Steamed Fish Fillets

Get ready to elevate your dinner game with my Steamed Fish Fillets recipe! This Chinese-inspired dish features tender fish bathed in a savory sauce with a hint of Japanese flair. With minimal prep and no special equipment needed, it’s the perfect hassle-free way to enjoy a healthy and delicious meal at home!

Steamed fish fillets topped with green onions and sliced ginger with sauce being poured on top.

Why I Love This Recipe

My Steamed Fish Fillets is the best because it offers a hassle-free way to enjoy tender fish without the inconvenience of picking through bones, thanks to my unique at home steaming method that we use in my Hainan Chicken, Japanese Steamed Eggs, and Asian Steamed Vegetables! I love enjoying fish for a healthy meal whenever I can, but definitely not picking through all the bones! That’s why I created this recipe—a fuss-free way to enjoy delicious fish!

Plus, it’s incredibly fast to steam since it features boneless fish fillets! The flavor profile is simply divine, with a savory sauce that boasts a hint of Japanese flair, reminiscent of the delicious dishes found at Chinese restaurants. What’s more, my recipe is perfect for anyone seeking a healthy, protein-rich meal that can be effortlessly prepared at home using basic equipment and ingredients. So, let’s dive right in and discover the joy of steamed fish right in the comfort of my own homes!



  • Fish Fillets – tender white fish fillets such as rockcod, red snanpper, grouper, or seabass.
  • Salt – sea salt preferred.
  • Dashi fish broth made from steeping kombu and bonito flakes with boiling water. Can also use Hondashi mixed in water for instant dashi.
  • Neutral Oil no taste or flavor with high cooking temperature. Some choices are sunflower oil, peanut oil, sallower oil, vegetable oil, and canola oil. 
  • Japanese Sake – typically will come in a large bottle labeled junmai sake. Can also substitute with dry sherry wine or Chinese cooking wine, found at local grocery stores or Asian markets. 
  • Soy Sauce – low-sodium Soy Sauce preferred. Can also use tamari for gluten-free.
  • Sweetener – use your preferred sweetener.
  • Ginger – fresh and sliced.
  • Garlic – fresh and sliced.
  • Green Onion – finely chopped green onion scallions.
  • Red Pepper – optional, whole red pepper for garnish.
  • Cilantro – optional, used for garnish.

🥢 Dashi Pro Tip

For easier preparation of the dashi, use Hondashi mixed with water. This quick tip simplifies the process and ensures a flavorful base for your dish.

Fresh rock cod fillets on a cutting board being prepared to be used in a steamed fish recipe.

Essential Kitchen Equipment


Step 1 Pat dry fish fillets and lightly salt them. Place the seasoned fillets on a heat-safe plate and set the plate on a steaming rack.

Seasoned cod.

🍣 Fillet Pro Tip

Ensure the fish fillets are of Uniform Thickness to ensure even cooking. This helps prevent overcooking thinner parts while waiting for thicker sections to cook through.

🧂 Seasoning Pro Tip

For even seasoning, try sprinkling from a higher above. Let the fish Rest at Room Temperature for 10-15 Minutes after seasoning to allow the meat to absorb the flavors.

Step 2 In a stovetop pot, combine Dashi, vegetable oil, Japanese sake, soy sauce, sweetener, sliced ginger, sliced garlic, and green onions. Bring the sauce to a gentle boil.

Steamed fish sauce in a pot.

Step 3 Lower the steaming rack with the plate of fish into the pot, cover, and steam for 4-6 minutes until the fish easily flakes with a fork.

Cod on a steaming rack.

💡 Steaming Pro Tip

If you lack a steaming rack, a Heat-Safe Bowl can be used to elevate the plate above the broth.

🌡 Internal Temperature Check

For optimal results, aim for an internal temperature of 145°F.

Step 4 Transfer the steamed fish to a serving plate, pour the remaining broth generously over it, and garnish with green onions, ginger, and red peppers.

