Mediterranean Diet 101

Grilled Sardines Recipe

Grilled sardines recipe is one of the simplest fish recipes around. Grilling sardines on non-stick grilling pan creates very quick and healthy meal for everyone, loaded with vitamins, minerals and omega-3 fatty acids.

Cholesterol in Sardines

Although sardines are relatively fatty fish, they are low in bad cholesterol (LDL) and have some good cholesterol (HDL). Being at the bottom of food chain in the sea, they are also low in mercury levels. Fat content varies in sardines from 2-3% up to 10%. This is fish fat, so have no fear regarding this. Cholesterol levels vary from 50mg, up to 100-120mg per 100g of fresh clean sardine meat. Since sardines are small fish, they can be eaten whole - this will increase amount of minerals consumed (mainly phosphorus and calcium).

Sardines are good source of animal protein, they are available year long and are one of the rare fishes that taste acceptable when frozen. Fresh sardines are always better than frozen, but having them frozen makes them available whenever we want.

Fresh or frozen, sardines have 18-20g of protein, have no carbs and on average have 5-6g of fat per 100g of fish meat.

Grilled Sardines Recipes

There are various grilled sardines recipes, but I like to keep things simple.

If you want to improve taste, then simple marinade is recommended - simply put sardines in plastic pot, add some salt, pepper, tablespoon of olive oil per half a kilo of fish and leaf or two of laurel. Leave the pot for few hours in the fridge or over the night. This is recommended for fresh sardines.

grilled sardines

If you have frozen sardines, after defrosting, put them in the strainer. Add some salt and mix everything. If you prefer, add some pepper. Since I am grilling my fish in non-stick grilling pan, I am not going to add any oil. If you add some oil, add olive oil and decrease heat.

grilled sardines

Preheat grilling pan and put sardines. I eat sardines whole, so I grill them little bit longer, maybe 4-6 minutes each side on medium heat.

grilled sardinesFew more minutes and sardines are done ... And that is all ...

Put sardines on the plate, add some garlic, parsley, lemon juice and maybe some olive oil. Serve warm with some salad as side dish. If you are having grilled sardines as first solid meal after workout, potato salad is recommended (great tasting, but also plenty of carbs). If this is a 'normal' meal and you are not ectomorph struggling to gain few grams of the precious muscles, than side dish in the form of mashed cauliflower with peas is recommended.

Note on olive oil: Olive oil is very healthy oil. It contains healthy fatty acids in right ratios, but it contains NO omega-3 fatty acids. But we are adding it to fish meals, so no worries about that. Olive oil, on the other hand, don't like heat, so if you are grilling or frying something with olive oil, decrease the heat. If you don't, olive oil will NOT turn itself into something toxic or dangerous, but it will lose it's aroma, fragrance and fatty acids ratios will change. Not to mention various oxidation processes ...

When eating fish, add olive oil just before consuming fish - with some garlic, parsley and few drops of lemon ...

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