How to Make Crudo – This wonderfully easy no-cook recipe is perfect for making elegant and delicious raw crudo with your choice of sushi-grade seafood like Hamachi (yellowtail), tuna, salmon, or scallops. It’s sure to impress as an enticing appetizer at your next dinner party or gathering!

Top down view of black oval plate loaded with thin slices of yellowtail crudo topped with seasonings, thin slides of radishes, jalapenos, red onion, and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.

What is Crudo?

The word crudo is Italian for raw, and refers to any uncooked meat. Unlike French tartare, which is made with ground or finely minced raw meat, or a Spanish ceviche made with chopped fish, a crudo most often is made with delicate thin slices of raw seafood.

The pieces of fish are plated before drizzling with a vibrant lemon, soy, and chili garlic sauce. It’s the acid in the lemon and soy that lightly marinates the raw Hamachi. While this does not technically cook the meat, it does tenderize and give the thin slices a lovely texture and taste. Then add on your favorite spicy and sweet fresh toppings!

No cooking, quick to prepare, and super customizable… We love making this simple and elegant raw seafood crudo at home!

What is Hamachi?

This fabulous fish we showcase here in Hamachi Crudo is made with Japanese amberjack, also called yellowtail, a type of light-flesh firm fish, similar to white tuna. (But no, it isn’t actually related to tuna fish at all!)

It has a wonderful firm texture, and does not really flake. The meat is buttery and rich, but with a milder flavor that is lightly sweet. Hamachi does not have a strong “fishy” smell or taste.

However, this recipe can be made with any sort of raw sushi-grade seafood, including salmon, scallops, shrimp, and of course ahi tuna.

Black oval plate loaded with thin slices of hamachi crudo topped with seasonings, thin slides of radishes, jalapenos, red onion, and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.

Ingredients You Need

  • Sushi-grade Hamachi – also known as amberjack or yellowtail (or other sashimi-grade fish)
  • Lemon – zested and juiced
  • Soy sauce – dark, for the most robust flavor
  • Chili garlic sauce – a combination of spicy, savory, and delightfully tangy tastes
  • Honey – pourable
  • Olive oil – choose a high-quality EVOO as you’ll be able to taste the flavor in this raw dish

If hamachi is not available – or you simply want to try something different – try any of these other fantastic seafood crudo options!

Scallop Crudo

Rinse scallops thoroughly and gently pat dry. Use a sharp knife to remove the foot, and slice each scallop into super thin slices.

Tuna Crudo

There are a few types of tuna that are great for making a crudo. Sushi-grade ahi tuna , also known as yellowfin, is a top choice. This fish has nice firm, deep pink meat that practically cuts like steak.

Salmon Crudo

Again, be sure you are purchasing quality sushi-grade fish. Remove the skin and pin-bones before thinly slicing the salmon.

Large whole raw hamachi fillet on a cutting board.

Optional Fresh Toppings

Customize Crudo toppings to fit your tastes and complement the flavors found in the rest of your evening meal. Here are some of our favorites that we use in this yellowtail crudo recipe:

  • Serrano pepper – similar to jalapeños in heat but slightly sweeter, sliced
  • Cucumbers – baby cucumbers are not too big and have lots of crunch, sliced
  • Radishes – super crunchy with a great punch of pungent spice, sliced
  • Basil leaves – baby leaves, or thinly sliced large basil leaves
  • Sesame seeds – the finishing touch for a nice texture and slightly nutty taste to balance the spice

You can also include other tasty toppings like sliced fresh jalapeno peppers, red onion, watermelon radish, cilantro, flaky sea salt, or green onion.

Crudo garnishes prepped on a cutting board: Individual piles of sliced cucumbers, radishes, jalapenos, and red onion.

How to Make Seafood Crudo

Place the fillet of fresh Hamachi in the freezer for 15 to 20 minutes to firm it up for slicing. Meanwhile, slice and prep all the fresh toppings for the crudo. 

Set out a small mixing bowl. Combine the citrus zest and juice, dark soy sauce, chili garlic sauce, and honey. Whisk well to combine.

Glass measuring cup of soy and chili sauce.

Once the Hamachi fillet is slightly firm, take it out of the freezer. If there is skin along the bottom side, carefully shave it off and discard it. Then slice the raw yellowtail fish into thin slivers, against the grain. Shave them as thin as you can, no more than 1/8 inch thick, but thinner is better.

Large fillet of hamachi on a cutting board, front half of the fish is cut into thin slices.

Arrange the Hamachi Crudo on one large serving platter, or several appetizer plates.

