Are Blue Marlin Good to Eat: A Comprehensive Guide

are blue marlin good to eat

Blue marlin, a large saltwater fish known for its distinctive bill and powerful swimming abilities, has long intrigued both fishermen and seafood enthusiasts alike. As a lover of seafood, I’ve often found myself wondering about this captivating creature: is it good to eat, and if so, what factors should be considered before adding it to my plate?

Upon further research, I discovered that blue marlin is indeed safe to consume, but it is crucial to consider both its mercury levels and the sustainability of the species. Since blue marlins are apex predators, they can accumulate relatively high amounts of mercury in their bodies, with occasional consumption being generally recommended. Furthermore, it’s essential to be aware of the source of the fish and its impact on the overall blue marlin population.

When it comes to taste and nutritional value, blue marlin has a dark, firm flesh that boasts a strong flavor. This fish can be grilled, smoked, or prepared in various cooking methods, and it is an excellent source of lean protein, vitamins B6 and B12, niacin, selenium, magnesium, iodine, and omega-3 fatty acids. The Hawaiian blue marlin, in particular, is seen as a popular choice for traditional dishes, providing key nutrients in a flavorful package.

Are Blue Marlin Good to Eat?

Nutritional Value

As a lover of seafood, I have found that the Hawaiian Blue Marlin is highly beneficial for our health. It offers significant nutritional value as an extra lean source of healthy protein, making it a great addition to my diet. While consuming this fish, I also benefit from essential nutrients like niacin, vitamins B6 and B12, selenium, magnesium, iodine, and omega-3 fatty acids. This makes it a delicious and nutritious choice for my meals.

Taste and Texture

The taste and texture of the Blue Marlin vary based on the individual’s preference. Some people, like me, find the blue marlin to be a delectable treat with a unique flavor. It has a mild, somewhat sweet taste that can be enhanced with various seasonings and cooking methods. The flesh of the blue marlin is firm, making it suitable for grilling, baking, or even pan-searing.

When it comes to the different types of marlin, opinions may vary. The black marlin, for instance, has darker flesh that some may not find appealing. Personally, I think the dark color adds to the flavor, making it a tasty option as well.

Of course, it’s important to keep in mind that consuming blue marlin in moderation is key due to potential risks, like higher mercury levels. Overall, I would say that the blue marlin is a tasty and nutritious seafood option that can be enjoyed on occasion.

Health Concerns and Regulations

Mercury Levels

As a large saltwater predator, blue marlin can accumulate relatively high concentrations of mercury and other heavy metals in their bodies. It is safe for me to consume blue marlin occasionally and with caution. The general standard for acceptable mercury levels in retail seafood is 0.5 ppm. I need to be aware of these levels to make informed decisions about my seafood consumption.

Fishing Laws and Conservation Efforts

Commercial landings of Pacific blue marlin from waters around Hawaii totaled to 900,000 pounds in 2020 and were valued at $1.1 million, as per the NOAA Fisheries commercial fishing landings database. The Billfish Conservation Act, together with existing billfish regulations, prohibits sale and commercial possession of billfish to ensure their populations are not over-exploited. As a consumer, I should support sustainable fishing practices to help maintain healthy marine ecosystems.

Nutritional Benefits

The Hawaiian blue marlin is an excellent source of extra lean protein, niacin, vitamins B6 and B12, selenium, magnesium, iodine, and omega-3 fatty acids. Including this fish in my diet can provide me with essential nutrients without excessive calories or unhealthy fats. Traditional dishes from islands near Hawaii often feature blue marlin in their recipes, adding a unique culinary experience to my menu.

By being aware of the health concerns, regulations, and nutritional benefits surrounding blue marlin consumption, I can make informed decisions about incorporating this fish into my diet while supporting sustainability efforts for our oceans.

Cooking Methods and Recipes

As a blue marlin enthusiast, I love indulging in various recipes that bring out the best flavors and textures of this delicious fish. In my experience, some of the top methods for preparing blue marlin are grilling, baking, and using it in sushi. Let’s look at each of these methods in more detail.


Grilling is one of my favorite ways to cook blue marlin since it gives the fish a nice, smoky flavor. When I grill my blue marlin, I usually follow these steps:

  1. Marinate the marlin steaks in a mixture of olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, and your favorite herbs and spices for about 30 minutes to an hour.
  2. Preheat your grill to medium-high heat.
  3. Remove the marlin steaks from the marinade, letting any excess drip off.
  4. Place the marlin on the grill and cook for 3-4 minutes on each side, or until the fish is opaque and flakes easily with a fork.
  5. Serve with a fresh salad or your favorite side dish.


Baking is a great way to enjoy blue marlin without adding any extra fat. When baking my blue marlin, I like to:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Season the marlin steaks with salt, pepper, and a drizzle of olive oil.
  3. Place the steaks in a baking dish, and add some thinly sliced lemon, onion, and a few sprigs of fresh herbs for extra flavor.
  4. Cover the dish with foil, and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the fish is cooked through and flakes easily with a fork.
  5. Enjoy your baked marlin with rice, quinoa, or steamed vegetables.


Blue marlin can also be enjoyed raw in sushi dishes. When I prepare sushi using blue marlin, I make sure to follow these guidelines:

  1. Start with fresh, sushi-grade blue marlin. This ensures the best taste and safety when consuming raw fish.
  2. Slice the marlin into thin, even pieces using a very sharp knife.
  3. Prepare your sushi rice by cooking short-grain rice and seasoning it with a mixture of rice vinegar, sugar, and salt.
  4. Assemble your sushi by placing a slice of marlin on a small bed of rice or using it as a topping on your favorite roll.

By employing these cooking methods, I’m able to enjoy blue marlin in various delicious ways. I hope you found this information helpful and that it inspires you to try out these methods for yourself.

For more flavor guides, check out the pages below:

Captain Tyler Brady

Captain Tyler Brady

Hi, I'm Captain Tyler Brady, founder of A Fellow Fisherman. Thank you for reading this post and visiting my site. I strive to provide the best information when it comes to fishing, whether it is myself or A Fellow Fisherman that is part of my team. Now stop reading and GO fishing!

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