Pan-Fried Grouper Recipe

Pan-Fried Grouper Recipe Recipe

This is a simple preparation for cooking white fish fillets. I used skinless grouper fish fillets because the skin can be strong tasting and unpleasant. I let the fish sit in milk and a mixture of onions, fennel, celery seed, bay leaf and thyme. Then I simply pan-fried the fish, basted it with clarified butter and waited until the flesh turned opaque. 

Grouper has succulent, moist meat on the inside if cooked properly. Its mild, slightly sweet taste is great to introduce to children. Baby Aria loved it. I think her favorite part was that I let her drizzle lemon juice over her fish.  


Yields: 4 servings

4 (8-ounce) grouper fillets
1 cup milk
¼ teaspoon turmeric
3 cloves fresh garlic, peeled and halved
¼ white onion, finely chopped
½ teaspoon fennel seeds
½ teaspoon celery seeds
1 fresh bay leaf
1 sprig lemon thyme
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon white pepper, freshly ground
1¼ teaspoons salt
¼ cup canola oil (or any neutral oil), as needed
2 tablespoons clarified butter, melted
juice of 1 lemon


Marinating the fish:

Clean the fish fillets. Pat dry. Cover with milk. In a mortar and pestle, combine the fennel, celery seeds and turmeric. Once powdered, add 1 clove garlic, onion, bay leaf and thyme. Add to the milk. Mix well and let sit for 5 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon oil. Set aside.

Allow your pan to get nice and hot, then add olive oil and pan fry the grouper 2-3 minutes on each side or until you get good color.


Pat dry the fish fillets one more time. Season with salt and pepper. In a non-stick pan, heat the rest of the oil and add the rest of the garlic, sauteeing until glistening.

Dust one side of the fillets with flour and place them in the pan, floured side down. Once a thin crust is forming, dust the top with more flour and flip the fish. Pan fry 8 minutes on each side. Baste with butter, flip the fish one more time and wait until you get a lightly golden color. 

Drizzle with lemon juice, cover and let sit for 5 minutes before serving.

Bon appétit!


You can also make your own variation using your favorite flavoring, such as lemon peels, pink peppercorns, turmeric or oregano.

Published By: Jacqueline Pham on May 20, 2014.


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