Baked Trout Fillet Recipe
There are many ways to cook a trout fillet, but this easy and healthy recipe is one of our favorites. Baked in the oven with olive oil, salt, pepper, onions, and lemon—it only takes about 20 minutes from start to finish. Serve the trout with veggies and rice or your favorite side dish, and you have a restaurant-quality meal right at home!
Trout is a lean, protein-packed fish with a mild, delicate flavor. When cooked properly, it’s moist and flaky.
Trout is also low in calories and fat but high in protein and healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Plus, it’s gluten-free, making it a great choice for anyone looking for an alternative to red meat or a simple healthy meal option.
It also pairs well with a variety of sides, so it’s a wonderful choice for everything from a dinner party to a quick and easy weeknight meal.
Try this easy oven-baked rainbow trout recipe and enjoy all the health benefits + great taste that come with it!
Here are the handful of ingredients you’ll need.
- 1 lb trout fillets
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 thinly sliced onion
- 2 lemons, 1 sliced into rounds, 1 for wedges
- 2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- Parsley or other fresh herbs
We love the limited amount of dishes used for this meal; here are the supplies to gather.
- Baking sheet
- Parchment paper or aluminum foil
- Small mixing bowl and spoon
- Small cutting board and knife
How to Cook Trout in the Oven
When it comes to the various methods you can use to cook rainbow trout fillets, baking is one of the best. Not only does it result in juicy, flavorful fish, but it’s also easy to do.
Follow these simple steps, and you’ll have delicious oven-baked rainbow trout in no time.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Thinly slice the onion and 1 lemon. Cut the other lemon into wedges, and set aside.
Place the fish fillets skin side down on the parchment paper or foil. Pat dry with a paper towel.
Drizzle with olive oil.
Top with thinly sliced onion (optional).
Squeeze fresh lemon juice over the fillets and top with lemon slices.
Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until cooked through. This cooking time is based on 1/2 lb. fillets. You may need to adjust the time up or down if your fillets are larger or smaller.
Trout is done when it reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit, the fish flakes easily with a fork, and the meat is opaque. Fish is very easy to overcook, so be sure to keep an eye on it!
Garnish with fresh parsley or fresh dill. Dried herbs work great as well. Serve with lemon wedges for an extra squeeze of citrus flavor.
That’s it! Enjoy this simple and tasty rainbow trout recipe!
Other ways to season trout
Using olive oil, salt, black pepper and lemon is a classic and delicious way to prepare rainbow trout, but don’t be afraid to get creative. Trout’s mild taste makes it a great complement to a variety of flavors. Here are a few additional ways you can season trout for baking:
- Use melted butter in place of olive oil
- Replace garlic powder with minced garlic
- Add a pinch of red pepper flakes to each fillet for a bit of heat
- Drizzle with honey
- Marinade the fish in a mixture of soy sauce, garlic, sesame oil, ginger, olive oil, and green onion before cooking (yum!)
- Try limes in place of lemon
- Top with a garlic butter sauce, lemon zest, and fresh herbs like parsley, dill, rosemary, or thyme
- Try a premade fish rub
What to serve with rainbow trout
Trout fillets go great with a variety of different side dishes. Here are a few of our favorites:
Asparagus and rainbow trout have complementary flavors. While asparagus is a bit sweet and grassy, trout is light and savory. When you pair them together, the sweetness of the asparagus helps to balance out the delicate flavor of the trout. The result is a meal that is both tasty and satisfying.
Short on time or can’t find fresh asparagus? Frozen asparagus tastes just as great and can be prepared in a variety of ways.
Vegetables are a fantastic side for rainbow trout. Roasted broccoli or asparagus are our favorites to pair with trout. You can also try roasting potatoes, carrots, and onions for a hearty side. Add in some green beans or Brussels sprouts for extra color and flavor.
Whatever vegetables you choose, roast them until they’re slightly browned and fork-tender. Serve alongside the trout for a complete meal. You can even make it a sheet pan meal for easy clean-up. Simply cook the roasted veggies together with the rainbow trout on the same baking sheet. Note that some veggies like potatoes and carrots may require extra cooking time.
Creamy Mashed Potatoes
Mashed potatoes are a classic choice to pair with trout, and for good reason – they simply complement each other perfectly. The creaminess of the mashed potatoes provides a lovely contrast to the flaky texture of the trout.
When it comes to choosing the perfect side dish for baked rainbow trout, rice pilaf is a classic option that is sure to please. This dish is made by cooking rice in broth until it is tender and fluffy, then adding in a variety of vegetables and spices. The result is a tasty and satisfying accompaniment that pairs perfectly with the light, fresh flavor of trout.
