How to Cook Mackerel Sous Vide | The Tool Shed

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How to Cook Mackerel Sous Vide | The Tool Shed

How to Cook Mackerel Sous Vide

Fish fillets, particularly small ones like mackerel, often cook unevenly when heated to a high temperature, producing a disappointing result. Cooking at a low temperature, for example using a sous vide method, gives a much more consistent result. It is a good idea to pan-fry mackerel fillets after cooking them sous vide in order to crisp up the skin and add extra texture and flavour.


  • 2 mackerel fillets, pinboned
  • sea salt


  1. Preheat the water bath to a temperature of 50⁰C.
  2. Sprinkle a little sea salt over the mackerel. Place the fillets inside a vacuum bag and vacuum on full pressure to seal.
  3. Cook the bag in the water bath for 20 minutes.
  4. Take the fish out of the bag and dry very carefully using kitchen paper.
  5. Add a splash of oil to a frying pan and place over a high heat. When the oil is hot, add the mackerel fillets and pan-fry for 1-2 minutes to crisp up the skin. Serve straight away.


You might like to try adding different flavourings to the vacuum bag. Black pepper would work well or you could add a dash of flavoured oil, such as chilli oil or garlic oil. For a fresh flavour, add some lemon rind. A note of caution, however: do not add lemon juice or anything else acidic as this will cure the fish and produce an unappetising texture.

Serving suggestions

Try using this method to make a delicious summer starter, such as Nathan Outlaw’s elegant Mackerel, tomato and samphire salad. For a colourful main, you could make Dominic Chapman’s show-stopping Seared mackerel with beetroot, horseradish and watercress.

Recipe courtesy of