Sauteed Sablefish with Ginger-Soy Glaze

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Look for wild-caught sablefish (a k a black cod, Alaska cod, butterfish) from Alaska or British Columbia. It’s a fatty, mild-flavored fish with luscious, buttery texture (if you can’t find sablefish, use wild Alaskan salmon instead). Sablefish is delicate, so use a thin, stiff spatula to turn the fish. If the skin sticks to the pan, no worries; just use the spatula to lift the fish and leave the skin behind.


Sauteed Sablefish with Ginger-Soy Glaze

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Yield: Serves 4


  1. 3 tablespoons honey
  2. 3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  3. 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
  4. 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  5. 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  6. 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  7. 1 clove garlic, grated
  8. 4 (5- to 6-ounce) sablefish (black cod) filets
  9. Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  10. 2 tablespoons canola oil
  11. 2 green onions, thinly sliced (white and green parts)


Combine first 7 ingredients in an 11 x 7-inch baking dish. Add sablefish, turning to coat. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 20 minutes, turning after 10 minutes.

Remove fish from dish and reserve marinade. Sprinkle fish evenly with salt and pepper. Heat a large nonstick skillet or sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add canola oil and lay fish in pan, skin side up. Cook 5 minutes on each side or until lightly browned and to desired degree of doneness.

While fish cooks, pour reserved marinade into a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and cook 7 minutes, or until marinade is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Brush fish with glaze and garnish with sliced green onions.

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  • Sea Cuisine

    Fabulous seafood recipe! We very rarely see sablefish on a menu out to eat. Usually there is the standard tilapia, salmon, grouper, etc. However, that doesn’t mean we can’t cook it at home! There are very few quality recipes for this white fish, so we are really appreciative that you shared yours. Thanks!

  • llmichellels

    This is soooo good! Trader Joe’s just started carrying the frozen Sablefish so I tried this tonight with one 11 oz piece. Not sure if there would have been quite enough sauce for double that, but you can always make enough sauce for your own taste. Dipped some steamed snow peas in it too. Now I don’t have to go to Roy’s for a great piece of butterfish! Thanks!

    • liahuber

      Oooh … thanks for the TJ’s tip! I love sablefish when I can find it (check out our smoked sablefish recipe too), but that’s not often enough.

  • Andrea Schneider

    Best fish I’ve ever made! I baked my fish from frozen and it still turned out fantastic. Here’s a picture on my blog:

    • Alison Ashton

      Wow — it looks great!

  • hannah

    Love it! Great spice combinations. I just tried a place based in Alaska that provides sablefish. I order there since i’m not near a Trader Joe’s or Costco. Yum!!

    • Alison Ashton

      Hope you enjoy it, Hannah!

  • marcy grantor

    Wow, this recipe is the best I have ever tasted!!!!!! It was better than a restaurant could ever make! Perfection! MMMM mmm mmm. My 5 and 8 year old girls and husband couldn’t get enough.

    • liahuber

      So glad, Marcy! I love that it got 3 (or 6!) thumbs up from your family too!

  • Rebecca Jane

    This is probably the best fish dish I have ever made.

    • liahuber

      Aww — I’m so glad to hear that, Rebecca. Thanks for sharing! Xo

  • H. Green

    oh my this is delicious! Had our first order from Ocean 2 Table – our first taste of Sablefish. Fantastic – Thanks so much for the recipe!

  • Kim

    My husband LOVED this dish!! He ate the whole pound of fish in one sitting with coconut rice. Huge hit!!

  • Heather Doyle

    I make a lot of fish and this easy recipe is one of the best dishes I have made. The marinade coats the fish perfectly and the glaze is fantastic. I can’t wait to make it again! Lots of bang for the buck here!

  • pvl

    Why would you begin sauteed with skin side up? In my experience, that’s a recipe to cause there flesh of the fish to adhere to the pan. Seems it would be better to saute skin side down, then when mostly cooked, turn over for a quick finish? Just trying to understand your why here?

    • Margaret Gunderson Bonicelli

      INO!!! Always sear skin-on fish skin side up first! This is a basic technique for preparing fresh fish!

  • Margaret Gunderson Bonicelli

    Love this recipe! The flavors complement the black cod perfectly!