Grilled Oysters on the Half Shell

Project Description

Source: Robb Walsh, barbecue expert and cookbook author, Zen BBQ
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Cooking Time: 10 minutes

You’ll want to spill a bit of butter into the flames of your grill to get the fire to flare up and char the oyster shells a little.

— Robb Walsh


  • 1 cup butter, melted
  • 2 tbsp. garlic, chopped
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 3 dozen oysters in the shell, fresh or frozen
  • Parmesan cheese, for garnish
  • Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish


  1. Prepare a hot fire for direct-heat grilling in a charcoal or gas grill.
  2. In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat, being careful not to let it brown. Stir in the garlic, salt, and pepper, then remove from the heat. (This can be done on the grill.)

  3. You can shuck the oysters, leaving them on the half shell. Or, you can put the unshucked oysters on the grill grate, and when the shells pop open, remove the top shell from each oyster (you’ll need an oven mitt and tongs).
  4. Spoon the butter mixture evenly over the oyster meats and grill for 3 – 5 minutes, until cooked through. Transfer to platters and sprinkle with a little Parmesan and parsley. Serve at once.


Robb Walsh is a veteran food writer and three-time James Beard Award winner. He is the author of Legends of Texas Barbecue Cookbook (New 2nd Edition) and Texas Eats.

Recipe reprinted with permission from Texas Eats: The New Lone Star Heritage Cookbook, with More than 200 Recipes by Robb Walsh, © 2012. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House Inc.

Photo by Laurie Smith from Texas Eats