Whole Grilled Sea Bass

Fish stuffed with loads of herbs and rubbed with a simple garlic butter are grilled whole, which leaves them with a smoky, charred flavor and tender meat. This recipe comes from chef Ignacio Mattos of Estela in New York City.

Whole Grilled Sea Bass Whole Grilled Sea Bass
Sea bass, stuffed with loads of herbs and rubbed with garlic butter, are grilled whole, rendering smoky, tender fish.
Yield: serves 4-6
Time: 20 minutes


  • 4 (1-lb.) whole sea bass (or sea bream or red snapper), cleaned
  • 2 tsp. crushed red chile flakes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 3 lemons
  • 1 bunch marjoram
  • 1 bunch thyme
  • 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced


  1. Heat a charcoal or woodburning grill or set a gas grill to medium-high. (Alternatively, heat a cast-iron grill pan over high.) Season cavity of fish with chile flakes, salt, and pepper; stuff with lemons and herbs. Mix butter and garlic in a bowl; rub over outside of fish; grill, flipping once, until slightly charred and cooked through, 12–15 minutes. Serve with more lemon.