​How to Cook Fish Perfectly With the 10-Minute Rule

​How to Cook Fish Perfectly With the 10-Minute Rule

If you usually shy away from cooking fish, you aren’t alone! Most Americans don’t meet the American Heart Association’s recommendation to eat two servings of seafood a week. What keeps most Americans away from fish markets is uncertainty about how to prepare it. Since fish cooks faster than other popular meats, like chicken and beef, many home chefs overcook it. Following the 10-Minute Rule is a simple way to master cooking fish to perfection.

What is the 10-Minute Rule?

The rule 10-Minute Rule is simple: cook fish for 10-minutes per inch of thickness. Then, flip the fish only once, halfway through the cooking time.

Whether you plan to follow a recipe or not, start by measure the thickest part of the fish with a clean ruler. If you are making stuffed or rolled fish, wait to measure it until after you’ve finished preparing it.

Once you have measured the thickness of the fish, use that to calculate how long to cook it. For example, if a fish fillet is ½ inch thick, cook it for 5-minutes—turning it over after 2 ½ minutes and cooking it for another 2 ½ minutes. Or, if the thickest part of a fish steak is 1 1/2 inch thick, cook it for 15-minutes —turning it over after 7 ½ minutes and cooking it for another 7 ½ minutes.

No matter what the recipe you are following says, base your cooking time off the thickness of the fish you are cooking! Otherwise, your fish may turn out undercooked or overcooked since the thickness of fish varies widely from fish to fish.

The second part of the Rule, only flipping the fish once, is as important as the cooking time. Since fish is more delicate than other meats, it can fall apart if you turn it frequently. Another benefit of only turning it once is that you will get a nice sear, resulting in fish that is mouthwateringly delicious!

Does the 10-minute Rule apply to all cooking methods?

There are two instances when you will need to add additional cooking time after using the 10-Minute Rule. The first is if you are cooking fish in a foil packet. Secondly, if you are cooking fish in a sauce. In both cases, you should add 5-minutes to the cooking time.

Pair you selected fish with your favorite seasoning and voila! A perfect fish meal for your family or just yourself!