Entree

Largemouth Bass Recipe

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If you want to try something new for dinner, this largemouth bass recipe could be just what you need. It’s simple, tasty, and perfect for a family meal or to impress your friends.

Two pieces of fried bass on a black plate with side dishes.Pin
Largemouth Bass. Photo Credit: Binky’s Culinary Carnival.

What are Largemouth Bass

The largemouth bass is a popular freshwater fish known for its striking appearance and spirited behavior. It has a large mouth extending past its eyes, a defining feature.

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The body is generally green with a shimmering pattern that helps it blend into its aquatic surroundings, ranging from murky lakes to flowing rivers. Adults can grow quite large, with some reaching over 20 inches in length and weighing more than 15 pounds. However, sizes vary depending on their habitat.

They are predators, feeding on smaller fish, insects, and crustaceans. Anglers admire largemouth bass for their fight when hooked, making them a favorite target for sport fishing. This fish is not just a challenge to catch but also plays a vital role in its ecosystem, balancing populations of other species.

Bass is a firm textured fish that fishermen and food connoisseurs alike prize. It is plentiful in most freshwater lakes and ponds in the United States. Although they taste delicious, most times, they are caught and released. Much of the reason is that they are so fun to catch and become quite large.

There are several popular ways to prepare it. Pan-fried, deep-fried, and grilled are common, but they can be hog-gutted (removing the innards), scaled, and baked or grilled.

Why Would You Want to Make it?

  1. It’s a great way to add variety to meals.
  2. Bass is rich in protein and healthy fats.
  3. Suitable for those following a healthy or balanced diet.
  4. Perfect for a special occasion or a casual dinner.
  5. It supports sustainability and eating locally and seasonally if the catch is local.

What you need

  • Bass filets: Be sure to remove all the bones by running your fingers along the side of the filet to feel for bones. If you find any, remove them with needle-nose plyers.
  • Flour: All-purpose flour is fine.
  • Cornmeal: This gives the bass its signature crunchy texture.
  • Salt: We use celery salt, which adds a great flavor to fish. You can use sea salt or kosher salt if you don’t have celery salt. But add a half teaspoon of celery seed to the mix.
  • Garlic: Use garlic powder or granulated garlic.
  • Pepper: We use cracked black pepper and lemon pepper for a different flavor.
  • Fat for Frying: Use butter or olive oil to fry the filets
  • Lemon: Serve the fish with lemon wedges or sprinkle them with lemon juice before serving.
  • Optional: Add optional herbs and spices to the breading. Paprika, cayenne powder, oregano, and thyme complement the fish well.

How to Make it

Step One:

Dry the filets well with paper towels.

Fish filets on paper towel to dry.Pin
Dry filets with paper towels. Photo Credit: Binky’s Culinary Carnival.

Step Two:

Dredge the fish in the flour mixture on both sides. Shake off the excess flour.

Dredge the fish in the flour mixture.Pin
Dredge fish. Photo Credit: Binky’s Culinary Carnival.

Step Three:

Pan-fry the fish in a non-stick or cast iron skillet in butter or olive oil until golden brown. Flip and fry the other side.

Fish filets browning in skillet.Pin
Pan-fry fish until golden and crispy. Photo Credit: Binky’s Culinary Carnival.

Batter fried

Bass is also delicious, batter-fried. To batter fry the fish, make your batter. We have a recipe for crispy fish batter.

Dip the filets in the batter. Let the excess batter drip off. Heat peanut oil in a cast iron skillet until very hot. If you don’t have peanut oil, use vegetable oil. To test the oil to see if it is hot enough, drop a few drops of the batter in the oil; if it starts cooking and bubbling immediately, it is hot enough.

Fry until golden brown, flip carefully, and fry the other side until golden brown.

Drain the fish on paper towels. You can also drain them on a cooling rack placed over a rimmed baking sheet with the paper towels underneath. They will stay warm with this setup in a 200°F oven until you fry all the filets.

How to Store Leftovers

Storage: You can store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.

Freezing: Freezing cooked filets is not recommended.

Reheating: Warm leftover filets in the air fryer for about three minutes at 350°F for 3-4 minutes. You can also warm them in the oven for about fifteen minutes. Wrap them in aluminum foil before placing them in the oven. They will heat faster.

