Five Simple Panfish Recipes

Panfish are fun to catch, and even more fun to eat. Here are fail-proof recipes for a panfish fry that will leave your dinner guests begging for seconds.
How to Clean a Panfish

Panfish are fun to catch, but can be a mess to clean. Here is a five-step, simple cleaning method for your slabs, bluegills, bass and more. Necessary tools include a fillet knife (electric or fixed-blade); a cutting board (plastic and glass reduce bacteria); a spoon or scaling tool (assuming that you're pan-dressing the fish); and some newspaper or a bucket for disposal of waste parts. Plus, we've included <a href="">five easy panfish recipes you should try.</a> Outdoor Life Online Editor


Broiled Bass with Hot Melted Butter

1 1/2 lb. white or yellow bass fillets
1 cup butter or margarine
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp. prepared mustard
2 tb. chili sauce
2 drops Tabasco sauce
4 tsp. lemon juice
2 tb. chopped parsley

Melt butter and stir in the last six ingredients. Pour enough of the butter mix into the bottom of a large glass baking dish and swirl around to coat the dish. Place the fish fillets in a single layer in the dish, then pour the remaining butter mix overtop. Broil, 4 to 6 inches beneath the heat source, for 10 minutes, or until the fish flakes easily with a fork.

Pan-Fried Crappie

2 lb. crappie
1 cup cornmeal
1 cup flour
3 eggs, beaten
Salt, pepper
Peanut oil

Directions: Mix corn meal and flour in a large zip-seal plastic bag. Salt and pepper each fillet, dip in egg, then shake in bag until coated with meal/flour mixture. Drop fillets in hot oil poured 1 to 2-inches deep in a cast-iron skillet. Cook fillets 1 to 2 minutes each or until they flake with a fork.

Bullhead Po’ Boys

6 fried bullhead fillets
1 cup ketchup
3 dashes hot sauce
1 tb. minced onion
1 tb. prepared mustard
6 large crusty rolls
Dill pickles

Directions: Cut rolls in half, lengthwise, scoop out centers and discard. Place rolls in oven until hot but not crispy. Combine ketchup, hot sauce, mustard, and onion. Spread hot rolls with this mixture, then top with fish, pickles, and the top half of the roll.

Panfish with Herbs

1 lb. panfish fillets
1 lemon
1 tsp. each chopped parsley, chives, and rosemary
1 tb. butter

Directions: Melt the butter and pour into a shallow baking dish. Arrange the fish fillets in the dish. Cut the lemon in half and squeeze about one tablespoon of lemon juice over the fillets. Sprinkle with the herbs. Slice the remaining lemon half into thin slices, and arrange the slices on top of the fish. Bake in a preheated 450-degree oven for 12 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork.

Perch Cakes

1 lb. fillets, cooked, flaked
1 egg, beaten
1 onion, minced
1 tb. lemon juice
1 tsp. parsley flakes
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/4 to 1/2 cup cornflake crumbs
2 tb. mustard
1/2 tsp. salt
Vegetable oil

Directions: Mix egg, onion, mustard, lemon juice, parsley, salt and pepper in a bowl; toss with flaked fish. Add enough cornflake crumbs to shape 4 to 6 fish cakes. Roll each cake in extra crumbs to coat the outside. Heat the oil in a skillet, and fry cakes until crisp and brown.