Fish Sticks with Cilantro-Serrano Tartar Sauce

Commercial fish sticks are loaded with fillers and preservatives. Make your own, and you can avoid all that. I'll often double this recipe and freeze half, so I have healthy fish sticks on hand for Noemi for busy nights. Just heat frozen fish sticks in the oven at 400°F for about 15 minutes, or until cooked through.


Tartar Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, minced
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 serrano pepper, seeded and minced
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled, smashed and finely minced
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Fish Sticks

  • 1 cup low-fat buttermilk
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1-1/2 cups panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 pound halibut fillets (or other firm, white fish), cut across the grain into 1-inch strips
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil, divided

Remaining ingredient

  • lemon wedges


  • To prepare tartar sauce, combine first 4 ingredients with a pinch of salt and pepper.
  • To prepare fish sticks, whisk together buttermilk and egg in a shallow dish. Combine panko breadcrumbs, flour, salt, and pepper in zip-top bag.
  • Just before cooking, dip fish in milk mixture, and add to crumb bag. Shake well, pressing the crumbs into the fish.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. When oil is hot, add half the fish to the pan, leaving enough room between pieces for air to circulate. Cook 3 minutes on each side, or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork. Remove to a plate lined with paper towel. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon of oil, and cook remaining fish.
  • Serve with tartar sauce and lemon wedges.
Servings: 4
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Hey there ... I'm Lia Huber

Hey there ... I'm Lia Huber

My mission is to inspire and equip you to live a richer life through real food by becoming a more competent, confident home cook.

I’m the author of Nourished: A Memoir of Food, Faith, and Enduring Love, founder and CEO of Nourish Evolution, and the creator of Cook the Seasons, Home Cooking School, and the Real Food Reset, and I empower intentional women to cook in a way that brings them (and their families) joy, health, and ease.

Making the shift from processed food to real food doesn’t happen overnight. It’s an evolution that occurs over time, with effort, intention, and belief. And it will change the course of your life. Are you ready to take the first step? I’m so glad you’re here … and I’m honored to be with you on the journey to becoming nourished!


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