What Is Pompano Fish + 14 Best Pompano Fish Recipes

What is pompano fish?

Pompano is an ocean fish and comes with several other names such as pampano, sunfish, or gulf pompano, and falls in the family Carangidae.

This fish species is hard to hunt and catch, and that’s why it is called the fighting fish or the “jacks.”

pompano fish

It is native to the eastern Atlantic and mainly in the Gulf of Mexico and the waters around Florida. Since it is hard to hunt these fish, many fish sportspeople take the opportunity to pursue them for a prize. However, some of these fish are raised for commercial purposes.

At first glance, this fish appears flat because it’s narrow, but it doesn’t have its eyes on the sides of the head like the flounder. In addition, the scales of this fish are relatively tiny, which means you don’t have to remove them before you begin cooking. 

This fish grows to a maximum length of twenty centimeters, and a matured pompano weighs about 8 pounds if left to grow in the oceans. 

How do you cook the pompano?

Cooking these fish species is relatively straightforward as there isn’t much to do, especially since you can cook them with the scales. That said, you can have them gutted from the grocery store such that you cook them when you arrive home.

You need a bit of preparation when making this fish. Frying the fish is the best way to make this fish, but you should be careful not to overcook on the flip side.

The key to getting the best of this dish is ensuring that both sides are cooked evenly. Frying might be the easiest way to get the best of this dish, but there are other techniques you can employ using the ingredients of ou choice.

Pompano pairs well with veggies because of its delicate flavor, but you can pair it up with other ingredients provided none is overpowered.

Pompano recipes 

When it comes to cooking, the only limit is your imagination. With this dish, you can readily customize it using different ingredients to boost its flavor. 

Here are some of the best-tasting and delicious pompano recipes you can try.

1. Grilled pompano 


There is nothing complicated with this dish, and you don’t need any technical skills to prepare this pompano recipe. The number of ingredients you require for this recipe is only a handful making it a straightforward recipe.

Pompanos are relatively fatty, which means grilling them is the perfect way to eliminate the extra fat from the fish. 

You need to slice the fish lightly on both sides so that the ingredients can readily be absorbed while the fish is getting grilled. Get the recipe here.

2. Fried pompano with tamarind sauce, salted eggs, and tomatoes

You only need four ingredients for this recipe, making it the perfect dish for busy weeknights.

All you need to do with this recipe is to fry the pompano fish and pair it up with the tomatoes and salted eggs. The tamarind sauce is an additional ingredient that shouldn’t miss when making this dish.

Tamarind sauce blends well with any fried fish recipes and adds a uniquely sweet-savory flavor to the dish. Get the recipe here. 

3. Florida pompano with grapefruit sauce 

The mild flavor of pompano fish pairs well with the sweet-savory flavors of the grapefruits. It is a 30-minute recipe with ordinary ingredients that you can readily replace with your favorites.

Lemon zest has a significant role in this recipe as it gives the sauce a distinct savory flavor. Pair this dish with a salad, and you have a full course meal. Get the recipe here. 

4. Steamed pompano 

Steaming is not a procedure popularly used when preparing fish recipes because it makes the fish dry. Instead, the most preferred method is sauteing, frying, or baking because the fish becomes juicy.

However, you should try steaming the fish and learn how good the fish can get. It is a Chinese-inspired recipe, and it’s just as good.

Soy sauce has a significant role in the results of this recipe. The sauce contains ginger and spring onion leaves which elevates this dish giving it distinctive flavors that you will love. Get the recipe here

5. Broiled pompano 

This recipe is the most straightforward on this list. The best part is you only need four ingredients to make this recipe a success. Also, you can customize it with the ingredients of your choice to boost its flavor.

The first step is to layer the pompano on a chopping board and make incisions on both sides of the fish. The idea here is to create crisscross patterns such that the ingredients can readily be absorbed in the fish.

You need to check the fish repeatedly when in the broiler to prevent it from getting burnt. Get the recipe here

6. Whole baked pompano with lemon ginger sauce 

This delicacy doesn’t disappoint and has a variety of flavors that will please your guests and family. In addition, it is a dish that you can prepare in less than 30 minutes which saves time for your family or friends.

So, if you love cooking fish whole, this is the dish you need to prepare. Baking the pompano makes it release juices that are mild but also sweet. 

Regardless of the fish variety, rice is the perfect pairing as the two ingredients complement one another perfectly. Top the pompano with lemon ginger sauce, and you have the ideal dish for dinner. Get the recipe here. 

