Halibut with Citrus Butter Sauce


Halibut has a meaty texture that lends itself to many different preparations. It is so tender and delicious though, I usually prefer simply searing it, then baking it until just barely cooked through. I like to add a simple sauce to enhance the flavor of this fish rather than overpower it.

This sauce is a simple butter sauce that I flavor with citrus, very similar to a French Beurre Blanc sauce. Good substitutions for halibut would be sea bass or mahi mahi, or grouper. The halibut is shown served on a bed of sauteed spinach.

Buon Appetito!
Deborah Mele 

Halibut with Citrus Butter Sauce

Halibut with Citrus Butter Sauce

Yield: Serves 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

This rich citrus butter sauce pairs beautifully with halibut.


  • 2 Pounds Halibut
  • 1 Tablespoon Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • Salt & Pepper

For The Sauce:

  • 1 Lemon
  • 1 Orange
  • 1 Shallot Finely Minced
  • 3/4 Cup White Wine
  • 1 Stick (125 gm) Unsalted Butter, Softened

To Serve:

  • Sauteed Spinach


  1. Squeeze the juice from both the orange and the lemon into a small saucepan, being careful not to drop any seeds into the juice, and cook over medium heat until the juice is reduced to about ¼ and is thickened, then set aside.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  3. Heat the oil and butter in a heavy, ovenproof pan on top of the stove until sizzling.
  4. Season the sea bass with salt and pepper, and sear it on both sides in the hot oil until lightly browned.
  5. Place the fish into the hot oven and bake for about 15 to 20 minutes or until the fish flakes with a fork, but remains moist inside.
  6. While the fish is cooking, heat a tablespoon or so of the butter into a saucepan, and cook the shallots over medium heat until translucent.
  7. Add the wine, turn the heat up to high, and cook until you have reduced it to about ¼ cup of liquid left in the pan.
  8. Turn the heat down to medium low.
  9. With a whisk, slowly beat in a little butter at a time, adding more as it becomes emulsified and thickened.
  10. Continue adding the butter until you have a nice, thickened sauce.
  11. Add the citrus reduction and mix well.
  12. To serve, create a bed of spinach in the center of a plate.
  13. Place a piece of sea bass on top of the spinach, and then spoon a little of the citrus butter sauce on top.
  14. Serve immediately.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1/2 pound
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 629Total Fat: 38gSaturated Fat: 18gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 17gCholesterol: 204mgSodium: 426mgCarbohydrates: 11gFiber: 3gSugar: 5gProtein: 54g

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