Blog Menu

Grilled Baby Octopus With Lemon

Don't be scared off by the fact that this Greek dish requires a whole baby octopus. The rich, meltingly tender taste of the marinated octopus mixed with the smoky taste of the grill makes believers out of skeptics.

Enjoy these grilled octopuses as an appetizer or for a meal; cook up some fingerling potatoes and grilled veggies, or your favourite sides.

Prep Time

        Prep time: 5 minutes and marinade time: 24 hours
        Cook time: 6 minutes
        Yield: Serves 4


    •    1/4 cup olive oil
    •    1 tsp lemon zest
    •    2 tsps kosher salt
    •    1/2 tsp ground cloves
    •    3 cloves garlic, crushed
    •    1 pound octopus, thawed if frozen
    •    1 tbsp freshly ground black pepper
    •    2 tbsps freshly squeezed lemon juice
    •    lemon wedges, for serving (Optional garnish)
    •    2 tbsps finely chopped fresh oregano (or 1 tbsp dried)


    1. Gather the ingredients.
    2. In a plastic bag or container with a tight-fitting lid, place the octopus, olive oil, lemon juice and zest, salt, pepper, oregano, cloves, and garlic.
    3. Massage the marinade into the octopus and put it in the fridge for 24 hours to marinade. Massage it periodically during the marinating phase.
    4. Fire up the grill. If you have gas or charcoal grill, it is vital that you add some kind of wood smoke. Without it, the dish becomes far less interesting.
    5. While the grill is heating, skewer the little octopi. It's a good thing if some of the herbs or garlic from the marinade sticks to the octopus, but it's not essential.
    6. Grill over the smoky fire, covered, for 3 minutes.
    7. Turn them over and grill for 3 minutes more.
    8. Serve while still hot with lemon wedges on the side. Enjoy.


    •    Choose a favorite hardwood to create the smoke. Use soaked wood chunks, placing them on charcoal or in a grill-safe container on a gas grill.

    •    One easy option is to soak hickory sawdust overnight, dump it into a makeshift bowl made from heavy-duty foil, and place that on the grill.

This great family recipe is thanks to The Spruce Eats at


    Leave a comment

    Please note, comments must be approved before they are published