What Does Walleye Fish Taste Like

The fishing season brings so many delights from our local waters and one of the very best is walleye. Make a splash with this fish by learning what walleye fish tastes like and how to cook it!

The ocean is not the only place to find sumptuous and delicious-tasting fish. Lakes and rivers offer us so many tasty fish options, like the amazing walleye fish.

Beloved by fishers and chefs alike, walleye can be a real treat once you understand what it tastes like and how to cook with it. Grab your waders and catch some big flavor with this helpful guide to walleye fish flavor!

What Does Walleye Fish Taste Like?

Does Walleye Fish Taste Good

North American fishers wait all year for walleye season because this fish is so fresh and tasty! Walleye fish have a nice white flesh with a firm yet flaky texture that truly satisfies but it is the flavor that keeps people coming back!

Walleye fish has a beautifully mild and buttery flavor. It is fishy and subtly sweet without all the extra brininess of an ocean-faring fish. It takes seasoning well and serves a satisfying chew along with its delicious flavor.

What is Walleye Fish?

This delicious fish is known for its satisfying flavor but just what type of fish is walleye and where does it come from?

Walleye, also known as yellow pike, is a freshwater fish native to the cold waters of Canada and the Northern United States. They belong to a larger family of fish commonly known as pikeperch and these fish are a fisher’s favorite!

Walleye are commonly fished before it actually reaches their full size, so the culinary walleyes we know and love only get up to about 20 inches. While these fish are a reel master’s favorite they can also be found at fish markets, stores, and butcher shops.

Walleye can be pan-seared, oven-baked, grilled, and more. Its ease of preparation and full-bodied flavor make it a must-try!

Benefits of Eating Walleye Fish

Benefits of Eating Walleye Fish

Not only is walleye fish delicious but it can also be a healthy addition to a balanced lifestyle and diet. Walleye offers essential nutrients and compounds that can be very beneficial to our bodies.

Like many fish, walleye is a low-calorie and protein-rich meat. It is very low in fat yet also very filling so it’s a great choice for a lean main dish.

Additionally, it is high in calcium and iron making this an all-around great protein dish.

The biggest drawback of this fish might be the high cholesterol level.

Walleye fish is rich in cholesterol, but if consumed in moderation as part of a healthy diet it should be a perfectly healthy and beneficial addition to your routine!

Where to Buy Walleye Fish

Walleye is one of North American anglers’ favorite fish to catch and cook but even if you don’t fish, you can still enjoy this tasty freshwater fish.

Walleye are commonly sold at fish markets and butchers throughout North America. It can even be found at most grocery stores, although some may require a special order for fresh filets.

Another great place to look for fresh walleye fish is online. Many online fish retailers will pack fresh walleye in ice to overnight you a delectable fresh fish flavor that is ready to cook!

How to Serve Walleye Fish

How to Serve Walleye Fish

Walleye is great for summertime and outdoor eating. This freshwater fish has that wonderful woodsy vibe that makes you want to sit by a stream and enjoy a rustic meal.

Walleye are so filled with mildly sweet, buttery, and fishy flavors that it hardly needs anything else to shine, but adding some sides makes this meal complete!

Pair this lovely fish with a delicious vegetable side dish like steamed green beans or asparagus.

Complete the meal with brown rice and a squeeze of lemon for a meal that looks and tastes gourmet but hardly takes any work at all!

Notes on This Walleye Fish Recipe


Walleye Filets – Walleye is the true star of this recipe. Always choose fresh, never frozen, for the best and most true-to-nature flavor in this freshwater fish!

Olive Oil –Extra virgin olive oil is the right choice of fats for cooking fish. It has a mild flavor and leaner body than butter or some other fats.

Different Ways To Cook Walleye Fish

Kosher Salt and Fresh Cracked Pepper –Walleye is a freshwater fish which means it could use some serious salt! Use fine-grain kosher or sea salt for this recipe. For the pepper element, fresh cracked multi-colored pepper is a great choice. This helps build the lemon-pepper flavor in this recipe.

Lemon Slices – Nothing complements white flesh fish like lemon. The bright hint of citrus rounds out the buttery flavors in the walleye perfectly. Use one to two fresh slices of lemon for every filet.

Expert Tips

  • Be very generous with the salt and pepper; this mild fish can take the seasonings!
  • Be sure to cook uncovered for a portion of the time to allow the fish to get a nice crispiness.
  • Don’t forget to poke holes in the foil you cover your fish with so that steam can escape.
  • Fish is done when it reaches an internal temperature of 145°F.

Simple Oven-Baked Walleye Fish Recipe


4 Walleye Filets

1 Tablespoon Olive Oil

1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

¾ Teaspoon Fresh Cracked Pepper

4-8 Lemon Slices


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Drizzle about half of the olive oil on a baking sheet to grease it.
  3. Pat the filets dry and then thoroughly drizzle them with the remaining oil.
  4. Generously season the filets with salt and pepper and then lay them on the prepared sheet pan.
  5. Top the filets with 1 to 2 lemon slices each.
  6. Bake the fish uncovered for 10 minutes then remove it from the oven. Lower the oven temperature to 350°F and cover the sheet pan with foil. Use a fork to poke a few holes for steam.
  7. Return the fish to the oven for 25-30 minutes or until white and flaky throughout.

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