Garlic & Lemon Red Snapper with Homemade Aioli

Impress your family with this lemon- and garlic-stuffed whole fish on the grill that’s surprisingly easy to put together. Make the aioli on your Sunday prep day so you can simply assemble and grill the fish right before eating.

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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
15 min
30 min


  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 3 cloves garlic, divided (NOTE: Mince 1 clove and slice 2.)
  • 1/2 cup avocado oil mayonnaise
  • 2 lemons, divided (NOTE: Zest and juice 1 lemon to yield 1 tsp zest and 1 tbsp lemon juice; cut remaining lemon into 6 thin slices.)
  • ¾ tsp sea salt, divided
  • ¾ tsp ground black pepper, divided
  • 2 2-lb whole red snappers, cleaned, scaled and patted dry


Prep Ahead

1. Make aioli: In a small, unheated skillet, combine 1 tbsp oil and minced garlic. Turn heat on low and let cook until it sizzles. Sizzle for 30 seconds, then transfer to a small bowl to cool. When cooled, stir in mayonnaise, lemon zest and juice. Season with ¼ tsp each salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days. 

The Day Of

2. Preheat grill to medium-high. Brush fish inside and out with 3 tbsp oil. Season inside and out with remaining ½ tsp each salt and pepper. Stuff cavities with lemon slices and sliced garlic. 

3. Grease grill (or a grill basket) and grill fish for about 6 to 8 minutes, until skin releases from grates. Carefully turn and grill until cooked through and underside releases, 6 to 8 minutes longer. Serve with aioli on the side.

Nutrition Information

  • Serving Size ¼ of recipe
  • Calories 486
  • Carbohydrate Content 2 g
  • Cholesterol Content 121 mg
  • Fat Content 29 g
  • Fiber Content 0 g
  • Protein Content 51 g
  • Saturated Fat Content 4 g
  • Sodium Content 761 mg
  • Sugar Content 0 g
  • Monounsaturated Fat Content 19 g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat Content 5 g