Pretzel Fish with Honey Mustard Sauce
Yield: 4 servings (easy to adjust to desired number of servings)
While this recipe is the way I got my two boys to enjoy fish when they were little, it's always a hit with the adults, too!


For the fish

  • 4 (5-6 ounce) fish fillets (a flaky white fish like flounder, cod or tilapia are all good choices)
  • 4 ounces pretzels (gluten-free pretzels may be used)*
  • Honey Mustard Sauce (recipe follows)
  • Olive oil spray

For the sauce

  • 1/4 cup (52g) mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon (15g) Dijon mustard
  • 2-3 teaspoons (14-21g) honey
  • Optional: a pinch (1/16 teaspoon) cayenne pepper or 1 teaspoon sriracha (or more or less to taste)

Instructions

  1. For the honey mustard sauce: In a small bowl, mix together the sauce ingredients, starting with the lower amount of honey and adjusting up if you prefer a slightly sweeter sauce. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Make-ahead tip: This may be done a day or two in advance.

    For the fish: In a sturdy bag (an empty bag from a cereal box is a great option to a zip-top bag, which also works!) crush the pretzels with a rolling pin or soup can. Alternatively, you may grind them in a food processor or mini chopper. You want fairly fine crumbs, although some texture is good. Make-ahead tip: This step may also be completed in advance.

    When ready to eat, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F, and lightly grease a baking sheet or line it with parchment paper for easy cleanup. Place the crumbs on a dinner or pie plate, and remove about 2 tablespoons of the honey mustard mixture to a separate small bowl, reserving the rest for use as a sauce when serving. (If you need a touch more to baste the fish, you can transfer it to the small bowl as needed, but this will allow you to avoid wasting the leftover amount that has come into contact with the raw fish.)

    Baste both sides of the fish fillets with a thin layer of the sauce. Press both sides of the fish firmly into the crumbs, and then transfer to the prepared baking sheet. Spray the tops of the fish lightly with olive oil (I have forgotten this step on occasion and the fish still turns out well!), and then bake the fish for approximately 8-12 minutes or until the fish is just barely opaque in the thickest part and flakes easily.

    Note: Depending on the thickness of the fillets, more or less time may be required. Check a few minutes early and extend cooking time, if necessary. It’s fine to cut into the fish to check for doneness, returning to the oven as needed.

    Serve with the reserved honey mustard sauce.


Notes

*Feel free to substitute your favorite gluten-free pretzel. I’ve used Utz’s pretzel sticks as well as whole grain, sea salt pretzel sticks by Mary’s Gone Crackers. The latter option was rather hard to crush but both tastes quite good.

*The actual cup measurement of pretzels varies based on what shape pretzel is used. If you don’t have a kitchen scale, you can estimate the amount based on total size of package – i.e., roughly half of an 8-ounce bag. Any unused crumbs can be stored in an airtight container for several months.

 


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