This spicy fish is full of flavor! Eat it plain with a dollop of the best tartar sauce, or stack it high on a bun for mind-blowing spicy fish sandwiches.
I can’t get enough of the amazing weather lately. I’ve been opening the doors and windows to let in as much fresh air as possible. You know what’s perfect to make when you’ve got a lot of fresh air going on?
I love to eat fish. I don’t mind preparing fish. But I don’t care for the way it makes my house smell afterward. I have the same trouble with broccoli and even bacon (both of which I love). But with plenty of fresh air around, I haven’t had to worry about any of that.
Instead, I get to enjoy recipes like these Spicy Fish Sandwiches–flavorful, slightly spicy fish topped with a dill tartar sauce that I just love. Michael loves to stack his high on a bun with lettuce, tomato, etc. I usually skip the bun and just top it with a dollop of sauce. My kids? Well, we’re still working on them. #babysteps
(Anyone have a secret weapon for making your house smell great after dinner?)
Notes on the Recipe:
Pick a fish. This method works well with nearly any white fish–catfish, halibut, cod, tilapia, etc. We used cod for this picture. We try to choose sustainably caught fish, and wild caught cod is usually the best price. Not sure what’s sustainable? You can check here.
To bun or not to bun? Grain free or paleo? Skip the bun. I often eat mine sans bun since gluten free buns just aren’t my fave. You can also go the lettuce-wrap route, I just prefer to dollop the tartar on top and eat it that way.
If you are looking for gluten free buns, our favorite brand is Canyon Bakehouse, but Udi’s makes a decent one, too.
Try the tartar. I’m not a big tartar sauce person. I usually find them bland or boring. I did a riff on my mom’s sauce (which I love), and I LOVE it. I love the brightness of the dill. It’s a great pairing with the spicy fish.
Like this recipe? You may also like:
- Cajun Shrimp Po’Boys
- (Healthy!) Crispy Halibut with Avocado Tomato Salad
- Vegetable and Sausage Gumbo
- Chicken Étouffée – Back to Her Roots
Any white fish will work here–we used cod for the photos, but the method works great with halibut, catfish, or tilapia. We try to use sustainably sourced fish.
For the spice mix:
- 2 tsp paprika
- 1 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 14–1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- salt, to taste
For the sandwiches:
- 4 White fish fillets (cod, halibut, tilapia, etc.)
- spice mix (see above)
- Lettuce, tomato, buns
- tartar sauce (see below)
- 1/4 c mayonnaise
- 2–3 Tbsp minced dill pickle
- 1 tsp dill pickle juice
- 1 tsp dijon mustard (I prefer grainy dijon)
- 1/2 tsp dried dill
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Make the spice mix by combing the paprika, thyme, pepper, garlic powder, cayenne, and a pinch of salt (I like to be generous here). Whisk or shake until well combined.
- Pat the fish fillets dry. Sprinkle both sides of the fish with the spice mixture. (You may well have leftovers)
- Heat a drizzle of oil, butter, or ghee in a skillet over medium heat. Working in batches (so you don’t over crowd the pan), cook the fish fillets for about 4-5 minutes on the first side. Flip and cook an additional 2-3 minutes on the other, or until the fish is opaque and cooked completely.
- (Your actual cook time will vary based on the thickness of your fish fillet. Thinner fish cook faster, thicker fish cook longer).
- While the fish is cooking, whisk together the tartar sauce ingredients until smooth. Taste and add salt and pepper to your liking.
- When al the fish is cooked, assemble your sandwiches–use buns, lettuce, tartar sauce, tomato, etc. Whatever you like!