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Taste of the South: Fried Catfish

Pair our Classic Fried Catfish Recipe with coleslaw, hush puppies, and baked beans for a complete meal. Photo: Beth Dreiling Hontzas

Breaded, seasoned, and fried, our fried catfish recipe will have you coming back for seconds.

Fried Catfish Recipes

Members of our Food staff have a tough time arriving at a consensus when it comes to the Southern delicacy of fried catfish. We tried a variety of techniques, from soaking catfish overnight to combining the best ingredients from several different recipes. We found 4- to 6-ounce, thin-cut, farm-raised fillets easy to manage in the skillet, and they curl up when cooked, giving great eye appeal. If you purchase frozen fillets, place them in a colander with a pan underneath, and thaw in the refrigerator overnight; otherwise, keep them in the coldest part of your refrigerator, and use within two days.

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In searching for the perfect fried catfish recipe, we found the answer in a simple ingredient—cornmeal. It offers a crunchy texture without a greasy taste. Fried catfish opinions aside, we all agree our choices for side dishes are hush puppies, baked beans, and coleslaw. As for catfish condiments, a dab of ketchup and tartar sauce and a squeeze of lemon are high on our list.

Frying Catfish Tips

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