Coconut-Curried Lionfish
Coconut-Curried Lionfish

Coconut-curried lionfish is a flavorful and exotic seafood dish that combines the rich creaminess of coconut milk with the bold flavors of curry spices. Lionfish, an invasive species in some regions, can be used in this recipe, but you can also substitute it with other white fish like snapper or grouper. Here’s a recipe for coconut-curried lionfish:


  • 4 lionfish fillets (or other white fish fillets)
  • 1 can (13.5 ounces) coconut milk (full-fat for creaminess)
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder (adjust to taste)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-inch piece of ginger, minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish (optional)
  • Cooked rice or naan bread for serving


  1. Prepare the Lionfish:
  • If you’re using whole lionfish, fillet and remove the skin. Cut the fish into bite-sized pieces. If using other fish fillets, make sure they are boneless and cut into similar-sized pieces.
  1. Heat the Oil:
  • In a large skillet or pan, heat the vegetable oil over medium heat.
  1. SautΓ© the Aromatics:
  • Add the chopped onion, minced garlic, and minced ginger to the skillet. SautΓ© for about 2-3 minutes until the onion becomes translucent and fragrant.
  1. Add Curry Powder:
  • Sprinkle the curry powder over the aromatics and stir to coat them evenly. Cook for another minute to toast the spices slightly.
  1. Add Peppers and Tomatoes:
  • Add the thinly sliced red and green bell peppers to the skillet. SautΓ© for 2-3 minutes until they begin to soften.
  • Pour in the can of diced tomatoes (with their juice) and stir well. Allow the mixture to simmer for about 5 minutes to combine the flavors.
  1. Pour in Coconut Milk:
  • Pour the can of coconut milk into the skillet. Stir to combine with the other ingredients.
  1. Simmer the Sauce:
  • Let the coconut milk mixture simmer gently for about 10-15 minutes, allowing it to thicken slightly and the flavors to meld. Stir occasionally.
  1. Add Lionfish:
  • Carefully add the lionfish fillets or other fish pieces to the skillet. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  1. Simmer and Cook Fish:
  • Allow the fish to simmer in the curry sauce for about 5-7 minutes, or until the fish is cooked through and flakes easily. Be careful not to overcook the fish, as it can become dry.
  1. Garnish and Serve:
    • Garnish the coconut-curried lionfish with fresh cilantro leaves if desired.
  2. Serve:
    • Serve the coconut-curried lionfish over cooked rice or with naan bread to soak up the delicious sauce.

Coconut-curried lionfish is a delightful fusion of flavors, and it’s a great way to enjoy lionfish if it’s available in your region. This dish can be customized with additional vegetables or spices to suit your taste. Enjoy your exotic seafood meal!