Grilled Halibut with Kale Pesto

grilled halibut topped with kale pesto

5 from 6 reviews

Grilled halibut topped with a zesty kale pesto for a healthy entree from the grill. Excellent paired with a white wine from Abruzzo, Italy.



For the kale pesto

  • 4 cups tightly packed kale leaves, stems removed
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 2 tbsp pumpkin seeds, lightly toasted
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ cup grated parmesan cheese
  • ⅔ cup extra virgin olive oil

For the halibut

  • 1 lb halibut fillet
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • pinch salt


  1. Make the kale pesto: Add the kale and garlic to a food processor, coarsely chopping to create enough room for the other ingredients.
  2. Add the pumpkin seeds, salt and pepper, cheese, and olive oil, and puree until it comes to a nice smooth consistency. Set kale pesto aside.
  3. Prepare the halibut: Preheat a grill to medium high heat. Combine the 2 tablespoons olive oil, dried basil, garlic powder and salt in a large bowl. Rinse and pat dry the halibut fillet, then dip the flesh side of the fish in the oil mixture, then let the fillet rest in the bowl skin side down.
  4. After the grill is heated and the halibut has marinated for about 5 minutes, spray the grill with cooking oil and place the halibut on the grill.
  5. Grill the halibut on one side for 4 to 5 minutes, then carefully turn the fish over to cook on the other side for about 5 minutes. The halibut is done when cooked through and it flakes easily. Total cooking time will vary based on thickness of the halibut, likely to range between 10 to 12 minutes total grilling time.
  6. When the halibut is done cooking, remove from grill to a platter. Portion the halibut into serving sizes, and plate the fish. Top each piece of halibut with about 1 tablespoon of the kale pesto. Enjoy!


  • This recipe will generate extra kale pesto. You can use the extra to toss with some pasta as a side dish, or save it for future use.
  • When turning the halibut, some of the skin may stick to the grill. If that is the case, just place the halibut in a clean area of the grill and scrape the skin off the grates later.
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