Field To Table | Healthy Recipes

Incredibly Easy Fried Perch

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This is an incredibly easy recipe for fried perch. It takes less than 10 minutes to have these on the plate and they couldn’t be more delicious!

Perch garnished with chopped parsley.Pin

What are yellow perch?

These yellow perch, also known as Jack perch, American perch and a few others are incredibly beautiful. They are a mild flavored fish that are native to the Eastern regions of the US and Canada, to the Mississippi River. The species is plentiful in the Great Lakes and possibly our favorite native fish.

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How to fish for them

Most regions have limits on how many fish can be taken per person. In NY the limit is 50 per licensed fisher.

Small perch are quite easy to catch. They will bite on pieces of worm, shrimp, and spikes off of docks and in deeper water. And with crankbaits, swim baits or jigs.

They travel in schools and once you have found a school of perch, it can be easy to catch your limit in a short amount of time.

Larger perch, which are ideally the ones you want to keep, can be tricky to locate at certain times of the year. They are best fished for in the early spring and late fall, when they will move into more shallow water to feed heavily in preparation for winter.

During spawn and pre spawn conditions, they can be found in 3-50 feet (1-15 meters) of water. Post spawn fish tend to move to deeper water and are therefore can be hard to locate.

Fried perch on vintage metal plate.Pin

How to prepare them

Perch can be fileted or scaled and dressed (innards removed). We have a different way of preparing perch filets that produces filets with 1/3 more meat than traditional fileting. See our YouTube video for How to Filet Yellow Perch to learn the secret!

What you need to make these fried perch

  • fileted freshwater perch – you can substitute ocean perch fillets if you don’t have access to freshwater perch.
  • butter or olive oil
  • flour or corn meal, you can use bread crumbs or or panko but we find it overpowers the mild tasting fish. If you use bread crumbs, you will need to dip them in an egg wash first so that the bread crumbs will stick.
  • salt
  • lemon pepper
  • celery seed
Fried perch ingredients. See recipe below for details.Pin

How to make them

  • Mix spices with flour on a dish or in a shallow bowl.
  • Dry perch well with paper towels.
  • Dredge fish fillets in flour mixture.
  • Dredge second side and shake off excess.
  • Melt butter or olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat, preferably cast iron. Add filets. Don’t crowd the pan.
  • Once they are golden brown, carefully flip perch to second side.
  • Flip and brown that side. When it is browned and done, the fish flakes easily with fork. Serve immediately.
Pan fried perch step by step process photographs. See recipe below for details.Pin

What sides to serve with them

Tray of fried perch on a burlap background.Pin

Pro tips for your success

  • Filet fish well so you reduce the risk of choking on bones.
  • After fileting, soak fish in very cold water with a bit of salt for about 5 minutes.
  • Fresh perch freezes very well. With smaller fish, we usually add a bit of water to the bag to reduce the risk of freezer burn.
  • Fish will freeze for at least six months.
  • Leftovers will last 2-3 days refrigerated.
  • We don’t usually reheat leftovers. We eat them cold but you can reheat in the microwave for just a minute or so, so that they don’t overcook and get tough.
  • When frying the perch, use a very hot pan and brown them for only about 2-3 minutes per side, depending on the size of the fish.
  • Serve with lemon wedges, cocktail sauce, tartar sauce or hot sauce.

More fish recipes you may like

Tools I use

Fried perch on gray plate topped with chopped parsley.Pin

This fried perch is delicious served with the sides above. It also makes fantastic fish tacos and fish sandwiches.

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I hope you enjoyed the recipe today.

Enjoy. And have fun cooking!

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Close up of perch on vintage metal plate.Pin

Fried Perch

This is an incredibly easy recipe for fried perch. It takes less than 10 minutes to have these on the plate and they couldn’t be more delicious!
See Step by Step Photos Above!Most of our recipes have step by step photos and videos! Also helpful tips so that you can make it perfectly the first time and every time! Scroll up to see them!
5 from 9 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: entree, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 135kcal
Author: Beth Neels
Cost: $1

Ingredients

  • 1 pound fresh perch
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon lemon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon celery seed
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Mix spices with flour.
    ¼ cup flour, 1 teaspoon lemon pepper, 1 teaspoon celery seed, ½ teaspoon salt
  • Dry perch fillets well with paper towel.
    1 pound fresh perch
  • Dredge in flour mixture.
  • Dredge second side and shake off excess.
  • Melt butter in cast iron pan. Add filets. Don't crowd the pan.
  • Once browned, carefully flip perch to second side.
  • Flip and brown that side. Sprinkle with lemon juice and a freshly cracked black pepper. Serve immediately.
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Video

Notes

  • Filet fish well so you reduce the risk of choking on bones.
  • After fileting, soak fish in very cold water with a bit of salt for about 5 minutes.
  • Fresh perch freezes very well. With smaller fish, I usually add a bit of water to the bag to reduce the risk of freezer burn.
  • Fish will freeze for at least six months.
  • Leftovers will last 2-3 days refrigerated.
  • I don’t usually reheat leftovers. We eat them cold but you can reheat in the microwave for just a minute or so, so that they don’t overcook and get tough.
  • When frying the perch, use a very hot pan and brown them for only about 2-3 minutes per side, depending on the size of the fish.
  • Serve with lemon wedges, tartar sauce, cocktail sauce or hot sauce.
  • Many fresh fish will work with this easy fish fry recipe, including; white perch, crappie, sunfish, catfish, flounder and the like.
  • Add a pinch of cayenne pepper to the flour mixture for an added kick.
 

Nutrition

Calories: 135kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 102mg | Sodium: 362mg | Potassium: 327mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 37IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 103mg | Iron: 2mg
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16 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I love seafood for the weekend and this is just what I want! Love that’s it’s so doable and tasty!

  2. 5 stars
    Oh my gosh I haven’t had this since I was a child. Brings back fun memories. Such a simple recipe, I’m going to have to add it into my rotation.

  3. 5 stars
    We love perch but I have always battered them. This is such a better way to cook them. You can actually taste the fish and it makes much less mess. Thanks!

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