Butter Cracker Oven-Baked Cod

Sweet and tender baked cod with a cracker topping.

Mild white fish baked with a crunchy butter cracker and herb topping – Butter Cracker Oven-Baked Cod makes a super fast weeknight meal that’s also guest-worthy if you need something special to serve.

Butter Cracker Oven-Baked Cod Recipe

Butter Cracker Baked Cod Fillets on a white plate with a fork.

Howdy! Chef Alli Here. Let’s Get You Cookin’…. Shall We?? 🙂

Yep, we raise cattle here in NE Kansas but we can’t eat beef EVERY meal, now can we? However, if you ask my cattleman husband, Pat, that question, he will hands-down say “YES!”

I do love beef, but I also like variety. That said, I make it my mission to add some poultry and fish to our dinner rotation. As a matter of fact, I’ve been adding quite a few new fish recipes to our repertoire of late.

Baja Fish Tacos with Sweet Potato Hash has graced our table more than once recently, as well as Fish Tacos with Fresh Cucumber Salsa – so yummy. I adore me some fish tacos!

And, if you have an air fryer, you may really enjoy Air Fryer Mahi Mahi with Mango Salsa and Air Fryer Crispy Fish with Dill Tartar Sauce. Oh, and don’t forget Air Fryer Frozen Fish with Parmesan Crumbles. Did you realize you can cook frozen fish fillets in just minutes in your air fryer? True story.

What to love about this easy baked fish recipe

  1. Cod is super duper mild in flavor. Even your “I don’t like fish” friends will be charmed by dod. You just gotta get ONE bite into their mouths.
  2. You can have this fish dish ready (start to finish!) in 30 minutes or less.
  3. You can find cod in nearly any grocery store’s frozen fish section – it’s very economical, too.

What you’ll learn from this recipe 

How to to tell when fish is fully cooked at the center.

How to tell what fish looks like when it’s done.

The best place to purchase cod fillets.

Good side dishes to pair with oven-baked fish.

Here are the ingredients you need to make oven-baked white fish

  • Boneless, skinless cod fillets
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepepr
  • Butter crackers (such as Club Crackers or Ritz Crackers)
  • Panko
  • Fresh Italian parsley (may substitute dried parsley)
  • Fresh garlic
  • Lemon zest
  • Lemon juice
  • Butter

How to Make Butter Cracker Oven-Baked Fish Step-by-Step

**Full, printable recipe card below – just scroll on down within this post to find it! 

All the ingredients gathered to make the butter cracker topping.

Gather all the recipe ingredients together, both for the cod fillets and for the butter cracker topping.

Seasoned cod fillets in a white baking dish.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Drizzle the olive oil into an 8×11 baking dish; tilt the dish so the oil coats the entire bottom. Place the cod fillets into the oil in the baking dish; turn the fillets to coat both sides oil. Season each fillet with salt and pepper, to taste.

Bake the fillets, uncovered, on the center rack of the preheated oven for 10 minutes.

Butter cracker crumb topping in a white bowl.

While the fish bakes, make the butter cracker topping by combining the crushed garlic, cracker crumbs, panko bread crumbs, parsley, salt, and lemon zest in a small bowl; drizzle with butter and combine until all the ingredients are nicely moistened.

Cod fillets topped with crumbs in a baking dish.

Remove the fish from the oven; squeeze the lemon juice over the fillets. Using your fingertips, pat a small portion of the prepared butter cracker topping on top of each fillet, pressing down gently so the topping will adhere a bit.

Baked cod fillets with a golden brown butter cracker topping.

Bake, the fish, uncovered, on the center rack of the oven for 8-10 minutes, or until the fish is fully cooked and fork-tender at the center of the fillet.

You will also notice that the fillets (where you can see them around the edges) are no longer opaque but much more white in color – this is another indicator that the fillets are fully cooked.

The fillets are fully cooked when the inserted fork will give easily to pressure when gently twisted. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, once more.

Crispy and golden brown cod fillets with a side salad on a white plate.

Serve the fish at once, alongside your favorite mixed greens salad and a potato or vegetable side dish. Delicious and such an easy weeknight meal!

Answers to Common Questions Asked About This Recipe

What type of fish is Cod?

Cod is a saltwater fish that is typically sold in boneless fillets. Cod belongs to the Gadidae family, along with monkfish and haddock.

What does cod taste like?

