Crunchy Fish Nuggets with Sweet Potato Fries

crunchy fish nuggets with sweet potato fries

Full of flavor and fun to make, especially with the kids, these crunchy fish nuggets will encourage even the non-fish lover to dive in.

Forget about the boxed fish sticks with their bland taste, preservatives, and ingredients you can’t pronounce. Try making your own with fresh or frozen fish. We used cod for our recipe, an excellent source of heart-healthy fats and protein.

We paired our fish nuggets with yummy sweet potato fries (see recipe below) for a low-fat, nutritious meal. Sweet potatoes have less calories and more vitamins than white potatoes.

This is a two baking sheet meal. The sweet potatoes can be roasted while the fish nuggets are being prepared. Just pop the nuggets into the oven on another rack when the sweet potato fries have about 12 minutes left to roast. In about 45 minutes both will be done. Set the table and pass the sauce (see recipes below).

Preparation time for fish nuggets: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 12
Total time: 22 minutes


  • 1 lb. cod or tilapia fillets (or other white firm fish such as haddock)
  • 4 tablespoons nonfat plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons skim milk
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup egg substitute
  • 2 cups whole wheat panko Japanese style breadcrumbs
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons Italian seasoning (or ½ teaspoon each of basil, oregano and thyme)
  • ⅓ cup grated parmesan cheese
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ cup whole wheat flour
  • Dipping sauces such as ketchup, tartar sauce and honey mustard sauce (see recipes below).


  1. Preheat oven to 450°F.
  2. Cut fish fillets (we used cod) into 1-inch strips.
  3. Mix together yogurt, milk, mustard and egg in a pie plate or shallow dish.
  4. Place panko breadcrumbs in a Ziploc bag and crush with a rolling bin until they are finer like regular breadcrumbs. (Crushing the panko breadcrumbs will help them adhere better to the fish.)
  5. Mix crushed panko breadcrumbs with the paprika, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, parmesan cheese and salt and pepper. Place this mixture in a separate pie plate or shallow dish.
  6. Place whole wheat flour in a separate dish. You will have three dishes – one with the flour, one with the yogurt mixture and one with the panko mixture. Now you are ready to make the nuggets.
  7. Roll each fish piece in the flour to lightly coat, then roll in the yogurt mixture, then in the panko breading. Press fish to make sure crumbs adhere. Note: Use a fork to remove the fish from the yogurt mixture to the panko mixture to keep your fingers from getting coated as well!
  8. Place nuggets on baking sheet and bake for about 12 minutes until fish is golden brown. Turn fish halfway through baking.

Serve with dipping sauces and oven roasted sweet potato fries if desired.

Honey Mustard Sauce

Mix together 2 tablespoons light mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon honey and 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard.

Tartar Sauce

Mix together ½ cup light mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon sweet pickle relish, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 1 tablespoon minced onion (optional), and a dash of salt and pepper.

Makes 4 servings of about four nuggets each.

Nutritional Information
Per serving (does not include dipping sauce): 259 calories; 3.3g total fat (1.3g saturated, 0.4g polyunsaturated, 0.7g monounsaturated); 360mg sodium; 68.6mg cholesterol; 21.8g carbohydrate; 1.5g fiber; 3.5g sugars; 33.5g protein; 327mg potassium.

Oven Roasted Sweet Potato Fries

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Roasting time: 30 minutes
Total time: 40 minutes

  • 1 large sweet potato or 2 medium, rinsed and dried with skin on
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 450°F.
  2. Cut sweet potato(es) into ¼-inch or ½-inch strips, depending on the desired thickness you want and place in a bowl. Suggestion: cut sweet potato in half, then into quarters, then cut into strips. For very large sweet potatoes you may need to cut the strips in half lengthwise unless you want wedges.
  3. Toss remaining ingredients together with sweet potatoes.
  4. Lightly coat baking sheet with cooking spray then place sweet potatoes on baking sheet in a single layer, spreading them out as much as possible.
  5. Roast for 25-30 minutes depending on thickness, turning fries once or twice until they are nicely browned.

Makes four servings.

Nutritional Information
Per serving: 102 calories; 3.6g total fat (0.5g saturated, 0.4g polyunsaturated, 2.5g monounsaturated); 299.5mg sodium; 0.0mg cholesterol; 16.6g carbohydrate; 2.2g fiber; 0.2g sugars; 1.3g protein; 152.7mg potassium.

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The LG Health Hub features breaking medical news and straightforward advice to help individuals of all ages make healthy choices and reach their wellness goals. The blog puts articles by trusted Lancaster General Health clinical experts, good 'n healthy recipes, videos, patient stories, and health risk assessments at your fingertips.


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