How to Fry Panko-Crusted Catfish


Stop serving greasy, fried catfish. Update your usual cooking and breading methods for catfish to create a light and crunchy crust on the fish. The secret to a crisp coating on breaded catfish is to trade traditional cornmeal or bread crumbs and use Japanese bread crumbs called panko. These bread crumbs have a light, fluffy texture that cook to a crisp in a pan or in the oven. Bread your own catfish filets with panko before frying or purchase panko-breaded catfish fillets from the store.

Things You'll Need

  • Deep frying pan
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • Deep-fry thermometer
  • Spatula or tongs
  • Metal cooling rack
  • Baking sheet
  • Paper towels

Pan Frying

  • Heat the oil over medium-high heat in the frying pan until the top of the oil begins to shimmer. Using a deep-fry thermometer to measure, bring the oil to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

  • Lower one or two panko-crusted catfish pieces into the hot oil with a spatula or tongs.

  • Fry the catfish for two to three minutes on the first side or until the bottom turns golden brown.

  • Flip the fish and cook for another two to three minute or until golden on the second side.

  • Transfer the fish to a metal cooling rack to drain and cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Oven "Frying"

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

  • Arrange a metal cooling rack on top of a baking sheet.

  • Lay the panko-crusted catfish on the metal rack with at least 1/2 inch of space on all sides of the fish.

  • Bake the fish in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown.

  • Let the fish rest for five minutes before serving.

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