Fried fish with collard greens plated on woven table, as seen on The Juneteenth Menu
Recipe courtesy of Gina Capers-Willis

Southern Fried Fish

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 25 min
  • Active: 20 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
This extra crispy fried fish recipe is one of my go-tos whenever I have family and friends over for a visit and to share a good meal. You can also use this on shrimp, but here in Savannah, our favorite fish to fry are whiting and flounder. The batter is light and flavorful and the fish is perfect as an accompaniment to any vegetable or as a sandwich. I like to add a dash of hot sauce and have yellow mustard on hand for dipping.



  1. In a medium bowl, combine the rice flour, Creole seasoning, black pepper, garlic powder smoked paprika and yellow cornmeal, and whisk together until evenly mixed. Add the seasoned cornmeal to a large piece of wax paper.
  2. Heat the oil in a large, deep cast-iron skillet until at least 325 degrees F (or add a few drops of cornmeal and if it sizzles, it's ready to start frying).  
  3. Rinse off the fish fillets and place in a large baking dish. Shake a few drops of hot sauce on both sides of 2 of the fish fillets, then coat both sides with the seasoned cornmeal. Fry the coated fillets in the hot oil, without turning, until the edges turn brown, about 4 minutes. Flip over and fry about another 4 minutes. Drain on a paper towel or wire rack. Repeat the coating and frying with the remaining 2 fillets. 

Cook’s Note

I prefer peanut oil because of the higher smoke point. I love cooking fish in cast iron for the perfect amount of crispiness.