Grilled Steelhead Trout

Labor Day Weekend is right around the corner and for many of us that means one more weekend packed with summer fun – festivals, live music, camping trips and of course, a couple of BBQs with friends and family.

Are you planning on firing up your grill this weekend?

We’re often asked about grilling during the cleanse, and the truth is that we like to consider grilling to be part of the 20% of our 80/20 lifestyle.

The ingredients used can be perfectly cleanse-friendly but the act of grilling over an open flame can add extra toxins.

Carcinogenic heterocyclic amines (also called HCAs) form when the combination of amino acids and sugars found in meat are exposed to high heat. Occasional exposure doesn’t appear to cause health problems but we wouldn’t want to take this delicious risk everyday.

When craving the outdoorsy flavor of a grilled treat, I often turn to fish. Salmon is always yummy but buying it wild-caught isn’t always an option. This is why Steelhead Trout – also part of the salmon family, is an easy alternative. It’s got similar flavor, nearly identical color and texture, and oftentimes it’s less expensive! The lower price may be due to the ecologically responsible farming methods of this popular fish. As opposed to opting for wild-caught as we do for most other fish, Seafood Watch encourages us to buy farm-raised Steelhead (or Rainbow) Trout and even considers it a Best Choice.

Seafood Watch also has a great app that you can download right to your phone, making it easy to check which seafood to buy and which to avoid.

If you’re not going to be cooking over the grill or campfire, I’ve also included directions for an oven-baked trout that yields a super juicy variation. Try both methods and let me know what you think!

Until next time, what are your plans for the long weekend? I hope it’s delicious and blissful.

With love,


Grilled Steelhead Trout

Yield: 2 trout fillets

  • 2 (4- to 6-oz.) steelhead trout fillets, preferably with skin on
  • 2 TB. coconut oil, divided
  • 1 clove of garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 TB. fresh rosemary or any fresh herb, minced
  • ¼ tsp. sea salt
  • Pinch freshly ground black pepper
  • Juice of 1 lemon

Preheat the grill to high heat.

Add trout fillets to baking dish with 1 tablespoon of coconut oil. If coconut oil is hardened, melt first and then add to baking dish. Add garlic, rosemary or other fresh herbs, salt and pepper. Massage seasonings and oil into the flesh and skin of the fish. Even if skin won’t be eaten, it’s best to leave it on while cooking to prevent the fish from curling. Add lemon juice and cover to marinate at room temperature or in refrigerator for at least 15 minutes.

When ready to grill, use the other tablespoon of coconut oil on a paper towel, and using metal tongs, grease the hot grill. Using a regular or fish spatula, then add fillets to the grill, skin side down. Close grill lid and allow fish to cook for at least 6-8 minutes before flipping. The fish is ready to flip when it releases easily from the grill and does not stick. Cook on opposite side for another 2-3 minutes until cooked through.

Skin and garlic slices may be eaten or discarded after cooking.

Preheat oven to 400o. Line baking dish with tinfoil before adding coconut oil and trout, skin side down. Add remaining ingredients and massage seasonings into fish flesh. Fold the foil to close, sealing each edge to form a packet around the fish. Marinate at room temperature or in refrigerator for 15 minutes. Then bake fish for 10-12 minutes or until cooked through. Discard skin and garlic slices (optional) before serving.

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Showing 4 comments
  • Debbie Stoffel

    This was Yummy! I wanted to marinate in the refrigerator for a few hours so I replaced the coconut oil with avocado oil. I thought that the coconut oil would harden and prevent it from marinating properly. (I have no idea if this is true!) I had 3 pounds of fish, so I used 2 Tbsp of Avocado oil. I also used 1 Tbsp of Herbes de Provence; the blend has rosemary, thyme, fennel and lavender, it was perfect for fish. I omitted the lemon juice from the marinate due to the length of time. I didn’t want ceviche. This is the first time I have grilled Steelhead Trout and I am grateful for your recipe as a guide. Turned out fabulous!

    • Jo and Jules

      So glad you liked it, Debbie! The coconut oil would have likely solidify in the fridge and may not render the same flavor. Your changes sound wonderful.

  • Beth Woods

    I just made this, and it is amazing! I used dill, garlic, lemon, salt, and smoked black pepper – with the coconut oil of course. My husband claims to hate fish, and I fed this to him out of my hand – literally. He loved it. He’s amazed. Thank you!

    • Jules Peláez

      Wow! Love it. That’s so great to hear! xo Jules

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