Cooking en papillote, or in a packet, is one of the best ways to cook fish without odor. It’s incredibly fast and easy and works with most fish fillets. It’s also a great way to make a meal for one. It is traditional and healthiest to use parchment paper to make the packets, but foil can be used as well, as it is easier to handle, especially if having neuropathy in the hands. Making the packets may seem tricky, but it’s easy, so try again if it didn’t work initially. Watch our Fish en Papillote video for step-by-step instructions. Do not make your packets too small or tight; the fish and veggies will make steam as they cook, and need room to expand.

20 min prep

4 servings 

5 ingredients 


  • 2 (6-ounce) thick-cut fillets white fish, such as black cod, tilapia, halibut or sea bass
  • 1 1/2 cups store-bought salsa verde, or 1 recipe Salsa Verde
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice
  • Lime, for garnish


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Diagonally slash the skin of each fish fillet three times. Set aside.
  3. Tear off two squares of parchment paper or aluminum foil large enough to comfortably hold one fish fillet each. If lining the foil with parchment paper, make it the same size as the foil and lay it on the dull side of the foil.
  4. Smear each foil/parchment square with 1 teaspoon of oil. Divide the salsa verde, and spoon over the center of the left side. Place the fish on top of the salsa and drizzle with half the lime juice.
  5. Fold the foil in half over the fish and tightly roll the sides of the packet together to seal, starting from the fold, leaving a small gap open at the far side. The packet should have the look of a giant empanada. Lay the packets on a cookie sheet and bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fish. Let them sit for a moment before opening.
  6. Carefully open the packets -- there will be steam! Serve with extra salsa verde and a wedge of lime.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

Calories: 140; Fat:5g; Saturated Fat: 1g; Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g; Monounsaturated Fat: 2g; Carbohydrates: 7g; Sugar: 3g; Fiber: 2g; Protein: 17g; Sodium: 598 mg

Registered Dietitian Approved

All our recipes are created by chefs and reviewed by our oncology-trained staff Registered Dietitian, Kate Ueland, MS, RD, to ensure that each is backed with scientific evidence and meets the standards set by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

This recipe was originally published on Cook for Your Life. It is used by permission.

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