Easy 20 Minute Oven Baked Trout

How to cook trout in the oven. This oven baked trout is incredible easy to make. The baked fish is tender, juicy, and flavorful thanks to lemon and herbs. Jump to the Easy Oven Baked Trout Recipe or watch our quick recipe video showing you how to make it.

Watch How To Cook Trout In The Oven

How to Make The Best Baked Whole Trout

Trout is one of my favortie fishes to cook at home. It cooks quickly, is easy to season, and the fish tastes sweet and is tender. You can buy trout as whole fish that have been gutted and cleaned (like in our photos) or as fillets. For this recipe, we’re using whole trout.

Baking whole trout in the oven is genius — especially when you do it in foil packets. With our easy trout recipe, dinner will be on the table in 20 minutes. You can’t beat that.

After sharing this recipe with friends, some were a little overwhelmed with cooking whole trout (with the skin, tail, and sometimes head still attached). If you’re thinking that, too, stop. I promise it’s all going to be okay 🙂

When it comes to shopping for trout, it’s easy to find trout that is already cleaned and butterflied. By butterflied I mean that the fish is opened up down the middle, but still has the halves attached.

Buying the trout butterflied allows us to add a few fresh ingredients to the middle. In our stuffed trout recipe below, we add lemon slices and lots of fresh herbs to the middle. You can also add thinly sliced garlic, onion, or greens (like spinach). Since we are adding so much flavor to the packets, there isn’t much need for a marinade or additional seasonings.

To make the packets, we use heavy duty foil. Parchment paper works, too.

How to Bake Trout in the Oven

How Long Does It Take To Bake Trout?

The bake time depends on how large your fish is. In our recipe below, we call for small to medium rainbow trout and find that they take between 10 and 15 minutes in our kitchen. If you have extra large fish or a steelhead trout, the bake time will be longer. Use our tips for checking for doneness as a guide.

By the way, you could put the trout packets on a grill instead. I’ve shared a note for temperature and cook time in the recipe below.

How To Fillet Cooked Trout

In the video above, we show you how to fillet your trout once it has finished baking. It’s really easy — and I think, much easier than when the fish is raw.

It’s a simple process. I use a spoon and butter knife to do it. Here are the basic steps I follow. I highly recommend watching the video:

  1. Pull away all the fins. Since the fish is cooked, they come away easily.
  2. Press the knife into the soft flesh just before the head and cut up to the bone. Repeat this with the soft flesh just before the tail.
  3. Use the knife to follow the line down the middle of the trout (this follows the spine). Just cut up to the bone.
  4. Following the line you just made down the spine, use a spoon to carefully pull/push the top and bottom fillet away from the bones.
  5. Pull the tail up and away the fish. By doing this the spine and bones will come away with it.
  6. Clean all the fillets of small bones and transfer to a plate for serving.
20 Minute Oven Baked Trout Recipe

Recipe updated, originally posted October 2009. Since posting this in 2009, we have tweaked the recipe to be more clear. – Adam and Joanne

Easy 20 Minute Oven Baked Trout

  • PREP
  • COOK

Baking rainbow trout in foil packets helps the fish cook perfectly. While they bake, juices form at the bottom of the packet. This is delicious when spooned over the cooked trout when serving. Other ingredients to consider adding to the middle of the fish are thinly sliced garlic, onion, or greens (like spinach). If you have large fish or have steelhead trout (usually much larger than rainbow trout), you can still use our method, but the bake time will be longer.

Makes 2 Servings

You Will Need

Olive oil

2 small rainbow trout, cleaned and butterflied (opened up with the halves still attached), about 1 pound

1 lemon, sliced

4 fresh parsley or dill sprigs

Salt and freshly ground black pepper


  • Prepare Trout
  • Heat the oven to 400 degrees F. Cut two sheets of heavy duty aluminum foil that are larger than your fish.

    Place trout, skin side down, on each piece of foil. Lightly oil both sides with oil. Season both sides, inside and out, with salt and pepper.

    Place two parsley (or dill) sprigs and two lemon slices down the middle of each fish.

