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The Ultimate Guide to Buying Fresh Halibut: Tips and Tricks from a Seafood Expert

April 27, 2023

The Ultimate Guide to Buying Fresh Halibut: Tips and Tricks from a Seafood Expert

Fresh Halibut

If you love seafood, there's nothing quite like the taste of fresh halibut. This delicate fish has a mild, sweet flavor that makes it perfect for a variety of dishes. But how can you be sure you're getting the best quality halibut when you're shopping for it? Here are some tips and tricks from a seafood expert to help you make the best choice.

  1. Look for Clear Eyes and Firm Flesh When you're buying fresh halibut, the first thing you want to look for is clear eyes and firm flesh. The eyes should be clear and bright, with no cloudiness or discoloration. The flesh should be firm to the touch, with no give when you press down on it. If the eyes are cloudy or the flesh feels mushy, that's a sign that the fish isn't fresh.

  2. Check the Smell Fresh halibut should have a mild, oceanic smell. If it smells strongly of fish or has a sour odor, that's a sign that it's not fresh. Avoid any fish that smells unpleasant.

  3. Look for Skin that's Intact The skin on fresh halibut should be intact and shiny. If it's dull or has patches of missing skin, that's a sign that the fish has been mishandled or isn't fresh.

  4. Buy from a Reputable Source One of the best ways to ensure that you're buying fresh halibut is to buy from a reputable source. Look for a seafood market or fishmonger that has a good reputation for quality and freshness. If you're buying from a grocery store, ask the fishmonger when the halibut was caught and how long it's been on display.

  5. Consider the Season Halibut has a peak season from March to September, but it's available year-round. If you're buying halibut out of season, it may have been frozen and thawed. While this isn't necessarily a bad thing, it's important to be aware of it so you can make an informed choice.


Q: Can I freeze fresh halibut?

A: Yes, you can freeze fresh halibut. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil, then place it in an airtight container or freezer bag. Frozen halibut can be stored for up to six months.

Q: How should I cook fresh halibut?

A: Fresh halibut can be cooked in a variety of ways, including grilling, broiling, baking, and sautéing. It's a versatile fish that pairs well with a range of flavors and seasonings.

Q: How can I tell if halibut is fully cooked?

A: Halibut is fully cooked when it reaches an internal temperature of 145°F (63°C). You can use a meat thermometer to check the temperature.


Buying fresh halibut can seem daunting, but with these tips and tricks, you can feel confident that you're getting the best quality fish. Remember to look for clear eyes and firm flesh, check the smell, and buy from a reputable source. And don't be afraid to ask questions! Your seafood expert will be happy to help you make the best choice.

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