Steckerlfisch aka grilled fish on a stick is a well loved Bavarian beer garden specialty. It is also an Oktoberfest dish.
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5 from 1 vote

Steckerlfisch aka Bavarian Fish on a Stick

Steckerlfisch is a flavorful grilled fish on a stick popular in beer gardens and folk fests in Bavaria and Austria. The fish is cooked suspended over wood embers and is served wrapped in paper with a squeeze of lemon juice. 
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Entree
Cuisine: Austrian, Bavarian, International
Author: CraftBeering


  • 3-4 whole 2 1/2 to 3 lbs each fish (mackerel, trout, etc) gutted and clean; head, tail and fins on

For Marinated Version

  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lemon (zest of), keep the fruit for squeezing juice
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped parsley
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 2 lemons, sliced in wedges

For Flour Dusted Version

  • 1 lemon - juice of
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp white pepper
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • optional - once the fish is cooked and off the stick, brush with olive oil and place a couple of thin lemon slices inside the belly, then wrap in paper to serve


  • A few hours before grilling the fish (overnight recommended) soak the roasting sticks/long wood skewers in water. 
  • When ready to grill start the charcoals and wait until they turn white. In the meantime prepare the fish per one of the two methods below. 

For Marinated Version

  • In a mixing bowl add the olive oil, minced garlic, lemon zest, oregano, chopped parsley, salt and red pepper flakes. Mix well together.
  • While supporting each fish with one hand near the tail insert the roasting stick through the mouth and with slow and firm motion continue threading forward through the flesh right above the spine until the stick comes out near the tail. If you are using smores sticks, insert a second stick right next to the first one for better support.
  • Generously brush the fish inside and out with the marinade. 
  • Position the skewered fish over charcoals (about 12 to 16 inches above embers). You can do so on the diagonal or horizontally, depending on your available options.
  • Grill the back first, then turn to grill each side and finally the belly. The fish are ready when the skins begin to get crispy - it takes between 15-25 minutes, depending on the size of the fish, how hot the charcoals are and how far above them the fish are positioned.

For Flour Dusted Version

  • Skewer the fish as described above. 
  • Drizzle lemon juice on the inside of each fish. Season with salt and white pepper both inside and outside. Let rest for 15 minutes. 
  • Dust the fish with flour and grill as described above.



Both methods described in this recipe are quite popular. 
If you are having trouble skewering the fish you can use thin wire to secure them to the grilling sticks.