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Lunch / Dinner

Grilled Swordfish with Chermoula Sauce

North African favorites like chermoula sauce and spiced couscous as a side dish make this swordfish dinner out-of-this-world good.

With its firm, meat-like texture, swordfish is a popular candidate for grilling. Although the fish has good flavor on its own, what really makes this recipe stand out is the chermoula [chehr-MOO-lah] sauce served on top. Made with an assortment of herbs and spices — mainly cilantro and garlic — it’s a classic Moroccan choice for enhancing fish and sometimes meat.

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Test Kitchen Tip

If it’s troublesome to remove the skin prior to grilling the swordfish, simply leave it on. The skin will release very easily once the fish is cooked.


Preheat grill to high. Brush grill grate with oil.

For the sauce, process cilantro, mint, ½ cup olive oil, garlic, lemon juice, zest, paprika, cumin, coriander, and cayenne in a food processor until smooth; season with salt and black pepper.

For the swordfish, cut steaks in half to make four equal pieces. Brush both sides of swordfish with olive oil and season with salt and black pepper.

Grill swordfish over high heat, uncovered, until dark grill marks appear, 8–9 minutes. Reduce heat to medium; flip swordfish over. Cook swordfish, covered, until it’s no longer translucent and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center registers 135°, 5–7 minutes more. Let swordfish rest 5 minutes; serve with sauce.


For a smooth chermoula sauce, blend the herbs, oil, and spices together in a food processor.


Swordfish steaks are plenty big for two servings, so cut each one in half crosswise before grilling.


For crosshatched grill marks, turn the swordfish 90° halfway through the cooking time (for each side).

Nutritional Facts

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