When you want something on the lighter side, pairing fresh greens with trout is hard to beat. The flaky texture of rainbow trout pairs well with the crispness of greens, and together they make a healthy, satisfying meal.
Start with arugula, spinach, or romaine lettuce, and add whatever toppings you like—fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts, seeds, and cheese are all good options. A simple vinaigrette made with olive oil and vinegar is a great choice for dressing. Serve with the trout right on top (removing the skin first) or as a side.
Need some great salad topping ideas? Check out our list of crunchy salad toppings.
Where to find trout
Living in Montana, we are lucky to have access to multiple blue-ribbon trout streams, and the rainbow trout used in this post was caught in the beautiful Bitterroot River near Hamilton, Montana.
But if you don’t have access to fresh-caught trout, you can also buy it in stores—depending where you are, you might find it at the meat counter, but you may need to look in the freezer section. Fresh or frozen salmon fillets are a great substitute.
Note: we used rainbow trout for this recipe and refer to rainbow trout throughout this post, but the cooking methods and seasonings will work equally well for any other kind of trout or salmon.Print
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Thinly slice the onion and 1 lemon. Cut the other lemon into wedges, and set aside.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil (if using foil, lightly coat it with cooking spray).
- Place the fish fillets skin side down on the parchment paper or foil. Pat dry with a paper towel.
- Drizzle with olive oil.
- Mix salt, black pepper, and garlic powder (or any other seasonings you like) in a small bowl. Season the fish to taste.
- Top with thinly sliced onion (optional).
- Squeeze lemon juice over the fillets and top with lemon slices.
- Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until cooked through. This cooking time is based on 1/2 lb. fillets. You may need to adjust the time up or down if your fillets are larger or smaller.
- Trout is done when it reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit, the fish flakes easily with a fork, and the meat is opaque. Fish is very easy to overcook, so be sure to keep an eye on it!
- Garnish with fresh parsley or fresh dill. Dried herbs work great as well. Serve with lemon wedges for an extra squeeze of citrus flavor.
- That’s it! Enjoy this simple and tasty rainbow trout recipe!
We used rainbow trout for this recipe, but the cooking methods and seasonings work well for any other kind of trout or salmon.
If you don’t have access to fresh-caught trout, you can also buy it in stores—you might find it at the meat counter, but you may need to look in the freezer section. Fresh or frozen salmon fillets are a great substitute.
Fish is very easy to overcook so be sure to keep an eye on it!
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Category: Main Dish
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
- Serving Size: 1/2 fillet
- Calories: 181
- Sugar: 1.1 g
- Sodium: 1207.5 mg
- Fat: 7.6 g
- Saturated Fat: 1.4 g
- Carbohydrates: 3.7 g
- Protein: 24 g
- Cholesterol: 66.9 mg
Keywords: seafood, trout, rainbow
Here you’ll find answers to common questions about cooking trout in the oven.
What temp should trout be cooked at?
When it comes to cooking trout, the key is to not overcook it. Trout should be cooked to an internal temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit to ensure that it is cooked through but still juicy and moist. Any higher than that and the trout may start to dry out.
How long do you cook trout in the oven?
To get the perfect baked trout, start by preheating your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Drizzle with olive oil. Season your trout fillets with salt, pepper, and any other herbs or spices you like.
Do you cook trout skin side up or down?
When cooking trout fillets, it’s best to cook the fillets skin-side down. This allows the skin to crisp up and prevents the fish from drying out. If you’re baking trout in the oven, place the fillets skin-side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or foil.
How do you know when trout is done?
There are a few ways to tell when trout is done cooking:
- Check the internal temperature of the fish with a food thermometer. Trout is cooked through when it reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees F.
- Insert a fork into the thickest part of the fish and twist. If the fish flakes easily, it is done.
- Simply look at the trout and see if it has turned opaque and looks cooked.
Can you eat trout skin?
Yes, you can. Depending on how you prepare it, cooked trout skin can be crispy and delicious. Just make sure you have removed all fish scales before eating.
What is the difference between trout and salmon?
Though trout and salmon are closely related, there are several key differences between them. Trout tend to be smaller than salmon. Additionally, trout typically have smaller scales and a more streamlined body shape than salmon. The flesh of a trout is usually lighter in color than the flesh of a salmon. Trout typically live in freshwater lakes and rivers, while salmon live in both freshwater and saltwater environments.
When it comes to taste, trout and salmon can usually be used interchangeably in recipes. However, trout tend to have a more mild flavor, while salmon usually have more of a bolder, slightly more “fishy” taste and generally tastes a bit sweeter.
Both trout and salmon are healthy options, as they are good sources of protein and omega-3 fatty acids. So whether you prefer the taste of trout or salmon, you can feel good about including either one in your diet.
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