The Hedgecombers' BBQ Citrus Baked Whole Mackerel

The Hedgecombers' BBQ Citrus Baked Whole Mackerel

This BBQ mackerel is cooked over a campfire with slices of lemon and lime and served with fire-baked sweet potatoes. 

According to the Cornwall Good Seafood Guide, mackerel are one of the most sustainable fish we can currently buy. Not only are they delicious, but they’re full of healthy fats and cheap as chips too!


Don’t be intimidated by the thought of cooking a whole fish on your BBQ. With a Thermapen by your side, all the guesswork (and worry) about serving an under, or overcooked fish will be gone. 

You are looking for a minimum of 60°C (140°F) throughout each mackerel.

Serves 3
  • 3 medium sized sweet potatoes, scrubbed clean and dried
  • 3 whole mackerel, gutted
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 2 lemons, thickly sliced
  • 2 limes, thickly sliced
  • salt
  • Pierce the skin of the sweet potatoes and wrap each one in a double layer of foil.
  • Bury in the embers of a campfire or BBQ, turning once in their 45 minute cooking time. If your sweet potatoes are particularly large, they may need a longer cooking time.
  • Score the sides of each mackerel with a sharp knife five or six times. Stuff each belly cavity with a few slices of the lemons and limes.
  • Place the fish in a wire BBQ basket, and lock shut. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt.
  • When the embers are white, place the basket on the fire and let the fish cook for about three minutes. Turn the basket over and start taking the temperature after another two or three minutes.
  • You are looking for a minimum of 60°C (140°F) throughout each mackerel.
  • Serve with the baked sweet potatoes and fresh green salad.
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"My Thermapen is never far away, whether I'm making jams with foraged hedgerow fruits, or ensuring that meats cooked on an open fire are safe and perfectly cooked."
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