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Solo Seafood: Cooking For One

Food Bloggers, The Gills Gals, provide top tips for shopping, storing, cooking and enjoying seafood easily for one.

When we started our blog, The Gills Gals [1], a lot of  people said that seafood was either too expensive or fussy for a midweek dinner. That’s one of the reasons we started it. As a place to share recipes that are easy, sustainable and delicious. We’re also conscious of time, kitchen space and budgets. We’ve both lived in shared houses and have experienced our fair share of tiny freezers and non-existent storage. Another hurdle we often hear is, ‘I don’t see any point in cooking if it’s just for one. Everything you buy is too much.’ Eating a delicious meal is self-care. Trust us you’ll feel a lot happier tucking into a tasty pasta dish that took you 15 mins to make than soggy beans on toast.

Here we recommend how to ensure you still get your seafood fix, even when swimming solo.

Shopping smart

Of course bulk buying can give you good value, but we get that you can’t always do so. Unlike mince, sausages and chicken, packaged seafood tends to come in portions of two. One for you and one for the freezer. Don’t forget, most big supermarkets have a fishmonger counter where it’s easy to buy the amount you need.

If you do have a bit more space in the freezer, a bag of frozen prawns [2] is a great option. That way you can take out as much as you need for that meal, defrost, and then leave the rest for another day (or two!) You could take them out for this prawn, pea, feta and orzo salad [3] and use the leftovers for this fancy prawn sandwich. [4]

You can also get the slightly bizarre looking, but great tasting, blocks of fish for the freezer. What’s more, these are often more sustainable species such as pollack or coley.


If your freezer is already full with prawns, smoked and tinned fish store brilliantly. Smoked mackerel can last up to a week in your fridge and can be used for more than just our Gill’s favourite mackerel paté [5]. Finish the weekend with this easy smoked mackerel carbonara [6] (one of the most popular dishes on the blog.) Then get meal prepped with smoked mackerel wraps [7] for lunch the next day.

When it comes to tinned fish, tuna is the obvious choice. Forget the soggy buffet sandwiches. Try these sweet potato tuna boats [8]. This recipe calls for four but easy enough to take down to one person. Use the other half of your can for a healthy tuna korean rice bowl. [9]

Tinned sardines are also a great store cupboard staple for a quick dinner or lunch. Try mixing them in spaghetti, lemon and lots of rocket for an easy dinner. If you want a bright packed lunch, try this tinned sardine salad [10] with tabbouleh. Make up a big batch for the week ahead, but keep the oil and lemon back until you’re ready to serve.