Lionfish Zacatecas

plate of lionfish Zacatecas

In recent years, Indo-Pacific lionfish have invaded reefs in and around Gray’s Reef, Florida Keys, Flower Garden Banks, and Monitor national marine sanctuaries. Lionfish eat whatever they can find, reproduce rapidly, and have no known predators in their new habitats. As a result, they seriously threaten the health and biodiversity of reef communities. But you can help by focusing your seafood choices on invasive species like lionfish, which is increasingly available at grocery stores around the country. Lionfish is a white, flaky fish with a firm, buttery texture. From ceviche to fish tacos, there are an abundance of ways to enjoy this delicious invader! This recipe, brought to us by the Reef Environmental Education Foundation (REEF), is a sanctuary favorite.



  • 2 lbs lionfish fillets
  • 2 eggs, whisked
  • 2 cups bread crumbs
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • salt & peper to taste


  • 1 cup butter
  • 2 tbsp peanut butter
  • 2 tbsp Adobo sauce
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp chipotle pepper


  1. Mix all compound butter ingredients together and form into a log. Wrap with wax paper and refrigerate
    for a minimum of one hour.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a large sheet pan. Season the lionfish fillets with salt and pepper. Coat the fish in flour, shaking off excess. Dip fillets in egg, then dredge in breadcrumbs to encrust. Place the breaded fillets on the sheet pan and drizzle with melted butter. Bake the fish for seven minutes.
  3. While the fish is baking, remove the compound butter from the refrigerator and slice into ¼-inch slices. Remove fish from the oven and place one slice of compound butter in the center of each fillet.
  4. Return fish to the oven for an additional two minutes.
  5. Remove the fish from the oven and enjoy!