7. Crispy fried pompano 

Pompano tastes good when fried because it keeps its moisture intact even when fried. You need to fry the fish perfectly such that the exterior parts are crispy while the inside remains soft and juicy.

It is a 30-minute recipe with only four ingredients required, which means anyone can do it without any problems. The texture and flavor of the pompano make it the perfect fish for frying.

Season the pompano with salt and pepper, then fry it in oil. Get the recipe here.

7. Italian stuffed whole pompano 

This recipe features lemon, pompano, parmesan cheese, wine {usually white}, and several Italian seasonings, all of which you can get done in less than half an hour. 

For this recipe, you need the bones, so when the fishmonger is gutting the fish, remind them to leave the bones as they are essential in retaining the moisture when baking. It would be best if you also watched while the fish cooks so that it doesn’t get overcooked.

Whether you serve this dish with baked sweet potatoes or go for roasted asparagus, the flavor will be perfect. Get the recipe here.

8. Pan-fried pompano 

If you are wondering about the name pomfret name, it’s just another name for pompano. This recipe features ingredients such as red chili, ginger, and garlic. 

This recipe is coated with masala from the outside while the inside remains juicy. It is a versatile recipe, and there are several ways to prepare this dish.

The good news is the ingredients you need are common, and there is a handful. Get the recipe here. 

9. Sweet and sour pompano

If you are looking for what to serve with white rice, this recipe is perfect. You can use this fish dish, especially for lunch, because it is easy to put together. 

You need to prepare the sauce differently when using it for this dish. Besides the pompano fish, which is pricey, all the other ingredients you need to make this recipe are readily available in the grocery stores.

Sweet and sour are essential in balancing out the fishier flavor from the pompano. Get the recipe here. 

10. Grilled pompano and summer vegetables

It is a simple recipe that takes a shorter time with ordinary ingredients. In addition, it’s an outdoor recipe which means you don’t have to worry about doing the dishes.

The combo between grilled fish and grilled veggies is one you cannot forgo. The starters you need for this recipe are all about your imagination because summer brings so many fruits and vegetables. Get the recipe here.

11. Pompano and green papaya soup

Are you looking for a recipe packed with extra heat? Here you go, pompano and green papaya soup will not disappoint if you love chili. 

It takes less than 40 minutes to get this recipe done, which means it is the perfect dish for a quick lunch or dinner if you are always on tight schedules.

The heat from this recipe shouldn’t keep you off because you can balance it with fresh coconut milk. There is no fancy ingredient required here. Everything is available in the grocery. Get the recipe here.

12. Pompano fish fillets with tropical fruit

The combo between fish and fruits is irresistible regardless of the fish’s form. The fillets are often grilled or pan-fried, whereas the fruits feature mangoes, bananas, and pineapples.

The dish’s appearance is fantastic, especially with several ingredients blending well to make it colorful. The flavor is also terrific, all perfectly balanced.

This recipe goes well with golden rice, but there are several other dishes you can pair with this recipe. Get the recipe here. 

13. Pinangat na pompano 


This Filipino-inspired recipe is just as delicious and is packed with distinct flavors that your family will love. The pampano specie in this recipe is golden and relatively buttery, and plump.

Pinangat {a Filipino traditional dish} gives this recipe a distinctive flavor because of the ingredients used when preparing it. You get to express how good you are in the kitchen by customizing it to your desire.

You don’t need any fancy ingredients for this dish, and you can replace any ingredient you don’t love. Get the recipe here

13. Grilled pompano with lime and olive oil 

This recipe features vegetable oil, parsley, salt, pepper, and pompano fillets. It is the best dish alternative if you ever want to eat healthily, especially since it is low in calories and high in protein.

Pompano takes a shorter time to cook, so the best will be to bake it lightly to prevent overcooking. The flesh of pompano fish is ideal for grilling because its tender, sweet, and firm.

You don’t need many spices and seasonings for this recipe because it’s flavorful even on its own. Get the recipe here

14. Steamed citrus pompano 

The key to making this recipe brilliant is the addition of citrus flavor. This ingredient adds a fresh sweet, and savory flavor to any recipe you are preparing, transforming it into irresistible dishes.

It is a 30-minute recipe which means you can prepare it for dinner if you don’t know what to prepare for the week. The best part is you don’t have to rely on pompano if finding it becomes difficult as either halibut or salmon work well.

You need a few ingredients for this recipe. Get the recipe here.  

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