Swordfish with Smoked Paprika

Chunks of swordfish sautéed with fresh tomatoes, smoked paprika and pine nuts.

Swordfish with Smoked Paprika
Elise Bauer

One of the best, and easiest ways to prepare swordfish, or any dense, meaty fish is this method by Simply Recipes contributor Hank Shaw. Enjoy! ~Elise

Swordfish is a cornerstone food throughout the Mediterranean, and this Spanish recipe may be one of the finest ways to cook sword anywhere.

The meaty fish, smoked paprika, pine nuts, garlic and parsley all meld into a rich, savory dish that takes you right to the sunny shores of the Costa Brava in Catalonia.

I know what you're thinking: Isn't swordfish endangered? No. Or at least it's not endangered anywhere around the United States.

The various fish watchdog organizations all give consumers the green light to eat as much swordfish as they want, provided it was caught in North American or Hawaiian waters.

The Monterey Bay Aquarium's Seafood Watch gives American sword either a "best choice" or "good alternative" rating, depending on how it's caught.

Swordfish with Smoked Paprika
Elise Bauer

If you've never worked with swordfish, it is dense and meaty. It also has an inedible rubbery skin that must be removed.

When shopping for sword, pay attention to the bloodline, that red patch of meat in the steak. It should be red. If it is brown, the fish is old.

Good alternatives to swordfish, if you can't find it, are farm-raised sturgeon, yellowfin tuna or albacore, tilefish, mahi mahi or even shrimp. I often use leopard shark I catch myself, but many commercially caught sharks are not faring well, so I don't recommend you buy shark for this or any other dish.

This is a recipe that comes together very fast, so have everything you need ready.

Serve with crusty bread and either a crisp white wine, a dry rose or a glass of ice cold, very dry fino sherry.

Swordfish with Smoked Paprika

Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Servings 4 servings

You will need to use a Roma or other paste tomato for this recipe. Regular tomatoes are too watery.


  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 pound swordfish or other firm white fish

  • Salt

  • Flour, for dusting

  • 2 cloves garlic, sliced thin

  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted

  • 2 tablespoons white wine

  • 4 Roma or other paste tomatoes, seeded and diced

  • 1/4 cup parsley, chopped

  • 2 teaspoons Spanish smoked paprika

  • Black pepper


  1. Prepare the swordfish:

    Remove the skin from the swordfish and cut it into cubes. Salt the fish well and dust the cubes in flour.

  2. Sear swordfish chunks:

    Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan large enough to hold all the swordfish chunks in one layer. Sear them well on at least two sides. Give the first side 1-2 minutes, then sear other sides for 30 seconds to 1 minute each.

    When the swordfish is cooked, remove it to a bowl and reserve.

  3. Make the sauce:

    Add the garlic slices to the pan used to sauté the fish and sauté 30 seconds or so. The second the garlic begins to brown, add the tomatoes, parsley, white wine, pine nuts and paprika.

  4. Add fish to sauce:

    Toss to combine and cook 1 minute, then add the swordfish back to the pan, toss to combine and cook another 30 seconds or so. Serve at once.


Spanish Shark with Smoked Paprika - from Hunter Angler Gardener Cook

Octopus with Paprika - from Leite's Culinaria

Grilled Swordfish with Citrus Herb Crust - from Steamy Kitchen

Elise Bauer
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
410 Calories
25g Fat
15g Carbs
31g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 410
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 25g 32%
Saturated Fat 3g 16%
Cholesterol 87mg 29%
Sodium 231mg 10%
Total Carbohydrate 15g 5%
Dietary Fiber 3g 10%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 31g
Vitamin C 27mg 133%
Calcium 68mg 5%
Iron 2mg 13%
Potassium 937mg 20%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.