Baked cod with Panko breadcrumbs is an easy and flavorful dish. Fresh cod is covered with crispy Panko breadcrumbs and baked to the perfection.
I really enjoy seafood, and cod is among my first choices. Seafood is kind of like a blank slate. You can add a variety of seasonings and breadcrumbs, or toppings to enhance the flavor.
I have tested two methods of crusting the cod with Panko breadcrumbs. I will share both of them so you can try them out and discover and share what is your favorite.
What Are Panko Breadcrumbs?
Panko breadcrumbs are breadcrumbs made from crustless white bread that is processed into flakes and then dried.
These breadcrumbs have a dryer and flakier consistency than regular breadcrumbs, and as a result, they absorb less oil.
You can try the plain breadcrumbs, but Panko breadcrumbs produce lighter and crunchier tasting fried food.
Can I Substitute Panko Breadcrumbs?
I suggest you use Panko breadcrumbs because of their crispiness, as nothing compares to these. Still, if you are out of breadcrumbs, there are a few great substitues out there.
Try toasted shredded bread, cracker crumbs, crushed pretzels, matzo meal, or even plain breadcrumbs.
I love Panko breadcrumbs because they are lower in calories, fat, and sodium than regular breadcrumbs. They are a healthier alternative to classic bread crumbs when preparing your dish.
Besides this, their flakes are larger and the final result is a super crunchy coated piece of meat.
Choosing The Perfect Cod
Whether you are trying to follow a Mediterranean diet or just want to eat healthier, fish is something you should have on your plate at least once a week.
However, after discussing it with my friends, I discovered that many of them have had a bad experience with fish or are just afraid of making it.
May believe they will stink up their kitchen or undercook the fish, and these are just some of the reasons why people avoid it.
When you buy fresh fish, you can forget about a stinky kitchen. Fresh fish is the key. I personally even avoid the frozen fish and always go with fresh.
There is nothing bad about frozen fish if you live in a landlocked area, but I personally believe all that ice and deep-freezing really kills the flavor.
When buying cod, which is mostly sold as a fillet, there are few things to consider:
- Fresh fish fillets are firm and do not fall apart. Stay away from anything that is not firm.
- Choose fish that does not have any strong odors.
- Fresh fish should not have any seeping fluids.
- When it comes to the color, fresh cod fillets are translucent to light pink in color.
Even when buying frozen fish fillets, I always go with reputable brands. This always ensure the best possible quality.
Another thing with frozen fillets is that, once thawed, they kind of end up soaked in liquid. So, once you thaw them, make sure you leave then on kitchen paper towels for at least 30 minutes before use and afterwards pat them dry.
My Two Crusting Methods
As mentioned earlier, I make Panko crusted cod in two ways. One is by using classic breading, which involves coating the fish with flour, dipping it into eggs, and finally coating with Panko breadcrumbs.
Fish made this way will be a bit dryer than the second method. I find this method very tasty and I love that extra crunch it provides.
The second method involves combining Panko breadcrumbs with melted butter and some herbs. I always mix 1 cup of Panko breadcrumbs with 1/3 cup of melted butter.
Pat the cod fillets dry, season them with salt and pepper, and smear the Panko mixture over the fish. This method will give you a juicier fish, but it will not be crusted all the way, nor on all sides.
Still, you can try this method out. It is very easy to make and allows you to enrich your cod fillet with different herbs and seasonings, like basil, rosemary, garlic, etc.
Both methods are amazing and work all the time. It is up to you to choose your ideal one.
Panko crusted Cod
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 12 minutes
For the cod:
- 1 lb cod fillets, skinless, boneless
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
For the breading:
- 3 eggs
- 1 ½ cup Panko breadcrumbs
- ½ cup flour
- Salt, to taste
1. Pat the cod fillets dry.
2. Preheat oven to 350°F and line baking sheet with parchment paper.
3. Place flour in a shallow dish and sprinkle with some salt.
4. Beat eggs in a bowl, and place Panko breadcrumbs in a third shallow bowl.
5. You can leave the cold fillet as it is, or cut it into pieces. I find it is easier to work with the pieces.
6. Season the cod with salt, pepper, and lemon juice.
7. Coat the cod fillets with flour and dip into the eggs. Shake off any excess.
8. Coat the fillets with the Panko breadcrumbs.
9. Place on a prepared baking sheet.
10. Bake the cod fillets for 12-14 minutes.
11. Serve baked cod with blanched kale, spinach, or asparagus. Enjoy!