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Oven-Baked Fish With Herbed Breadcrumbs Recipe

You get the crunch and richness of fried food without ruining the flavor—or nutrition.
Oven-Baked Fish With Herbed Breadcrumbs RecipeMitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Deep-frying is the ultimate equalizer: It takes any raw ingredient, regardless of how healthy it may be, and turns it into nutritional garbage. (Plus, have you ever noticed how fried food all tastes the same? Don’t believe us? Order the 1,650-calorie Admiral’s Feast at Red Lobster and see if you can tell the difference between one type of fried seafood and the next.) Fish is full of nutrients that are healthy and energizing and have a complex and exciting taste. So why drown them away in a greasy deep fryer? Here’s where our healthy fish with herbed breadcrumbs enters to save the day.  This oven-baked fish is still butter-laced, but with a breadcrumb topping that gives you the satisfying crunch and richness of deep fried food without ruining the inherent flavor—or nutrition—of the fish itself, plus it cuts the calories by more than half.

Nutrition: 320 calories, 11 g fat (4.5 g saturated), 390 mg sodium

Serves 4

You’ll Need

2 slices white bread or 1 English muffin, split
2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
4 halibut fillets or other flaky white fish such as cod or swordfish (4–6 oz each) (Thinner fillets like catfish and tilapia are likely to overcook before the breadcrumbs are toasted, but any thick white fish fillet will be perfect.)
Salt and black pepper to taste
2 Tbsp butter, softened

How to Make It

  1. Preheat the oven to 450°F.
  2. Place the bread, parsley, and thyme in a food processor and pulse until you have small but not superfine breadcrumbs. You want a bit of texture here.
  3. Lay the fish on a baking sheet and season all over with salt and pepper.
  4. Smear the tops with a thin layer of softened butter, then press the herbed breadcrumbs into the butter so that they adhere to the fish.
  5. Bake for about 20 minutes, until the fish is cooked through and flakes with gentle pressure from your finger.

Eat This Tip

If you need a gluten-free option for breadcrumbs, seek out a box of panko breadcrumbs at your local grocery store (Ian’s is a trusted brand). You’ll still enjoy the crunch, but without the gluten.

This recipe (and hundreds more!) came from one of our Cook This, Not That! books. For more easy cooking ideas, you can also buy the book!

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