Share on Pinterest

Cast Iron Fish: Halibut Edition

By August 28, 2016Recipes
Reading Time: 2 minutes
The next Whole Life Challenge starts in:

If you had nothing but a fish, a fire, and a cast iron pan, you could make some wonderful things happen.

Here, we’re going to learn those things.

(And you’ll leave with a skill that will be very useful during your next backwoods adventure).

New Call-to-action
While this recipe is a bit further along than just iron and fish (we’re going to use lemon, butter, and thyme), the essence stays the same — you could cook this dish over an open campfire with any whitefish you choose — trout, tilapia, bass, cod, or halibut — with no loss of fidelity or flavor.

Cast Iron Fish: Halibut Edition

Cast Iron Fish Recipe

You could cook this dish over an open campfire with any whitefish you choose — trout, tilapia, bass, cod, or halibut — with no loss of fidelity or flavor.

Category Dinner, Paleo, Seafood
Compliance Level Kickstart, Lifestyle, Performance
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 7 minutes
Total Time 12 minutes
Servings 2
Author Jon Gilson


  • 2 fillets wild-caught halibut skin on, 6-8 oz. each
  • 3 tbsp grass-fed butter
  • Fresh thyme
  • 3 tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 lemon or 2 limes
  • Salt
  • Pepper


To Get Started:

  1. Get your cast iron skillet roaring hot. (Like, stupid hot.)
  2. While the skillet heats, salt and pepper your fish on both sides.

Step 1:

  1. Once hot (as demonstrated by a bit of smoking), add avocado oil and coat the skillet.
  2. Put the fish in the skillet, skin side down, and sear for 3 minutes. (This will give you a crispy skin, an essential part of the final product.)
  3. Flip the fish over, and add butter and thyme to the pan.

Step 2:

  1. If possible, turn down the heat. (If you're doing this outdoors, move the pan to the periphery of your fire/heat source.)
  2. Cook for an additional 3-4 minutes. (During this time, move the butter around in the skillet to prevent burning.)
  3. Remove the skillet from the heat source, and let rest for 1 minute.

Serving the Meal

  1. Plate your fish, and cover with drippings from the pan.
  2. Serve with fresh lemon or lime, along with the salad of your choice.

Jon Gilson on FacebookJon Gilson on InstagramJon Gilson on Twitter
Jon Gilson
Jon Gilson is a coach and writer, and the former CEO of the Whole Life Challenge.

Previously, he founded Again Faster Equipment, a functional fitness equipment company created to serve the CrossFit community. Established in 2006, Jon took the Company global in 2012, twice landing on the Inc. 500/5000 list of America’s fastest growing private companies.

From 2007 to 2013, he served as a Senior Lecturer for CrossFit, Inc., training aspiring CrossFit trainers at over 100 seminars, including engagements in Iceland, Afghanistan, Moscow, Holland, the United States, and Canada. Jon also served on the CrossFit L1 Advisory Board, helping establish policy for the organization’s training efforts from 2011 to 2013.

He’s also done stints in state government, gym management, and consulting — and currently teaches classes at CrossFit City Line.

Jon graduated from the University of New Hampshire in 2003, summa cum laude, with a B.A. in Psychology. He also holds a Graduate Certificate in Finance and Control from the Harvard Extension School, 2006, and has completed coursework in data analytics.