How to Gut a Fish

How to Gut a Fish
One of the more satisfying parts of recreational fishing is putting the day's catch on the dinner table. Whether it be at a campsite or the kitchen, the first step in preparing a freshly caught fish is gutting or cleaning it.


Difficulty: Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Clean, stable surface
  • Sharp knife
  • Bottle (camp only)
  • Scissors (optional)
Step 1
Choose a clean site for gutting the fish. If you are not doing this on a kitchen countertop or camp table, improvise: Spread out some newspaper or cardboard on the hood of a car, or wash off the top of a relatively flat, stable rock.
Step 2
Grip the tail and the run a knife from the tail to the gills, alongside the body. This will strip the worst of the scales off. Flip the fish and repeat on the other side.
Step 3
Insert the knife into the belly near the tail and cut it open to the gills.
Step 4
Pull or cut the guts out.
Step 5
Rinse out the inside of the fish. If you're doing this at a camp site, you will need a bottle of water to pour into the fish.
Step 6
Cut away the fins with either the knife or a pair of scissors.
Step 7
Cut off the head from behind the gills.
Step 8
Look for and remove any remaining cartilage in the belly, using either the knife tip or your fingers.

Article Written By Edwin Thomas

Edwin Thomas has been writing since 1997. His work has appeared in various online publications, including The Black Table, Proboxing-Fans and others. A travel blogger, editor and writer, Thomas has traveled from Argentina to Vietnam in pursuit of stories. He holds a Master of Arts in international affairs from American University.

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