For as simple as this Slow Baked Trout is to prep and cook, it packs a LOT of flavor. And because the fish cooks slowly at a low temperature, the result is tender, moist piece of trout that flakes easily.
Here’s why we love this steelhead trout recipe so much:
- Citrus! The juices from the thinly sliced lemon and blood orange absorb into the trout giving it a wonderful bright, citrus taste!
- It’s healthy! This recipe is low calorie, gluten-free, and easily adaptable to be dairy-free (instead of butter, use olive oil). Trout is naturally low fat, making it one of the healthiest fish that is also widely available in grocery stores and markets.
- Quick prep! The prep time is less than 10 minutes, guaranteed!
It just doesn’t get better than this. Whether you’re feeding your family on a busy weeknight or trying to impress friends, this baked steelhead trout always hits the spot!
- Steelhead trout: Similar in both appearance and taste to salmon, but smaller, thinner, and generally with a lower fat content.
- Kosher salt + black pepper: To season the trout!
- Onion salt: Our favorite brand is from Trader Joe’s, but any seasoned onion powder or salt is fine. If you use onion powder, increase the Kosher salt by ¼ teaspoon.
- Unsalted butter: You can certainly drizzle with olive oil instead, but trout is much more lean than salmon, so we like to season with butter to add a little richness.
- Fresh dill: Steelhead trout and fresh dill are a match made in heaven! Other fresh herbs you can substitute with: parsley, thyme leaves, or thinly sliced chives
- Fresh citrus: Lemons + blood oranges, though any thinly sliced citrus would work, such as other varieties of oranges, limes, or grapefruit.
You’ll also need a rimmed baking sheet, parchment paper (or aluminum foil), and a microplane zester.
Note: if you’re not making an entire side of trout and have a smaller piece to work with, you can bake this entirely in a pan or small skillet.
How To Bake Steelhead Trout
Place trout on a parchment lined baking sheet, then season liberally with Kosher salt, black pepper, and onion salt (or garlic salt). Next, zest one lemon and one blood orange right over the fish. Sprinkle with fresh dill leaves.
Using a sharp knife, thinly slice each fruit into ¼” thick slices. Layer the fish with alternating lemon slices and blood orange slices, covering the entirety of the flesh of the fish. It makes such a beautiful presentation!
Bake for 25-30 minutes in a preheated oven, or until the trout reaches an internal temperature of 125-130F. It should easily flake with a fork!
We recommend the Thermapen MK4 to check for doneness on all meats!
Steelhead Trout vs Salmon: While both Steelhead trout and salmon have bright, vibrant orange-pink colored flesh, trout tends to be thinner and smaller. This means it also cooks more quickly. Trout is also leaner than salmon, which has a naturally higher fat content.
In terms of flavor, they’re quite similar. The only distinguishable difference, in general, is that salmon has a fattier mouthfeel. You can easily substitute trout for salmon in just about any recipe (or vice versa), but remember that trout often takes less time to cook.
If you love salmon as much as we do, be sure to try our Salmon en Papillote, Sardine Rillettes, or this quick and easy Salmon Piccata next!
This is fascinating, but all steelhead trout start out as Rainbow Trout. It is only when they migrate to an ocean from freshwater that they are categorized as Steelhead Trout. Crazy cool!
Yes! As mentioned above, salmon and trout (rainbow trout or steelhead) are pretty interchangeable within recipes. Salmon will generally take longer to cook, as it is often larger and thicker. The exception to this rule is wild Coho salmon, which is extremely similar to trout, so it tends to have a similar cook time.
And if you can’t get your hands on a full side of trout, use individual fish fillets — one per person, usually about 6 oz a piece.
How To Serve Baked Trout
Hurry and run to the store to grab the ingredients, because you do not want to sit on this one. It’s too delicious not to share!
If you make our Baked Trout recipe, please let us know by leaving a review and rating below!
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More seafood recipes to try!35-Minute Baked Crab Stuffed Shrimp Grilled Halibut with Charred Scallion Sauce Homemade Spicy Tuna Crispy Rice (So Crunchy!) Melt-In-Your-Mouth Butter Poached Cod Pan Seared Salmon Cakes with Creamy Yogurt Sauce
Slow Baked Steelhead Trout with Citrus
- 1 ¼ lb Steelhead trout skin on
- 2 tsp onion salt
- ¾ tsp Kosher salt
- ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 3 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 lemon
- 1 blood orange
- 2 Tbsp fresh dill large stems removed
- Season the trout. Preheat an oven to 275 F. Lightly pat the trout dry on both sides with a paper towel, then place on a parchment lined rimmed baking sheet. Season the flesh of the fish with 2 tsp onion salt, ¾ tsp Kosher salt, and ¼ tsp black pepper. Zest the lemon and blood orange over the trout fillet, then sprinkle small bits of the butter all over. Add 2 Tbsp of fresh dill leaves all over.
- Slice the citrus. Using a sharp knife, thinly cut the lemon and the blood orange into ¼" thick slices. Alternate slices of citrus directly on top of the trout, covering the entire flesh of the fish.
- Bake the trout. Cook in a preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the internal temperature reached 125-130F. Serve immediately!
- If substituting onion salt with onion powder, increase the Kosher salt to a full 1 teaspoon.