Caribbean Citrus Mahi Mahi with Brown Rice Noodles


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When I was growing up Lent meant grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup, eggs for dinner, or fish, but let’s just say in rural Minnesota, we weren’t eating Mahi Mahi with a Caribbean flair for dinner. Van de Kamp’s fish sticks was more like it. This recipe is a definite step up from fish-in-a-box and just as easy.

Caribbean Citrus Mahi Mahi with Brown Rice Noodles

Here’s how you get dinner on the table in less than 15 minutes.

Defrost your frozen fish fillets or buy fresh and place them in a skillet.

Caribbean Citrus Mahi Mahi cooking in pan

Drizzle olive oil and the juice of half an orange over them, season them with salt and pepper, a few shakes of Mrs. Dash or your favorite spice blend, and you’re ready to pan-sear.

raw Caribbean Citrus Mahi Mahi in pan

I like using orange juice because it reduces any “fishy” flavor. Experts say that good fish shouldn’t ever be fishy-tasting or fishy-smelling, but sometimes even good fish is, well, fishy. A little citrus goes a long way in eliminating that issue and I prefer oranges to lemons.

Oranges neutralize the fishy flavor in a more flavor-neutral way than lemons. I do like lemons, but in this case, I wanted the Mahi to stand on it’s own and not be overwhelmed by lemon, which is why I used an orange.

half lemon

Then go through your cupboards and discover you have a box of brown rice noodles. Cool!

Put them in a bowl of hot water for about 20 minutes before you plan to use them, and let them hangout, on standby.

rice noodles and lemon

Pan sear the babies in less than 10 minutes, flipping halfway through, and then plate them.

Caribbean Citrus Mahi Mahi

Take those noodles that were in the warm water on standby, and throw them into the (greasy) fish pan, add a little more grease (a tablespoon or two of olive oil), a little more Mrs. Dash and the juice of the other orange half, and toss them for a couple minutes. The noodles will absorb all the flavors from the bottom of the pan and sear a bit.

Rice noodles in pan

Put it together, and voila, a nice Lent dinner.

Or anytime dinner.

Caribbean Citrus Mahi Mahi with Brown Rice Noodles

The two Mahi fillets I used were pretty generous and let’s just say that the family was licking their plates and I could have even bought a third fillet.

I don’t usually plan on a 5 year old needing her own portion, but you won’t have to beg your child (or your spouse), to eat their fish if you make it like this. Instead, they’ll be asking you why you didn’t make more.

Caribbean Citrus Mahi Mahi with Brown Rice Noodles


Pan-Seared Caribbean Citrus Mahi Mahi with Brown Rice Noodles (Gluten Free)

2 Mahi Mahi fillets

1 orange, halved

2+ tablespoons Mrs. Dash Caribbean Citrus Blend (or use individual spices such as sweet chili pepper, thyme, black pepper, allspice, nutmeg, cayenne pepper, ginger, cinnamon)

salt (sea salt or Kosher if possible) and pepper, to taste

3 tablespoons+ olive oil, drizzled

Place the fish in a non-stick skillet, squeeze the juice of half the orange over it, drizzle 2 tablespoons olive oil over fish, sprinkle with Mrs. Dash, salt and pepper, and cover. Cook over medium to medium-high heat for about 5 minutes or until visible browning has begun on the bottom corners and edge of fish. Do not move fish or “check it” unnecessarily with a spatula while it’s cooking initially because that will impede it from searing well. After fish has seared, flip it and add another tablespoon of oil if needed, cover, and allow fish to cook 3-4 more minutes, or until done (white and opaque). Remove from skillet and plate, allowing fish to rest.

Brown Rice Noodles

Allow brown rice noodles to soften or cook according to package directions. I used Annie Chun’s Pad Thai noodles that softened in a large bowl of hot water for 20 minutes that I started soaking shortly before the fish was cooking. After removing fish from the skillet, add the brown rice noodles, squeeze the juice of remaining orange halve over them, drizzle 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil, sprinkle with Mrs. Dash, salt and pepper, to taste, and allow to cook for 2 to 4 minutes or until slightly browned. Because they are cooked in the same skillet as the fish, the blackened bits and cooking juices will coat the noodles, adding color and flavor. Remove them from the skillet, plate them, and serve immediately.

Note: You could substitute almost any kind of fish with this recipe if you don’t have Mahi Mahi or prefer other types of fish. Adjust cooking times accordingly, but the seasonings and method, in general, will likely work with most types of fish.


Gotta love a fast dinner that the family likes, asks you to make again, and is a one skillet special.

Caribbean Citrus Mahi Mahi with Brown Rice Noodles

The fish was tender, moist, flavorful. The touch of citrus, both form the orange and the Mrs. Dash seasoning used, gave this dish a Caribbean vibe.

