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Baked Fish in Banana Leaf

I always think that food wrapped in packages (like in foil, pandan leaves, and in this case – banana leaves) look professional. So when I saw this recipe in a cookbook for a banana wrapped baked fish, I thought this was a great chance for a noob like me to fake being a pro ;p This recipe is actually delightfully simple, because of the minimal of ingredients used. I’ve always loved my fish dishes simple so that the ingredients used help to enhance the taste and freshness of the fish, but not mask it.


Baked Ginger Soy Fish Wrapped in Banana Leaf

Baked Ginger Soy Fish Wrapped in Banana Leaf

The marinade only calls for 3 simple ingredients of soy sauce, ginger juice and lime juice. As a special touch I rubbed a little bit of hot chilli powder to spice things up just a little bit.

Baked Fish in Banana Leaf Recipe

The banana leaf gives a nice aroma to the baked fish, but you can always use aluminium foil to wrap the fish instead if banana leaf is unavailable.


  • 1 whole fresh fish (red snapper is used in this recipe) scaled, gutted and cleaned
  • 2 large banana leaf sheets

(A) Marinade

  • 1 1/2 tbsp ginger juice
  • 1 1/2 to 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tsp lime juice
  • dashes of white pepper powder to taste
  • 1/2 tsp hot chilli powder optional


  1. Make a few diagonal slits on each side of the fish. Pat dry with paper towels.
  2. Combine (A) in a small bowl. Brush both sides of the fish with the marinade for at least 1 hour in the fridge.
  3. Prep the banana leaves by placing it on top of a heated pan or oven for a few minutes, or rinsed in boiling water. This softens the leaf and also releases the aroma.
  4. Place the heated banana leaf in a baking tray. Place the fish in the center of the leaf and pour the remaining marinade over. Use the other piece of banana leaf to form the top, and secure the sides with toothpicks.
  5. Bake the fish for about 10-15 minutes in a preheated oven of 170°C (350°F), or until cooked.

36 comments on “Baked Fish in Banana Leaf”

  1. Looks great, I love the fragrant of banana leaves.

  2. Thumbs up Wiffy! That really looks good.

  3. VERY interesting recipe. I have never seen or heard of such a combination, but you managed to make it look quite presentable and tasty as always. :D

  4. You are so brave for cooking a whole fish, you make it look so easy!! The flavors sound great! Thanks for the tips.

  5. Wow, this looks so delicious with the outside of the banana leaf. That banana leaf looks so green and vivid! I rarely see that shade of green leaves whenever I eat something wrapped in leaves. Mmm!

  6. Lovely! Too bad banana leaves are not the easiest things to get hold of here ;) Makes me think of sambal stingray too, yum…

  7. Love cooking fish wrapped in paper or leaves. Somehow I don’t ever remember screwing any of those up :) Makes for a great presentation, too right?

  8. NC, there’s no better, or prettier way to present a whole fish!

    I used to get my banana leaves from a local Latin market, but they’re no longer in business, so I’m going to look around again.
    If I can’t find any, I’ll have to resort to cooking the fish en papillote, which it’s not as pretty, but that fish looks so good, I’ll try anything.

  9. I can dream about the aroma of banana leaf while baking….

  10. Simple and delicious, I am ALL for that! I’d love to cook something wrapped in banana leaf someday :)

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