Steamed fish fillets topped with green onions.

🍽️ Serving Pro Tip

After steaming, Transfer to a Fresh Serving Plate to prevent any excess liquid from diluting the sauce.

Pairing Recommendations

When serving my delightful Steamed Fish Fillets, consider complementing it with a simple vegetable side dish like Baby Bok Choy Stir Fry or Garlic Kale Stir Fry for freshness and flavor. Additionally, pairing it with a serving of rice of choice and a bowl of Egg Drop Soup or Shrimp Egg Drop Soup adds a comforting touch to your meal.

A bowl of Japanese fish broth aka dashi to be used in making steamed fish.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Fish Fillets to Use For Steaming?

When selecting fish fillets for steaming, opt for varieties such as Rock Cod, Grouper, Red snapper, or Seabass. These options offer a firm texture and neutral taste, ideal for steaming.

Can I use frozen fish fillets for this recipe?

Yes, as long as it has been defrosted completely, you can use frozen fish fillets for this recipe.

Do I need any special equipment to steam the fish?

No, you just need a pot and a steaming rack. However, if you don't have a steaming rack, you can simply use a heat-safe bowl for my recipe.

Can I use a different type of broth or stock for steaming the fish?

Instead of dashi, you could use chicken broth, but it will alter the flavor of the dish.


Steamed fish fillets topped with green onions and sliced ginger being picked up with a pair of chopsticks.

Storage Tips

Place it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. You can expect it to maintain its freshness for 2-3 days.

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Watch How To Make It

Steamed fish fillets served on a plate with sliced green onions and ginger on top.

Steamed Fish Fillets

Discover the perfect way to make Chinese Steamed Cod with my easy steamed fish fillet recipe. Enjoy tender fish bathed in savory sauce, a delightful fusion of Chinese flavors.
4.47 from 15 votes
Course: dinner, Lunch, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: Chinese
Keyword: Chinese fish fillet recipe, Chinese steamed cod, steamed fish fillet
Prep Time: 4 minutes
Cook Time: 4 minutes
Total Time: 8 minutes
Servings: 2
Print Recipe
Calories: 236kcal



  • 1/2 lbs Fish Fillet can sub with other white meat fish fillets
  • 1/8 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 Cup Dashi
  • 1 tbsp Cooking Oil neutral, no flavor or taste
  • 1 tbsp Japanese Sake can substitute with dry sherry wine or Chinese cooking wine
  • 2 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 2 tsp Sweetener your preferred sweetener
  • 1 Inch Ginger
  • 4 Cloves Garlic
  • 3 Stalk Green Onion



  • Gather all the ingredients.
    Ingredients for steamed fish.
  • Prepare Dashi.
    Bowl of dashi.
  • Slice ginger, garlic cloves, and green onions as shown below.
    Sliced ginger.
  • Cut match stick green onions, ginger and chop red pepper as shown below. These will be used as the toppings so set them aside.
    Sliced green onions.
  • Pat fish fillets dry with a paper towel, lightly salt both sides and transfer fillets to a heat safe plate.
    Seasoned cod.
  • In a stove top pot, add Dashi, vegetable oil, Japanese sake, Soy Sauce, sweetener, sliced ginger, sliced garlic, green onions and mix well. Bring liquid to a soft boil over medium heat.
    Steamed fish sauce in a pot.
  • Once boiling, reduce heat to medium-low, place plate on top of steaming rack (or directly on top of water if you don't have a steaming rack), completely cover and steam for 4-6 minutes or until the fish easily flakes off with a fork.
    Cod on a steaming rack.
  • Once fish is cooked, transfer to a serving plate, top with green onions, ginger, red pepper and spoon remaining broth on top of fillets.
    Steamed fish fillets topped with green onions.


Calories: 236kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 43g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 98mg | Sodium: 374mg | Potassium: 1133mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 601IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 89mg | Iron: 2mg
*Values Based Per Serving
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