The noodles were perfectly coated with just a little olive oil, which made them easier to twirl around your fork suck up using the inhaling-and-sucking-in-your-noodles-like-they’re-air method that most of us perfected as 5 year olds.

Caribbean Citrus Mahi Mahi with Brown Rice Noodles

If you’re a fish fan, I have a recipe for Pan Seared Lemon Pepper Grouper with Sweet Dipping Sauce

Pan Seared Lemon Pepper Grouper with Sweet Dipping Sauce

Another 15 minute dinner special is Szechuan Shrimp Stir Fry with Fried Rice

Szechuan Shrimp Stir Fry

And here are two vegetarian, Caribbean-ish themed recipes

Caribbean Citrus & Veggie Stir Fry

Caribbean Citrus & Veggie Stir Fry

Apple Glazed Vegetable & Edamame Stir Fry

Apple Glazed Vegetable & Edamame Stir Fry

Do you have childhood Lent memories? What did you (or do you) eat for dinner if you observe?

Fish or Fish-Fry memories?

Do you like fish?

Even if you’re not Catholic, I think most everyone has spent time at a fish fry. Church basements, fried fish, corn on the cob or mashed potatoes, cole slaw, and the women of the Parish usually bake and bring the desserts and the money raised goes to buy something like 4 new basketballs and a new swingset for the playground, and maybe a set of Encyclopedias for Sister Mary’s third grade class.That’s my childhood in a nutshell.

And I think I can still smell the fish smell from a 1984 fish fry in my hair. Nothing like a fish fry to smell like fish for a day (or three).

Winners of the Green Smoothie eBook Giveaway coming up tomorrow


About the Author

Welcome to AverieCooks! Here you’ll find fast and easy recipes that taste amazing and are geared for real life. Nothing fussy or complicated, just awesome tasting dishes everyone loves!

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  1. This was delicious! My family said it was a winner, and they would definitely have again. I cooked the fish and noodles in coconut oil, and made up my “Mrs. Dash’s,” (Thanks for including the spices in the recipe!) I served with some stir-fry broccoli (olive oil, garlic) to make a nice foil for the slightly spicy fish and noodles. Thumbs up!

    1. Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad it came out great for you! I wrote this recipe years ago and so it’s nice for me to know that someone made it and that you and your family will make it again!

  2. Just made this and it’s Delish!!! Couldn’t find Mrs. Dash seasoning so I mixed my own. I’ll def make this again!!!!

    1. Woot! Glad it was a success and that you came up with your own seasoning – I just have an arsenal of seasonings on hand and most any all-purpose blend will tend to work :)

  3. Great meal! I definitely wasn’t eating Caribbean mahi mahi as a child either but I want it now! The brown rice noodles are a great touch. Thanks for linking up to my pasta blog hop! Pinned :-)

  4. This looks wonderful! I definitely have to look for those brown rice noodles, they look really delicious! :)

  5. I love fish! All kinds, including shellfish. And this looks delicious, esp. with those noodles, yum. I must say, your savory dishes ALL look fantastic (as well as your sweet ones, of course!) … :-)

  6. I don’t eat meat (including seafood), because it has the worst texture ever. Aubrey loves meat in all forms, and this looks like something he’d love! I have actually never been to a fish fry. I didn’t even know they existed! And I didn’t know what Lent was until that movie came out when I was in high school (or was it college? I don’t remember now) 40 Days and 40 Nights where the main character vows to give up sex. Not exactly a great way to be introduced to the concept, lol!

  7. Awesome dish, sounds wonderful and fast! And great recipe inspiration, I’ve gotta try the edamame stir fry.

    No real Lent memories from my childhood, but we used to do a lot of fish frys on the family boat.

  8. I’ve never been a fish lover but have spent many a time at a fish fry with my Best friend Cathy. Her mom made fish (out of a box) every Friday night and not surprising, she stayed over to dinner quite a few Fridays! I’ve been trying to acquire a taste for fish and can usually stand Mahi Mahi. This recipe looks as good as it gets. I think I will surprise my husband (a fish lover) with this Saturday, but I might have to cook up some chicken as a back up just in case!

  9. Loving Fish right now!!!! I’ve actually never had Mahi Mahi, but I LOVE salmon….would the “texture” be the same?? I’m weird with gooey fish ;) LOL!!!

    Love the sound of this recipe!! YUM

    1. hard question…the texture would be similar, but the flavor…not at all similar!

  10. What a great fish dinner, looks wonderful!
    I didn’t know you were from MN. I was born in Minneapolis and then lived in Rochester for years after college.

  11. oh wow – this looks delicious! I love pan-seared fish and mahi mahi works so well with that cooking technique!

  12. This blog looks amazing!! I cant wait to try the Mahi Mahi with brown rice noodles. Thank you for this! I really needed some recipes for Lent Fridays!

