Crispy Fish Sandwich

by Rachel on May 12, 2010

[Disclaimer: It’s impossible to get through this recipe without getting “Give Me That Fillet O Fish” stuck in your head. My apologies.]

I’ve been all about my grill lately, but I’m always looking for ways to mix it up. The June issue of Food & Wine magazine brought it — tons and tons of great grill ideas. This recipe caught my eye. You grill the fish and then press it into toasted Panko.

Panko are Japanese breadcrumbs that I see in recipes all the time. I finally sucked it up and bought them and it was definitely a “Where you have been all my life?!” moment. They are crispier than regular breadcrumbs, which give a fried effect.

The result is the perfect summer dinner — one that’s very healthy to boot!

Ingredients (Serves Two)

Two tilapia fillets, about four ounces each

1/2 cup Panko

1/2 tbsp butter

1/2 tsp Old Bay seasoning (reduced sodium!)

1/2 tbsp butter melted

Salt and pepper to taste

Whole wheat buns, lettuce, tomato, and mayo

This is How We Do It

Melt half a tablespoon of butter over medium-low heat and add the breadcrumbs. Cook for about five minutes, stirring frequently, until golden brown. Then stir in the Old Bay.

Transfer the crumbs to a plate. (You can make these the night before; just store at room temperature in an airtight container.)

Meanwhile, season the fish with salt and pepper and fire up the grill. Grill for about 8 minutes, turning once.

While the fish is grilling, toast the buns and top with mayo, lettuce, and tomato. When the fish is done brush each fillet on both sides with the remaining half-tablespoon of melted butter and then press the fish into the toasted breadcrumbs, getting it nice and coated. Fish flakes when it’s cooked, so it might fall apart a bit, but just scoop up the breadcrumbs and coat it as best you can!

Put your sandwich together, crack open a beer and toast to a perfect summer dinner!


This sandwich was pretty much everything I never knew I always wanted. The buttery breadcrumbs were simply delicious and such a good way to take plain white fish up a notch. (Actually I plan on Panko-ing the shit out of everything now that I know how great it is.) Grilling is so easy that taking the extra step with the breadcrumbs means that this is still a quick and delicious dinner. I think this one is going to be in pretty frequent rotation this summer!

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Anna May 12, 2010 at 3:11 pm

This looks SO good. I don’t even know if I like fish sandwiches, but I think I might love one made like that.

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2 Rachel Marlena May 12, 2010 at 3:24 pm

Oh man, I was JUST about to tell you to start Pankoing the shit out of everything because it is amazing…but you beat me to it. This also works great when you want to make eggplant or chicken parmesan.

Super random aside but it fits in because fish=cooking=dishes. I know you are moving in about six weeks and I am moving in 2.5 but I came up with the most genius packing tip ever. You know how most people wrap all their kitchen goodies in newspaper? Wellll I wrapped mine in my clothes. All the dishes, etc. are clean and the clothes are clean as well so you lose the inky residue newspaper leaves on everything, save paper, AND save boxes so it is super eco-friendly. You can also wrap them in dish towels, regular towels, etc. Whooooo!

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3 shelby @ eatdrinkrun May 12, 2010 at 3:54 pm

I panko the shit out of everything too – isn’t it wonderful stuff? I’d probably eat a chunk of sod of it were breaded in panko! It’s really good sprinkled on top of stuff too – pasta, salad, stir fry – to give it a little crunch.

Definitely adding this recipe to my list!

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4 Manon May 12, 2010 at 4:21 pm

Oh thank you thank you THANK YOU…..I love tilapia, and have some that needs to be gobbled up and I was trying to figure out something to do with it that I hadn’t already done a bazillion times. Panko-ing the shit out of it will be its destiny! Nom nom nom…….
.-= Manon´s last blog ..Good Eats, Good for nothing Boys…. =-.

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5 amanda May 12, 2010 at 8:11 pm

Looks very delicious! Btw, I hate that song!!!

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6 Katie @ Katie's Healthy Discovery May 13, 2010 at 10:27 am

What a great idea. I love tilapia and I have never thought of making fish burgers. I’m definitely going to try this recipe soon!

Thanks :)

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