Pan-Seared Rockfish | Family Cuisine

Rockfish, also known as Pacific Rockfish or Pacific Cod, is a type of fish that can be found in the Pacific Ocean. This fish is usually caught by fishing boats and then sold to grocery stores and restaurants. It's often served

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How to pan fry rockfish

This delicious pan-seared rockfish is made with fish seared in butter and oil, and then served with a lemon and caper pan sauce.

pan-seared rockfish on a plate

This year has had its ups and downs, but for us there has been one constant.

Reading: how to pan fry rockfish

We’ve had a freezer full of amazing seafood.

Since we knew we’d be home (not traveling) for quite some time, we signed up for monthly seafood deliveries from a CSF (community supported fishery).

And guys, it’s made the year a little bit easier.

If you’re looking for a CSF to join, I can highly recommend the one we joined, Sitka Salmon Shares.

One of our monthly fish deliveries included black rockfish (or black bass). We immediately made blackened rockfish tacos (yum!), but next I wanted to try a recipe where I could taste the rockfish more clearly.

This pan-seared rockfish is based on one of my all-time favorite fish recipes, Julia Child’s fish meunière (fish in butter sauce), and is served with an easy lemon caper sauce.

Looking for more white fish recipes? Try these: pan-seared lingcod, baked lingcod with tomato caper sauce, broiled cod, broiled halibut, pan-seared halibut, and halibut tacos.

What Does Rockfish Taste Like?

It depends on the type of rockfish you’re buying!

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The black rockfish I used was a mild, flaky fish.

In the past, I’ve purchased Pacific rockfish at Aldi that had a somewhat stronger flavor profile. It was still quite tasty.

Can I Make This Pan-Seared Rockfish Gluten-Free?

Yes, absolutely!

Before pan-searing the rockfish, you’ll dust the fish with flour. All-purpose gluten-free flour, such as Cup 4 Cup, will work perfectly.

Can I Skip the Flour?

Yes, you can.

The sear on the fish will be slightly less golden.

How to Make Pan-Seared Rockfish

Start by patting the fish dry and lightly dusting it with flour. Season the fish with salt and set aside.

Next, heat butter and olive oil in a heavy pan. I like to use this Lodge 12″ carbon steel skillet.

Place the fish into the pan, and avoid trying to move the fish. Don’t touch it yet.

Add Fish to the Hot Pan
Add Fish to the Hot Pan

After about three minutes, use a metal spatula to test the fish. Ideally, use a fish spatula.

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I use this Wusthof fish spatula, but have also heard great things about this Toadfish fish spatula.

Try to slide the spatula under the fish.

If the rockfish releases easily from the pan, flip it. If it doesn’t, try again in a few seconds.

It will release when the bottom of the fish is done cooking.

After you flip the fish, top each fillet with a little more butter.

Flip Rockfish + Top with Butter
Flip Rockfish + Top with Butter

Cook the rockfish for another couple minutes, and then remove it from the pan.

How to Make the Pan-Sauce

To make the sauce, add lemon juice and capers to the hot pan.

Use a wooden spoon to stir, scraping up any bits of fish stuck to the pan. Stir in some fresh herbs, and it’s ready!

Add Lemon Juice, Capers, + Herbs to Pan
Add Lemon Juice, Capers, + Herbs to Pan

Top the pan-seared rockfish with the lemon caper pan-sauce and a few more fresh herbs.

I like to serve this rockfish along with French mashed potatoes and a haricot vert salad.

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pan-seared rockfish on a plate

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