Escovitch fish is a traditional Jamaican dish that has been enjoyed for generations. This delicious meal is made by frying fish and then marinating it in a tangy, spicy vinegar-based sauce. The dish is usually served with a side of festival (a sweet, fried cornbread) or bammy (a flatbread made from cassava). In this blog, we will explore the history of Escovitch fish, its nutritional benefits, and provide a simple recipe for you to try at home.

History of Escovitch Fish

Escovitch fish is a dish with roots in Spain, but it has become a beloved Jamaican specialty. The word “escovitch” is derived from the Spanish word “escabeche,” which refers to a type of pickling technique that involves marinating food in a vinegar-based sauce.

When the Spanish colonized Jamaica in the 16th century, they brought with them their culinary traditions, including escabeche. The Jamaican version of escovitch fish features local ingredients, such as Scotch bonnet peppers, onions, and thyme, which give it a distinct Caribbean flavor.

Escovitch fish has become a staple dish in Jamaican cuisine and is often served at special occasions such as weddings, parties, and other celebrations.

Nutritional Benefits of Escovitch Fish

Escovitch fish is a nutritious dish that provides a variety of health benefits. Fish is an excellent source of protein, which is essential for building and repairing tissues in the body. It is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to reduce inflammation, lower blood pressure, and improve heart health.

The vinegar-based sauce used in escovitch fish is also beneficial for health. Vinegar has been shown to lower blood sugar levels and improve insulin sensitivity, making it a good option for people with type 2 diabetes. Additionally, the sauce contains anti-inflammatory spices like thyme and Scotch bonnet peppers, which have been shown to reduce inflammation and boost the immune system.

Recipe for Escovitch Fish


  • 2 lbs fish (such as snapper, kingfish, or tilapia)
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 Scotch bonnet pepper, sliced
  • 1 tbsp thyme leaves
  • 1 cup vinegar
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • Vegetable oil for frying


  1. Clean the fish and pat dry with paper towels.
  2. Season the fish with salt and pepper, then coat in flour.
  3. Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  4. Add the fish to the skillet and fry until golden brown on both sides, about 3-4 minutes per side.
  5. Remove the fish from the skillet and place on a paper towel-lined plate to drain excess oil.
  6. In a separate pan, sauté the onion, Scotch bonnet pepper, and thyme leaves until the onion is soft and translucent.
  7. Add the vinegar, sugar, and salt to the pan and bring to a boil.
  8. Pour the vinegar sauce over the fish and marinate for at least 1 hour before serving.
  9. Serve with a side of festival or bammy.


  • You can use any type of fish you prefer, but snapper, kingfish, and tilapia are popular choices.
  • If you don’t have Scotch bonnet peppers, you can use jalapeños or other spicy peppers instead.
  • You can also add other vegetables to the vinegar sauce, such as bell peppers, carrots, or celery.


Escovitch fish is a delicious and nutritious dish that is beloved in Jamaican cuisine. With its tangy, spicy vinegar-based sauce and crispy fried fish, it’s no surprise that this dish has become a staple in Jamaican culture.

Escovitch fish is not only delicious but also provides a variety of health benefits, making it a great addition to any diet. With its high protein content and anti-inflammatory spices, this dish can help boost your immune system, reduce inflammation, and improve heart health.

If you’re interested in trying your hand at making escovitch fish, our simple recipe is a great place to start. With just a few ingredients and some basic cooking skills, you can enjoy this traditional Jamaican dish right in the comfort of your own home. So why not give it a try and experience the flavors of Jamaica in your own kitchen?