Fish in a parchment packet

Contributed by Preston Maring, MD

Fish in a parchment packet

Fish and chips or a fish sandwich at a fast-food restaurant can sound sort of healthy because we are told to eat fish a couple of times a week.  But — as those of you who really like crispy and crunchy know all too well — the fish is breaded then deep-fried.

Try this way to cook fish as a very healthy and tasty alternative. You don't even need tartar sauce or ketchup. At home, we served this by putting the packets right onto the plates with some parsleyed red quinoa and a big salad. This is a wonderful way to cook fish.

Servings: 4


  • 1 1/4 pounds fish — black cod, rockfish, probably whatever you want
  • 4 teaspoons grated ginger
  • 1 carrot, sliced into thin strips about 2 inches long (julienne)
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 1 orange
  • 4 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Parchment paper


  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.  
  2. Tear off four pieces of parchment paper about 15 inches long. Lay them out on the counter after folding them in half to crease them.  
  3. Salt and pepper a 5-ounce piece of fish lightly and place it at the crease of each piece of parchment.  
  4. Using a peeler, make strips of orange peel leaving the white pith behind.  
  5. Scatter these over the fish.  
  6. Sprinkle the ginger and the julienned carrot on each piece of fish.  
  7. Juice the orange and drizzle a tablespoon of juice over each piece (the amount doesn't really matter).  
  8. Drizzle a teaspoon of olive oil on each piece and top with 6 sprigs of cilantro. 
  9. Fold the paper over like an omelet then fold and crimp the edges to make a packet.  
  10. Place them on a baking sheet. Make sure the oven is completely preheated. 
  11. Allegedly, the rule for cooking fish is 10 minutes per inch of thickness no matter how you cook it. I've found that it seems to take a little longer.  
  12. Try cooking them for 11 minutes or so then test one to see if the fish flakes with a fork.

Nutrition information (per serving)

  • Calories: 371
  • Total fat: 20 g
  • Saturated fat: 4 g
  • Sodium: 632 mg
  • Total carbohydrate: 19 g
  • Dietary fiber: 2.8
  • Total sugars: 5 g
  • Protein: 28 g