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Baked Flounder with Lemon Garlic and Butter

Baked Flounder with Lemon Garlic and Butter is an easy dinner that goes from prep to table in under 30 minutes. The fish is buttery, flaky, and full of fresh citrus and garlic flavors.

Who doesn’t love an easy meal that’s big on flavor? We are big fans of quick and easy dishes that use fresh herbs, citrus, and spices to add flavor without a lot of fuss.

Baked flounder with lemon garlic and butter is one of those meals. The flounder is baked in a lemon butter sauce filled with fresh garlic, onion powder, salt, and pepper.

Then the fish gets sprinkled with smoked paprika for an extra touch. Flounder is a light, white fish that flakes beautifully and pairs well with vegetables or salad for an easy dinner.

Much like our oven baked Mahi Mahi, Chilean Sea Bass and baked cod with Panko, this recipe comes together quickly and bakes up in no time! I love that it bakes in one pan, so cleanup is super easy.

Baked fish with fresh veggies on a gray plate.

Lemon Garlic Flounder:

We love to add seafood recipes to our weekly rotation of easy dinner dishes. They’re light, simple to prepare, full of flavor, and the possibilities are endless.

This easy flounder recipes checks off all those boxes. It comes together and is on the table in about 30 minutes.

We chose to season the flounder with a savory lemon garlic butter and a sprinkle of smoked paprika. The light flavors pair well with flaky white fish without being heavy or overwhelming.

Serve this flounder recipe with your favorite sides for an amazing dinner recipe that the whole family will love!

How to Make Baked Flounder with Lemon Garlic and Butter:

  1. Start by preheating the oven, and buttering a 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Set aside. Since the fish is usually on the thinner side and it’s delicate, we bake it on a lower temperature of 325°F.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the melted butter, lemon juice, garlic, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Please use freshly squeezed lemon juice and not imitation.
  3. Pat the fish fillets dry with a paper towel, and check for any small bones. Lay the fillets in the prepared baking dish. It’s okay to overlap the fish if it doesn’t fit in an even layer as long as all the fillets are in an even layer.
  4. Pour the lemon butter mixture over the fish. Sprinkle the flounder with smoked paprika, and bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until the fillets flake easily with a fork. Depending on the thickness of the fish, it may need to bake it for a couple extra minutes.
  5. Serve the baked flounder immediately with a drizzle of the lemon butter and garlic, extra lemon wedges, fresh vegetables, or a side salad.
Bowl of lemon butter garlic sauce.
Top down view of flounder with lemon butter in a baking dish.
Flounder fillets in a white baking dish.
Arial view of uncooked flounder in a baking dish.

What goes with baked flounder?

Baked flounder goes great with lighter side dishes. Here are some favorites:
Roasted Potatoes
Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Dill Potatoes
Sautéed Broccoli
Spinach Salad

How do you bake fish without drying it out?

Make sure to cook the fish at the correct time and temperature for the variety that you’re baking. Although, most fish varieties cook at similar oven temperatures, they can vary slightly. The thickness and texture of the fish is also important. Less oily fish tend to dry out more easily than fattier fish like salmon or sea bass.

How do you know when flounder is cooked?

Baked flounder will be white and flake easily with a fork when it’s finished baking. Additionally, the internal temperature should range between 140° to 145°F on an instant read thermometer.

Baked flounder with lemon wedges.

Can you use frozen fillets for baked flounder with lemon garlic and butter?

We used frozen fillets that had been thawed and patted dry, and don’t recommend using completely frozen fillets. Fresh fillets are the best bet if you’re able to locate them.

Why is the flounder so watery?

If you used frozen flounder fillets, it is likely due to the solution in fish. Another possibility is if the fish wasn’t properly thawed, it will release water as it cooks.

Either one of these can cause the finished dish to have a watery or soupy consistency and will dilute the flavor of the butter sauce.

Fish fillets with lemon wedges and broccoli florets.

Do you have to use a lemon garlic and butter sauce?

No, there are a ton of ways to flavor flounder.

You can also use olive oil, salt, and pepper with some fresh lemon juice at the end. Anything that’s light and flavorful will work well without overpowering the fish.

If you want a spicy fish recipe, try our blackening seasoning and make oven baked blackened flounder.

How to Store Leftover Flounder:

Flounder stores well in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 days. Reheat in the oven on the lowest temperature setting just until warmed through. This helps to prevent drying out.

Another option is to reheat over low heat on the stove top.

Like this recipe?

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Top down view of flounder with lemon and broccoli.

Baked Flounder with Lemon Garlic and Butter

4.4 from 142 votes
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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 Servings

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Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice freshly squeezed
  • 2 teaspoons garlic cloves minced or pressed (about 3 small cloves)
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt or to taste
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 pound flounder fillets patted dry with paper towels
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 325°F, and butter a 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Set aside.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the melted butter, lemon juice, garlic, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Set aside.
    4 tablespoons unsalted butter
    2 tablespoons lemon juice
    2 teaspoons garlic cloves
    ½ teaspoon kosher salt
    ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
    ¼ teaspoon onion powder
  • Pat the fillets dry with a paper towel, then place them in the prepared baking dish. Pour the butter mixture over the fillets. Sprinkle smoked paprika over the top.
    1 pound flounder fillets
    ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • Bake for 15 to 20 minutes (may need a few more minutes for thick fillets), or until the flounder flakes easily with a fork. 
  • Remove from the oven, garnish with fresh parsley and lemon. Serve hot with a salad or steamed veggies.

Notes

*The calories listed are an approximation based on the ingredients in the recipe card and a serving size of ¼ pound of flounder. Actual calories will vary.
 
*For more information, tips, and answers to frequently asked questions, please refer to the post.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.25pound | Calories: 185kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 0.5g | Cholesterol: 81mg | Sodium: 385mg | Potassium: 207mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 0.2g | Vitamin A: 512IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 32mg | Iron: 0.3mg
Recipe Rating




Brenda Sneed

Saturday 10th of December 2022

Made it tonight and my husband loved it.

John

Sunday 11th of December 2022

Glad to hear it, thank you Brenda!

Cathy

Sunday 3rd of July 2022

Had this tonight! I added a light layer of Panko to the top. My husband likes a little crunch. Was delicious! Served with garlicky couscous, sauted vegetables and a nice mixed salad. Spooned the pan juices over the couscous. Yum! Nothing but a delicious memory now. Thank you for sharing

John

Monday 4th of July 2022

Thank you Cathy, Kim and I are thrilled you and your husband enjoyed the flounder. That sounds like a wonderful meal! Have a lovely day :)

Friday 8th of April 2022

Gebbie

Sunday 30th of January 2022

My husband and I had this for dinner tonight and we were not impressed with the flavors. I think we will stay with the bolder flavors of blackened seasoning.

Kim

Monday 31st of January 2022

Hi Gebbie!

Blackened seasoning would taste great. Hope that works out better for you. Have a wonderful week! :)

Keri

Friday 24th of December 2021

This was great! Made it, ate some and added the rest to a seafood casserole with other seafood!