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Crispy Lemon Baked Fish

Crispy lemon baked fish topped with flavorful citrus and herb-seasoned breadcrumbs. An incredibly easy and healthy weeknight dinner to cook in the oven!

baked fish on baking sheet

Easy Oven Baked Fish

I love the classic fish and chip combo, but sometimes I want a healthier version without all of the frying. With this baked fish recipe, you still get the crispy texture and a ton of fresh flavor with less calories and fat. It’s one of my favorite healthy dinner ideas.

This baked fish is so easy to make and is the perfect weeknight meal that comes together in just 30 minutes. The end result is tender and flaky white fish with a crisp and golden exterior that’s filled to the brim with flavor.

Whip up a batch of homemade fries to curb that fish and chip craving and serve with a creamy tartar sauce or garlic aioli. It’s a healthier restaurant worthy meal that’s made in the comfort of your own home!

fish on the baking sheet

Best Type of Fish to Use

This recipe calls for white fish. Since there are many different kinds, I recommend using 4 medium-sized fillets, or 8 small fillets (without the skin). White fish is not a type of fish – it just means it’s mildly flavored, firm or flakey and is usually not very expensive.

The most popular kinds that you’ll find at your bulk market or the grocery store are tilapia, cod, bass, haddock, catfish and snapper. They are all great for frying, sautéing, chowders and baking.

Crispy Breadcrumb Coating

The trick when making this crispy oven baked fish is to use coarse breadcrumbs (such as panko) and finish the fillets under the broiler. This gives it the texture of fried fish, but way healthier and lighter!

The fresh parsley, dill and lemon zest included in the breadcrumb mixture give the fish that perfect extra boost of flavor. You could always use dried herbs if that’s all you have on hand, but fresh is definitely my preference!

No breadcrumbs in the pantry? Learn how to make breadcrumbs from scratch using leftover homemade bread and a drizzle of olive oil. They are so easy to whip up that you may never buy the store-bought container ever again!

baked fish on sheet pan

How to Bake Fish in the Oven

  1. Coat fish with breadcrumbs. In a medium bowl, mix together the breadcrumbs, lemon zest, parsley, dill, salt and olive oil. Place the fish on a parchment lined baking sheet, then sprinkle the breadcrumbs on top. Drizzle with lemon juice and season with extra salt.
  2. Bake in oven. Place the fish on the lower rack in your oven and cook at 400ºF for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and turn on the broiler.
  3. Broil until crisp. Place the fish under the broiler for about 1 minute, or until the breadcrumbs are golden and crispy. It won’t take long for them to crisp up, so make sure to keep an eye on them so they don’t burn!

Flavor Variations

Feel free to switch up the herbs if preferred. Replace the dill and parsley with Italian seasoning or keep it simple with some garlic powder and a sprinkle of lemon pepper. You can even spread some garlic herb butter over the tops before adding the breadcrumb coating. If you like spice, add a dash of paprika!

Favorite Sides for Serving

To keep it healthy, I love serving my baked fish with oven roasted vegetables. You can even cook them at the same time in the oven, which makes it super easy!

baked fish with lemon and tarter sauce

More Easy-to-Make Dinners:

baked fish on baking sheet

Crispy Lemon Baked Fish

5 from 4 votes
Crispy lemon baked fish topped with flavorful citrus and herb-seasoned breadcrumbs. An incredibly easy and healthy weeknight dinner to cook in the oven!
Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Servings: 4

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1-2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh dill
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 medium white fish fillets, skinless (or 8 small firm white fish fillets)
  • 2-3 Tablespoons lemon juice , plus lemon wedges for serving

Optional: Tartar sauce for serving

    Instructions

    • Heat oven to 400ºF and center two racks. Mix together the breadcrumbs, olive oil, lemon zest, parsley, dill and salt. Line a baking sheet with parchment and place fish on the baking sheet. Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture on top of the fish, then drizzle with lemon juice and season with extra salt.
      parsley and breadcrumbs in a bowl
    • Add the fish to the lower rack in the oven. Cook about 15 minutes total. Remove from oven and heat broiler.
      fish with parsley and breadcrumbs on top
    • Place fish under broiler about 1 minute until breadcrumbs are browned and crisp. Serve with extra lemon wedges and tartar sauce on the side if preferred.
      baked fish on sheet pan

    Video


    Notes

    I love serving the fish with this easy homemade tartar sauce
    • 1/2 cup mayo
    • 1/3 cup finely chopped dill pickle
    • 1 Tablespoon chopped dill or parsley
    • 1-3 teaspoons fresh lemon juice, to taste
    • 1 teaspoon sugar
    • Salt and pepper, to taste 
    Combine the ingredients in a small bowl. Mix until combined.

    Calories: 258kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 36g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 85mg | Sodium: 784mg | Potassium: 595mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 640IU | Vitamin C: 14mg | Calcium: 57mg | Iron: 2mg
    Course: Main Course
    Cuisine: American
    Author: Jamielyn Nye

    Recipe contributed by TaraTeaspoon for I Heart Naptime.

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