Are you looking for a way to spice up your grilled fish?
If so, then sauces are the perfect solution.
The right sauce can add flavor, texture and color to any dish – and it’s especially important when cooking with delicate fish.
From creamy mayonnaise-based sauces to zesty salsas, there’s something for everyone.
In this article, I’ll be exploring the ten best sauces for grilled fish.
From classic recipes like tartar sauce to more unique options like chimichurri, these condiments will take your seafood dishes from good to great!
Why Use A Sauce with Grilled Fish?
Grilled fish is a delicious and healthy way to enjoy seafood, but it can be tricky to get the perfect flavor.
Adding a sauce or marinade can help enhance the flavor of grilled fish and make it more enjoyable.
Here are three reasons why you should use a sauce with grilled fish:
- To add moisture: Fish tends to dry out quickly when cooked on the grill, so adding a sauce helps keep it moist and juicy. Sauces also help prevent sticking, which makes for easier flipping and turning during cooking.
- To add flavor: A good sauce will bring out the natural flavors of your fish while adding its own unique taste as well. Marinades are especially helpful in this regard since they have time to soak into the flesh of your fish before grilling, giving them an extra boost of flavor that won’t burn off during cooking like sauces do.
- To create texture: Sauces can also give your grilled fish some added texture by creating a crispy crust on top that adds crunchy contrast to each bite. This is especially true if you choose something thicker like barbecue or teriyaki sauces that will caramelize nicely when exposed to high heat from the grill grates.
The 10 Best Sauces for Grilled Fish
Grilled fish is a delicious and healthy meal, but it can be a bit bland if not accompanied by the right sauce.
Here are ten sauces that will bring out the flavor of your grilled fish, each offering its own unique taste:
1. Tartar Sauce
Tartar sauce is a condiment made from mayonnaise, pickles, capers, and other seasonings.
It is usually served with seafood dishes such as fried fish or shrimp.
The name comes from the French word for ‘tartare,’ which refers to a type of steak tartare that was popular in France during the 19th century.
- How To Make It: Start by combining 1 cup of mayonnaise with 2 tablespoons of finely chopped dill pickles, 1 tablespoon of capers (drained), 1 teaspoon of lemon juice, and ¼ teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Mix all the ingredients together until they are well combined. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.
- Common Uses: Tartar sauce is most commonly used as an accompaniment to fried fish or seafood dishes such as crab cakes or shrimp cocktail. It can also be used as a dip for vegetables or chips, spread on sandwiches instead of mayonnaise, or added to salads for extra flavor and creaminess.
Chimichurri is a sauce or marinade made from finely chopped parsley, minced garlic, olive oil, oregano, and vinegar.
It originated in Argentina and Uruguay but has become popular all over the world.
The name of the sauce comes from an Argentine slang term for “a mixture of things,” which perfectly describes this flavorful condiment.
- How to Make It: Start by combining fresh parsley, garlic cloves, oregano leaves (dried or fresh), red pepper flakes (optional), salt and pepper in a food processor. Pulse until everything is finely chopped. Then add extra-virgin olive oil and white wine vinegar to the mix and pulse again until it forms a thick paste. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed before transferring to a jar or bowl with a lid.
- Common Uses: Chimichurri can be used as both a marinade and sauce for grilled meats like steak or chicken, but it’s especially delicious when served with fish dishes such as grilled salmon or tuna steaks. It can also be used as a topping on sandwiches or salads, stirred into soups or stews for added flavor, or simply enjoyed as an accompaniment to breads like focaccia.
3. Lemon Butter Sauce
Lemon butter sauce is a classic French sauce made with butter, lemon juice, and white wine.
It’s creamy and rich, yet light and tangy at the same time.
The combination of flavors makes it an ideal accompaniment to grilled fish or seafood dishes.
