How to cook sea bass

Here's how to cook sea bass to perfection – enjoy this Mediterranean classic this evening

how to cook sea bass
(Image credit: Getty)

Want to know how to cook sea bass for dinner? This delicious fish is popular in Mediterranean cuisine and has a strong, almost meaty flavour that some people compare to chicken. Perfect pan fried if filleted, or baked whole, it's a real treat with roast potatoes and fresh salad.

We do recommend making sure that the sea bass you buy is farmed: wild sea bass stocks are at a critically low level, so avoid wild caught sea bass. 

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How to cook whole sea bass


To make an absolutely delicious whole baked sea bass, you'll need:

  • Whole sea bass, gutted and cleaned, head on 
  • Olive oil, two to four tablespoons, depending on the size of the fish
  • Fresh lemon, sliced
  • Parsley, a large bunch, chopped
  • Salt, to taste


1. Place the fish on a large sheet of baking foil. Score the skin gently in a couple of places, without piercing the flesh.

2. Cover in lemon slices, sprinkle with parsley, and season generously with salt. Sea bass likes a lot of salt, so don't be shy with the seasoning. 

3. Close the foil at the edges to form a large parcel and bake on 200ºC/180ºC/gas mark 6 for 20 to 30 minutes, depending on the size of the fish.

Serve with potatoes and salad. 

How to cook sea bass fillets

It's best to pan fry sea bass fillets. Simply score the skin, season well with salt, and fry in olive oil on medium heat for eight to 10 minutes, flipping the fillets halfway through frying. Squeeze a bit of lemon over the fillets in the last couple of minutes of cooking for extra flavour.

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