This Grilled Halibut is cooked on a bed of sliced citrus fruits to create an indirect heat and is brushed with honey garlic butter. Best of all, this is grilled in 20 minutes!
If you’ve read many of my posts, you know that I have a love-hate relationship with Costco. I just can’t be trusted to wander the seafood and meat section of the store unsupervised! 😀 This trip, I walked off with a huge halibut fillet! I ended up cutting into pieces, as there was no way we’d eat it all in one sitting.
🍽️ Why This Works
Simple – This is an easy recipe that doesn’t take a lot of effort. In fact, we spent more time slicing the citrus and mixing the garlic butter than we did doing anything else. This is not complicated at all!
Delicious – The white, tender and flaky fish is so mild that it works with just about any side dish. The hints of citrus, garlic and butter make this a classic recipe that we come back to time and again.
New Technique – I cook on the Big Green Egg primarily, and have used my plate setter to create an indirect heat. This is the first time I used a bed of sliced oranges and lemons to create an indirect heat, and let me tell you: It worked like a charm!
Halibut – This is a fantastic fish that is commonly found in the Pacific Northwest. Years ago, my dad and I took a charter boat out of Kodiak, Alaska to catch these huge fish and it is a memory that will stick with me forever. It is a large, flaky, medium-firm, and mild white fish that holds together well on the grill.
Baste – This is a simple baste made from lemons, honey, butter and garlic. It adds just enough flavor to the fish without overpowering it.
Bed of Sliced Citrus – This was made from lemons and oranges sliced ¼ inch thick and laid directly on the grate. It protects the fish from burning and falling through the grates since it is so delicate.
⏲️ Baste Instructions
Step One: Melt the butter and add the honey in a small mixing bowl. You’ll see in our photos that the honey had crystalized a little. Don’t worry about it. The heat of the grill will reconstitute it nicely. In fact, I like the honey to crystalize, as I know it is all-natural and doesn’t have additives.
Step Two: Add the minced garlic and the juice from one lemon. Use a wooden juicer to get all of the juice possible.
Step Three: Mix well and set aside.
🔥 Grilling Instructions
Step One: Slice the lemons and oranges into ¼” slices using a sharp knife. I used three total fruits as that looked like enough to form a solid bed for the halibut to lay on.
Step Two: Heat the grill on direct heat to 350°F. For gas grills, target a nice medium-high temperature. Lay the fruit slices directly on the grill grate as close together as possible.
Step Three: Lay the halibut on top of the fruit. The citrus fruit forms an indirect heat and protects the delicate fish from burning. Baste the fish with the liquid mixture from above. Let the fish cook for ten minutes.
Step Four: Turn the fish over and baste that side. Let it cook for another 10 minutes.
Step Five: Remove the halibut and the bed of oranges and lemons. Place it back on the grill for a direct heat sear for an additional 2-3 minutes. This process adds a lot of flavor!
Add some kosher salt and black pepper if you’d like and then remove and serve with fresh lemon wedges!
❗ Expert Tips
Cut the large filet into manageable sized halibut steaks before grilling. I keep them around 1½ – 2” thick. That seems to be a good size to handle with grilling tongs and still cooks in a reasonable time frame.
There is no need for the plate setter. Believe it or not, the fruit serves the same purpose. It is a great technique that adds a hint of orange and lemon to the end product.
Use leftovers for a nice salad or over a light pasta dish. We flake the fish apart and add it to pasta with a little bit of olive oil for a fun lunch.
Steer away from seasoning the fish with strong spices and herbs. I love the mild taste of halibut and sometimes those seasonings overpower the flavor of the fish.
Additions and Substitutions
The easiest thing to change is the seasoning on the fish. I really like the honey garlic butter, but you can save some calories by sticking with a nice light herb rub. Use fresh rosemary, thyme, onion powder or even paprika.
🥦 What to Serve with Grilled Halibut
If you’re looking for something a bit lighter, try some grilled broccolini. This is extremely light and really complements the fish well.
Grilled Carrots with a delicate balsamic glaze are quick to make and you’ve already got the grill set up with the right configuration. These were so good, that we typically eat a few before they even make it back to the kitchen.
Halibut is usually found at your seafood counter in the grocery store. If they don’t have any, ask them to order it. Frozen fillets work, but the fresh choices are always better.
This is an extremely mild fish with just a hint of gaminess. It is a firm white fish and holds together well on the grill.
If you can’t find halibut, try another firm white fish like cod, pollock or white sea bass. If you are in the Pacific Northwest, see if you can find Lingcod. That is my favorite.
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- Small Mixing Bowl
- 2 lbs Halibut
- 2 Oranges sliced
- 2 Lemons sliced
Honey Garlic Butter
- 4 tbsp Butter
- 4 tbsp Honey
- 4 tbsp Lemon juice from the lemon
- 4 cloves Garlic minced
- Slice the lemon and oranges into ¼" thick pieces.
Prepare the Glaze
- Combine the butter, honey, lemon juice, garlic in a bowl and stir.
- Set aside.
- Heat the grill to 350°F over direct heat.
- Place the sliced oranges and lemons nest to each other directly on the grill grate. This will form a bed to protect the halibut from burning.
- Place the halibut on top of the citrus. Brush with the glaze and let it cook for 10 minutes.
- Carefully turn the halibut over and brush with the glaze. Let it cook for another 10 minutes.
- Remove the halibut and the citrus slices.
- Place the halibut back on the grill for 1-2 minutes per side to form a nice sear. This direct heat grilling will add a lot of flavor to the fillets.
- Remove and serve.