- How To Make It: Start by melting some butter in a pan over medium heat. Once melted, add some minced garlic and cook until fragrant (about 1 minute). Then add the white wine and bring to a simmer for about 5 minutes until reduced by half. Finally, stir in the lemon juice and season with salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for another 2-3 minutes until thickened slightly then remove from heat.
- Common Uses: Lemon butter sauce is most commonly served with grilled fish or seafood dishes such as salmon, cod, shrimp, scallops, etc., but it can also be used as a topping for vegetables like asparagus or broccoli or even pasta dishes like linguine or fettuccine alfredo.
4. White Wine Lemon Caper Sauce
White Wine Lemon Caper Sauce is a classic French sauce made with white wine, lemon juice, butter, and capers.
It’s a light and flavorful accompaniment to grilled fish or other seafood dishes.
- How To Make It: To make the sauce, start by melting butter in a pan over medium heat. Once melted, add minced shallots and cook until softened. Then add white wine and reduce until it has reduced by half. Add lemon juice and capers to the pan and simmer for 5 minutes before adding salt and pepper to taste. Finally, whisk in cold butter until the sauce is thickened.
- Common Uses: White Wine Lemon Caper Sauce is commonly served with grilled fish such as salmon or cod but can also be used as an accompaniment for roasted vegetables or chicken dishes. The bright flavors of this sauce are sure to bring out the best in any dish!
5. Salsa Verde
Salsa verde is a type of sauce or condiment made from green ingredients such as parsley, capers, anchovies, garlic, and olive oil.
It is usually served with grilled fish or other seafood dishes.
The name salsa verde comes from the Spanish words for ‘green sauce.’
- How to Make It: To make salsa verde, combine chopped fresh parsley leaves with capers, anchovies (optional), garlic cloves, lemon juice and zest in a food processor. Pulse until everything is finely chopped. Then add extra-virgin olive oil and pulse again until the mixture forms a thick paste. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.
- Common Uses: Salsa verde can be used as a condiment for grilled fish or seafood dishes such as ceviche or shrimp tacos. It can also be used as a dip for vegetables like carrots and celery sticks or spread on sandwiches instead of mayonnaise or mustard. Additionally, it can be added to soups and stews to give them an extra kick of flavor.
6. Creole Cream Sauce
Creole cream sauce is a creamy, flavorful sauce made with smoked paprika, butter, diced tomatoes, creole seasoning and lime juice.
It’s a popular accompaniment to grilled fish dishes in the Southern United States.
- How To Make It: To make creole cream sauce, start by melting butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add the diced tomatoes and cook for about 5 minutes until they are softened. Then add the smoked paprika, creole seasoning and lime juice and stir to combine. Simmer for 10 minutes or until the mixture thickens slightly. Serve warm over grilled fish or other seafood dishes.
- Common Uses: Creole cream sauce is most commonly served as an accompaniment to grilled fish dishes such as blackened redfish or mahi-mahi. It can also be used as a topping for tacos or burritos filled with shrimp or crabmeat. The smoky flavor of the smoked paprika pairs well with many types of seafood dishes and adds depth of flavor to any dish it’s added to.
7. Salmoriglio Sauce
Salmoriglio sauce is a traditional Italian condiment made from olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, oregano, and salt.
It is typically served with grilled fish or vegetables.
- How to Make It: To make salmoriglio sauce, start by crushing two cloves of garlic in a mortar and pestle. Then add 8 tablespoons of fresh oregano leaves and 1 teaspoon of coarse salt. Mix together until the ingredients are well combined. Next, add 5 ounces of freshly squeezed lemon juice and 10 ounces of extra-virgin olive oil to the mixture and mix until everything is blended together. Finally, add 10 ounces of water to thin out the sauce slightly before serving it over your dish.
- Common Uses: Salmoriglio sauce is most commonly used as a condiment for grilled fish or vegetables such as zucchini or eggplant. It can also be used as a marinade for chicken or pork dishes before grilling them on the barbecue. Additionally, it can be used as a dressing for salads or drizzled over roasted potatoes for an added flavor boost!
