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Grilled Octopus served with two Herb-Oil Dipping Sauces

This "Wicked Easy" grilled octopus' recipe is a tender, lightly seasoned, and charred octopus dish that tastes amazing! A must try for seafood lovers!

grilled octopus' legs with lemon herb oil

The key to great grilled octopus that is tender on the inside and well-seared and crisp on the outside is to cook it in two stages. First, you cook the octopus until tender by boiling it in a pot of water, using a pressure cooker, or even cooking it sous vide. You then cook the tenderized octopus over direct heat on a grill or under a broiler until it is crips and slightly charred on the outside!

grilled octopus on a plate topped with chili herb oil

This recipe doesn’t mask the great taste of the grilled octopus but rather lets it shine by dressing it lightly in two olive oil-based dipping sauces that are infused with herbs and seasonings!

Grilled octopus that is sliced and place on top of a garden salad

And because this octopus recipe keeps for several days, and is good either warm or at room temperature, it is the perfect make-ahead dish for parties or special gatherings. It is also great as a salad, over pasta, or just to munch on by itself with some good, crusty bread! 

octopus in a pot of water with seasonings

To tenderize the fresh or frozen octopus, place it in a pot and cover with water (which can be seasoned with salt, pepper, bay leaves, garlic, pickling spice, etc.). 

Bring the water to a boil and cook for 40 minutes to an hour depending on the size of the octopus being cooked. 

octopus that has been boiled in order to tenderize it

Once the octopus has been cooked and is tender, remove it from the hot water, rinse, and place on to a plate or bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and chopped garlic and let it rest at room temperature for 30 minutes to an hour to cool and firm up. 

pre-cooked packaged octopus

You can also use pre-cooked octopus which eliminates the need to tenderize it with the boiling step. 

The back of a package of precooked octopus

Pre-cooked octopus is not only a time saver but is already tender and guarantees you won’t get rubbery results. 

a bowl of lemon herb oil used for drizzling over the grilled octopus

While the octopus is cooling down, you can make the two dipping sauces starting with the Lemon Herb Oil. It consists of olive oil, fresh lemon juice, oregano, parsley, garlic and salt & pepper all mixed together. 

A bowl of chili herb oil that is used as a sauce with the grilled octopus

The second dipping sauce you can make while the octopus is cooling down is the Chili Herb Oil, which consists of olive oil, sweet chili sauce, oregano, and salt that is combined together. 

Boiled octopus on the grill

Preheat your grill or broiler to medium-high heat and then clean and oil the grates. Cooking over direct high heat sears and crisps the octopus without the risk of drying out the interior.

Here in South Florida the weather is pretty nice year-round, so I prefer to grill whenever possible. However, this wicked easy grilled octopus’ recipe will also come out great when heated and charred under a hot broiler.

Charred octopus on the grill

Place the octopus on the grill and sear until browned and crisped on one side, about 4 minutes. Then carefully flip the octopus and brown the other side, about 4 minutes longer.

Grilled and charred octopus on the grill

Grilling time may vary depending on the heat of your grill and the distance between the octopus and the heat source. 

portioned octopus on a plate with different sauces

Remove the grilled octopus from the heat source and transfer to serving plates or platters. Serve as is with the herb oils or cut into smaller pieces, sauce, and then serve.  

octopus on top of a side salad

Stir the herb oil sauces to mix and then spoon over the octopus or serve on the side. The sliced octopus also goes well over some leafy greens or on a side salad with the herb oil sauce used as a dressing. 

What does octopus taste like? If cooked properly, octopus is tender, and many say it is somewhat similar in taste and texture to calamari or chicken. 

grilled octopus on a plate topped with chili herb oil

Grilled Octopus with Herb-Oil Dipping Sauces

This wicked easy grilled octopus is a tender, lightly seasoned, and charred seafood dish that tastes amazing! This octopus recipe doesn't mask the great taste of the grilled octopus but rather lets it shine by dressing it lightly with two olive oil-based dipping sauces that are infused with herbs and seasonings.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Resting Time 30 mins
Total Time 1 hr 30 mins
Course Appetizer, Main Course, Salad, Side Dish, Snack
Servings 4 servings

Equipment

  • 1 grill or broiler
  • 1 stock pot
  • 1 large bowl
  • 2 small bowls
  • 1 grilling tongs

Ingredients
  

  • 2 lbs fresh or frozen octopus or can use pre-cooked octopus
  • 2 oz olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped

Lemon Herb Oil

  • 4 oz olive oil
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp oregano, finely chopped fresh or dried
  • 2 tsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Chili Herb Oil

  • 4 oz olive oil
  • 2 tsp chili paste / sauce sambal oelek, sweet chili sauce, etc.
  • 1 tsp oregano, finely chopped fresh or dried
  • salt to taste

Optional Garnish

  • 1 each lemon, cut into wedges
  • 2 cups lettuce or leafy greens, shredded

Instructions
 

Octopus

  • To tenderize the fresh or frozen octopus, place it in a pot and cover with water. You can season the water if you wish with salt, pepper, garlic, bay leaves, pickling spice, etc. Bring the water to a boil and cook the octopus for 40 to an hour depending on the size. If using precooked octopus, skip this step.
  • Remove the octopus from the hot water, rinse and place into a bowl. Drizzle with the olive oil and chopped garlic and let it cool and rest at room temperature for 30 minutes to an hour.
  • Preheat your grill or broiler to medium-high heat and then clean and oil the grates. Working over direct high heat sear4s and crisps the octopus without the risk of drying out the interior.
  • Place the octopus on the preheated grill or under the broiler and sear until browned and crisped on one side, about 4 minutes. Carefully flip the octopus and brown the other side, about 4 minutes longer. NOTE: Grilling times may vary depending on the heat of your grill / broiler and the distance the octopus is to the heat source.
  • When done, remove the octopus from the grill and transfer to a plate or platter. Serve as is with the herb-oil dipping sauces or slice the octopus into smaller pieces and serve with the sauces as is or on top of a bed of greens or on a salad. Garnish with lemon wedges if desired.

Lemon Herb Oil

  • Combine the olive oil, lemon juice, oregano, parsley, garlic, salt, and black pepper in a bowl and mix well.

Chili Herb Oil

  • Combine the olive oil, chili paste / sauce, oregano, and salt in a bowl and mix well.
Keyword grilling, octopus, seafood
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