Cod is the most non-fishy fish you will ever eat. Cod is a very tender and flaky fish that has a mild and slightly sweet flavor. Even people who “don’t like fish” wind up enjoying cod.

Where should I purchase cod?

If you have a local fish market in your area, that’s the best resource for super fresh fish of any kind. Cod should be easy to find since it is such a popular fish. If you don’t have a fish market in your area (we sure don’t!), your next best bet is the frozen fish section at your favorite grocery. Here, you will find frozen cod fillets and many other fish varieties, as well.

Does cod cook quickly in the oven?

Baking cod in the oven is as easy as falling off a log, truly. Because cod is a very tender and flaky fish, it will cook very quickly in the oven.

Why is the cod baked uncovered in this recipe?

Great question! Because we want the butter cracker topping to be more on the crunchy side once it’s baked, we cook the cod uncovered. If you cooked the fish with this topping in a covered pan, the topping would steam, keeping it from becoming crispy on top.

How do I know when oven-baked fish is done?

No matter which cooking method you use to cook cod (or nearly ANY type of fish), you will know it’s fully cooked when it turns from opaque to white in color and when tested at the center of the fillet, it nearly falls apart when you insert a fork and give a gently twist.

What is a good side dish to serve alongside baked cod?

We really enjoy potato side dishes alongside our baked cod. Smashed Garlic Potatoes are kind of an unusual and tasty side dish, as are Baked Yum Yum Potato Wedges.

Heck, because we are such big sweet potato fans, I often make 5-Ingredient Creamy Au Gratin Sweet Potatoes. And if your family is big into potato salads, you might want to give Grandma Lucille’s Warm German Potato Salad with Bacon a try too – it’s a keeper recipe!

Flakey fish fillets with a golden brown cracker topping.

More Favorite Recipes to Enjoy –

Printable Butter Cracker Oven-Baked Cod Recipe

Sweet and tender baked cod with a cracker topping.

Butter Cracker Oven-Baked Cod

Mild white fish baked with a crunchy butter cracker and herb topping – Butter Cracker Oven-Baked Cod makes a super fast weeknight meal that's also guest-worthy if you need something special to serve.
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 77kcal

Ingredients

  • 4 8 oz. boneless, skinless cod fillets
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 Tbs. Olive oil for baking the fish
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or crushed
  • 1/4 cup crushed butter cracker crumbs
  • 3 Tbs. panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 Tbs. minced fresh Italian parsley, may substitute 1 tsp. dried parsley flakes
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly grated lemon zest
  • 1 Tbs. unsalted butter melted
  • 1 Tbs. freshly squeezed lemon juice

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  • Drizzle about the olive oil into a 8×11 baking dish, tilting the dish to coat the entire bottom with the oil. **May use a 9-inch baking dish, if preferred.
  • Place the cod fillets into the oi l in the baking dish; turn the fillets to coat both sides, then season each one to taste with salt and pepper.
    Bake the fillets, uncovered, on the center rack of the preheated oven for 10 minutes.
  • While the fish bakes, make the butter cracker topping by combining the minced garlic, cracker crumbs, bread crumbs, salt, parsley, and lemon zest in a small bowl. Add the melted butter; stir until the crumb topping is evenly moistened.
  • Remove the fish from the oven; squeeze the fresh lemon juice over the fillets.
    Using your fingertips, pat a small portion the prepared butter cracker topping evenly on top of each fillet, pressing down a bit to ensure the topping will stay in place.
  • Return the fish to the oven, still uncovered, on the center rack; back for an additional 8-10 minutes until the fillets are just cooked throughout and flake easily at the center with tested with a fork.
    Season once more with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Serve at once!

Notes

**Be sure to check the blog post for tips and tricks, specific instructions, recommended tools, and FAQ’s for making this recipe.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cod, easy, easy dinner idea, fish fillets, oven baked fish, oven meal, quick

Nutrition

Calories: 77kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 8mg | Sodium: 328mg | Potassium: 38mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 173IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 24mg | Iron: 1mg

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Let’s Get You Cookin’,
Chef Alli

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Chef Alli

Chef Alli is a home-grown Kansas girl on a mission to strengthen families through enabling kitchen confidence, educating the family cook, and encouraging better food relationships. She believes with her whole heart that time spent with our loved ones and our overall quality of life is greatly enhanced by nutritious food made at home with simple, wholesome ingredients. She loves being able to connect and share this passion with others through her website, her social media presence, and her coveted speaking engagements.

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