Easy to make oven baked Red Snapper with Pesto Sauce makes an ideal weeknight meal, that’s ready in under 20 minutes. Perfectly seasoned tender fillets get a punch of bright and refreshing flavor from a healthy homemade pesto.
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❤️ Why You’ll Love This Baked Red Snapper Recipe
- Light and fresh dinner with bright flavors
- Quick and easy to make in under 20 minutes
- Wonderful flavors from a classic Homemade Pesto Sauce
- Versatile - can be made with any fish you like
- Super low carb, with only 1 carb per serving
Whether you're looking for a stress-free meal for the family or an elegant dinner to serve guests, this snapper recipe will cover both bases. It only takes about 5 minutes to prep and then it's baked in the oven on a sheet pan. This means it's just as easy to cook for two people as it is to cook for twelve.
The tender and flaky baked red snapper is packed with fresh herb flavors that are the perfect complement to just about any low-carb or Keto side dish. Served with Grilled Broccolini, Green Beans Almondine or these super tasty Air Fryer Brussels Sprouts, you’ll have a hearty and healthy restaurant quality meal on the table in minutes.
If you want to try this recipe but can't find snapper, fresh or frozen, in your local grocery store, you can use cod, tilapia, grouper, mahi mahi or even salmon. It will still taste awesome and is just as easy to make using the same cooking method.
What’s in Baked Red Snapper with Pesto Sauce
- Red snapper
- Homemade Pesto Sauce
- Olive oil
- Smoked paprika
- Dried basil
- Garlic salt
- Ground black pepper
*Exact measurements are listed in the recipe card below.
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How to Make Baked Red Snapper with Pesto Sauce
Preheat oven to 425°F.
Brush each piece of the snapper with the olive oil, then sprinkle the smoked paprika, basil, salt and pepper over the tops.
Add the snapper to a baking sheet lined with a wire rack.
Tip: Line your baking sheet with aluminum foil for easier cleanup.
Bake for 12-14 minutes or until it reaches an internal temperature of at least 145°F when checked with a thermometer.
Spoon some of the pesto sauce over each piece of snapper right out of the oven and serve.
Tip: If you have leftover pesto sauce, freeze them in ice cube trays. This way you'll always have some on hand and they'll thaw quickly.
What's the Best Way to Store Cooked Snapper? How Long Does Cooked Fish Last?
In general, you can store baked fish for two-three days in the refrigerator in an airtight container. Because fish is so perishable, for safety purposes, keep in the coldest part of the fridge where the temps are maintained around 36°F-38°F.
Fish of any kind is always best when eaten freshly cooked. But if you ended up cooking too much need to freeze the leftovers, just make sure that each fillet is covered well with a double layer of plastic wrap. It should stay fresh in the freezer for up to a month of two.
Is Red Snapper Keto Friendly? Is Snapper Low in Carb?
Snapper is the perfect fish for Keto, it has zero carbs! And because it has such a mild flavor, it’s great to serve with creamy sauces to make it even more filling and satisfying. In this recipe using pesto sauce as the topping, the macros come in at 13g Fat/1g Carb/33g Protein.
What Can I Use Instead of Pesto?
Not a fan of pesto? No worries! You can use a Creamy Dill Sauce, this rich and decadent Alfredo Sauce, or you can simply just top each piece of fish with a generous squeeze of fresh lemon juice and a sprinkling of finely grated parmesan cheese.
How Do You Make Red Snapper Not Taste Fishy?
The first key is to pick really fresh fillets. Snapper typically has a very mild taste and smell. It's probably the least fishy smelling fish I cook. But just because the snapper smells or taste a little fishy doesn't mean it has gone bad.
In fact, all fish, once caught and delivered to grocery stores or fish markets begin to produce a compound called (trimethylamine) TMA which is where that fishy odor comes from. To counter than taste or smell, there are a few things you can do to help.
- Use a marinade with a good bit of lemon juice. Any type of acidic marinade will help reacts with the TMA to get rid of any fishiness. This includes limes, oranges, vinegar and tomato sauce.
- Use bold seasonings to cover up any fishy flavor. If you end up with some fillets that have a string smell, consider uses and Blackened Seasoning or a Cajun Rub to season the snapper.
- Add fresh herbs to add fresh notes of flavor to the fish. The basil in this recipe, as well as in the pesto gives snapper the most amazing flavor without overpowering it.
Baked Snapper FAQs
What Does Red Snapper Taste Like?
Red snapper is a delicate and moist fish. It has somewhat of a mild and slightly sweet and nutty flavor that goes with many different types of seasonings.
What Temperature Do You Bake Red Snapper?
You want to cook snapper, or most any fish on a relatively high temp in the oven. For fillets, it's best to cook them on 425°F to ensure they'll have a nice golden color on the outside but will be moist and tender on the inside.
Do You Cook Red Snapper Skin Side Up or Down?
You can honestly go either way with it. The skin is a pretty red color and cooks great when cooked skin side up. But most of the time, you are using seasonings or sauces that you want to get some color on the top, so in those cases, I'd cook it skin side down.
What's the Best Way to Eat Red Snapper?
Snapper is a very versatile fish. You can pan sear it, bake it, grill it or even fry it using parmesan cheese and these Gluten Free Breadcrumbs as a coating.
More Keto Seafood Recipes
- Baked Salmon with Creamy Dill Sauce
- Keto Crab Cakes with Remoulade Sauce
- Salmon Piccata
- Broiled Lobster Tails with Compound Butter
- Keto Coconut Shrimp
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Baked Red Snapper with Pesto Sauce
- 1 pound fresh red snapper, cut into 4 pieces
- ½ batch Homemade Pesto Sauce
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ¼ teaspoon dried basil
- ¼ teaspoon garlic salt
- ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Preheat oven to 425°F.
- Brush each piece of the snapper with the olive oil, then sprinkle the smoked paprika, basil, salt and pepper over the tops.
- Add the snapper to a baking sheet lined with a wire rack.
- Bake for 12-14 minutes or until it reaches an internal temperature of at least 145°F when checked with a thermometer.
- Spoon some of the pesto sauce over each piece of snapper right out of the oven and serve.
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*Nutritional data is provided as a courtesy and is accurate to the best of my knowledge. You can verify it using the nutrition calculator of your choice. All data is based on net carbs, without sugar alcohol- Swerve/Erythritol, Allulose, or Monk Fruit.
NOTE: Recipes using Swerve/Erythritol can be substituted 1:1 with a Monk fruit/Allulose blend.
This looks delicious…I love fish!
Keto Cooking Christian
It really is! Let me know what you think when you make it.