How to Clean and Gut a Fish

While it may be best to leave the big guys to the pros, anyone with a knife and a strong stomach can clean a smaller fish. Here’s how to prepare your fresh-caught catch, or a market-bought whole fish:

1.  Wash it.
Use cold water to keep the flesh fresh.

2. De-scale it.
With the fish lying on a cutting board, run the dull side of a knife along its body from tail to gills. Continue until all of the translucent gills have been removed from the body. Rinse the fish under cold water to wash away any scale residue.

3. Cut the belly.
Hold the fish so that its belly is revealed. Using the sharp side of the knife, slice along the belly from the gills to the tail. Keep your cut shallow to prevent damaging the innards.

4. Remove the entrails.
Reach into the fish and pull out the entrails. Be sure to clean out any stray bits clinging to the bones or flesh. If you’re not planning to cook the fish whole, you can also remove the head (from behind the gills) and tail.

5. Rinse and refrigerate.
Wash the fish inside and out under cold water. If you’re not going to cook it right away, store it in the refrigerator for up to two days.


Become more interesting every week!

Get our Read Up newsletter

how we use your e-mail

Some people like to travel by train because 
it combines the slowness of a car with the cramped public exposure of 
an airplane.

Dennis Miller

I think my pilot was a little inexperienced. We were sitting on the runway, and he said, “OK, folks, we’re gonna be taking off in a just few—whoa! Here we go.”

Kevin Nealon

“I can’t wait until your vacation is over.” 
—Everyone following you on Instagram


A man knocked on my door and asked for a donation toward the local swimming pool. So I gave him a glass of water.

Comedian Greg Davies

Funny Jokes

Just found the worst page in the entire dictionary. What I saw was disgraceful, disgusting, dishonest, and disingenuous.


Funny Jokes

Client: We need you to log in to the YouTube and make all our company videos viral.


Funny Jokes

My cat just walked up to the paper shredder and said, “Teach me 
everything you know.”


Funny Jokes

“Just because you can’t dance doesn’t mean you shouldn’t dance.” 

@yoyoha (Josh Hara)

Funny Jokes

My parents didn’t want to move to Florida, but they turned 60 and that’s the law.

—Jerry Seinfeld

Funny Jokes

Q: What do you call an Amish guy with his hand in a horse’s mouth?

A: A mechanic.