Also indexed as: Cero Mackerel, King Mackerel, Ono, Opelu,
Spanish Mackerel, Wahoo
Preparation, uses, and tips
The secret to successful mackerel cookery is to not overcook. Whichever of the following
cooking methods you choose, your mackerel will be cooked when its flesh becomes opaque but
still moist, and can easily be pierced with a fork. To tone down strong-tasting mackerel,
marinate in a citrus or vinegar marinade for
15 to 30 minutes.
Place mackerel in a greased baking dish, or wrap in oiled foil and place on a baking sheet.
Brush with melted butter or oil and season
with salt and pepper, or cover with a piquant sauce. Bake in a preheated 450°F
(230°C) oven until done, about 10 minutes per inch of thickness.
Rinse mackerel fillets or steaks and pat dry with a paper towel. Coat with flour, crumbs,
or cornmeal, if desired. Place fish on a rack above a baking dish, and brush with melted
butter or oil. Preheat broiler and adjust oven rack so the fish is 3 to 4 inches (about 7.6 to
10cm) from the element. Broil, turning once, until fish is opaque but still moist in the
center, about 3 to 10 minutes, depending on size of the fish.
Place fillets or steaks on perforated aluminum foil, 4 to 6 inches (about 10 to 15cm) above
prepared coals or fire. Baste with butter, oil, or marinade, and close the hood of the grill.
Cook until fish is opaque and moist on the inside, about 6 to 8 minutes for fish less than
1-inch (2.5 cm) thick, and 10 to 15 minutes for fish larger than 1-inch (2.5cm) thick.
Coat mackerel with seasoned flour, crumbs, or cornmeal. Shake off any extra coating and fry
in a small amount of hot butter or oil, turning once halfway through cooking time. Cook until
opaque and moist on the inside, 4 to 8 minutes.
Bring poaching liquid, consisting of water, broth, and herbs and spices, to a simmer. Slip in the mackerel,
then cover pan and keep liquid at a simmer for about 8 minutes per inch (2.5cm) of
Atlantic mackerel (also called Boston mackerel) is often used in sashimi. Spanish mackerel
has only a small percentage of red meat and a milder taste than other kinds of mackerel. King
mackerel (also called kingfish or cavalla) has a firm texture and distinct taste. Cero
mackerel (also called cerro or painted mackerel), caught in waters along the coast of Florida,
has leaner flesh and more delicate flavor than most varieties. Pacific mackerel (also called
American, blue, or chub) is an oily fish with an assertive flavor. Pacific jack mackerel (also
called horse mackerel) is often canned. Wahoo (also called ono), is a subtropical fish with a
delicate flavor; it is often used for sashimi.
Fresh mackerel is sold whole, as fillets, and as steaks.
Mackerel (cooked, dry heat), 1 fillet (3 oz.)
Total Fat: 15.7g
*Excellent source of: Selenium (45.4mcg), Niacin (6mg), Vitamin B6 (0.4mg), and Vitamin B12 (16.7mcg)
*Foods that are an “excellent source” of a particular
nutrient provide 20% or more of the Recommended Daily Value. Foods that are a “good
source” of a particular nutrient provide between 10 and 20% of the Recommended Daily
When cooked (dry heat), Atlantic mackerel provides 1.316 grams of omega-3 fatty acids,
derived from EPA (0.504 grams), DHA (0.699g),
and ALA (0.113g), per 100 grams of Atlantic
mackerel. When cooked (dry heat), king mackerel provides 0.401 grams of omega-3 fatty acids,
derived from EPA (0.174g) and DHA (0.227 grams), per 100 grams of king mackerel.