What to do With Leftovers

  • Fish Sandwich: Make fish sandwiches on bread or rolls. Top with tartar sauce or cocktail sauce and serve on a bed of shredded lettuce.
  • Salads: Serve the fish with a fresh garden salad for a healthy lunch or dinner. There is no reason to reheat them on a salad, but you can if you choose.
  • Tacos: Leftover bass makes delicious fish tacos. For a delightful dinner, serve them on corn or flour tortillas with spicy coleslaw or pineapple coleslaw.
  • Pasta: Make a creamy pasta dish with sautéed onions and garlic. Add a splash of white wine and let it reduce a bit. Flake in the leftover bass and finish it with heavy cream and a sprinkling of freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

Suggested Side Dishes for Bass

  • Rice: Make a quick rice flavored with chicken or seafood stock.
  • Fried Potatoes: Make some fried potatoes or French fries.
  • Green Salad: A green salad with a fruity dressing, like rhubarb vinaigrette, is great with these fish.
  • Vegetables: Choose your favorite vegetable, like corn on the cob, steamed broccoli, or glazed carrots.
  • For Tacos: Refried beans or Mexican rice are great.
  • For Fish Sandwich: Serve them with spicy coleslaw and tartar sauce for fish sandwiches.

More Fish Recipes

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I hope you enjoyed the recipe today.

Enjoy. And have fun cooking!

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Largemouth Bass Recipe

If you want to try something new for dinner, this largemouth bass recipe could be just what you need. It's simple to make and really tasty, perfect for a family meal or impressing your friends.
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!
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Course: entree, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes
Total Time: 13 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 154kcal
Author: Beth Neels
Cost: $2

Ingredients

  • 1 Pound largemouth fillets
  • 6 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tablespoons cornmeal
  • 2 Teaspoons coarse kosher salt or sea salt
  • ½ Teaspoons celery seed
  • 1 Teaspoons cracked black pepper
  • 1 fresh lemons
  • 2 Teaspoons butter or olive oil

Instructions

  • Rinse fish fillets under cold water. Dry well with paper towel.
    1 Pound largemouth fillets
  • Mix flour, cornmeal, salt, celery seed, pepper in a medium bowl well.
    6 Tablespoons all-purpose flour, 2 Teaspoons coarse kosher salt or sea salt, ½ Teaspoons celery seed, 1 Teaspoons cracked black pepper, 2 Tablespoons cornmeal
  • Dredge fillets in the flour mixture. Shake off excess. (If the fillets don't seem to be holding enough flour, make a egg wash with one egg whisked with a tablespoon of water first. Dip the fillets in the egg and then the flour.)
  • Add butter or olive oil to a heavy bottom skillet. Heat over medium high heat.
    2 Teaspoons butter or olive oil
  • Add fillets a few at a time and sauté them until slightly browned on the first side. This should only take a couple minutes.
  • Flip them with a small spatula and brown the second side. Remove them to a serving tray. Serve with lemon wedges.
    1 fresh lemons
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Notes

 
You can substitute lemon pepper seasoning blend for the pepper and lemon juice.
You can substitute celery salt seasoning blend for the salt and celery seed in the ingredients above.
How to serve them
  • We serve them for dinner with lemon wedges and any of the side dishes suggested below.
  • Make a fish sandwich with tartar sauce and a splash of hot sauce.
  • Make fish tacos, top with slaw or your favorite toppings like, lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, avocado, a squeeze of lime and salsa.
What sides to serve
  • rice
  • fried potatoes or French fries
  • green salad ( we like a fruity dressing like this rhubarb vinaigrette.
  • your favorite vegetables like, corn on the cob, green beans, carrots or broccoli
  • beans or Mexican rice if you make tacos
  • chips or French fries for fish sandwiches

Nutrition

Calories: 154kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 102mg | Sodium: 1234mg | Potassium: 365mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 43IU | Vitamin C: 16mg | Calcium: 107mg | Iron: 2mg
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Beth Neels

Author: Beth Neels

Title: Owner

Expertise: canning, game meat cooking, smoking

Bio:

Beth Neels is an entrepreneur, blogger, photographer, author, and recipe developer. She founded Binky’s Culinary Carnival in 2014, focusing on “Crafting delicious recipes with sustainable ingredients.” She has been featured in multiple online publications, including MSN, Reader’s Digest, Associated Press, and Parade.

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