Dover Sole

My Dover Sole Story

Big Larry, a larger than life character who appreciates the finer things, always touted Dover Sole. “If it’s on the menu,” he’d say, “it’s worth getting one for the table.  It’s a delicacy.  It’s white fish but tastes like lobster.”

He was right about it tasting like lobster.  According to the Trader Joes packaging, “Dover Sole is tender and flaky with a mild, sweet almost buttery flavor.  It is best served pan-sauteed.” My question is, does Dover Sole really need to be sauteed in butter if it already tastes like butter naturally?  My guess is no.

Baked Dover Sole served with greek yogurt fish sauce and lemon wedge

Dover Sole has always been sold as a delicacy.  But, is Dover Stole still a delicacy if it can be found with the other frozen fish at Trader Joes? Probably depends who you ask. I say why not?

Useful Tips for Easy Dover Sole

This easy fish recipe is good for busy guys and gals.  It’s very simple to make and very hard to mess-up.

Who knew making baked Dover Sole was so easy?  Salt, pepper, extra virgin olive oil, done. Whip up some fish sauce if you’re feeling fancy.

Frozen Dover Sole Fillets in clear plastic packaging from Trader Joes

Uncooked Dover Sole Fillets on broiler pan with salt pepper ready to be cooked

Dover Sole

Dover Sole

Print Recipe

Easy, healthy, quick white fish recipe using dover sole.


  • dover sole fillets
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper



  1. Defrost Dover Sole Fillets (throw in fridge night before)
  2. Preheat oven to 425 (don’t preheat night before.  wait until you’re actually going to cook the fish)
  3. Drizzle olive oil on roasting pan and on top of Dover Sole Fillets
  4. Add salt & pepper


  1. Cook for 3 minutes
  2. Flip fish (careful, the fish will probably be delicate and not flip like you might expect)
  3. Cook for another 5 minutes
  4. Fish should be opaque, but not dry.


  • Nutrition facts based on 4 oz fillets
  • One pack comes with about one pound (16oz).
  • Most people will want at least two fillets, so we said this recipe serves two people
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  1. RM Ward -


    Thanks for the great recipe. I usually make Julia Child’s Sole Meunière, but I didn’t have flour. Searching for a quick and easy recipe I came across yours.

    I only added some lemon zest and lemon juice to the fish before baking it.

    It was delicious

  2. Cynthia W -

    Great recipe! Most recipes for Dover sole say pan seared, but I am really lazy. I actually lazied up your recipe even more. I covered everything with another layer of tin foil, making sure to seal it with the foil underneath the fish trap the moisture inside, then baked it at 425 for 8 minutes (no flipping for me – like I said, super lazy). Turned out great.

    I do sort of want to try it with butter next time. :)

  3. Olga -

    for the quick recipe — I will use it tonight. I often cook fish, and always rinse it first then drain it on paper towels. If it smells “fishy” I let it sit in water & lemon juice for a short time.

  4. VMN -

    Butter is actually much better than Olive Oil when heated at such a high temp. You should only have olive oil not heated, or when heated…only heated at a very low temp. Butter IS good for you, and there is much evidence about it. Olive oil IS good for you as well… Just not heated on a high temp. Thanks for this recipe! I’ll be making it tonight :) by the way Kerrygold (a butter company) is a “grass-fed” butter…America’s way of eating is all messed up, hence why there is so many people that are obese, heart problems etc. if they were actually teaching correct info, we wouldn’t still have so many people with these problems. In Europe, they mostly eat healthy fats (butters, creams etc.) and animals that are grass-fed.

  5. Jamie -

    I just made your recipe last night and it was almost a success. I am trying to make fish once a week for my family in order to eat more healthy. I really like the recipe for 2 reasons: #1 Cooking the fillets on a really high heat allows for roasting veggies at the same time (I made roasted cauliflower) #2 You recommend olive oil. We eat dairy free because of one of my sons milk sensitivity.
    Results: I feel like the fish was slightly underdone. This is no fault of your recipe, may just be my oven/taste. Also, the sole was really fishy. I bought it fresh (previously frozen) and I think I will try buying the frozen as you did and thawing it over night. Thanks again for the easy recipe!

