How to Tell When Snapper Fillets Are Cooked

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Snapper fillets are most commonly from the red snapper fish typically caught in the Atlantic Ocean. The red snapper is a popular fish to serve as it pairs easily with vegetables and is versatile -- you can bake, grill, boil or fry it. Once fully cooked, the snapper fillet has white meat with a textured, mild taste. When cooking a snapper fillet, consider using a recipe that includes sides in the same dish -- this will save you time and bring out more flavor from the fillet.

Things You'll Need

  • Snapper fillets
  • 1/4 tsp. olive oil
  • Knife
  • Fork

Determine how you want to cook your snapper fillets. Cooking time varies based on the method you choose. For example, you will bake for between 30 and 45 minutes depending on your recipe, whereas you will grill the fillets within 15 minutes.

Follow your recipe closely in order to prevent over- or under-cooking the fillets. For example, snapper fillets that are baked with tomatoes, onion and green peppers may need to cook longer than a fillet without the additions.

Add one-fourth of a teaspoon of olive oil or vegetable oil to the fish when grilling or baking. Without the addition of oil, you could quickly burn the outside of your fish while the meat inside remains raw.

Flip the fish over during the halfway mark of the cooking time. This step is especially necessary when grilling snapper fillets or working with fillets that are particularly thick, so that the meat cooks all the way through.

Look for a slightly reddish appearance on the outside of the fish. Also, the juices will appear thick and caramelized.

Scrape a knife over a small portion of the top of the fillet. If the fillet easily flakes, it is most likely fully cooked. However, if it’s still rough and no parts flake off, cook the fish longer.

Cut through the middle and examine the pinkness of the center. The center of the meat should be white and not a light pink color. Remove the fillet from the grill, stove or oven and let it rest for five minutes. Examine the meat again and make sure the fillets easily flake.

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