Sarasota's Pan Fried Catfish

Prep Time
Cook Time
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"This, I know isn't traditional; but, it is what I enjoy. It is easy and quick to prepare. Catfish is a firm; yet, mild and flaky fish - and, very easy to work with. I soak mine for a few minutes in hot sauce and buttermilk to give it a little 'tang;' then, into the flour and corn meal seasoning mix. That's it - pan fried until golden brown. Now, I love to serve this with slaw and buttered parsley potatoes; but, feel free to serve with your favorites. Collards, grits, black eyed peas, red beans and rice; mac and cheese, etc.; there all good. Prep time does not include the time the fish marinates."

Original is 4 servings
  • Finish and garnish:


  • Serving Size: 1 (259.3 g)
  • Calories 329.8
  • Total Fat - 7.8 g
  • Saturated Fat - 2.8 g
  • Cholesterol - 75.8 mg
  • Sodium - 198.7 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate - 39.4 g
  • Dietary Fiber - 4.3 g
  • Sugars - 4.8 g
  • Protein - 26.6 g
  • Calcium - 147.8 mg
  • Iron - 2.6 mg
  • Vitamin C - 1.3 mg
  • Thiamin - 0.5 mg

Step by Step Method

Step 1

Marinade ... Add the buttermilk and hot sauce to a 9x9 or any flat baking dish and mix to combine. I prefer to use a non-reactive dish (glass). Add the catfish, and flip it over a few times to make sure the fish is coated on both sides. Let the fish marinade 15-30 minutes, but no longer.

Step 2

Breading ... Add the corn meal, flour, and cajun seasoning to a pie plate, and mix to combine. I start out with 3/4 cup of each (corn meal and flour) and 1 1/2 tablespoons of the seasoning; but, it all depends on the size of the catfish fillets. If you have 4 very large fillets, you will probably need to use 1 cup of each, and the full 2 tablespoons of the seasoning.

Step 3

Remove the catfish from the marinade and shake off any excess. Then add the fillets to the breading mixture, making sure to press the fish into the mixture, so it is coated well on both sides. Set to the side on a plate to rest 5 minutes before frying.

Step 4

Pan Saute ... I like to use canola or vegetable oil for this; olive oil has too much flavor for the delicate fish. The size of the pan will affect how much oil you use. I like about a 1/4" coating on the bottom of the pan, and I do prefer a nonstick pan for this. Cast iron would also work very well if you have one. Bring to medium high heat and add the fillets. Cook 4-5 minutes until golden brown on the first side; then flip, and cook another 3-4 minutes until golden brown. The thickness of the fish can change the cooking time. Transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel to drain. Immediately season with a pinch of kosher salt and a squeeze of fresh lemon.

Step 5

Serve and ENJOY! ... Plate with your favorite southern favorites; and lemon wedges for those who like to add a bit more lemon.


No special items needed.

3 Reviews


We loved the coating! Nice and crunchy and lots of pazazz from the seasoning. Nice spicy fish all the way!


review by:
(26 Nov 2014)


This is some great tasting fish right here! Loved the spiciness from the 1 1/2 tablespoons of Cajun seasoning. That was plenty for us!


review by:
(26 Sep 2013)


This fish was fabulous! I did use the 2 tablespoons of hot sauce, great recipe as all your recipes are, thank you KChurchill5, keep all those great recipe and photos coming!


review by:
(10 Aug 2013)

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