Calling this baked fish recipe “stuffed” is a bit of a misnomer because the cod fillets are simply topped with a buttery combination of fresh breadcrumbs, garlic, parsley, and a pinch of crushed red pepper, but no matter what you call it, it’s a delicious and easy way to cook fish.
Because this dish is quick enough for a weeknight dinner, yet impressive enough to serve for company, we make it often and have even included it in our Italian Christmas Eve Dinner Menu.
Baked Stuffed Cod
- 1 to 1-1/4 lbs cod fillets about 1 inch thick (see notes for substitutions)
- 4 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice divided
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil divided
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 3/4 cup fresh breadcrumbs
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley chopped
- Preheat the oven to 400°F and thoroughly coat a baking dish with nonstick spray and add the cod fillets.
- Try to choose a dish that will accommodate your fish in a single layer with little or no room left over. If your fillets have thin portions (as most do), it’s a good idea to overlap them a bit to keep the thickness somewhat uniform.
- Drizzle the fish with 1 tablespoon each of the lemon juice and olive oil, then season lightly with salt and pepper.
- In a separate skillet, heat the remaining olive oil together with the butter over medium heat.
- Add the garlic and crushed red pepper and sauté just until garlic begins to turn golden (do not brown).
- Remove from the heat, stir in the remaining lemon juice, breadcrumbs and parsley.
- Spread the crumb mixture evenly over the fish and bake for 12 to 14 minutes, or until the fish flakes easily.
- Serve immediately (this dish is served casserole-style – you don’t have to portion out individual fillets).