated in the oven or microwave. Try not to overheat or it will become dry and chewy.
What to Serve with Halibut
Serve this seasoned halibut over rice or add it to a tortilla for Halibut Tacos. To keep calories down, we love to serve it alongside grilled veggies. This recipe is so versatile you can make it work with so many recipes. Try a few of our other fish favorites.
How to Make Grilled Halibut
- 12 ounces fresh halibut filets
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 cloves garlic crushed
- ½ cup white wine or chicken stock
- 1 tablespoon fresh cilantro chopped
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 teaspoon lime zest
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Season halibut with salt and pepper one hour before cooking. Place in refrigerator.
- Lightly oil a non-stick pan with canola or vegetable oil. Over high heat, sear each side of the halibut filets for five seconds each.
- Searing the filets will cook a fine layer on the outside of the fish so that it will not stick to the barbecue. Because of the moistness and flakiness of halibut, this will prevent the halibut from sticking and falling through the grates of your barbecue grill. This is a great tip when barbecuing all types of fish, but works especially well with halibut.
- Remove halibut from pan and turn heat down to medium. Add olive oil and garlic to pan and cook for 2 minutes. Add wine or chicken stock, cilantro, lime juice , lime zest and olive oil to the sauté pan and heat until hot but not boiling.
- Remove sauce from heat and baste fish on both sides. Cook on barbecue grill for 3 minutes per side, basting constantly while cooking. Serve immediately.
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Halibut is such a wonderful fish to grill! This is one of our summer time favorites!
I love halibut and am always looking for new great ways to prepare it. Delicious! Thank you
I made one change in the cooking method that I think was an improvement. I used a couple of pieces of fresh caught halibut I just got this weekend on a fishing trip in my home state of Alaska. The only difference I did was to cook the fish in a grill pan rather than on a barbecue. The marinade was collected in the bottom of the pan and when the fish was done it had reduced down to a nice sauce to finish the fish off with. Great recipe, using fresh ingredients that I had on hand.
That sounds DELICIOUS!!!! Very good to know! Sometimes fish is hard to grill because it sticks and flakes too easily. This is the perfect solution– plus you get a yummy sauce so double-win! Thanks for your great comment and for the 5-stars!
Aloha! Do you think pacific cod can be substituted in this recipe?
Hey Makana! 😀 How are you? Yes, you can use Cod or any type of white fish. Hope you like it! – Erica
Made the Cilantro-Lime Halibut last night and it was GOOD! Skewered some veggies for the BBQ and a slice of garlic toast and we had an excellent dinner 🙂
The tip about searing the fish first – really worked well!
Great! Glad to hear it turned out well for you! One of my favs… love the idea of skewered veggies!
This looks great! Do you have any suggestions for sides??
You could do a rice pilaf, steamed veggies or these Parmesan Potato Halves (that is my go-to side)
Can you do this without grilling and if so how long in the over or on stove top? Thanks!
Try grilling in a fry pan over medium heat until it is cooked through. It will brake and flake off easily when fully cooked.
Wow…this looks awesome too! I'll have to make this next week and share on my blog!! Be on the look-out ;o)
I just did this recipe and the timing was way off….especially for a thicker fish such as halibut. After following the instructions I think searing for about 20-30 secs on each side would be better than just 5 secs each side, and cook on grill for maybe 6 mins on each side, b/c after grilling for 3 mins each side the fish was still raw in the center. I think maybe i’ll try this recipe with a different type of fish and cook on a skillet!
I’m sorry you had that experience with this recipe! Cooking times can vary so much depending on your grill, the thickness of the cuts of fish, and even altitude. I’m glad you were able to figure out a solution!
At what temperature was your grill??? Thank you
It was on medium heat!
Hey there! I found your blog on my cousin’s blog links… I am so glad I did! I am LOVING your recipes… Thanks for sharing them:)