Mahi-Mahi

Species Information

Mahi-mahi were long known as dolphin fish because they swim alongside boats as dolphins do. To make the fish more acceptable to consumers, they are known by their Hawaiian name, mahi-mahi. They generally live in waters warmer than 68°F with a lifespan of 4 to 5 years.

Between 66 million and 88 million pounds of mahi-mahi are delivered to the global market each year. Mahi-mahi are known for their dazzling colors but when they are removed from the water, the fish often change color among several hues finally fading to a muted yellow-grey upon death.

Cooking & Handling

Keep mahi-mahi fillets refrigerated for up to 2 days before cooking.

Mahi-mahi is low in saturated fat and is a good source of vitamin B12, phosphorus, and potassium and a very good source of protein, niacin, vitamin B6, and selenium.

Poorly handled mahi-mahi can produce histamine, an organic substance that results in scombroid poisoning if eaten. Keep properly refrigerated.

Flavors that work well with mahi-mahi are avocado, butter, garlic, ginger, honey, kiwi, lemon, lime, mango, mustard, onion, oregano, rum scallion, sesame, shallot, soy sauce, teriyaki, thyme and tomato.

Cooking Methods

Bake, Broil, Fry, Grill, Sauté

Global Supply

Brazil, Costa Rica,Ecuador, Peru, United States

Seasonal Availability

Fresh available January through November. Frozen available year-round. Mahi-mahi is available most of the year, but catches peak from March to May and September to November.

Did You Know?

Mahi-mahi means "strong strong" in Polynesian.

In the Atlantic, dolphinfish are attracted to Sargassum, a floating brown alga, which serves as a hiding place and source of food.

Scientific Name

Coryphaena hippurus

Market Name

Mahi-mahi

Common Names

Dolphinfish, dorado

Substitutions

Grouper, snapper

Raw Characteristics

  • brilliant iridescent blue-green and gold
  • flat head, large mouth, sharp teeth, no scales with dorsal fin that runs the length of their body
  • pinkish flesh
  • lean meat
  • market weight 3–6 lbs

Cooked Characteristics

  • mild, sweet flavored
  • off-white meat
  • large, moist flakes
  • firm texture

Pronunciations

French: coryphéne
German: goldmakrele
Italian: lampuga
Japanese: shiira
Spanish: llampuga