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Grilled Fish With Dill Sauce and Zucchini

Grilled Fish With Dill Sauce and Zucchini 2.000

Scott Suchman for the Washington Post/food styling by Lisa Cherkasky for The Washington Post

Dinner in Minutes Jun 22, 2021

In his cookbook “One-Beer Grilling,” food writer Mike Lang says that grilled fish “gets a bad rap ... because it’s perceived to be difficult.” He offers a few pieces of advice for preventing fish from sticking: Make sure the grates are thoroughly cleaned, properly preheat the grill and rub the fish all over with oil. “The fish will release from the grate when it’s cooked. If you feel a little bit of resistance, wait a minute more and try again.” He recommends using a meatier fish, such as a Chilean sea bass and said black cod, cod, mahi mahi, or salmon work well, too. Here, we’ve paired the fish with grilled zucchini. The two can cook simultaneously. We’ve included his easy, creamy dill sauce, too, but the fish tastes great with tzatziki as well. In his cookbook, Lang pairs each of his dishes with a beer. For this one, he recommends a tart lambic.

Total time: 35 mins

Make Ahead: The sauce can be made up to 1 day in advance.

Storage Notes: Leftover fish can be refrigerated for up to 2 days. Leftover zucchini and sauce can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.


When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 2 servings

  • For the sauce
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh dill, plus extra fronds for serving, if using
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt or table salt
  • For the fish
  • 1 Chilean sea bass fillet (about 1 pound)
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil, plus more as needed
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt or table salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • For the zucchini
  • 2 zucchini (about 1 pound total), trimmed, sliced lengthwise into 1/4-inch planks
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt or table salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper


Prepare a grill for direct medium heat (350 to 450 degrees; see NOTE).

Make the sauce: In a small bowl, whisk together the sour cream, dill, lemon juice and salt; set aside.

Make the fish: Brush or rub the fish on both sides with olive oil and season both sides with salt and pepper.

Make the zucchini: Brush the zucchini with olive oil and season with oregano, salt and black pepper.

Starting flesh-side down if skin-on, grill the fish over direct heat until the flesh begins to flake and is cooked through, approximately 10 to 12 minutes, using a spatula to flip once after 7 or 8 minutes. If the fish sticks when you start to flip it, leave it in place for another 30 seconds to 1 minute, and try again.

After flipping the fish, add the zucchini to the grill and cook over direct heat until charred and softened, 5 to 6 minutes, flipping once midway through cooking.

Place the zucchini and fish on a serving platter, spoon some of the sauce on top of the fish or serve it on the side. Sprinkle fresh dill fronds on top of the fish, if using. Serve with additional sauce and lemon wedges on the side.

NOTES: To prepare the grill: If using a gas grill, set it to 350 degrees. If using a charcoal grill, fill a chimney starter with charcoal, light it and when the coals are red hot, pour them into the grill. Add more charcoal. When all the coals have ashed over and are gray but are still very hot, about 15 minutes, your grill should be medium-hot. (Use a grill thermometer or test the heat by holding your hand, palm-down about 5 inches from the grill. If you can hold it there for 4 to 5 seconds, the heat should be at medium heat, or 350 to 450 degrees.)

If using charcoal, this dish may take about 10 to 15 minutes longer to prepare.

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Recipe Source

Adapted from "One-Beer Grilling" by Mike Lang (Castle Point Books, 2021).

Tested by Ann Maloney.

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Nutritional Facts

Calories per serving: 445

% Daily Values*

Total Fat: 24g 37%

Saturated Fat: 9g 45%

Cholesterol: 123mg 41%

Sodium: 913mg 38%

Total Carbohydrates: 10g 3%

Dietary Fiber: 3g 12%

Sugar: 2g

Protein: 49g

*Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Total Fat: Less than 65g

Saturated Fat: Less than 20g

Cholesterol: Less than 300mg

Sodium: Less than 2,400mg

Total Carbohydrates: 300g

Dietary Fiber: 25g

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