    Fold up the foil by grabbing at the edges and crimping together to make a packet.

    • Bake Trout
    • Place packets of fish onto a baking sheet. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, checking one packet after 10 minutes. The flesh should pull apart easily with a fork.

      Place each packet on a plate. Carefully open the foil packets — take care not to let the steam burn you. Slide the fish away from the packet and onto the plate and pour juices over it. Serve with more fresh herbs and lemon slices.

Adam and Joanne's Tips

  • If you do not have heavy duty foil, use two sheets of regular foil to make each packet.
  • How to Make Grilled Trout: Follow the directions in the recipe above to make each packet. Heat grill to medium-high heat. Place the packets over indirect heat. Grill 10 to 15 minutes, or until cooked through.
  • Nutrition facts: The nutrition facts provided below are estimates. We have used the USDA Supertracker recipe calculator to calculate approximate values.

If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #inspiredtaste — We love to see your creations on Instagram and Facebook! Find us: @inspiredtaste

Nutrition Per Serving: Calories 285 / Protein 32 g / Carbohydrate 1 g / Dietary Fiber 0 g / Total Sugars 0 g / Total Fat 16 g / Saturated Fat 4 g / Cholesterol 87 g
AUTHOR: Adam and Joanne Gallagher

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29 comments… Leave a Comment
  • Lolo April 15, 2019, 7:37 pm

    A friend who loves to fish gave me two trout. Having never cooked freshly caught fish before,I went searching for a recipe. Your recipe and instructions were fantastic. They were absolutely amazing. I felt like a real Pro. Many thanks!

  • Kenny February 22, 2019, 7:03 pm

    The recipe is very good! Are used Dill seed and lemon pepper plus lemons, sea salt, and olive oil. I believe the dill seed added just a little more tartness. I loved it! Thanks

  • Sujett February 17, 2019, 3:21 am

    I love love love trout! However I have been tentative at preparing it myself mostly because of not knowing how to remove the bones. If I wanted good trout I used to have to go to a Fish Market restaurant. However, I will not have to ever do that again! This recipe and instructions really will allow me to prepare trout myself deliciously! I don’t need another recipe because this one is perfect. The trout is tender moist flavorful. The recipe allows you to put your own spin on it. Thank you so much!

  • Shelagh Parrish July 9, 2018, 5:31 pm

    Beautiful meal, tasted delicious and removing the bones was made really easy after watching the video. I added sun dried tomatoes and olives which went well with the lemon, spring onion and herbs

  • Stephen July 3, 2018, 2:35 am

    Great video guys!

  • Sylvia Kennedy June 14, 2018, 2:09 pm

    We have just finished eating our gourmet trout having followed your recipe and instructions. We stuffed it with garlic, spring onion, thyme, sage and a celery-type herb from the garden. Wow! It was wonderful! We are feeling very pleased at the moment . . . we will definitely use this recipe again. (The trout was freshly caught in the lake where we live). Thanks for sharing.

  • Gramma June 5, 2018, 3:04 am

    I love the baked trout recipe. I added a number of fresh spices and was able to filet more easily than ever. I can hardly wait to try some more of your recipes.

  • Dawn May 22, 2018, 12:04 am

    Thank you for the great explanation on how to filet the trout! It was a breeze to do at home.

  • Kristi Z March 13, 2018, 6:15 pm

    Delicious and so easy! I used one clove of minced garlic per fish instead of the herbs since I didn’t have them on hand. The meat pulls right off the bones. 5 star recipe.

  • Lynette November 19, 2017, 10:04 pm

    Love your site. It’s like a breath of fresh air. I have just stumbled on it while looking for a recipe on the best way to bake a trout given to us by a friend. Will be trying your one tonight. Thanks.

  • Beverly Andrews potry July 30, 2017, 6:10 pm

    Good and simple which is most important!

  • Brenda May 9, 2017, 4:43 pm

    My dad always stuffed baked trout with pineapple and white onion and season.

