Broiled Swordfish Steaks

Broiled Swordfish with cucumber salad and parsley

Jason Loucas / Photodisc

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 8 mins
Total: 18 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
497 Calories
34g Fat
14g Carbs
37g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 497
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 34g 43%
Saturated Fat 11g 53%
Cholesterol 143mg 48%
Sodium 491mg 21%
Total Carbohydrate 14g 5%
Dietary Fiber 4g 14%
Total Sugars 4g
Protein 37g
Vitamin C 77mg 384%
Calcium 56mg 4%
Iron 2mg 10%
Potassium 989mg 21%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

These broiled swordfish steaks are nicely seasoned with butter and paprika along with salt, pepper, and some lemon. The recipe is simple yet flavorful, and it's the perfect way to enjoy swordfish. The garlic and parsley sauce is optional but well worth making.

Swordfish is a firm fish, making the steaks ideal candidates for grilling or broiling. It's meaty, mild, and a little bit sweet, and is excellent cut into chunks for kabobs as well. Halibut or tuna steaks may be substituted, or salmon.

There are many nutritional advantages, including healthy fats and nutrient density. It's also a good natural source of vitamin D. But because of the high level of methyl mercury, swordfish consumption—along with mackerel, shark, and tilefish—should be limited to rare occasions.


  • 2 pounds swordfish steaks, about 1 inch thick

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1/8 teaspoon sweet Hungarian paprika

  • 5 tablespoons (2 1/2 ounces) unsalted butter, melted

  • Chopped fresh parsley, optional

  • Lemon wedges, for garnish

For the Garlic Parsley Sauce:

  • 1/2 cup minced fresh parsley

  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1/3 cup olive oil

  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

  • Kosher salt, to taste

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Sprinkle the swordfish steaks with salt, pepper, and paprika and gently rub into the fish.

  2. Preheat a greased broiler rack.

  3. Place the swordfish steaks on the greased broiler rack and brush with the melted butter. Put them under the broiler, about 2 to 3 inches from the heat source. Broil the steaks for about 4 minutes.

  4. Turn the swordfish steaks, brush with more melted butter, and broil for 4 to 5 minutes longer.

  5. The fish should be lightly browned and will flake easily with a fork when done. 

  6. Transfer the swordfish to a platter or individual plates and sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley, if desired. Serve with lemon wedges and drizzle servings with a tablespoon or two of garlic parsley sauce (below), if desired.

  7. Serve with rice or potatoes. 

Garlic Parsley Sauce

  1. In a bowl, combine the 1/2 cup of chopped parsley with the grated lemon zest, minced garlic, olive oil, and 3 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice.

  2. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste.

How Do I Know When Swordfish is Done?

It's hard to detect doneness in swordfish by simply poking it, as it feels just as firm at medium and medium-well as it does at well done. The FDA's recommended cook temperature is 145 F, but by most accounts, swordfish will be well-done at that point. If you have a remote thermometer or a digital probe thermometer, you can put it into a steak and set the temperature to 130 to 135 if you would like it less than well done. Keep in mind that it will continue to cook after you pull it out of the oven or off the grill.


  • Grill the swordfish steaks on an oiled grill grate over hot coals for about the same amount of time, or use a greased fish grilling basket.
  • Swordfish is a sustainable seafood choice but you should keep in mind that swordfish contains a higher level of mercury than most other types of edible fish. The FDA advises that this can be dangerous to young children, pregnant and nursing women, and women of child-bearing age. Therefore, these groups should avoid eating swordfish.

Recipe Variations

  • Replace the swordfish steaks with salmon, tuna, or Pacific halibut. 

How to Store and Freeze Swordfish

Leftover swordfish will keep for about 3 days in the refrigerator if it's well-wrapped or in a sealed container. If you would like you can freeze it for up to 4 months. Wrap it well in foil or plastic wrap and keep it in a zip-close freezer bag.

Glass Bakeware Warning

Do not use glass bakeware when broiling or when a recipe calls to add liquid to a hot pan, as glass may explode. Even if it states oven-safe or heat resistant, tempered glass products can, and do, break occasionally.