    • -

      Jamie! Thanks for the note.

      I always yield to less cook time for these recipes. People seem to be happier when it’s underdone (versus overdone). How much longer did you have to cook it for?

      If you buy the frozen filets, be sure to remove them from the packaging before thawing. They aren’t good thawed in fishy water. On a plate covered with is how I do it.

      Come back with more feedback, Jamie!

    • Christy -

      Hi. Read your message about buying the Dover Sole and thawing. Their is a disclaimer on the package indicating to remove from package before thawing. Just a heads up.

  6. Alexis -

    Why are people being douches to you? The recipe looks great to me (I’ve been cooking Dover sole for a while and am always looking for new ideas). About butter vs olive oil: butter being solid and room temperature is indicative of its saturated fat content. Olive oil being liquid at room temp is indicative of its unsaturated fat content. Traditionally saturated fats are blamed for heart disease and obesity because of the tendency to be associated with cholesterol (heart disease) and the way we metabolize it. I guess lately researchers have re-thinking this connection. A little butter is ok but I’m sure if you ate loads of it you’d be in trouble. But olive oil causing cancer, I doubt it (anything burned, even meat, should contribute to the accumulation of acrylamide, which is carcinogenic and is probably what Laura was referring to). Here is the scientific literature, since I am a scientist. Any old textbook will give you info on the chemistry of saturated & unsaturated fatty acids but here is Wikipedia for pictures and stuff and unsaturated

    As for a sprinkling of olive oil vs butter research articles (abstract only; journals are bastards for charging for a full article. scientists don’t see this money) here we are: *the only free full article, thank you PLOS*

    olive oil

    butter & carbs

    Grain vs grass-fed beef

    • Alexis -

      And I meant to say, interpret as you wish. It’s all very confusing, how nature works.

    • -

      Alexis, congratulations. You just won reader of the month!

      So with grass-fed beef, is it safe to say it’s better than grain-fed, but still is beef and therefore still filled with saturated fat?

      P.S. Let’s collaborate. I like your writing style.

  7. JCD -

    Can I get some form of scientific bases for all of these claims about butter and EVOO, not just your opinion.

    I was looking for a recipe for Dover Sole and found all this stuff with no reference to scientific studies.

  8. debby - one over on her for sure. I’m a dietician and never heard her claim about evoo and never heard of “grass fed butter” either!!

    • -

      Thank you, Debby! Grass-fed butter is marketing speak for “healthier butter”, IMHO. I had never heard of the e.v.o.o claim, either.

      Cancer is not logical. But here’s my logic. Cancer comes from eating foods that are animal-based, genetically modified, or processed/formulated in a lab. So assuming your e.v.o.o is basically just that, olive oil, I don’t see how heating it would create cancerous properties.

  9. Laura -

    Why on earth would you swap out butter for olive oil when cooking to try to be healthy. That is the mark of an amateur of unscientific chef.

    Olive oil is not for heating. It has a much lower flash point which means that when you cook it you make carcinogens. You can guess at flash points by looking at what state the oils are at room temperature. Olive oil is liquid at room temperature and will only solidify at lower temperatures. Butter however is still solid around room temperature and is safer too cook. The same is true for coconut oil.

    Butter has more omega 3s where the omega 6s in your evoo drive cholesterol problems.

    evoo is only ok for drizzling on cooked food or dipping things in. Even then I stay away from it because of the omega 6 and MCT oil derived from coconut has a similar texture and actually causes weight loss.

    Please Google this stuff and update your post.

    Plus grassfed butter is one of the best things out there for you period.

    • -

      Thanks for the thoughts, Laura.

      I’ve never been told olive oil is not for heating. Nor have I ever heard creates carcinogens when it’s cooked. I hate carcinogens, so this is good to know. What’s your source?

      Regarding grass fed butter, I’ve never tried it. I try to eat dairy free because of the carcinogens created by dairy products. But I’d be open to try the grass-fed butter, for sure.

      Let’s keep the conversation going. :)


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