I've had 40-something trips around the sun, and I haven't met a crispy baked cod recipe that I don't like. This easy Panko Baked Cod is addictively crunchy, well seasoned with fresh thyme, and brings a punch of unique flavor from the buttermilk and Dijon marinade.
If fried chicken turned pescatarian, this is what it would look like.
This crispy baked cod is one of those fish recipes you make for people who still say they don't like fish. It really is something the whole family can enjoy along with tartar sauce (or my homemade salmon patty sauce) as the perfect creamy sauce to accompany the fish.
What you need to make this dish:
Full ingredient list and measurements included in the printable recipe card below.
Step-by-step instructions :
1. Marinade fish
Combine Dijon mustard, buttermilk, lemon juice and 1 teaspoon salt in shallow dish. Stir until well combined. Add in fish filets, flipping to ensure coverage on all sides. Leave fish to marinate for 30 minutes.
2. Make crunchy topping
Heat olive oil in skillet over medium heat to medium-low heat. Combine panko crumbs with minced garlic, pepper and remaining ½ teaspoon of salt in the olive oil.
Cook gently for 5-6 minutes, stirring often, until the garlic is fragrant and the crumbs have turned lightly golden brown. Remove from heat. Add lemon zest, parsley and thyme. Set crunchy panko topping aside.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Sprinkle top of the fish lightly with a pinch of salt.
3. Bread and bake cod
Remove fish fillets from marinade and arrange on the prepared baking sheet, leaving some marinade on the fish.
Divide the seasoned panko mixture over the top of each cod fillet. Place pan in preheated oven and bake fish in the preheated oven for 10-14 minutes, depending on thickness of filets, until the fish flakes easily.
4. Serve and enjoy
Cooking time can vary, but a good rule of thumb is 10 minutes for each 1-inch thickness of fish. Serve immediately with a squeeze of lemon juice.
The beauty of this recipe is its adaptability. Any flaky white fish you find at your local grocery store will work, including grouper, striped bass, tilapia, hake, haddock, pollack, even cod loins, if you can find them.
Absolutely. I most often make it with any white fish fillets in my freezer or on sale that week. Just thaw in the refrigerator overnight or in a bowl of very cold water, and blot dry with paper towels before marinating.
French green beans and rice would be a perfect side dish these flaky fish fillets with panko crust. Napa cabbage slaw and French fries would round out a grown-up fish and chips meal. And of course, plain rice or rice pilaf and steamed vegetables would be a great side dish and make this a proper healthy meal.
Regular breadcrumbs would do the trick, but will produce a less crunchy topping. Homemade wheat or white bread crumbs that have been well dried and then browned in olive oil (per recipe) would probably make for a crisper crust.
Certainly - start with 1 teaspoon garlic powder and once the panko breadcrumb mixture has been browned, taste and adjust seasoning.
To store leftovers, place in airtight container in refrigerator for 2-3 days. To reheat, cook on baking sheet in oven at 350 for 6-7 minutes, or until just heated through.