  13. I was already thinking fish would be dinner tomorrow night, and now i’m sold on the idea! Perfect meatless meal without sacrificing any flavor – thanks, girl!

  14. I need to see if I can find brown rice noodles – I just tend to find the plain ones, but I love them for convenience. I’ve never had mahi mahi. Can I just do this with tofu ;-) Probably not the same at all!

  15. I am sorry if this is a double comment I just dont see my previous comment, I like pan seared mahi mahi since it keeps all the juices it is much better than grilled!

  16. I like mahi mahi and shrimp very much! we usually get some everytime when we go grocery shopping, pan seared is even better than grilled since the fish gets to keep all the juices!

  17. Yum!! I can say, living in upstate NY, mahi mahi isn’t really a normal thing on menus, but I would love to try this recipe! I like the idea of orange in there.

  18. I love this!!! Looks amazing. I rarely buy fish, though. I don’t know why? I love fish! But I just don’t really buy it much….that will change this weekend!

  19. “i love fish” is an understatement for me! haha! I’m so guilty of eating it almost everyday, probably every other day….and although I love salmon, tuna steak, etc., my favorites are the wangiest and fishiest fish out there! xD All your stir frys are lookin’ amazing too, Averie….bad idea looking through these pics at this hour, hehe.

  20. This looks DELICIOUS! I love pan searing fish, the extra flavor it adds is just incredible. Fish is one of my favorite foods that I’ve welcomed back into my life after moving beyond veganism. It is so quick and delicious and incredibly healthy. I eat it several times a week – and now I’ve got a new recipe to add to my rotation!

  21. I love this savory dish Averie. I think my whole family would devour it as well if I made it for them. I have never used brown rice noodles but they look so yummy that I may have to give them a try.

    1. I was sent that box of brown rice noodles otherwise I never would have bought them but very cool b/c I didnt actually have to cook them in a pot of boiling water; just let them soften for 20 mins in warm water, then pan sautee for a few mins…super easy!

  22. I have never cared for fish, but I often think the way many seafood dishes are prepared sounds amazing. This is one of those dishes! And the stir-fry… I would eat that straight out of the pan! :)

  23. Growing up in Alaska, we ate a ton of salmon and halibut and when we went fishing/camping through the summers, we would eat it pan fried right from the river over our campfires. Great memories. My kids absolutely love salmon, halibut, mahi mahi, sea bass, tilapia…all kinds. It’s a nice meal to pair with noodles and/or potatoes or rice. Your recipe looks great! I LOVE the orange idea. I am so over lemon on fish. Definitely going to try this the next time I prepare fish for my fam.

    We do observe lent and in the Orthodox church there is an avoidance of all animal products, dairy, eggs, and even oil during the week, with oil and seafood and wine allowed on the weekends. Of course, everyone does what they are able to do. That is just the general fast that is prescribed.

    1. So glad to know there are other Orthodox foodies out there in blogland! As a kid, I dreaded Lent, but now I use the fast as an excuse to experiment with the huge world of vegan cooking. We had tempeh chili tonight – yum!

      1. your chili sounds great! My husband is Jewish so we really don’t celebrate Lent either…even if he wasn’t, I still wouldn’t be too observant or anything :)

  24. Lent meant the same thing in our house growing up and as a kid who HATED all things from the sea, I wasn’t too particularly fond of those 40 days. I’ve since rebelled quite a bit against my catholic upbringing and pay that whole thing no attention now but it’s funny b/c now I LOVE fish. Go figure.

    1. I rebelled by marrying a jewish man in vegas, eloped, in a hot pink betsey johnson mini dress :) 11 years ago. And they said it wouldnt last. But Lent, yeah, lots of Cheerios nights for us as a kid.

  25. Dustin and I LOVE mahi mahi! I just bought 3 lbs of it the other day, made fillets out of it and froze it. Since Dustin only eats seafood now and no meat, mahi mahi is one of his faves. When you grill it, I swear it’s like chicken! I have mahi mahi kebabs on the menu this week.

    I love how you tossed the noodles right in the yummy juices. TASTY sauce. Yum!

    1. Mahi is one of his faves?! For the man who is very particular about his likes and dislikes, that’s an interesting like, but a welcome one. I know, grilled mahi IS like chicken, I even think thick tuna steaks grilled taste like chicken, too.

      The juices..both for flavor..and EASE. One.pan.always.

      1. Girl, I’m surprised he eats fish at all. Before we met, his seafood experience was limited to shrimp cocktail trays you buy pre-made frozen in the store. ‘Nuff said. He eats mahi and GOBBLES it like there’s no tomorrow. I, too, welcome it, haha. I think because it is flavor-neutral it gets a picky palate pass.

        Halibut is another grilled gem. Tastes like lobster! But it’s so friggin’ expensive that our stores don’t even carry it because who has $25/lb for fish these days?

