Fresh Flounder: Catch and Cook Them While You Can

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The North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries has adjusted the recreational and commercial seasons for 2021 to ensure a sustainable fishery. The recreational flounder season will open September 1 and close September 14 in internal and ocean waters of North Carolina. So, like I said catch and cook them while you can!!

Growing up, flounder was the only fish I would profess to eat, and it seemed like it was pretty plentiful. To my taste, flounder was and still is a mild fish, and works great in many flavorful recipes.

Flounder belong to a group of fish species called flat fish. These flat fishes or flounders are often found at the bottom of oceans around the world. There are many ways to cook flounder, such as baking, frying, or grilling. Flounder has many of the essential nutrients needed in your diet. Grilled flounder contains many nutrients such as 13 grams of protein, 2 grams of fat and no carbohydrates.

Like many fish, flounder is rich in fatty acids, such as Omega 3, and Omega 3 has the anti-inflammatory effects for the bone are helpful not just for relieving arthritis, but also for preventing other diseases linked to inflammation, such as any heart related disease. Omega-3 in flounder can also lower levels of unhealthy blood fats, reduce the growth arteries clog, raise levels of beneficial cholesterol and slightly lower blood pressure.

Hope you are able to find some fresh flounder and give these recipes a try!

Down East Baked Flounder

(This is my family’s version)


  • Flounder Filet, large one depending on how many you are serving
  • 2-4 large potatoes, or the equivalent of red skin potatoes
  • 1 large sweet onion, sliced
  • Bacon, enough to cover the fish
  • ½ stick butter
  • Salt and Pepper to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Spray a 9″ X 13″ baking dish with cooking spray. Place prepared flounder in baking dish with the flesh side up.
  2. Slice peeled potatoes into 1/4-inch thick round slices. Place potato slices on and around sides of baking dish and around flounder in bottom of pan. Add salt and pepper to taste on fish and potatoes. (This is good with a little extra pepper!) Top with sliced onion rings. Add enough water in the bottom of the baking dish to come up around sides of fish a little, but not to cover it. Dot with butter or margarine on top of fish.
  3. Cover with strips of bacon.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for approximately 45 minutes to an hour or until potatoes are tender and flounder flakes with a fork. Enjoy!

Air Fryer Filets


  • 1 pound fish filets
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1-2 cups breading, such as panko, crushed pork rinds, almond flour, or breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg
  • Cooking spray


  1. Preheat the air fryer to 380°F.
  2. If using frozen filets, make sure to thaw first. Cut fish filets in half if needed. Make sure the filets are even sized, so they will cook evenly. The thicker they are, the longer they will take to cook.
  3. Pat the filets dry. Lightly oil the filets and then season with the salt, black pepper, garlic powder and paprika.
  4. Put the breading in a shallow bowl. In another bowl, beat the eggs. Dip the filets in the egg, shaking off excess egg. Dredge the filets in your breading of choice. Press the filets into the bowl of breading so that they completely coat the filets. Repeat this process for all of the fish pieces. Line the air fryer basket or tray with the perforated parchment paper, or generously coat with oil spray. Light spray parchment paper with the cooking spray.
  5. Lay coated fish in a single layer on the parchment, cook in batches if needed. Spray all sides of the breaded filets, coat all dry spots.
  6. Air fry at 380°F for 8-14 minutes, depending on the size and thickness of your filets. After 6 minutes, flip filets. Lightly spray any dry spots then continue cooking for the remaining time or until they are crispy brown and the fish is cooked through.
  7. Serve with your favorite dip.

Flounder Piccata


  • 4 flounder filets, about 17 ounces total
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 2 large egg whites
  • ⅔ cup seasoned bread crumbs
  • Olive oil spray
  • 1 tablespoon light butter
  • Juice of 1 lemon, reserve lemon halves
  • ¼ cup dry white wine
  • ½ cup fat-free chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon capers, drained
  • Sliced lemon for serving
  • 2 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley


  1. Season fish with salt and pepper. Heat oven to 200°F.
  2. In a shallow bowl, beat the egg whites. Place the bread crumbs in another dish. Dip each fish filet in the egg whites, then bread crumbs.
  3. Heat a large sauté pan over medium to medium-low heat. Spray a generous amount of olive oil spray on one side of the fish, and lay it in the pan, oil side down. Spray the other side of the fish generously to coat and cook for 4 to 5 minutes on each side, until fish is opaque and cooked through.
  4. Set aside on a platter in a warm oven until you make the sauce.
  5. Over medium heat in the same pan, melt butter, add the lemon juice, wine, chicken broth and the reserved lemon halves, salt, and pepper and bring to a boil.
  6. Boil over high heat until the liquid is reduced to half, about 3 – 4 minutes.
  7. Discard the lemon halves, add the capers and spoon the sauce over the fish; place a slice of lemon on each filet and top with fresh parsley.

Each serving contains Calories 268, Carbohydrates 13 g., Protein 34 g., Fat 8 g, Sodium 366 mg., Fiber 3 g.

Blackened Flounder


  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • ½ teaspoon white pepper
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • ½ teaspoon oregano
  • 6 flounder filets, about ¼ inch thick
  • ¼ cup olive oil


  1. Combine paprika, parsley, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper, black pepper, thyme and oregano in a small bowl.
  2. Dip fish filets in olive oil. Sprinkle both sides of each filet with the spice mixture.
  3. Heat a cast-iron skillet over high heat until smoking. Arrange filets in a single layer on the hot skillet.
  4. Cook the flounder, turning once, until blackened, about 2-3 minutes per side. Serve immediately.

Stuffed Flounder


  • 8 large fresh mushrooms
  • 8 ounces spinach, rinsed and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon crumbled feta cheese
  • 4  4-ounce flounder fillets


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Spray an unheated medium skillet with no-stick spray. Heat skillet over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and cook about 5 minutes or until the liquid released from the mushrooms has evaporated, stirring occasionally.
  3. Add the spinach to the skillet. Cook and stir about 2 minutes or until the spinach is wilted. Remove from the heat and drain excess moisture. Sprinkle the feta cheese over the vegetables, then stir it in.
  4. To assemble the fish rolls, place one-quarter of the spinach mixture onto the wide end of each filet. Carefully roll the filet around mixture onto the wide end of each filet. Carefully roll the filet around the spinach mixture. Use wooden toothpicks to hold the end of each roll in place.
  5. Spray an 8 x 8 inch baking dish with non-stick spray. Place the fish rolls, seam side down, in the baking dish. 2 tablespoons of water. Loosely cover with foil.
  6. Bake in a preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork and is opaque all the way through.