4 pieces of hamachi on a black oval plate.

Spoon the Crudo sauce over the top of the Hamachi. Then drizzle a little bit of olive oil (or sesame oil) over the top.

Get the Complete Hamachi Crudo Recipe Below. Enjoy!

4 pieces of hamachi on a black oval plate. Spoon is adding chili soy sauce on top.

If using fresh toppings, sprinkle or arrange them over the top of each plate.

Sprinkle with sesame seeds to garnish and serve immediately.

Top down view of black oval plate loaded with thin slices of yellowtail crudo topped with seasonings, thin slides of radishes, jalapenos, red onion, and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is yellowfin the same as yellowtail?

This recipe can be made with what we think of as traditional high-grade sushi tuna, AKA ahi tuna or yellowfin. However, it’s important to note that yellowtail and yellowfin tuna are NOT the same thing. They are actually quite different…

Yellowfin tuna is red or burgundy in color. Japanese amberjack or yellowtail, has a light white to golden color with dark red streaks throughout. It is very similar to tuna in texture but not exactly the same thing. Yellowfin is more thick and hearty, like steak; whereas yellowtail is firm but buttery.

What’s the difference between crudo and carpaccio?

Carpaccio is actually a type of crudo. While crudo refers to any raw dish, carpaccio is specific pieces of uncooked fish (or other foods) sliced and/or pounded super thin. Although we slice the Hamachi very thin here, it isn’t quite as paper-thin as to be considered a carpaccio.

Can Hamachi be eaten raw?

Yes, high-quality Hamachi is safe to consume without cooking. However, as is the case whenever eating raw seafood or eggs, there is always the potential to contract a foodborne illness.

What to pair with crudo?

This light raw dish pairs beautifully with heartier entrees. Here we use several Asia-inspired toppings, like the soy and chili garlic sauce. This is great to serve with Sukiyaki Beef, Asian Spiced Turkey, or Instant Pot Asian Chicken Thighs.

Can crudo be made ahead?

No. You can prep the toppings in advance, and keep everything handy in the fridge. But you want to keep the fish super cold in the refrigerator up until you are ready to slice, top, and serve.

Leftovers do not keep well. So that’s right, you have to enjoy every last scrumptious bite – oh, darn! :))

Top down view of black oval plate loaded with thin slices of yellowtail crudo topped with seasonings, thin slides of radishes, jalapenos, red onion, and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.

Looking for More Marvelous Appetizer Recipes? Be Sure to Also Try:

Hamachi Crudo (Tuna Crudo) Recipe

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
This wonderfully easy no-cook recipe is perfect for making elegant and delicious raw crudo with your choice of sushi-grade seafood like Hamachi (yellowtail), tuna, salmon, or scallops.
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • ½ pounds sushi-grade Hamachi Japanese amberjack, or yellowtail
  • 1 large lemon zested and juiced (1 tsp zest + 3 tb juice)
  • 3 tablespoons dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Optional Fresh Toppings –
  • 2 serrano chiles sliced
  • 2-3 baby cucumbers sliced
  • 2-3 radishes sliced
  • ¼ cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds

Instructions

  • Place the fillet of fresh Hamachi in the freezer for 15 to 20 minutes to firm it up for slicing. Meanwhile, slice and prep all the fresh toppings for the Crudo.
  • Set out a small mixing bowl. Combine the lemon zest and juice, dark soy sauce, chili garlic sauce, and honey. Whisk well to combine.
  • Once the Hamachi fillet is slightly firm, take it out of the freezer. If there is skin along the bottom side, carefully shave it off and discard. Then slice the Hamachi into thin slivers, against the grain. Shave them as thin you can, no more than 1/8 inch thick, but thinner is better.
  • Arrange the Hamachi Crudo on one large serving platter, or on several appetizer plates. Spoon the Crudo sauce over the top of the Hamachi. Then drizzle a little bit of olive oil over the top.
  • If using fresh toppings, sprinkle or arrange them over the top of each plate. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve immediately.

Notes

This recipe can be made with any sort of raw sushi-grade seafood, including salmon, scallops, shrimp, and ahi tuna.

Nutrition

Serving: 2oz, Calories: 144kcal, Carbohydrates: 12g, Protein: 15g, Fat: 5g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Cholesterol: 21mg, Sodium: 796mg, Potassium: 542mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 8g, Vitamin A: 317IU, Vitamin C: 27mg, Calcium: 58mg, Iron: 1mg
Course: Appetizer, Salad, Seafood, Side Dish, Starter
Cuisine: Italian, Japanese, Spanish
Author: Sommer Collier
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