      2. Halibut I don’t think is quite that expensive here?! Then again, I don’t pay attention real closely but very little is over about 14.99 lb at the regular grocery store. Now, WFs is a different story. I guess that’s one perk of CA living is that we do get tons of fish in the reg groc stores and it sounds far more reasonable than yours…YIKES! Gas, however, was at $4.85/gallon yesterday. Ugh.

  26. I am in the land of the fish fry! Year round, even, they love their fish here. Since I can see Lake Superior from my front yard, that’s not all that surprising.

    Oh, the Vande Kamp’s fish sticks. I rememeber them not at all fondly. I swear we ate those at least once a week, lent or not. With tarter sauce, of course. When I got old enough, I would leave the house every time my mom was making fish or fish sticks for dinner. That smell just LINGERS. And I’d agree about lemon being overpowering. I’m not a fan at all, but I never thought to try oranges.

    Just ate a bowl of stir fried shrimp and veggies. Literally JUST finished it. Same page, per usual.

    1. The smell of fish..there is just no way to get rid of it easily…the #1 drawback to making fish is the house stench. lol

  27. I love the idea of tossing the pasta in the fish pan, don’t let any flavor go to waste! I LOVE fish but I have been either pregnant for breastfeeding for the last 4 1/2 years, and still am nursing, so I have to limit my fish to once a week. I could eat it every single night and do without meat forever!

    1. You know tilapia is pretty much “okay” at least 3-4x a week, or more. The smaller the fish itself, the less mercury it accumulates and the safer it is. Of course, do as you see fit, but small fish, like sardines <--ick! or shrimp/mussles/clams (shellfish) are on the green light list (this is from memory, google it!)

  28. ohhh this looks great, I’ve been loving your savory recipes lately I have to say! I’ve never even heard of a fish fry actually, and we didn’t eat much fish growing up, but these days I love it and try to eat it a few times a week.

    1. I’ve never even heard of a fish fry actually <-- huh?!! That's crazy. We grew up in diff parts of the country, obviously :)

  29. Oh man, this mahi mahi looks amazing! It’s such a sophisticated dish, yet you can make it in less than 30 minutes. Plus, it’s on a bed of rice noodles, my absolute favorite kind of noodles. Yum!

    1. sophisticated dish, yet you can make it in less than 30 minutes = MY GOAL in everything I do!

  30. I love fish! I am addicted to fish! This is the only food I wasn’t ready to give up. I already gave up too much, but fish, no, please, leave it to me…:)

  31. The orange citrus vegetables look amazing! I never had Mahi Mahi, but it looks good. I like fish, but my family doesn’t so I normally order it when we go out, and I don’t make it at home! :(

  32. Your dinner looks fantastic! i love fish, but I’m not sure I’ve ever cooked mahi mahi at home. Need to remedy that soon :)

  33. I love all kinds of fish and use the Caribbean citrus blend quite often– it has quickly become my favorite seasoning! When I tried a completely vegan diet for a couple of years, fish was actually a craving that never went away, so I started eating it again and now I’m a happy “pescatarian”! I remember those fish sticks from my childhood but didn’t really like them (even with tartar sauce).

    1. glad you’re loving the seasoning!

      glad you’re also a happy “pescatarian”..gotta do what’s right for you!

  34. This looks great! The hubs doesn’t like fish but I love it. I would have never thought of using oranges, great tip!

  35. I really enjoy seeing what you eat for dinner instead of just all desserts! This dish looks good – I can definitely appreciate it even though I don’t eat fish!

    1. I am not thrilled with these photos (I never am with dinner time pics; rushed, bad lighting, food getting cold, family getting crabby…) but ya know, I hoped for the best…that’s why I always revert back to desserts b/c they are timeless but glad you like the savory recipes.

  36. Ah the Friday night fish fry. I know them well. The smell of fried fish and tartar sauce will forever be ingrained in my memory.

    I love fish and can’t wait to try using orange! (*Hand bumping forehead* for not thinking of that sooner!) You photos have me craving some right now.

    It was such a pleasant surprise to see you today and to finally get to meet you. You’re lovely!

    1. Oranges are milder than lemons and more gentle in flavor…try it. And I am not thrilled with these photos (I never am with dinner time pics; rushed, bad lighting, food getting cold, family getting crabby…) but ya know, I hoped for the best.

      It was AMAZING meeting you today…You are SUCH a sweetheart. We HAVE to keep in better touch and get together!

  37. This sounds so wonderful and it gives me an excuse to use a tip I learned on Rachael Ray the other day. Take the half of an orange and use the beater of a kitchen mixer like a reamer to get a ton of juice!

    1. Omg. You are freakin’ psychic. I was at a Kitchen Aid event today and they were juicing oranges with them!! And I had a mimosa :) And I will be blogging about the event in a couple days…wow!