Easy & Quick: The Only Fish Sticks Recipe You Need

Easy & Quick: The Only Fish Sticks Recipe You Need

You know how it feels, seafood lovers!

What. To eat. For lunch time. Snack. Dinner time. At any time. We've all had those moments where trying to figure out what to do seems like it requires a magic trick. At times like these, we like to call on a real kitchen hero to save the day. Two words: air fryer!

If yours has been sitting idle, it's time to dust it off and follow our recipe for crispy air fryer fish fingers. You'll have food on the table faster than you can say “abracadabra!”

These fish fingers are the height of crispy perfection, ready to be dipped in your favorite sauce and devoured. But they're also a healthier option, thanks to, you guessed it, the air fryer! With just a light spray of cooking spray, you can achieve delicious crispiness without the excessive oil needed for other cooking methods. Incorporating this 20-minute recipe into your weekly meal plan is a great way to save time during the school year and get an extra serving of fish per week as recommended by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans [LINK HERE]and keep your home cooler during the warmer months, without the need for a hot oven.

We love using mild-flavored cod for this recipe, but any firm-fleshed white fish will work and pair perfectly with the marinade. Our secret step is to use kefir, a tangy fermented drink (kind of like those liquid yogurts your kids love), which not only adds flavor but helps the breading stick to the fish. Then, let the fryer do its work for about 5 minutes on each side and voila! You've got yourself a batch of well-seasoned, family-approved fish fingers.

While these fish sticks are delicious with just a squeeze of lemon, they're equally irresistible when paired with tartar sauce, cocktail sauce, ranch dressing, or even ketchup for dipping. In any case, both adults and small shellfish will devour them. So file this recipe under “family favorites” as a low-stress solution to save any mealtime craziness and save your sanity!


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Air Fryer Crispy Fish Fingers Recipe
  • 1 cod or other white fish, cut into pieces 1inch strips
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup plain kefir
  • ½ cup wholemeal flour (or yellow corn flour to make it gluten-free)
  • 1 Teaspoon paprika
  • ½ tsp dried parsley
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Non-stick cooking spray
  • Lemon slices, for garnish
  • Favorite tartare or other sauce for fish fingers, if desired

  1. In a shallow dish, beat the egg and kefir. Add the fish and leave to marinate for 10 minutes.
  2. While the fish is marinating, spray the fryer basket with nonstick cooking spray and preheat the basket in the fryer for about 4 minutes at 400 F.
  3. In another shallow bowl or pan, add the flour or cornmeal, paprika, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
  4. Using a fork, lift a piece of fish from the marinade and press it into the flour or cornmeal mixture until well coated. Continue with each piece of fish. Add to the preheated air fryer basket in a single row (do not overlap; cook in batches if necessary). Lightly spray the coated fish with cooking spray until the coating is moist.
  5. Return the basket to the fryer and cook the fish for 5 minutes. Open the basket, turn the fish pieces and spray them with cooking spray. Cook for a further 5 minutes or until cooked through and crispy. Serve with lemon wedge and dipping sauce, if desired.


Recommended tools; Air fryer, whisk or fork, two shallow bowls or pans.

  • Author: Fish-based dish
  • Preparation time: 10
  • Cooking time: 10
  • Category: White Fish

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