Moroccan Grilled Fish Kebabs: A Great Appetizer or Main Course

Moroccan grilled fish kebabs

The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Marinate: 30 mins
Total: 55 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
484 Calories
31g Fat
8g Carbs
43g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 484
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 31g 40%
Saturated Fat 4g 22%
Cholesterol 131mg 44%
Sodium 652mg 28%
Total Carbohydrate 8g 3%
Dietary Fiber 1g 5%
Total Sugars 3g
Protein 43g
Vitamin C 8mg 40%
Calcium 77mg 6%
Iron 1mg 8%
Potassium 836mg 18%
*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.)

Kebabs are a great way to enjoy meat, seafood, and or vegetables on the grill. These Moroccan spiced fish kebabs are easy to make and bring a depth of flavor to any white fish. The paprika, turmeric, chili powder, garlic, and cilantro add both color and spice. You can serve these fish kebabs by themselves as appetizers, or serve them over rice with grilled vegetables for a complete meal.

"Perfect recipe for grilling almost any kind of white fish. Combination of spices is on-point with great amount of acid. If you like spicy food, I highly recommend adding more chili powder to the marinade. Make sure that your grill is clean and hot otherwise fish might stick to the grill." —Tara Omidvar

Moroccan Grilled Fish/tester image
A Note From Our Recipe Tester


  • 1 1/2 pounds firm white fish

  • 1 cup coarsely chopped red onion

  • 1/3 cup olive oil, more for the grill

  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro

  • 1 teaspoon paprika

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/2 chili powder, more to taste

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients to make Moroccan grilled fish kebabs

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  2. Cut the fish into 1-inch pieces. Place pieces in a resealable bag.

    Small pieces of fish in a zip top bag

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  3. In a small bowl, combine the onion, oil, lemon juice, cilantro, paprika, salt, turmeric, pepper, chili powder, and garlic. Pour this mixture into the bag with fish. Seal bag, rotate to mix thoroughly and allow to marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

    A zip top bag of fish and marinade

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  4. Meanwhile, prepare a medium-high (400°F to 475°F) gas or charcoal grill fire. Brush the grill grates a number of times until they are very clean. Brush the grates with oil several times to ensure a nonstick surface.

    A brush brushing oil to the grate of a charcoal grill

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  5. Remove fish from bag and discard the marinade. Thread fish onto skewers. 

    Pieces of fish threaded onto four skewers

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  6. Place fish kebabs on the grill and cook, turning occasionally, until the fish turns opaque and flakes easily, and reaches an internal temperature of 145 F to 150 F, about 10 minutes total.

    Remove from grill and serve.

    Fish kebabs cooking over a charcoal grill

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck


  • You can use wood or metal skewers to make the kabobs. If you are using wooden skewers, make sure to soak them in water for at least 30 minutes or more before threading fish to avoid burning them on the grill.
  • When choosing fish for this recipe, make sure you select one that is meaty and firm; a thin, delicate fish (like flounder or sole) will fall apart either while trying to thread onto the skewers or on the grill. Select fish such as swordfish, halibut, mahi-mahi, striped bass, yellowtail, snapper, monkfish, and kingfish.
  • It will be easier to cut the fish into cubes if you purchase fish steaks. If you plan to buy a thinner fish, make sure it has its skin as this will help keep the fish intact. It is also important to cut the fish into equal-sized cubes so all of the pieces cook in the same amount of time. 
  • When threading onto the skewer, be sure to leave space between each piece of fish. It will cook slower and unevenly if the food is touching each other. Also, make sure to marinate the fish cubes no longer than 30 minutes as the acid in the lime juice can begin to break down the flesh or even start to cook the fish. 

Recipe Variations

  • If you'd like to add vegetables to the skewers, peppers, onion, zucchini, and cherry tomatoes are all good choices. Just be sure to cut them a similar size to the fish and do not crowd the skewers.
  • This is a simple and tasty fish marinade. To change the flavors, vary the herbs and spices as desired.
  • For Italian-style flavors, use parsley instead of cilantro and omit the paprika, turmeric, and chili powder. Add dried oregano, rosemary, or thyme instead.
  • For a Mexican twist, use lime juice instead of lemon. Swap the paprika and turmeric for cumin and cinnamon.

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