Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari

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  • Simple yet delicious, my Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari only takes 5 minutes on the grill. This recipe is a great way to enjoy seafood without heading to a restaurant.

    Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari brings the flavors of the sea right to your dinner table. You won't be disappointed by this mouth-watering recipe.

    Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari brings the flavors of the sea right to your dinner table. You won’t be disappointed by this mouth-watering recipe.

    Calamari is one of my favorite appetizers.  When cooked well, it is quite the tasty treat. For my Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari recipe, I use classic ceviche preparation and finish it on the grill.

    I use both techniques for this grilled calamari because serving raw seafood to friends and family makes me uneasy. Ceviche relies on citrus juice to “cook” it. This is also known as denaturation.

    During denaturation, the citrus juices break down the proteins in the fish or seafood and change both their chemical and physical properties. This, in turn, changes the appearance of the fish as well.

    Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari brings the flavors of the sea right to your dinner table. You won't be disappointed by this mouth-watering recipe.

    The longer it sits, the more “firm” and “done” the fish or seafood will get.  Important note: this process doesn’t kill any bacteria, so it is extremely important to have fresh, sushi-grade fish or seafood.

    Finding fresh calamari may be a bit of a challenge, but if you can find it, use it! If not, frozen, thawed calamari will work just as well.

    I prepare my Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari ceviche style and then finish it off with a quick sear on the grill to kill off any bacteria that might be lingering AND to give it a robust smoky flavor.

    The key thing to remember when you’re making Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari is to make sure you don’t overcook it. If you do, it will become tough and rubbery.

    If you loved this Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari recipe, check out these easy seafood dishes:

    Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari brings the flavors of the sea right to your dinner table. You won't be disappointed by this mouth-watering recipe. #grilledcalamari #calamari www.savoryexperiments.com

    If you are looking for even more fabulous appetizers, snag a copy of my Easy Appetizers Beyond Dips Mini-Cookbook. Available here for only $0.99, one of these fun and festive appetizers sure to be the hit of any gathering!

    5 from 2 votes
    grilled calamari
    Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari
    Prep Time
    40 mins
    Cook Time
    5 mins
    Total Time
    45 mins

    Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari is an easy recipe for seafood on the grill! 

    Course: Appetizer
    Cuisine: Mediterranean
    Keyword: grilled calamari
    Servings: 4
    Calories: 65 kcal
    Author: Jessica Formicola
    • 1/2 pound calamari tubes only
    • 1 cup fresh lemon juice
    • Freshly cracked pepper
    • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley minced
    1. Clean calamari tubes well, running water through the inside. If there is a small membrane or muscle still attached at the bottom, cut this off so water can flow freely through the cylinder. Pat tubes dry.
    2. In a shallow dish, lie whole calamari tubes in a single layer. Cover with fresh lemon juice. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for 40 minutes.
    3. Heat grill to high heat. Remove calamari tubes from the refrigerator and drain lemon juice. Brush grill with vegetable oil and heat to a medium temperature. Place calamari tubes on the grill for 2-3 minutes per side do not overcook. Calamari should be white and firm.
    4. Remove from grill to a cutting board. Cut calamari into rings and place into a medium mixing bowl. Toss with cracked pepper and finely chopped parsley.
    5. Serve immediately and while hot. Enjoy your Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari!
    6. If you've tried this recipe, come back and let us know how it was! 

    Nutrition Facts
    Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari
    Amount Per Serving
    Calories 65
    % Daily Value*
    Cholesterol 132mg 44%
    Sodium 26mg 1%
    Potassium 202mg 6%
    Total Carbohydrates 6g 2%
    Sugars 1g
    Protein 9g 18%
    Vitamin A 2.1%
    Vitamin C 33.5%
    Calcium 2.2%
    Iron 2.8%
    * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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