Creole Halibut BBQ Pouches 

Spring is always an indicator of halibut season, and this recipe is one of our favorite halibut recipes for the grill. Alternatively, you can cook these pouches in the oven at 450°F – 475°F for 12 to 15 minutes. Also, the halibut can be substituted with any white fish if you desire. This recipe and over 150 more are available in my cookbook: The Best in Your Kitchen. Enjoy!

Creole Halibut BBQ Pouches – makes 4 portions

 “The holy trinity of bell pepper, celery & onion; along with garlic, tomatoes, thyme, sweet smoked paprika and cayenne, give this seafood dish delicious Creole flavour”
4 halibut filets, approx. 200-250g each
Salt & pepper
12 cherry tomatoes, quartered
1 stalk celery, sliced thin
1 small yellow bell pepper, cut into small short strips
4 garlic cloves, minced
8 thin slices onion
12 fresh thyme sprigs
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
Ground cayenne pepper, optional
1 teaspoon white sugar
4 tablespoons cold butter
1 lemon

  1. Preheat BBQ grill with high heat.
  2. Cut 8 pieces of heavy duty aluminum foil – 12 inches x 18 inches. Lay 2 pieces of foil on top of each other to make 4 separate double-layer foil bases.
  3. Place each filet, skin side down, in the center of one half of each of the foil bases, and season each filet liberally with salt and pepper.
  4. Top each filet evenly with 3 quartered tomatoes, equal amounts of celery, equal amounts of bell pepper, 1 minced garlic clove, 2 thin slices of onion, 3 sprigs of thyme, 1/2 teaspoon paprika, pinch of cayenne, 1/4 teaspoon sugar, and season with more salt & pepper.
  5. Top each mound with a 1 tablespoon pat of butter.
  6. Seal the pouches by folding over the foil in half longwise over the vegetable covered fish. Starting at one end, fold in and crimp the edges of the foil tightly and work around the whole open side of the foil to form a semi-circle pouch. It must be tightly sealed to keep all the steam and juices in the pouch.
  7. Place the pouches on the hot BBQ grill and reduce heat to medium low. Be careful not to pierce the pouches. Close the lid and cook for approximately 12 to 15 minutes while trying to maintain a cooking temperature of 375°F on your BBQ’s built-in gauge. The pouches should be puffed up life a balloon when done.
  8. Remove pouches from the grill and let sit for 5 minutes before opening. The internal temperature of the fish should be 140-150°F.
  9. Carefully cut open each pouch (steam will be hot), squeeze over a bit of fresh lemon juice, and serve immediately. It is very fun to let your guests open their own pouch themselves and eat right out of the pouch.

Chef Dez is a Chef, Writer, & Culinary Instructor. Visit him at

Write to him at or P.O. Box 2674, Abbotsford, BC V2T 6R4