Our Best Seafood Recipes
From refreshing Thai crab-and-green-mango salad to salmon with gingery vegetables, here are our best seafood recipes.
F&W’s Justin Chapple rubs a supertasty mix of crushed fennel seeds and grapefruit zest onto snapper before baking it on a bed of sweet roasted fennel.
Bouillabaisse à l'Américaine
This luxe seafood soup from star chef Daniel Boulud starts with a fantastically rich-flavored broth made with fish heads, bones, lots of aromatics and tomatoes. Saffron-laced potatoes, snapper and bass fillets, shrimp and mussels all go in at the end and the dish is served with the best rouille we've ever tasted.
Frogmore Stew with Old Bay Aioli
Chef Joe Kindred’s deeply flavorful fish stock is what sets this recipe apart from a traditional low-country boil. Pile some of the seafood into a shallow bowl and ladle the strained cooking liquid over the top for a more refined stew, or save the golden stock to make the best seafood chowder of your life the next day. Whatever you do, do not let it go to waste.
Seafood Pan Roast
With this mixed seafood roast, Grace Parisi proves that a dish can be both luxurious and simple. "As a kid, I thought shrimp scampi was the height of sophistication," Grace says. "I've taken it several steps higher by adding lobster, oysters and scallops."
Ginger-and-Lemon-Steamed Striped Bass with Fennel Salad
Laurent Gras uses ginger, fennel and lemon to flavor his lean, protein-rich striped bass as it steams; then he serves it over a lemony shaved-fennel salad, an excellent source of vitamin C. "Instead of using oil or butter, I like to steam fish with aromatic ingredients," Gras says. "You get as much flavor this way—usually more."
Salt-Crusted Tilapia with Lemongrass
Thai cooks love tilapia for its versatility. "You can steam it, fry it or grill it," Andy Ricker says about this mild white fish. He stuffs whole fish with lemongrass, encases it in a salt crust, and cooks it over a charcoal fire. Be sure the heat stays relatively low, or the crust will burn before the fish is ready to emerge, moist and fragrant.
Potato-Crusted Salmon with Herb Salad
Preshredded potatoes, sold in plastic bags in the supermarket frozen-food department, usually end up as hash browns. This recipe suggests an entirely new use for them: seared onto fat fillets of salmon to form a fantastic crisp crust.
Fettuccine with Spicy Shellfish
Emeril Lagasse’s hearty pasta is packed with fresh shellfish and spicy chorizo.
Spaghetti with Clams and Garlic
I look forward to going to Sicily for many reasons," says Frank Castronovo of his biannual trip to southern Italy. "One of them is because I'm amazed at how many times Frank [Falcinelli] can order linguine con vongole." Their exquisite, supersimple version is packed with garlic and a judicious amount of crushed red pepper. If you prefer, shell the clams before tossing them with their juices in the pasta.
Pan-Seared Trout with Serrano Ham and Chile-Garlic Oil
“This dish is almost a cliché in Navarra, but it’s absolutely delicious,” says Alex Raij. “The Spanish ham keeps the fish from drying out, basting it with its inimitable fat.”
Lemon-Stuffed Grilled Branzino
Branzino, a European sea bass, is low in fat but has a wonderful richness when cooked on the bone. Barbara Lynch stuffs the fish with lemons and herbs, then grills it until the skin is browned and crispy to add even more flavor.
Sea Bass with Tomato and Black Olive Salsa
Sophie Dahl calls this a "good date dinner" because it's elegant yet easy. The Mediterranean-style salsa on the fish—a mix of olives, tomatoes, basil and lemon juice—would be equally delicious on its own as a salad.
Grilled Mackerel with Sicilian Caper-Tomato Salsa
"Give mackerel a chance," begs Michael White. The Spanish fish he imports from Europe is grilled, which makes the skin enticingly crisp, then topped with a refreshing tomato-caper salsa.
Grappa-Cured Striped Bass
Grappa, an Italian spirit, is made from grape pomace (the skins, seeds and stems left over from winemaking). Its slight earthiness and high alcohol make it perfect for curing fish, as in David Page's meaty striped bass fillets here, delicately scented with fennel.
Marinated Sardines with Fennel, Raisins and Pine Nuts
This classic Venetian dish sardines in saor incorporates quickly fried fish marinated in sweet Champagne vinegar.
Grilled Salmon with Preserved Lemon and Green Olives
Joe Bastianich likes the way protein- and omega 3–rich salmon gives him lots of energy without weighing him down. Here, it's grilled until the skin is crisp. Green olives add more heart-healthy fat and a hit of cell-protecting vitamin E.
Spanish Mackerel Escabèche
In this light dish, chef David Swain marinates fish fillets in red wine vinegar and olive oil along with tender carrots and shallots.
Steamed Mussels with Tomato-and-Garlic Broth
Mussels have three things going for them: They're cheap, quick to cook, and delicious. Using clean farmed mussels negates their one big drawback—the tedious chore of scrubbing and debearding.
Salmon with Gingery Vegetables and Turmeric
Alternative-health experts like Dr. Andrew Weil are lauding the "anti-inflammatory" diet, claiming that vegetables like broccoli, spices like turmeric and oily fish like salmon can ward off disease. This dish by F&W's Marcia Kiesel should make Dr. Weil very happy.
