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Red Snapper with Ancho Vinegar Brown Butter Sauce

My, oh my! This unusual twist on one of our all time favorite fish (American Red Snapper) is absolutely delicious. Take advantage of the “bonus” ARS season this summer, do some reef fishing and try this one out. You will not be disappointed.

With no disrespect to the Red Snapper, in this dish, the sauce is the BOSS! If you have never prepared (or even heard of) vinegar butter sauce, you are in for a treat. It adds an alternately sweet, tangy and slightly smoky flavor that completely compliments the delicate, somewhat nutty, flavor of the Snapper itself.

Red Snapper Recipe Ingredients

The Fish

Red Snapper: 1 – 1.5 lb. fillet – no skin

Butter: 2 Tbsp.

Salt & Pepper: To taste

Ancho Powder: 1 Tsp.

The Sauce

Butter: 3 Tbsp.

Seasoned Rice (Sushi) Vinegar: 1.5 Tbsp.

Shallot: 2 Tbsp. diced

Chives: 2 Tbsp Chopped

Garlic: 1 Clove Smashed

Olive Oil: 2 Tbsp.

Ancho Powder: 1Tsp.


Red Snapper with Ancho Vinegar Brown Butter Sauce


Prepare The Ancho Vinegar Brown Butter Sauce

ingredients for ancho vinegar brown butter sauce

The fixin’s


chopped ingredients


melted butter sauce

Start by bringing the olive oil to a nice warm temperature in a small pan. Remove from the burner and add the smashed garlic clove. Let the garlic season the oil for a good 10 minutes. While this is working, chop, slice and dice the shallots, chives and lime. When the oil is ready pour it into the pan you will ultimately cook the fish on and set it to just shy of medium on a burner. Saute the shallots in the oil for a few minutes then add the butter allowing it to fully melt. Cook until the butter just begins to brown and add the chives, a squeeze of lime, ancho powder and the vinegar. Whisk thoroughly. Remove the contents to a small bowl and return the pan to the burner.

Our vinegar butter is a little different than most. Being both browned and using ancho & sushi vinegar lends it a unique taste profile. Traditional vinegar butter looks a lot like this example at The Splendid Table. If this sauce is new to you…. you will find many creative ways to use it bringing new life to old recipes. Very versatile.

Prepare The American Red Snapper

American red snapper fillet


add salt, pepper and spices to fish fillet

Season the Red Snapper fillet with salt, pepper and ancho powder on both sides.


cooking red snapper in butter

Melt the butter in the pan (the same pan you just removed the Ancho Vinegar Brown Butter Sauce from). Place the fillet in the melted butter and cook on the first side for 5 minutes taking care not to burn the flesh. Turn the fillet and cook for an additionsl 5 minutes on the other side.


steaming fish to complete doneness

When the Red Snapper has cooked the allotted time on both sides turn the burner off, place a tight fitting lid on the pan and let set for an additional 3-5 minutes until cooked through completely. Set time varies by thickness of the fillet.


spoon vinegar butter sauce on fish fillet

Remove the fillet to the plate and spoon on a generous amount (all?) of the Ancho Vinegar Brown Butter Sauce


serve cooked red snapper

The fish is ready for the table. It pairs well with a wide range of possible sides. For this meal we prepared a Balsamic Tomato & Avocado Salad.


And, last but not least…. the fillet in this recipe came from the fish that Austin, Key West Shrimp Company – Madeira Beach, is seen holding here.

Enjoy. Let us know what you think of the recipe and shoot us your recipe ideas for future posts. Bon appétit and tight lines

2 Responses to Red Snapper with Ancho Vinegar Brown Butter Sauce

  1. Trying this recipe tonight, will let you know tomorrow what we think. Caught 4 limits of ARS with friends offshore Saturday so I need a new recipe!

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