Make this mackerel puttanesca with orzo, then try our smoked mackerel salad, mackerel curry, Spanish mackerel and more mackerel recipes. For a classic version, also try our pasta puttanesca.


  • ½ tbsp olive oil, plus 1 tsp
  • 2 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 2 anchovies, finely chopped
  • a pinch dried chilli flakes
  • 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 8 black olives, pitted and halved
  • 2 tsp capers
  • ½ small bunch flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 100g orzo
  • 2 mackerel fillets
  • a handful rocket, to serve


  • STEP 1

    Heat ½ tbsp of olive oil in a frying pan, and fry the garlic, anchovies and chilli flakes for 2 minutes until fragrant and the anchovies have dissolved. Add the tomatoes and simmer for 8-10 minutes or until thickened and saucy, then stir in the olives, capers and parsley. Season.

  • STEP 2

    Meanwhile, cook the orzo until al dente following pack instructions. Drain well.

  • STEP 3

    Brush 1 tsp of oil over the mackerel fillets and season. Heat a non-stick frying pan over a high heat until really hot, then sear the mackerel, skin-side down, for 3-4 minutes until the fillets start to curl up at the sides and release from the bottom of the pan. Turn with a fish slice and cook for another 2-3 minutes until the fish is golden and cooked through.

  • STEP 4

    Spoon the orzo onto plates, top with the mackerel fillets and puttanesca sauce, and serve with some rocket on the side.

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Anna GloverSenior food editor

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