Cooking pan-seared halibut is easy. . If you're new to cooking fish, t buttery halibut with a lemon and white wine marinade is a good place to start. (gluten-free, nut-free, dairy-free option)
Here’s a halibut recipe that I’ve used throughout my life.
Time and Temperature For Pan Seared Halibut:
Pan seared halibut over medium heat for 3-5 minutes per side, or until a golden crust forms on the bottom and the center is opaque but no longer glossy or pink (about 130-135°F internal temperature).
Why You'll Love Pan-Seared Halibut
Halibut is my favorite fish. It doesn’t take a lot of ingredients to make.
All you need is a marinade and garlic. The halibut is pan-seared in olive oil for a crispy outside and finished with a drizzle of melted butter to take it from good to amazing while still keeping it light.
Tips For Picking Out Halibut
Fresh halibut season runs from March through mid-November, when you'll find it fresh in markets. Delicious fish is always fresh.
It should be mild-smelling with no strong odors. The flesh should be firm and vibrant in color, not dull, milky, or mushy.
Alaska halibut is my first choice. Most US halibut is sourced from Alaska.
Now that you've pick out (or caught yourself, if you're lucky!) your fish, here's everything you'll need to make the perfect pan-seared halibut:
- Garlic - fresh is always best
- White wine - something dry and light, such as pinto grigio or sauvignon blanc
- Olive oil
- Salt & pepper
How To Make Pan Seared Halibut
- Marinate the fish. In a shallow dish, whisk the minced garlic, lemon juice, white wine and lemon juice.
- Cut the halibut into filets.t. Place the filets in the marinade, turning to coat it. Marinate the fish in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes.
- Once you're ready to cook, discard the marinade and season the fish with salt and pepper on both sides.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add a little olive oil to coat the pan.
- Sear halibut for 3 to 5 minutes on each side.Press lightly using a fish spatula so the esurface touches the pan.. It should release easily once it has a crust and is ready to flip. Halibut is done when the internal temperature reaches 130 to 135°F (for medium).
- Lower the heat and add the butter to the pan. Once melted, spoon butter over the top of each filet before serving.
Is Marinade Necessary?
If you want to keep it simple, skip the marinade. y Squeeze lemon over the filets before seasoning with salt and pepper.
What Goes With Pan-Seared Halibut
- Easy Oven Broiled Asparagus, Simple Sautéed Green Beans, or a green salad.
- For a heartier meal, add some Basic Mashed Potatoes, Simple Oven Roasted Rosemary Potatoes, or Instant Pot Brown Rice Risotto.
- For a wine pairing, I suggest drinking what you used for the marinade - so make sure it's a wine you enjoy! I like a light, crisp Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, or Grenache Blanc.
Pan Seared Halibut Conclusion
Impress your friends and family with pan-seared halibut. Restaurants charge an arm and a leg for pan-fried halibut, so you’re better off cooking it at home.
Halibut steak is a delicacy. The halibut taste is unique. When prepared just right, you won’t believe you cooked it yourself.
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Easy Pan Seared Halibut
This easy pan-seared halibut recipe is healthy and so simple to pull off! If you're new to cooking fish, this buttery halibut with a lemon and white wine marinade is a great place to start. (gluten-free, nut-free, dairy-free option)
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Marinating Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: 3-4 servings 1x
- Category: main dish
- Method: stovetop
- Cuisine: seafood
- 1 lb Alaska halibut
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- juice from 1 large lemon
- ½ cup dry white wine, such as pinot grigio
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus 1 tablespoon for the pan
- sea salt and black pepper, to taste
- 1 tbsp butter
- lemon slices, for serving
- In a large, shallow dish, combine minced garlic, lemon juice, wine and olive oil.
- Use a sharp knife to cut halibut into 4 equal portions. Place portions into the dish with the marinade, turning to coat. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes.
- When you're ready to cook, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.
- Remove halibut from the marinade and season with salt and pepper.
- Place halibut filets in the hot pan and cook, pressing down gently with a fish spatula, until a golden crust forms on the bottom of the fish, about 3-5 minutes. Try not to move the fish around the pan a lot until the crust forms to decrease sticking.
- Flip fish and cook in the other side until cooked through, another 3-5 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 130-135°F (for medium).
- Add butter to the pan and let it melt, then spoon it over the top of the fish.
- Serve halibut with lemon (optional).
- Omit butter for dairy-free version.
- If you're using frozen fish, make sure it's completely thawed before cooking in order to ensure the center gets cooked.
- Careful not to leave the fish in the marinade for too long. The acid in the marinade can end up "cooking" the fish if left too long, and it might get tough. A little over 30 minutes is probably fine, but don't go much longer.
- If you want to keep things extra simple, you can skip the marinating step. Simply squeeze a little lemon on each filet before seasoning with salt and pepper and carry on with the recipe as written. I often do this on extra busy nights!
- If you want to keep the marinade to serve as a sauce, place it in a saucepan and bring it to a boil to make sure it's safe and the cook off the alcohol from the wine. Add some capers and/or a pat of butter if you'd like!
Keywords: simple pan seared halibut, pan seared Alaska halibut, easy pan seared halibut, wine marinated halibut
This post was originally published October 2018 and has been updated.