Honey-garlic glazed steelhead trout

Steelhead trout can be a wallet-friendly alternative to salmon. Photo: Lauren Jescovitch

By Lauren Jescovitch, Michigan Sea Grant Extension educator for the western Upper Peninsula

The other night, I made a fantastic batch of honey-garlic glazed steelhead trout. Steelhead are native to the Pacific Northwest and were first introduced into the Great Lakes in the late 1800s. They are a subset of rainbow trout that spawn in rivers but spend most of their lives in the open waters of the ocean or Great Lakes. Steelhead tend to grow larger than rainbow trout that remain in rivers.

Steelhead can also be a wallet-friendly alternative to salmon, though salmon would taste great in this recipe if that’s what you have on hand. I served my dish with mashed cauliflower, a nutritious swap for mashed potatoes. The leftover fillets are also fantastic when served cold on a salad!

Be sure to sear the fillets with the meat-side down first. Photo: Lauren Jescovitch

Honey-garlic glazed steelhead trout

Serves 2


8 oz. steelhead trout fillet (skin on), can also use salmon



Olive oil

¾ cup honey

2 cloves fresh garlic, minced

1 Tablespoon lemon juice


  1. Mix honey, garlic, and lemon juice; set aside.
  2. Drizzle olive oil in a frying pan. Turn heat on medium-high.
  3. Wash fillets and pat dry with a paper towel.
  4. Cut fillets into smaller portion-sized chunks or strips (see picture above for an example).
  5. Cover fillets with a pinch of salt and pepper.
  6. Once pan is hot, put trout meat-side down and sear. Do not move fish until seared, about 3-4 minutes.
  7. Flip fillets over so skin-side is down. Pour honey-garlic mixture on top of the trout (I used a spoon).
  8. Cook 4-5 more minutes until done (fillet should easily spread apart if prodded with a fork).
  9. Serve with mashed cauliflower or the side of your choice.

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