This Pan Seared Scallops Recipe is as easy, simple and uses only three ingredients, scallops, olive oil, and salt.
- 12 (1 to 1.5 inch wide) raw sea scallops
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Sea salt, to taste
- Optional: Microgreens, for garnish
- Pat the scallops dry with a paper towel, then put them in a large bowl and add the olive oil. Toss the scallops gently in the oil until fully coated.
- Preheat a large cast iron over medium high heat. Once it’s hot, sear the scallops until golden, 1 to 1 ½ minutes per side. Season to taste with salt and garnish with microgreens. Serve immediately.
- Use dry scallops: Dry scallops are preferable for pan-searing, as they will develop a better crust. Look for scallops that are labeled as "dry" or "chemical-free." If your scallops are wet, pat them dry with paper towels before cooking to remove excess moisture.
- Preheat the pan properly: It's crucial to preheat your skillet or frying pan properly before adding the scallops. Heat the pan over medium-high to high heat for a few minutes until it's hot but not smoking. A hot pan will help you achieve a good sear on the scallops.
- Season the scallops: Season the scallops with a sprinkle of salt and pepper just before cooking. You can also add other herbs or spices of your choice for additional flavor, such as paprika, garlic powder, or lemon zest.
- Don't overcrowd the pan: Avoid overcrowding the pan when searing scallops. Leave enough space between each scallop to ensure they cook evenly and develop a nice crust. If the pan is too crowded, the scallops may release moisture and steam instead of searing.
- Use the right cooking fat: Choose a high-heat cooking fat such as vegetable oil, canola oil, or clarified butter for pan-searing scallops. These fats have a high smoke point, which allows you to achieve a good sear without burning the fat.
- Don't overcook the scallops: Scallops cook quickly, usually in just a few minutes per side, depending on their size. Overcooking can result in rubbery and tough scallops. Keep a close eye on them and cook just until they are opaque and slightly firm to the touch.
- Rest before serving: Allow the cooked scallops to rest for a minute or two before serving. This helps them retain their juices and ensures a juicy and tender texture.
- Garnish for presentation: Consider garnishing your pan-seared scallops with a squeeze of lemon juice, chopped fresh herbs (such as parsley, chives, or cilantro), or a drizzle of balsamic glaze for added flavor and presentation.
- Prep Time: 2 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Cooking
- Cuisine: American
- Serving Size: 1
- Calories: 150.7
- Sugar: 4.0 g
- Sodium: 218.5 mg
- Fat: 3.4 g
- Saturated Fat: 0.8 g
- Carbohydrates: 4.0 g
- Fiber: 0.0 g
- Protein: 22.5 g
- Cholesterol: 48.8 mg