  • Milton April 6, 2017, 9:48 pm

    I recently went from bass to trout fishing to change it up a bit. I caught my limit (7) and scaled, cleaned and took the bones out (the easy way) all at the stream I caught them. Scales free skin was left on since it’s also good to eat. I had tried pan frying them w/butter and seasoning them with salt, pepper, smoked hot paprika and lemon juice after cooking. Needless to say they were delicious! Today I tried your recipe but I didn’t have lemons so I used lemon juice. This one’s a keeper boys and girls! Can’t wait to catch, and eat more!

  • Tracy March 15, 2017, 2:08 pm

    OMG! I made exactly as sown and served it with Red Pepper Quinoa and shaved steamed Brussel Sprouts. To Die For! And the funniest part, I don’t like fish, lol.

  • D & D February 13, 2017, 8:45 am

    It was our first time to bake trout and this recipe was fantastic. We used cilantro as our herb and butter instead of olive oil. The trout was cooked perfectly following the instructions. We were told that the trout out of our town’s hatchery is too strong too eat…not true. Thanks! 5 stars.

  • Darlene December 15, 2016, 4:16 pm

    I used I can’t believe it’s not butter and old bay. Just as good and easy thank you

    • Robert Clark April 22, 2017, 6:07 pm

      It’s amazing with old Bay butter and lemon

  • Kendrick December 5, 2016, 5:26 pm

    Great recipe,It looks so easy to make but very delicious at the same time.I am going to cooking it on Sunday for my family.Thank You!

  • Clarence April 22, 2016, 12:36 am

    This was my first time making trout & this reciepe was simple but amazing. The trout came out so good.
    Thank you!

  • Sandy Madar December 8, 2015, 5:28 pm

    Fantastic recipe and yet so simple. The trout was so delicious. This recipe is a real keeper. Thanks!

    • Blah May 4, 2016, 6:34 pm

      I season/stuffing it outside and inside. Wrap tightly in heavy duty foil. 1′ is about 10-15 minutes on each side. Start with folded foil side down first and then flip. Cook longer if necessary. If your worried about the driping of fish oil/butter/etc., put a pan or foil or something underneath the foiled fish to catch the drippings.

  • Dustin E. September 1, 2015, 4:46 pm

    Hey awesome ideas! Nice to see a nice recipe for people also on a budget! Thanks again

  • Deanna July 22, 2015, 3:16 am

    What perfect timing. A new fish store opened in our area and we stopped in to see what they have. He showed us some fresh trout. He cleaned it (inside and out) and butterflied it for us. I had no idea what to do with them. Found your recipe and walla…..they are now in he oven with 13 minutes to go. Can’t wait to taste it.Looks great! Real gourmet and so simple to make.Thanks so much.I added a sprinkling of dill in and out of the fish.

  • chessie roberts May 18, 2014, 4:30 pm

    I did this recipe tonight. And it was amazing. My husband and my brother in law caught 16 fish so we had a full belly. Very good recipe. Thank you very much.

    • Joanne May 19, 2014, 10:46 am

      You are so lucky to have actually caught the fish yourself! We’re thrilled the recipe helped out 🙂

    • Ute June 7, 2014, 6:00 pm

      Had all ingredients at home; tastes delicious.

  • Michelle February 6, 2014, 2:27 pm

    My boyfriend fishes all the time. We have a freezer full of trout. Of course it is cleaned but he did not bother to cut the fillets out. This is how he usually cooks it too. It is very good but the beauty is you can also add a lot of other seasonings to it. Found one today where they suggested bay leaves and another where it was stuffed inside with onions and carrots and garlic. Think if you keep it fresh, the flavors on the brighter side, the better off you are. Hope you will try more Trout. Thanks for the recipe, I printed for my book since he never wrote his down. Now you get the credit. LOL

  • Evan March 4, 2011, 5:42 am

    Love the baked trout reciepe!

  • Ryan O October 10, 2009, 11:05 am

    Adam and Joanne, The trout sounds great, and surprisingly simple to make 🙂 Maybe one day I will try to make one of these recipes, but in the meantime, when are you making this for me!P.S. I am not surprised you didn’t want to clean the fish haha. That was a great tip though about asking the person behind the seafood counter to clean it for us. Looking forward to your next post !–Ryan


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