Made with fish fillets, a handful of seasonings, and butter this Cajun Style Blackened Cod is ultra flaky, with an earthy, spicy flavour that’s always a hit. Enjoy with a side of coleslaw and sweet potatoes.
This Cajun Style Blackened Cod Recipe may look like it belongs on a restaurant plate but in reality, this dish comes together in under 30 minutes – and it turns out perfectly every time!
The secret to a good blackened fish recipe is in the spices and instead of opting for a store-bought blackened seasoning mix, I prefer to create my own. It allows for the perfect level of customization to ensure it’s not too salty or too spicy. I kept this recipe pretty mild but feel free to spice it up with some more cayenne if you desire!
Where Did Blackened Fish Originate?
Blackened fish originated in New Orleans in the 1980s, from Cajun chef Paul Prudhomme in the K-Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen restaurant. He had the idea to dredge fish in a variety of Cajun spices, then add it to a very hot skillet. Blackened fish was born and quickly became a Cajun cuisine favorite.
Does Blackened Fish Taste Burnt?
No, blackened fish does not taste burnt. Instead, you get the distinct flavors of the seasonings used. The burnt appearance actually comes from the burnt the fish is fried in. When cooked properly, blackened fish is not actually burnt and therefore doesn’t have a burnt taste.
Ingredients & Substitutions
- Cod – Use equal-sized fillets cut in half to make smaller pieces.
- Seasoning – Blackened seasoning is made with garlic powde,r onion powder, paprika, dried thyme, salt, black pepper, cumin, and cayenne. You can adjust the amount of cayenne added to reach your desired level of spice.
- Butter – Used in place of oil for frying.
Can You Blacken Other Types of Fish?
Yes, you can blacken pretty much any type of fish. A few favorite include haddock, sole, basa, salmon, and red snapper but the sky is really the limit.
How to Make Cajun Style Blackened Cod
To make your blackened cod, combine all of the seasonings in a small bowl, then transfers to a freezer bag or larger bowl.
Prepare the cod by washing it and then drying it with a paper towel.
Dredge the cod in the dry spice mix until well coated on all sides.
Preheat your pan over medium-high heat. Be sure to use cast iron or a non-stick pan to prevent the fish from sticking. Melt one tablespoon of butter in the pan, then add two pieces of the seasoned cod.
Cook for about 3 minutes on each side, until the centre is opaque and flaky. Be sure to only flip it once to get the blackened outside.
Repeat with any remaining pieces of fish, adding more butter to the pan each time.
How Do You Know When White Fish Is Cooked?
You can tell white fish is fully cooked when it’s no longer translucent and shiny but fully white instead. Another sign is that it flakes easily when poked with a fork.
Sides to Serve With Blackened Fish
Blackened fish pairs well with so many different sides. One of my favorites is a tangy homemade coleslaw. The flavor just complements the fish so well!
Other sides to enjoy with this blackened cod include rice, avocado slices, fruit salsas (like pineapple or mango), sweet potatoes (baked or mashed), and French fries.
Additionally, instead of serving the fish as a fillet, you can crumble it up a bit to use inside a taco.
How to Store & Freeze
Blackened cod can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days, in an airtight container. For best results, reheat on the stovetop as the microwave tends to dry fish out.
This recipe can also be frozen. Allow the blackened fish to cool then wrap tightly in plastic wrap and foil. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge, then reheat either on the stovetop or in the oven.
More Fish & Seafood Recipes To Try
Cajun Style Blackened Cod
- 24 oz cod fish fillets; cut in half
- 3 tbsp garlic powder
- 1 1/2 tbsp onion powder
- 1 1/2 tbsp paprika
- 1 tbsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper or to taste
- 2 tbsp butter
- Combine all ingredients except for the fish in a small bowl. Add the dry ingredients to a large freezer bag or larger bowl.
- Wash and dry the fish with a paper towel. Dredge the cod in the dry spice mix in a casserole dish or large plastic bag until well coated.
- Preheat a cast iron or non-stick pan over medium-high heat. Add one tbsp of butter for two pieces of fish. Let the butter melt and then add the seasoned cod. Cook 2-3 minutes on each side or until the centre is opaque and flaky. Only flip once to allow for the coating to blacken. Serve hot.
For the step-by-step version of this recipe, check out the How to Make Cajun Style Blackened Cod Story.