What Does Mahi Mahi Taste Like? (Explained)

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What Does Mahi Mahi Taste Like

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Like most people, you’ve probably heard great stories about mahi-mahi and believe they would be tasty due to their size, amazingly colorful, and smooth body. But you have never had the opportunity to taste one. So, what does mahi mahi taste like?

Mahi-mahi has a mild flavor with a sweet undertone and lean texture traces. That sweetness comes out even more if you cook the fish in a way that lets it caramelize, like searing or grilling.

In this article, we will be learning more about the popular mahi mahi fish so you will know what to expect whenever you decide to use it in your dishes!

What Is Mahi Mahi?

Mahi-mahi, also called dolphinfish or “dolphin,” is a lean, white fish with a meaty texture with firm flakes. They have a mild flavor with a sweet finish and tend to be one of the most expensive types of fish because they are so difficult to catch.

Mahi-mahi is found in tropical and subtropical waters worldwide, but it’s not uncommon for this fish to swim through cooler waters. They are known for their bright colors, including greens, blues, and golds, which can often change when excited or frightened.

This fish species gets its name from the Hawaiian word for “very strong,” and they typically weigh between 10 to 50 pounds. The average lifespan of mahi-mahi is five years, and they can reproduce when they’re just one year old.

The word “mahi-mahi” is Hawaiian for “strong,” which makes sense considering its broad, flat body, large eyes, and razor-sharp teeth.

The orange-colored flesh of the mahi-mahi is so sweet and succulent that it is often called the “dolphin fish,” but it should not be confused with the dolphin mammal; they are different critters! When it comes to cooking Mahi, you don’t want to overpower the natural sweetness of this fish with heavy sauces or seasonings.

Instead, try cooking it with a light lemon sauce or light seasonings like salt and pepper. For example, try our recipe for Lemon Garlic Mahi Mahi — it’s fast and easy!

What Does Mahi Mahi Taste Like?

Mahi-mahi is a firm, mild-flavored fish. It has a flaky, white flesh, usually served in steaks. It’s often compared to swordfish or halibut. It has a relatively mild flavor, making it versatile in cooking methods.

You can bake it, sautee it, grill it, or broil it.

It can be served in many ways; it’s great in soups, stews, and chowders, on salads, like sushi or sashimi, or by itself with side dishes, especially rice.

Cooking tip: There’s no need to marinate this fish before cooking — it’s not that strong-flavored.

But if you want to marinate it, keep the seasoning light and simple so that you don’t overpower the fish’s natural taste.

Soy sauce is a great option here; use half a cup for every pound of fish (or more if you want an extra-strong flavor).

TextureFirm, large flakes
Color (cooked)Off white

What Seasonings Are Best With Mahi Mahi?

It’s no secret that mahi-mahi is a delicate fish with a mild flavor that can be easily overpowered. We’ve found that the best way to season Mahi Mahi is not just to sprinkle it with an herb or two but to start with a marinade and then finish it off with some additional herbs.

Here are our favorite ways to marinate and season this delicious fish:

  • Lemon, cilantro, and olive oil: Try this light marinade for a bright, summery taste. It’s perfect for the start of summer!
  • Garlic, ginger, and soy sauce: This savory marinade adds an Asian flair to your meal.
  • Basil and oregano: The herbs in this marinade have a sweet flavor that goes beautifully with the fish’s tenderness.

What Should I Consider When Buying Mahi Mahi?

1. Freshness

When you buy Mahi Mahi, you should consider what kind of Mahi Mahi you want. It would be best if you always went with fresh Mahi Mahi. Fresh Mahi Mahi is better than frozen because it has a better flavor and texture.

If you are buying fresh fish, ask the fishmonger to show you the whole fish that has been previously frozen. Frozen fish will have discolored flesh and be dull in appearance.

2. Storage

The next thing to consider is where the fish has been kept. Fresh fish should be kept in a cool, dry place from direct sunlight and heat sources such as stoves or ovens.

The best way to store your fish is in a refrigerator at 35 to 40 degrees Fahrenheit (1.7 to 4.4 degrees Celsius).

 Store it in an airtight container and keep it out of direct sunlight so that the meat doesn’t get spoiled by light exposure.

This will help keep your fish fresh for up to three days after purchase!

3. The Time It Was Caught

The last thing to consider when buying mahi-mahi is how long it’s been since the catch was made.

According to the Seafood Nutrition Partnership, Seafood that is caught less than 24 hours before purchase may not yet show

Why Is Mahi Mahi A Good Fish?

Mahi Mahi is the best fish to eat for several reasons. First, it is a sustainable fish. This means it is caught using methods that do not damage the surrounding environment.

Mahi-mahi is caught using fishing lines or nets. These methods do not damage the reefs where the mahi-mahi live, nor do they catch other fish used for food or cause harm to marine life.

Second, mahi-mahi is high in vitamin B12 and selenium, two essential vitamins and minerals for healthy living. Vitamin B12 helps keep nerves and red blood cells healthy, while selenium contributes to the normal functioning of the immune system.

Mahi also contains omega-3 fatty acids. These fats help reduce inflammation and lower the risk of heart disease by decreasing harmful cholesterol levels in our bodies.

Mahi Mahi is also delicious!

 It has a firm texture and mild flavor making it great for eating raw or cooked into dishes like ceviche or tacos with mango salsa. You can also bake them with potatoes, spinach, and artichokes or grill them over an open flame alongside your favorite vegetables.

Is Mahi Mahi A Dolphin Or Fish?

Mahi Mahi is a member of the Coryphaenidae family, home to pompano dolphins and Dorado. While they look like dolphins, they do not share the same biological classification as actual dolphins.

However, they’re still pretty closely related. Mahi Mahi is also sometimes called “dolphinfish,” which is the cause of this confusion about whether or not it’s a dolphin.

Which Is Better, Cod Or Mahi Mahi?

Cod and mahi-mahi are fish, but they’re not even in the same family. Cod are milder tasting than mahi-mahi. They’re more versatile — you can prepare them in more ways than you can with mahi-mahi.

While both types of fish are high in protein, you can’t beat cod for nutrients like potassium and vitamin B12. So if you have a tough time deciding which is better: have it at the back of your mind that cod wins for its versatility and superior nutritional value.


In addition to everything that we have already highlighted, mahi-mahi is one of the best-tasting seafood on the market. Coupled with its flavor, it is also extremely high in protein and low in calories.

When you buy it fresh or frozen, it will have a mild taste that can easily be enhanced by various spices and seasonings –like the ones above.

Now you’ve gotten your fair share of what mahi-mahi tastes like second-hand. And that should motivate you to break the bank regardless of its cost.


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