One-Pan Steamed Fish with Lemon White Wine Sauce


Seafood wasn’t a category of food that I grew up with. Our family budget was more in the range of pork chops and pantry “can-do” dinners, and my father was a weekend 5K runner, not a fisherman. Once in a blue moon, we had salmon (it was relatively cheap in Oregon at that time), but I think I was too young to fully appreciate what it had to offer. Today, fish is one of my favorite foods, and I love it when fresh prepared using a simple cooking method, like in this pan-steamed fish recipe with lemon white wine sauce.

One-Pan Steamed Fish with Lemon White Wine Sauce - super easy, fast, healthy and impressive dinner! Naturally dairy-free, gluten-free and paleo.

This recipe & photo for pan-steamed fish with lemon white wine sauce was shared with us by Wild Alaska Seafood.

The price tag of halibut and wild Alaskan salmon still deters me more often than I would like, but if I could, I would enjoy it several nights a week! Not only is it versatile, flavorful and easily impressive, but fish is so darn quick and easy to cook. This pan-steamed fish takes just 4 to 5 minutes to cook (seriously!) and the lemon white wine sauce needs only 5 minutes or so more. Serve it over rice or quinoa (to catch all of that delicious lemon white wine sauce) and with a side of your favorite seasonal steamed vegetables for an easy, healthful “any night” meal.

Note that this pan-steamed fish technique works well with any firm white fish, such as halibut, cod or salmon, but splurge on wild, if possible. It tends to be much higher in omega-3 fatty acids and more sustainable than most farmed fishing methods.

One-Pan Steamed Fish with Lemon White Wine Sauce - super easy, fast, healthy and impressive dinner! Naturally dairy-free, gluten-free and paleo.

Special Diet Notes: Steamed Fish with Lemon White Wine Sauce

By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, grain-free, nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, and suitable for pescetarian and paleo diets.

One-Pan Steamed Fish with Lemon White Wine Sauce
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 4 servings
  • 4 wild Alaskan salmon or whitefish fillets (4 to 6 oz. each), fresh or thawed
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon white pepper
  • ½ cup white wine (sauvignon blanc or chardonnay)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (can substitute dairy-free buttery spread, if desired)
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh garlic
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh herbs
  1. Remove the fish fillets from refrigerator 15 minutes before cooking.
  2. Fill a 12-inch skillet with 1 inch of water. Add the lemon slices and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat.
  3. Rinse the fish in cold water and pat dry. Season it with the salt and pepper.
  4. Add the fillets to the pan, skin side down. Cover pan tightly and cook for 4 minutes, or until the fish is lightly translucent in the center, checking at the thickest part. Remove from the pan and let rest a minute; it will finish cooking from the retained heat. Remove the lemon slices from the steaming liquid.
  5. Create a quick reduction sauce with the remaining liquid by adding the wine, oil, garlic and herbs to the pan. Whisk the ingredients and continue to simmer, allowing the liquid to reduce to your desired thickness. Taste test, and add seasoning, if desired.
  6. To serve, transfer the lemon slices and fillets to 4 plates and then drizzle with the sauce.

About Author

Alisa is the founder of, Food Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living, and the new cookbook, Eat Dairy Free: Your Essential Cookbook for Everyday Meals, Snacks, and Sweets. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.


  1. Alisa,
    The grocery store down the street will offer Alaskan fish events, where they purchase a huge haul and have it shipped overnight. When these events come around I’ll buy a whole salmon and have the shop cut & wrap it for me. It isn’t as cheap as picking up some frozen swai at a large grocery store, but it is fresh wild caught fish, and then it is a lot of fish in my freezer that I get to play with.
    This recipe looks fast and easy–thanks for sharing it!

  2. I always have trouble cooking fish just right. It’s either not quite done or overcooked. Never tried steaming so maybe that will work better for me. Looks like a great way to cook fish. Thanks!

Leave A Reply

Rate this recipe: