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Once you try grilling cod, you’ll never want to cook it any other way in the summer! Although baked cod and air fryer cod taste amazing and is my go-to for most of the year, cooking it on the grill creates tender white fish that pairs perfectly with Cajun spices. Learn how to grill cod in foil (or directly on the grill, too) the easy way, plus the best ways to season a grilled cod recipe. This post is loaded with tips to get it cooked perfectly every time!
Grilled Cod Recipe: Why You’ll Love It
- Spicy, savory grilled fish
- Flaky, buttery texture
- Just 5 ingredients
- Ready in 15 minutes
- Naturally low carb and high in protein dish
Ingredients & Substitutions
This section explains how to choose the best ingredients for grilling cajun cod, what each one does in the recipe, and substitution options. For measurements, see the recipe card below.
- Cod Fillets – While this is a recipe for grilled cod, you can also use this technique for other types of white fish, such as halibut or tilapia.
- Butter – Unsalted butter adds rich flavor to this recipe, but olive oil can also work.
- Lemon Juice – Use fresh squeezed juice for best flavor, or bottled lemon juice for convenience. Fresh juice makes sense here, though, because you’ll need fresh lemon slices, anyway.
- Cajun Seasoning – A mix of paprika, garlic powder, sea salt, oregano, thyme, onion powder, cayenne pepper, and red pepper flakes. You can get this seasoning mix pre-made, or make homemade Cajun seasoning.
- Lemon Slices – Add an additional flavor boost to the fish.
How To Grill Cod In Foil
This section shows how to make cod on the grill, with step-by-step photos and details about the technique, to help you visualize it. For full instructions, including amounts and temperatures, see the recipe card below.
- Prep. Preheat half of the grill burners to medium-high heat. Place each piece of cod on a flat sheet of foil (large enough to wrap around the fillet later). Pat fish dry.
TIP: Why preheat only half the grill burners?
Since this fish is so delicate, we’re making cod grilled over indirect heat to keep it from scorching or drying out.
- Brush. Whisk butter and lemon juice together, and brush over fillets.
- Season. Season both sides of cod with Cajun seasoning and top with a lemon slice.
- Fold. Fold foil around the fish, leaving room at the top for steam to collect. Create a seam and seal tightly.
- Grill. Cook cod on the side with the burners off (a.k.a. indirect heat), until the fillets are opaque and flake easily. I like to garnish with fresh parsley.
How To Grill Cod Directly On The Grill?
You can cook cod directly on the grill (without foil) with the right approach:
- Preheat well. A grill that isn’t hot enough can cause the fish to stick.
- Cook over direct heat. Unlike grilled cod in foil, grilling cod directly on the grates is best done over direct, medium-high heat (about 400-450 degrees F).
- Grill without moving. Place the cod on the grill and leave it there until ready to flip. Trying to move the fish before it’s ready to flip can cause it to tear or fall apart.
- Flip after 80% done. Like grilled salmon, it’s best to grill cod on the first side until it’s 80% done before flipping. This will allow it to release cleanly from the grates.
- Use a fish spatula to carefully flip, or a grill basket to make it even easier.
- Add mayonnaise. This is not required, but adding mayo to the marinade can help the fillets release more easily.
How Long To Grill Cod?
Grill cod directly over the heated side of the grates (direct heat) for 7-9 minutes, or over indirect heat (on the side with burners off) for 10-12 minutes. Indirect heat lowers the chance of cod scorching or overcooking.
For best results, use a meat thermometer to ensure perfectly cooked cod and check the internal temperature — it should reach 140-145 degrees F.
Try these variations instead of the Cajun seasoning:
- Lemon Pepper Seasoning – Make homemade lemon pepper seasoning in place of Cajun spices.
- Taco Seasoning – Swap Cajun seasoning for homemade taco seasoning and use this cod for fish tacos!
- Pesto Sauce – Brush fish with basil pesto sauce instead of using butter and spices. This is best cooked in foil packets, so that it doesn’t burn over direct heat.
- Compound Butter – Instead of plain butter, add you favorite fresh herbs to compound butter and add 1 tablespoon of butter per fillet instead of spices.
- Lemon Garlic Aioli – Brush fillets with lemon garlic aioli instead of butter. This also helps reduce sticking, so is a great option for cooking cod on the grill grates directly.
- Store: Keep fish covered in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.
- Reheat: Heat fillets gently in a hot skillet or 350 degree F oven until warmed through. You can also reheat on the grill over medium heat.
- Freeze: Cool cod completely, wrap tightly, and freeze for 3-4 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating.
What To Serve With Grilled Cod
Instead of basic sides like rice or potatoes, try these easy healthy side dishes:
More Healthy Grilling Recipes
The grill is one of my favorite fast cooking methods! Try these easy dishes on your grill next time:
How To Grill Cod
Cajun Grilled Cod In Foil (5 Ingredients!)
This spicy grilled cod recipe in foil combines savory spices with an easy method that keeps fillets moist and tender. Just 5 ingredients + done in 15 minutes!
Recipe VideoTap on the image below to watch the video.
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Tap underlined ingredients to see where to get them. Please turn Safari reader mode OFF to view ingredients.
Tap on the times in the instructions below to start a kitchen timer while you cook.
Preheat half of the grill burners to medium-high heat.
Place each piece of fish onto a piece of aluminum foil, large enough to wrap around the fish (leave open for now). Use paper towels to pat the fish dry.
In a small bowl, whisk together the melted butter and lemon juice. Brush the mixture over the cod fillets.
Season the cod on both sides with Cajun seasoning. Top each piece of fish with a lemon slice.
Fold the foil all the way around the fish, leaving some space inside for air and creating a tight seal so that steam can't escape.
Grill cod foil packets over indirect heat (on the side with burners off) for 10-12 minutes (recommended for even cooking), or over direct heat for 7-9 minutes, until the fish is opaque and flakes easily with a fork.
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Serving size: 1 grilled cod fillet
Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy. Have questions about calculations or why you got a different result? Please see our nutrition policy.
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