8. Asian Sweet Sesame Sauce
Asian Sweet Sesame Sauce is a sweet and savory sauce made from sesame oil, soy sauce, sugar, garlic, ginger, and other seasonings.
It has a rich flavor that pairs well with grilled fish or vegetables.
- How to Make It: To make Asian Sweet Sesame Sauce, combine 1/4 cup of sesame oil with 1/4 cup of soy sauce in a small bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of sugar and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Then add 1 tablespoon of minced garlic and 1 teaspoon of grated fresh ginger. Stir until all the ingredients are combined. Taste the sauce and adjust the seasoning as desired by adding more soy sauce or sugar if needed.
- Common Uses: This versatile sauce can be used as a marinade for grilled fish or vegetables before cooking them on the grill or in the oven. It can also be used as a dipping sauce for fried foods such as tempura shrimp or chicken nuggets. Additionally, it can be drizzled over steamed rice or noodles for an extra burst of flavor.
9. Cajun Remoulade Sauce
Cajun Remoulade Sauce is a creamy, spicy condiment made with mayonnaise, mustard, and various spices.
It originated in Louisiana and is commonly used as a dipping sauce for seafood dishes such as fried shrimp or crab cakes.
- How to Make It: Start by combining 1 cup of mayonnaise with 2 tablespoons of Dijon mustard, 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce, 1 teaspoon of garlic powder, 1 teaspoon of onion powder, ½ teaspoon of cayenne pepper (or more if desired), ¼ teaspoon of paprika, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix all the ingredients together until they are well combined. Taste the mixture and adjust seasonings if needed. Refrigerate the sauce for at least an hour before serving so that the flavors can meld together.
- Common Uses: Cajun Remoulade Sauce is most often served as a dipping sauce for fried seafood dishes such as shrimp or crab cakes. It can also be used as a spread on sandwiches or burgers or even stirred into soups or stews for added flavor.
10. Dijon Mustard Sauce
Dijon mustard sauce is a creamy, tangy condiment made from Dijon mustard, mayonnaise, and other ingredients.
It has a smooth texture and a slightly sweet flavor that pairs well with grilled fish.
- How to Make It: To make the sauce, combine 1/2 cup of mayonnaise with 2 tablespoons of Dijon mustard in a bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of white wine vinegar and 1 teaspoon of honey or sugar for sweetness. Whisk together until all the ingredients are combined. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.
- Common Uses: This sauce is commonly used as a dip for fried foods such as french fries or onion rings, but it can also be used to top grilled fish or chicken dishes. It can also be used as an ingredient in salad dressings or sandwiches for added flavor and creaminess.
In conclusion, there are many different sauces that can be used to enhance the flavor of grilled fish.
From tartar sauce to creamy piccata sauce, there is a sauce for everyone’s taste.
The best sauces for grilled fish are tartar sauce, chimichurri, lemon butter sauce, white wine sauce, salsa verde, cajun cream sauce, salmoriglio sauce, soy lime chili sauce, creamy piccata sauce, and cajun cream sauce.
Each of these sauces is unique and adds a different flavor to grilled fish.
No matter which sauce you choose, it will surely add an extra layer of flavor and make your grilled fish even more delicious.
The 10 Best Sauces for Grilled Fish
- Tartar Sauce
- Lemon Butter Sauce
- White Wine Lemon Caper Sauce
- Salsa Verde
- Creole Cream Sauce
- Salmoriglio Sauce
- Asian Sweet Sesame Sauce
- Cajun Remoulade Sauce
- Dijon Mustard Sauce
- Select your favorite recipe.
- Organize all the required ingredients.
- Prep a sauce recipe in 30 minutes or less!
Jenny has always been passionate about cooking, and she uses her platform to share her joy of food with others. Her recipes are easy to follow, and she loves giving tips and tricks to help others create their own unique culinary creations.