Easy and Fantastic Thai Fried Fish

Four cod fillet and the rest of the ingredients for oven fried fish fillets are photographed from the top.
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  • Total: 40 mins
  • Prep: 30 mins
  • Cook: 10 mins
  • Yield: Serves 2-3
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
443 Calories
34g Fat
16g Carbs
20g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: Serves 2-3
Amount per serving
Calories 443
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 34g 43%
Saturated Fat 2g 11%
Cholesterol 50mg 17%
Sodium 550mg 24%
Total Carbohydrate 16g 6%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Protein 20g
Calcium 30mg 2%
*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.)

This Thai Fried Fish is so delicious you might just find it addictive. Any firm, white-fleshed fish fillets can be used for this recipe - cod is excellent, but you can also use ​basa (a type of catfish native to Indochina), halibut, or tilapia. Just dust any white fish fillets in the spice mixture and pan fry.

Note that you don't have to deep fry this fish - it turns out perfectly when fried in a slim layer of oil in your frying pan, and it cooks in just a couple of minutes. Serve it up with plenty of Thai jasmine rice, lime wedges, and sweet chili sauce on the side for dipping. Enjoy and be prepared to share!


  • 2 basa (medium-large fillets of cod, tilapia, or any white-fleshed fish)
  • 1 lime
  • 6-7 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • Optional: coriander
  • For the Spice Mix:
  • 1 tsp. coriander (ground)
  • 1/3 tsp. cumin (ground)
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin seed (whole)
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper (or more depending on how spicy you want it)
  • 1 tsp. onion (powder)
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic (powder)
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 5 tbsp. cornstarch

Steps to Make It

  1. Rinse fish under cold water and pat to nearly dry.

  2. In a medium-size mixing bowl, combine all 'Spice Mix' ingredients. 

  3. Using a sharp serrated knife or a clean pair of kitchen scissors, slice fish into chunky, 4-inch segments (this makes frying easier and crispier results!).

  4. Sprinkle a clean plate with cornstarch. Now dip fish into the spice mixture, coating all sides. Place coated pieces on the plate that has the cornstarch.

  5. In a wok or medium-size frying pan (not too large), pour oil, enough to cover the bottom of the pan plus a little more (1/4 to 1/2 inch deep). When the oil is hot enough to make fish sizzle immediately when dipped in, it is ready. Gently set coated fish pieces in the oil, allowing them to cook at least 1 minute before turning with tongs.

  6. The fish is done when the outside turns light golden brown.

  7. Remove from oil and drain, or set directly on serving plate. Serve this fish up with lime wedges on the side and plenty of Thai jasmine rice. 

Side Sauces: This fish is excellent on its own, with just a little lime juice squeezed over. However, it's also spectacular served with ​Thai sweet chili sauce on the side. Another nice side sauce for spice lovers is Nam Prik Pao.

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