Butterfly Cut of Fish || How to make & Uses


What is the Butterfly Cut of fish ?

Butterfly cuts

The butterfly cut of fish is a method of preparing fish where the fish is filleted down the center, leaving the spine and tail intact. The filleted sections are then spread open like a butterfly, resulting in a larger, flatter piece of fish that is easier to cook evenly.

How to make butterfly Cut of Fish ?

To make a butterfly cut of fish, you will need a sharp knife and a cutting board.

  • Start by placing the fish on the cutting board, with the head facing away from you.
  • Using a sharp knife, make a cut behind the gills, going all the way down to the backbone.
  • Next, make a similar cut on the other side of the fish, also going all the way down to the backbone.
  • Carefully remove the fillet from each side of the fish, keeping the knife as close to the bones as possible.
  • Once both fillets have been removed, you can then spread them open like a butterfly, leaving the spine and tail intact.
  • At this point, the fish is ready to be seasoned and cooked to your preference.

For more about Butterfly fish you can watch below video



Note: Remember that you can use fish that is cleaned and scaled before this process.

Please keep in mind that this is a general guide and depending on the fish you are cutting, you may need to adjust the method slightly.

Uses of Butterfly cut

The butterfly cut of fish is a versatile method of preparation that has several uses. Here are a few in detail:

Even cooking

By spreading the fish open like a butterfly, the cut results in a larger and flatter piece of fish which makes it easier to cook evenly. This is particularly useful for fish that tend to be thick in some areas and thin in others, as it allows for more even cooking.


It can be used to make the fish look more elegant and visually pleasing, which can add to the overall experience of the meal. This method of cutting fish is often used in fancy restaurants and at special events.



The butterfly cut makes it easier to stuff the fish with herbs, spices, or other ingredients. This can add extra flavor and depth to the fish, and can also be used to conceal any imperfections in the fish.


The butterfly cut also makes it easier to portion the fish, as the fillets are already separated and can be cut into individual servings. This can be useful for meal prepping or for serving a crowd.


The butterfly cut of fish is ideal for grilling as it allows for even cooking, and the fish can be filled with herbs and spices before grilling for added flavor.


It is also a great method of preparation for broiling as the fish will cook quickly and evenly, and can be topped with breadcrumbs or other toppings for added texture and flavor.


The butterfly cut can be used in poaching as well, it allows the fish to cook quickly and evenly in a flavorful liquid.


The butterfly cut is also a good method of preparation for baking, as the fish can be filled with herbs and spices and topped with a breadcrumb or cheese topping for added flavor and texture.


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