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Grilled octopus topped with herbs on a long serving platter with roasted baby potatoes, a checkered napkin and glass of wine on the side, on top of a wooden board.

Grilled Octopus with Leeks and Shallots

  • Author: Asian Caucasian
  • Prep Time: 30 min
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 15 min
  • Total Time: 1 hour 45 min
  • Yield: 4-6 1x
  • Category: Seafood
  • Method: Stove Top & Grill
  • Cuisine: Asian Fusion


This delicious Grilled Octopus with Leeks and Shallots recipe will change your mind about cooking octopus at home! This beautiful sea creature grills up so quickly, and the taste is out of this world! 


Units Scale
  • 25 whole peppercorns (green or black)
  • 1 large lemon, cut in half
  • 4-5 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 1 head garlic, cut in half length wise
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 2 bay leaves (fresh or dried)
  • 2 pounds fresh, cleaned whole octopus (head removed)
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic, minced
  • 1 leek, cleaned and chopped (white part only)
  • 1 large shallot, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • Salt & pepper
  • 1 large lemon for squeezing
  • 1 teaspoon fresh parsley, chopped


  1. In a large pot of salted water, add peppercorns, lemon (squeezed), thyme, garlic, white wine, and bay leaves. Bring water to a boil. Slowly drop in whole octopus, tentacles first to avoid too much curling. Lower to a simmer, cover and cook for 1 hour. Poke tentacles with a fork to check tenderness (should be very tender).
  2. When done, drain into colander and put octopus only into a large glass bowl of ice water to cool. Drain again when octopus has cooled.
  3. On a cutting board, cut tentacles into off of into individual whole pieces starting from middle of octopus (keeping tentacles intact). Place whole tentacles into a plastic baggie and add 2 tablespoons olive oil, salt and pepper to coat. Set aside to marinate, about 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, heat a non-stick skillet with one tablespoon of olive oil. Add garlic, leeks, shallots, and red pepper flakes. Cook until translucent. Stir in thyme, salt and pepper. Remove from heat and set aside.
  5. Heat either an outdoor grill or grill pan on high. Remove tentacles from marinade and grill until octopus has vivid char marks, about 3 to 5 minutes on each side. Remove from grill and place on a serving platter.
  6. Sprinkle veggie mixture on top of octopus and squeeze with lemon juice. Garnish with chopped parsley. (Can be served warm or at room temperature.)
  7. If desired, serve with a side of Roasted Baby Potatoes with Leeks.


I buy my octopus in the seafood department at Whole Foods. You can also find it at select fish markets and Asian markets.

Adapted from: NY Times


  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 228
  • Sugar: 0.7 g
  • Sodium: 446.6 mg
  • Fat: 8.7 g
  • Carbohydrates: 9.1 g
  • Protein: 23.3 g
  • Cholesterol: 72.5 mg

Keywords: Grilled Octopus, Asian Grilled Octopus,