I love grilled fish or baked fish. In my hometown, there is a famous grilled fish named Chong Qing WanZhou grilled fish(万州烤鱼). This dish is an exact Sichuan dish. Whole fish is grilled with sauces made with Doubanjiang, garlic and Sichuan peppercorn.

Spicy Grilled Fish |ChinaSichuanFood

I get my finger cut days before and thus failed to do complex cooking. Then I recall my memory the taste and make my own version of spicy grilled fish.  I promise that it is excellent. So excellent that we eat the whole fish and all the vegetables up but still keen to have some.

If doubanjiang is available in your kitchen, then making this spicy fish is really simple.

Spicy Grilled Fish |ChinaSichuanFood

Firstly, we need to pan-fry the sauce with doubanjiang, sichuan peppercorn, garlic and ginger slices. Then marinade the fish for about 1 hour. Then put it in oven to bake for abound 30 minutes with the temperature of 220 degree centigrade.

Spicy Grilled Fish |ChinaSichuanFood

Spicy Grilled Fish

Grilled fish with spicy and garlic sauce made with Chinese doubanjiang, garlic sauce and sichuan peppercorns
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Sichuan cuisine
Keyword: fish, Spicy
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 2
Calories: 211kcal
Author: Elaine


  • 1 whole fresh fish
  • 10 Shitake mushroom
  • 2 ~3 fresh chili peppers sliced
  • 1 onion sliced
  • 1 handful coriander
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon five spice powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon doubanjiang , chili bean paste
  • 1 teaspoon Sichuan peppercorn
  • 2 cloves garlic sliced
  • 1 section of ginger sliced
  • 1 tablespoon shallots sections
  • 2 teaspoons Salt


  • Clean the fish. Cut several cuts on both sides of the fresh. Sprinkle some salt to add flavor to the meat inside.
  • Wash all the vegetable ingredients listed above. In a large container, add salt and mix thoroughly.
  • Cut fresh pepper and onions into slices as well as the Shitake mushrooms.
  • Prepare a pan and heat up some cooking oil and then add garlic,shallots and ginger to stir fry until the aroma can be smelled. Then put doubanjiang and sichuan peppercorn in to stir-fry until the oil becomes red. Turn off the fire. Put the pan aside.
  • Put the fish cleaned in the middle of ovenware, and then lay the vegetables around the fish.
  • Pour the sauce made in above steps onto both sides of the fish. Marinade for around 1 hour.
  • Sprinkle five spice powder and cumin powder on top.
  • Preheat the oven to 220 degree centigrade; Oven 30 minutes.
  • Get the ovenware out and sprinkle some coriander on top to add fresh aroma.


Vegetables can be replaced by others. Just cook with what’s in your kitchen and bear 30 minutes oven heat.


Calories: 211kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 37g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 87mg | Sodium: 2442mg | Potassium: 727mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 695IU | Vitamin C: 15.6mg | Calcium: 45mg | Iron: 2.7mg

Spicy Grilled Fish |ChinaSichuanFood

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  1. Just made this for dinner, was delicious and easy! Not hot either, I do so like to be able to taste other things afterwards!

    1. Hi Cath,
      Thanks for your feedback. This is my favorite fish dishes. Most of Sichuan Food looks spicy not taste not so hot. Enjoy and nice day ahead.

  2. Hello this is a great idea for a recipe and I also love your website. I have a question about this particular recipe: putting the doubanjiang directly on the fish, won’t it make it really salty? I made the mistake to put doubanjiang +shallots garlic and ginger directly on my tofu (without water and corn starch) and it was really salty barely eatable.
    Or is the doubanjiang you use not as salty? Basically how do you prevent having an overly salty dish?

    1. The skins are slightly over salted, but the meat should be appropriately salted.
      For tofu and vegetarian dishes, I usually dilute the sauce with water like cold tofu.

  3. I made this dish this weekend, inspired by the discovery of your website. I made it with a little variation trying to replicate how you would be served at a restaurant in China. So I used a LOT more fresh peppers, and in the sauce used a LOT more red peppercorns, and dried chilies along with chili powder for depth of flavor and color. last, instead of five spice powder, I used the Indian spice blend Garam Masala with the cumin, and added powdered green peppercorns sprinkled for the topping..

    Instead of backing, I placed the pan on the grill and added some apple wood chunks with the charcoal to give it a smokey finish. What a pleasant surprise, and so easy to make. Firey hot and very numbing. I was in heaven.

    P.S. I have grown to really enjoy using the red peppercorns to be infused with the oil at the start of any dish, then adding the crushed or powdered fragrant green peppercorns a the end of the dish. An amazing citrusy and numbing flavor profile. Have you ever tried this way before? I did not see this in Sichuan Province but pretty common in Yunnan Province.

    1. Hi Xiong,
      Thanks for the feedback!! I am drooling when reading your description.
      As for the peppercorn, red peppercorn are more aromatic with less numbing feeling. So we mainly use it in stir-frying, stews and soups. However green peppercorn has a very profound numbing feeling. So yes, you get the right choice concerning about Sichuan peppercorns.

      1. Making it again tonight. Let me know how to send you a picture and I would like to share with you if you would like. I am using Sea bass fillets, so do not have the benefit of the skin. This time I am going to use some apple wood chunks for a little smoke, and see if that adds a nice extra flavor.

        1. Hi Xiong,
          We don’t support uploading pictures on the blog, but you can share your image from FB or Ins. I love to see it.

          1. Have not figured out how to upload to those yet, but pics are on my phone. Making again tonight with a different kind of fish. Using a lot more fresh Thai chilies to kick up the heat, and a few adjustments. Will let you know how it turns out.

    1. Sarah,
      I don’t have a griller right now, using just oven. So sorry no valuable suggestion can be offered.

  4. What kind of fish is used for this? That should definitely be included in the recipe. I’m guessing sea bass?

    1. Theoretically speaking, carp, crucian carp, bass, turbot, etc. are all acceptable. In this recipe photo, it is sea bass 😊