Octopus Salad with Potatoes and Green Beans
When octopus is slowly simmered, it becomes delicate and tender. Tossed in a salad with potatoes and green beans, then dressed with garlic and parsley, it makes for a very lovely and satisfying dish.
Salmon Sashimi with Ginger and Hot Sesame Oil
Tim Cushman is a master at preparing raw fish. Here he dresses salmon with a little citrus-soy dressing, then tops it with fresh ginger and chives before bathing it in a hot sesame-oil mixture. The heat from the oil cooks the salmon just slightly, creating a luxurious texture and fragrance.
Sea Bass Fillets with Parsley Sauce
Bob Chambers, a private chef and former F&W staffer, created this delectable butter-fried sea bass with an easy, lemony sauce.
Thai Crab-and-Green-Mango Salad
To create completely satisfying dishes, Thai cooks aim for a mix of sweet, salty, sour and bitter flavors. In his salad, chef Laurent Tourondel achieves that alluring combination by tossing tart green mango with cucumbers, a myriad of fresh herbs, a vibrant Thai dressing and plenty of delicate, sweet crabmeat.
Mofongo with Shrimp
While shooting his Food Network show, Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, Guy Fieri stopped in Miami to try mofongo, a Puerta Rican comfort food. The dish is served with chicken broth on the side or topped with meat or seafood, like the sautéed here.
Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp with Passion Fruit Mustard
Jean-Georges Vongerichten planned to punch up his shrimp with a simple mustard sauce, but the spectacular passion fruits on Bora Bora gave his sauce a tangy kick. Store-bought passion fruit juice also works well.
Stuffed Whole Wild Salmon
Whole fish are usually less expensive than fillets, and the presentation is more impressive. Chef Tim Love generally opts for wild salmon, which has a more delicate flavor than farm-raised. Cooking an eight-pound fish might sound intimidating, he acknowledges, but it's surprisingly fast and simple—though filleting the salmon can require some finesse.
Pasta with Salmon Caviar
Juicy salmon eggs add a delicate crunch to this luxurious pasta dish. If you prefer a more subtle fish flavor, substitute trout roe and smoked trout for the salmon roe and smoked salmon.
Steamed Wild Striped Bass with Ginger and Scallions
Steamed fish may sound plain, but this version is packed with flavor: It's cooked in a ginger-and-sesame soy sauce and topped with frizzled jalapeños and scallions. "I think part of the reason people love this dish is that the sauce is a really good vehicle for rice," Andrea Reusing says.
Clams the Sailor's Way
It's not uncommon in Galicia to have a meal that consists of lots of different shellfish, bread and nothing else. Encarna Méndez prepares clams the fisherman's way: steamed in Albariño with onion and garlic.
Fragrant Gigante Beans with Garlic Confit and Mussels
Mussels are lean, but the huge hunks of bread and french fries they're usually served with are very caloric. Chef Michael Psilakis cleverly serves his mussels with fiber-rich beans instead to sop up the delicious juices.
Salt-Crusted Snapper with Eggplant-Raisin Puree
Top Chef Season 6 winner Michael Voltaggio says fish in a salt crust is sexy.
Creamy Oyster Stew with Fennel and Brown Bread Toasts
Instead of serving this luxurious stew with oyster crackers, Jeremy Sewall brushes brown bread with rosemary butter, toasts it until crisp and dunks a piece in each bowl.
Smoked fish—already cooked and intensely flavorfu—is an ideal addition to dishes when time is of the essence. We've used trout here, but another flaky fish, such as haddock or whitefish, would work just as well.
Langoustines alla Busara
Venice-based blogger Skye McAlpine loves the delicate flavor of langoustines, but to her the real magic of the dish is the superflavorful tomato sauce in which they simmer. Be sure to have plenty of crusty bread on hand to soak up the sauce.
Butter-Poached Lobster Rolls with Spicy Sauce
Chef Geoffrey Zakarian makes the most decadent lobster rolls. First he boils the lobsters, then he poaches the meat in butter. To balance all of that richness, he tops the rolls with a spicy mustard mayo.
Food & Wine’s Justin Chapple makes his zippy cioppino with shrimp, squid, mussels and cod, then, to give it a lively Korean twist, he also includes tofu and gochujang (Korean red pepper paste).
Pike Quenelles in Crayfish Sauce
Chef Jamie Malone of Grand Cafe in Minneapolis, MN takes this traditional old-school dish French dish and Americanizes it with walleye and crayfish. Making the lobster stock from scratch ensures a rich sauce.
Maine-Style Lobster Rolls
Mary-Frances Heck refers to these lobster rolls as “knuckle sandwiches” because they showcase the knuckles—the segments that connect the claws to the carapace—which are the sweetest, most tender meat on a lobster. Dressed simply with mayo, the cold salad sits in a hot, buttered bun. Her tip for tackling the admittedly tedious work of cracking the shells? Do it with a friend and a cold beer.
This traditional Parsi dish gives crispy fish an extra hit of flavor thanks to a coating of green chutney.