How to Fry Fish on the Stove?

Fried fish is usually any fish that is cooked by frying instead of grilling, baking, or some other method. This kind of fish can be fried on its own, but it is more common for the fish to be coated in batter or something else before being fried. The batter or coating changes a lot from place to place or culture to culture, but heavy and light batters are both standards. Fried fish can be eaten by itself, often with different side dishes, or it can be used in other ways, like sandwiches and tacos.

How to Fry Fish on the Stove

What is Fried Fish?

There are many different ways to make fried fish, but most of the time, the fish is cooked by frying it in hot oil. This can be a shallow fry, in which the fish is only slightly exposed to the oil and must be turned at least once while cooking. Fish can also be deep-fried, and this is often done with fish that has been battered or given some other kind of coating.
Even though you can fry fish in butter instead of oil, cooking fish in butter makes it taste like it was grilled or baked. Fried fish can be used to make many different kinds of food. “Fish and chips” is one of the most well-known.
It usually consists of battered, fried fish served with French fries in a paper bag or wrapped in newspaper. Fried fish is often used to make fish sandwiches, and the fish is usually done between two pieces of bread or on top of a bun. This fish can also make tacos, which typically have soft tortillas, cabbage, diced red onions, and a creamy sauce.
How to Fry Fish on the Stove?
  • When deep-frying, you should use cooking oil with a high smoke point, at least 400° F. You shouldn’t put more than 2/3 of the way through your vessel with oil. You only need enough water to cover your food.
  • Slowly heat the oil over low heat until it reaches 375° F. (keep a close eye on it with the help of your thermometer).
  • While the oil heats up, take the fish out of the fridge, pat it dry, and season it with salt and pepper. Fish cooks evenly when it’s at room temperature, and patting it dry removes extra moisture. Water and oil don’t mix, and putting water in oil that is very hot can make a kind of hell on fire.
  • Once the oil is hot enough, dredge the fillets in the batter and carefully put them one at a time into the fryer. Don’t put too many in at once; cook one or two at a time.
  • The amount of time it takes to cook will depend on how thick your fillets are. Plan on giving them about 2–4 minutes to cook. The temperature inside should be 145° F when your fish is done.
  • Once the fish is done, and the batter has turned golden and crisp, carefully remove the fillets from the oil with a skimmer and place them on a cooling rack or plate lined with paper towels to soak up any extra oil.

How Long does it Take to Fry Fish in a Pan?

Once the butter has melted, stir it in the pan, adding two fillets. Cook the fish until one side is golden brown, adjusting the heat as needed to keep it from burning. Depending on the fillet’s thickness, this should take between 30 and 3 minutes.

How to Cook Fish on the Stovetop?


Pat the fish dry: Use a paper towel to pat the fish dry on both sides.

Sprinkle with salt and pepper: Salt and pepper the top of the fish in many spots.

Warm the oil in the skillet: In a pan over medium-high heat, melt the olive oil or butter. When a drop of water on the pan makes a sizzling sound, it’s ready.

Lay the fish in the hot pan: Lay the fish, seasoned side down, in the pan.

Cook for 2 to 3 minutes: Cook, the fish without moving it for 2 to 3 minutes. The bottom should look golden and crisp when it’s time to turn it over. It should also come out of the pan pretty quickly with a fish spatula. (Not a problem in a non-stick skillet!)

Season the other side of the fish: While the first side is cooking, sprinkle salt and pepper on the other side.

Flip the fish and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes:  Flip the fish over and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes on the other side. When it’s done, the fish will be clear all the way through and be easy to break apart.

Serve immediately: Serve the fish while it’s still hot from the pan, and add any other toppings you want. After being cooked, white fish is often very flaky, and don’t worry if it falls apart a bit as you serve it.


  • 6- to 8-ounce white fish fillets per person, such as tilapia, cod, bass, grouper, haddock, catfish, or snapper
  • Pepper
  • Two tablespoons
  • olive oil or butter
  • To serve lemon wedges, minced herbs, capers, etc.


Cast-iron, nonstick, or stainless steel skillet
Fish spatula or another thin spatula for flipping

How to Fry Fish without Oil?

Fry fish in oil to make it crispy and creamy, and moist on the inside. However, this cooking method gives you a lot of saturated fat and cholesterol. By frying fish in the oven without oil, you can keep the fat calories down and make fried fish a regular part of a healthy diet instead of a guilty pleasure you only eat once in a while. Use thick fillets and a crisp breading to make crunchy oven-fried fish fillets that won’t make you miss the oil.

  • Buy fillets of white fish that are at least 1 inch thick. Cod or haddock are the best choices, but pollock, red snapper, and orange roughy can also be used. If it’s frozen, put it in the fridge overnight to thaw. Each fillet should be cut into four even pieces.
  • Get ready to bread the fish. You can choose either cornflakes or white bread crumbs. If you want to use them, put the cornflakes in a plastic bag with a zip-top and crush them well. To make bread crumbs, put the bread, some melted butter, salt, and pepper in a blender or food processor and pulse until the bread is broken into small pieces. Bake the crumbs on a baking sheet with a rim at 350°F until they are brown, then let them cool. Put the breading in a shallow dish or pie plate.
  • Put flour in a pie plate or shallow bowl. For every pound of fish you will be baking in the oven; you will need about a quarter cup of flour. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • In a third pie plate, whisk eggs. For every pound of fish, use two eggs. Add seasonings like cayenne, paprika, or pepper, if desired.
  • Put a wire rack on a baking sheet or roasting pan with a rim. Spray the whole thing with cooking spray that won’t stick. Set the oven’s temperature to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Use a paper towel to dry each fish fillet. First, dredge the fillets in flour, dip them in the egg mixture, and then coat them with bread crumbs or crushed cornflakes. Put on the wire rack that has been set up.
  • Bake for 18 to 25 minutes until the breading is golden brown and a cooking thermometer inserted into the thickest fillet reads 140 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • With a spatula, take the fillets off and serve them right away.

Oils for Frying and Deep-Frying Fish

The amount of oil used to cook the fish determines whether it is deep-fried or just fried. While deep-frying involves immersing the entire piece of fish in hot oil, frying involves cooking in enough oil so that half of the fish is covered in oil while it cooks.

Higher smoking point oils are the best shallow and deep frying fish options. For foods where you don’t necessarily want the oil to impart much taste, neutral oils like vegetables and canola are suitable for frying. With one of the highest smoke points, peanut oil is excellent for frying Asian food and other foods where its flavor will enhance the final product. If it is light or refined, olive oil can be used to fry fish, which goes particularly well with Mediterranean-inspired dishes. You can also fry with butter or lard if you’d like.

Use the same oil you would pay for a standard fry when deep-frying or completely drowning fish or seafood in oil. Canola oil is a wise choice because it is affordable, has a neutral flavor, and is ideal for high-volume applications. You can deep-fry with refined olive oil (not extra-virgin), but bear in mind that it won’t make the food healthier.


It is also a good source of calcium and phosphorus. As part of a healthy diet, the American Heart Association says you should eat fish at least twice a week. Fried fish was linked to a higher risk of heart failure that gets worse over time. The study says this could be because people who ate fried fish often also had other lousy risk factors. The study doesn’t show that fried fish is dangerous to eat, and researchers say that doing so would be too soon.