Grilled Whole Red Snapper (Oven Grilled)
Published Jun 24, 2020
Updated Jan 24, 2023
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Grilled Whole Red Snapper is incredibly tasty! Ready in 25 minutes and made completely in the oven, this is a no-fuss whole fish recipe that anyone can make.
It is incredibly flavorful with the combination of herbs used. This is an easy dinner recipe for the whole family!
No grill, no problem! I am going to show you how to cook a whole fish completely in the oven. I used a whole red snapper here but the principles in this post will apply to any other fish.
The combination of herbs is to die for! The marinade that goes on this fish takes the taste to a whole ‘nother level. Even my non-fish-loving daughter was in love with this Grilled Whole Red Snapper!
Grilled Whole Fish Ingredients
For grilled whole fish you need the following ingredients:
1. Whole Fish. This can be gotten from fish markets.
2. Garlic. Lots of minced garlic adds flavor to the fish
3. Herbs. A combination of fresh thyme, parsley, and basil makes fish taste insanely good!
4. Lemon Juice. Freshly squeezed lemon juice adds freshness to fish and seafood in general.
5. Oil. Olive oil, canola oil, vegetable oil, or any neutral-tasting oil would work.
5. White Pepper. White Pepper adds a more intense depth of flavor that works well with fish. But use black pepper if that’s what you have.
6. Chicken Bouillon Powder. This brings out more flavor in the fish that salt alone doesn’t bring out. But you can use salt only to season your fish.
How To Grill Whole Red Snapper In The Oven
1. Scale, gut fish, trim the fins and thoroughly rinse the fish. Thoroughly dry the fish. Make 4-5 half-inch deep diagonal slits on both sides of the fish.
2. Mince garlic, basil, and parsley. Strip leaves off thyme stems.
3. Place herbs and garlic in a bowl. Add in lemon juice, oil, salt, white pepper, and chicken bouillon powder. Mix to form a marinade.
4. Rub the marinade all over the fish making sure to stick the marinade into every cut on the fish.
4. Bake fish in 400 degrees Fahrenheit oven for 20 mins. Then broil for 5 minutes to achieve a crispy top.
Where To Buy Whole Red Snapper
Here in the United States, I get whole red snapper fish from Asian stores. Most Asian stores have seafood sections where you can buy whole fish.
If you search for “Asian store near me” or “seafood market near me” you’ll likely find stores selling whole fish near you.
Top Tip: Have the fishmonger scale and gut the fish for you to make things easier at home.
Expert Tips For the Perfect Oven Grilled Red Snapper
1. After rubbing herbs and spices on the fish, let it marinate for 30 minutes. This really allows the flavors to penetrate the fish.
2. Line the baking sheet with parchment paper instead of aluminum foil. Sometimes fish will still stick to the foil even when you grease the foil. With parchment paper, that problem is solved. The fish easily slides out of the pan.
3. Bake the fish first to cook it then broil it to achieve color and crispiness on the outside and make it taste like it was grilled on the outside grill. The broiler in an oven cooks food with high direct heat like the outside grill. But while the grill cooks from under, the broiler cooks from the top.
What To Serve With Grilled Whole Red Snapper
You could serve Grilled Whole Red Snapper with a variety of side dishes including:
More Tasty Fish Recipes
Looking to try more fish recipes? Check these out:
Grilled Whole Red Snapper
- 1 whole red snapper (1 – 1 1/2 pounds) scaled and gutted
- 10 sprigs thyme leaves stripped off the stems
- 6 sprigs parsley minced
- 8 basil leaves minced
- 5 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons canola oil sub with olive oil
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice freshly squeezed
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon chicken bouillon powder
- 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
- In a bowl combine the minced garlic, parsley, basil and thyme leaves. Add in salt, chicken bouillon powder, white pepper, oil and lemon juice. Mix well to combine.
- Using kitchen shears cut the fins of the fish. Rinse thoroughly then pat dry with good quality paper towels or a clean kitchen cloth.
- Using a knife, make 4-5 1/2 inch deep diagonal slits on both sides of the fish.
- Rub half of the garlic herb mixture all over the fish making sure to rub the mixture into the cavity and stuff some into the slits you made. This will ensure the seasoning gets to the bone of the fish.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the fish on the baking sheet and cover with a plastic wrap. Let it marinate on the counter top for 30 minutes (no need to place the fish int the fridge).
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (300 degrees Celsius).
- Take the plastic wrap off the fish then place in preheated oven to cook. Let it cook for 20 minutes then take out the fish and brush with a little oil.
- Set the oven to broil. Place fish back in the oven and let it broil for about 5 minutes or until the fish is nicely charred. Be sure to watch the fish closely so it doesn't get burnt (the broil function could burn things fast).
- Take fish out of the oven and let it rest for 5 minutes before serving!