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Easy Air Fryer Fish Sticks

Easy Air Fryer Fish Sticks is a quick homemade recipe using cod fillets and breadcrumbs. These healthy nuggets can be made using fresh or frozen fish. This is a seafood dish the whole family will love!

air fryer fish sticks on a white plate with tarter sauce and lemons

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FOR THE FULL LIST OF INGREDIENTS AND COMPREHENSIVE INSTRUCTIONS, PLEASE SEE THE RECIPE CARD AT THE END OF THIS POST. BEFORE YOU SCROLL, THERE’S IMPORTANT INFORMATION IN THIS BLOG POST.

Can you cook fish in an air fryer? The air fryer can literally do it all, including making some of the best crispy fried fish. How to cook raw fish, is actually pretty easy and you only need a handful of ingredients.

I cringe when I think about the boxed fish sticks we ate growing up. They are the epitome of convenience food and something my mom could serve to us kids with minimal effort. Luckily, I find making homemade recipes with the air fryer pretty quick and easy.

Are Fish Sticks Bad For You?

Frozen fish sticks in the grocery store are processed and deep-fried in vegetable oil. They also contain ingredients like maltodextrin and modified food starch. Maltodextrin is highly processed from potatoes and corn. It is closely related to corn syrup solids, which is basically sugar.

Processed food is not usually healthy. Homemade fish sticks are another story. You have direct control of the ingredients you add.

flour, breadcrumbs, an egg, and seasoning in separate bowls

What Kind of Fish to Use

Cod or any white fish will work great for this recipe. You can also use tilapia or pollock if you wish.

Tilapia is farm-raised fish and isn’t available in the wild. Some tilapia is genetically modified, I typically don’t eat tilapia and prefer wild-caught cod.

fresh cod fillets on a cutting board

Can You Use Frozen Fish?

You can use previously frozen fish, but defrost it prior to air frying.

fresh cod fillets on a cutting board

How to Make Air Fryer Fish Sticks

  1. Slice the cod into sticks or smaller portions about an inch wide.
  2. Season panko breadcrumbs with paprika, lemon pepper seasoning, and salt.
  3. Dip the cod in all-purpose flour, then egg, and then breadcrumbs.
  4. Place the fish sticks in the air fryer basket. Spray with olive oil.
  5. Air fry.
breaded fish sticks in air fryer

Air Fryer Temperature

I recommend 400 degrees.

cooked breaded fish sticks in air fryer

How Long to Cook and Cook Time

Cook the fish for 10-12 minutes total, or until the fish has reached your desired level of crisp. Flip the fish halfway through. Crispy fish will need a longer cook time. Monitor the fish, every air fryer brand will cook at varying speeds.

air fryer fish sticks on a white plate with tarter sauce and lemons

How Long to Cook Frozen Fish Sticks

Frozen processed fish sticks will need 10-15 minutes of cook time on 400 degrees.

air fryer fish sticks on a white plate

How to Reheat Homemade Fish From Frozen

I like to make batches of these and freeze them to have on hand for later. I find the fish only needs 3-4 minutes in the air fryer on 350 degrees to reheat.

air fryer fish sticks on a plate with one fish stick half eaten

More Air Fryer Seafood Recipes

Air Fryer Catfish
Air Fryer Shrimp
Air Fryer Salmon

Air Fryer Crab Cakes

person holding half eaten air fryer fish stick

Serve the Fish with These Condiments

Pair the Fish Sticks with These Recipes

Air Fryer French Fries
Air Fryer Sweet Potato Fries
Air Fryer Green Beans
Air Fryer Brussels Sprouts
Air Fryer Asparagus

Click here for a complete listing of Air Fryer Recipes.

air fryer fish sticks on a white plate with tarter sauce and lemons
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4.95 from 18 votes

Easy Air Fryer Fish Sticks

Easy Air Fryer Fish Sticks is a quick homemade recipe using cod fillets and breadcrumbs. These healthy nuggets can be made using fresh or frozen fish. This is a seafood dish the whole family will love!
Course dinner, lunch
Cuisine American
Keyword air fryer cod, air fryer fish, air fryer fish sticks, air fryer frozen fish sticks
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 200kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 pound skinless cod fillets
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs I used panko
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt Add additional to taste if desired.
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon-pepper seasoning
  • cooking oil I used olive oil.

Instructions

  • Slice the cod into 1-inch strips or whatever size you wish. Pat dry.
  • Spray the air fryer basket with cooking oil. I use this oil spray bottle.
  • Add the breadcrumbs to a bowl large enough to dredge the fish sticks along with the seasonings.
  • Set up a cooking station with the beaten egg, flour, and seasoned breadcrumbs in 3 separate bowls large enough to dip the fish sticks.
  • Dip the fish in the flour, then egg, and then the breadcrumbs. Keep a moist towel nearby. Breading can get really messy.
  • Place the fish sticks in the air fryer basket. Spray with cooking oil. Do not stack the fish. Cook in batches if necessary.
  • Cook for 5 minutes on 400 degrees.
  • Open the basket and flip the fish. Spray with cooking oil. Cook for an additional 5-7 minutes or until crisp.

Video

Notes

  • Your serving size may vary based on how you slice the fish sticks.
  • The amount of flour and breadcrumbs you will need may vary based on the width and height of the fish you use. You may need a little or more or less than what I use in the recipe.
  • Spray the fish sticks with oil at a distance to prevent lost breading.
  • You can season this fish in a variety of ways. You can also use a half teaspoon of  Old Bay Seasoning or Creole Seasoning.
  • Crispy fish will need a longer cook time. Monitor the fish, every air fryer brand will cook at varying speeds.
Recipe Tools Used in this RecipeAs an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition (displayed with net carbs)

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 200kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 3g
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Nutrition DataMacros are provided as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. This information is calculated using MyFitnessPal.com. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator. You are solely responsible for ensuring that any nutritional information provided is accurate, complete, and useful.
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Recipe Rating




Ashleigh

Thursday 29th of October 2020

Followed the recipe exactly and it was delicious!! Super easy to make, highly recommend if you are looking for a quick, easy and tasty meal!!

staysnatched

Tuesday 3rd of November 2020

I'm so glad you enjoyed it!

Kelly

Monday 26th of October 2020

These were amazing! SO much better than any frozen fish sticks I've ever had - this is my new favorite way to cook cod. Thank you!!

staysnatched

Monday 26th of October 2020

You're welcome! I'm glad you enjoyed them.

Lulu

Thursday 15th of October 2020

Omg! I bought an air fryer just so I can make your fish sticks recipe! I just could believe how easy they were to prepare and who’s, they were delicious. I used to just buy them frozen but now this recipe is on my meal plan rotation! Thank you, your recipes are quick, easy and very yummy!

staysnatched

Thursday 15th of October 2020

Wonderful! I'm so glad you enjoyed them!

Heather

Saturday 22nd of August 2020

These fish sticks turned out absolutely perfect. I swapped Tajin seasoning for lemon pepper and served them with Skinnytaste Bang bang sauce and avocado corn salad. Yum!!

staysnatched

Tuesday 25th of August 2020

I love that seasoning! I will have to try that.

Tiffani

Wednesday 19th of August 2020

Another hit and so simple! I looked at the panko at the store, but I remember thinking, "oh no, the recipe said breadcrumbs and I have those already." It's okay with the breadcrumbs. And I didn't cut my fish into sticks, it's just me, so I cut what I had in half and it turned out pretty good. Will definitely try again with panko.

staysnatched

Thursday 20th of August 2020

I'm glad you enjoyed it!