Baked Panko-Crusted Fish Fillets

Baked panko-crusted fish

 The Spruce

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 20 mins
Total: 35 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
406 Calories
11g Fat
26g Carbs
48g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 406
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 11g 14%
Saturated Fat 2g 12%
Cholesterol 256mg 85%
Sodium 898mg 39%
Total Carbohydrate 26g 10%
Dietary Fiber 2g 6%
Total Sugars 2g
Protein 48g
Vitamin C 3mg 13%
Calcium 104mg 8%
Iron 5mg 27%
Potassium 1027mg 22%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Panko-crusted fish is delicious when baked in the oven, and the beauty of this recipe is that it's versatile. It will work with any mild fish fillet, including catfish, cod, flounder, haddock, pollock, and tilapia. The panko crumb coating keeps the fish fillets crisp, and the oven makes cooking a breeze in this light and tasty alternative to fried fish. Perfect for a quick weeknight meal, it takes right around 30 minutes from start to finish.

Panko crumbs are specialized breadcrumbs that keep their shape and crispiness. They are larger and less crumbly than typical breadcrumbs and absorb less grease and oil. For this recipe, if you don't have panko, feel free to substitute toasted breadcrumbs, crushed melba toast, or cracker meal.

Serve the crispy baked fish with lemon wedges and rémoulade sauce or tartar sauce on the side, along with coleslaw and fries or roasted potatoes.

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"This recipe is super easy to prepare and absolutely delicious. The mayonnaise adds a nice creaminess to the fish and the panko is a delicious crunch. Once the fish is breaded, the dish just bakes until ready to serve. Enjoy!" —Tracy Wilk

Baked Panko-Crusted Fish Fillets Tester Image
A Note From Our Recipe Tester

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds fish fillets, such as haddock, cod, catfish, pollock, or similar mild white fish

  • Kosher salt, to taste

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs (unseasoned)

  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley

  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour

  • 2 large eggs (or 1/2 cup egg substitute)

  • 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning (or Creole)

  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise

  • 1 lemon, quartered, for serving, optional

  • Tartar sauce, for serving, optional

  • Remoulade sauce, for serving, optional

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients. Heat the oven to 425 F.

    Panko-Crusted Fish Fillet Ingredients

    The Spruce

  2. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper and then spray it with nonstick cooking spray.

    Rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment
    The Spruce
  3. Cut the fish fillets into 6-ounce portions.

    Fish cut into three equal portions
    The Spruce
  4. Sprinkle both sides of the fish pieces with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

    Salt and pepper on three slices of fish
    The Spruce
  5. In a wide bowl, combine the panko breadcrumbs and parsley.

    Panko crumbs and parsley in a wide, shallow bowl
    The Spruce
  6. Put the flour in another wide, shallow bowl.

    Flour in a wide, shallow bowl
    The Spruce
  7. In a third bowl, whisk the eggs or egg substitute with the Cajun seasoning and mayonnaise.

    Eggs, mayonnaise and Cajun seasoning in a wide, shallow bowl
    The Spruce
  8. Dip the fish fillets in the plain flour, coating each piece thoroughly.

    Fish dipped in flour
    The Spruce
  9. Dip the flour-coated fillets in the egg mixture and then coat them with the panko crumb mixture, pressing lightly to help the crumbs adhere to the fish. Repeat with the remaining fish.

    Fish dipped in egg and panko mixture
    The Spruce
  10. Arrange the crumb-coated fish on the prepared baking sheet.

    Panko-coated fish on a baking sheet
    The Spruce
  11. Bake for about 16 to 20 minutes, or until the fish flakes easily with a fork. The time in the oven depends on thickness, so adjust for very thin or very thick fish fillets. Serve the baked fish fillets with the lemon wedges and tartar sauce or rémoulade sauce.

    Panko-crusted baked fish on a rimmed baking sheet
    The Spruce

Recipe Variations

  • Add 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper, some Sriracha sauce, or a dash of your favorite hot pepper sauce to the egg mixture for a little extra spice.
  • Replace the Cajun or Creole seasoning with a seasoned salt blend or salt-free seasoning.
  • Sprinkle the fish fillets lightly with garlic powder and/or onion powder along with the salt and pepper.
  • Add 1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese to the panko breadcrumbs.
  • Swap parsley for cilantro, and change the seasoning to ground cumin, paprika, and/or coriander.

How to Store and Reheat

Any leftovers will keep in the fridge for three to four days. Remove the fish from the fridge and let it come to room temperature while the oven heats to 350 F. Put the fish on a baking sheet and reheat for 10 to 15 minutes.

Should Fish Be Thawed Before Baking?

Frozen fish needs to be defrosted before baking to ensure evenly cooked fillets. That is especially true in a recipe like this because the breading will not stick to frozen fish. The best method is to place the packaged fillets in the refrigerator. For a quicker thaw, seal the fish in a plastic bag and let it sit in a bowl of cold water (never use hot or warm water). Change the water every 30 minutes until the fish is thoroughly thawed, then prepare and cook it immediately.

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