A simple, yet delicious pollock burger to enjoy instead of rushing to a fast-food restaurant! Three elements make it: a fluffy, buttery brioche bun, a lovely piece of white fish fillet and our homemade tartar sauce without relish. In our opinion, this is a better version of a famous fillet-o-fish burger! Serve with some fries for the ultimate fast-food experience at home!
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I am told that nobody orders a fillet-o-fish from a McDonald’s menu. Well, they’re wrong! I know for a fact that Fillet-o-Fish is one of my Top 2 choices when we grab a bite to eat at services on a long trip. Since we haven’t done a long trip in a while, nor have we visited any Fast Food restaurants in over a year, I decided to have a mini-franchise of it in my own kitchen. And the first order was a fillet-o-fish with a side of potato wedges!
Our fish burger isn’t quite a replica of a Mcdonald’s filet-o-fish burger, but if anything, for me, it’s better! It is healthier, it is a lot more filling and it tastes homemade with love. Hopefully, no one will take offence, but we replaced the pasteurised American cheese slice that’s traditionally served in a fillet-o-fish with some grated cheddar. It adds a lot more flavour, and we much prefer it to processed cheese slices.
What Fish to Use for Burgers?
Choose the non-oily white type of fish that are about 1.5cm in thickness. One of the cheapest options (that is actually used in the fillet-o-fish burger, at least in the UK) is pollock. You can find frozen Alaskan pollock fillets in the frozen foods aisle and it is sometimes labelled “White Fish Fillets”.
Alternatively, use skinless cod fillet, haddock, basa or tilapia.
Tips & Tricks For Crispy Fish For Burgers
- Dab the fish fillets with a piece of kitchen towel to remove any excess moisture. This is especially helpful if you are using defrosted fish. Having them relatively dry before breading will ensure maximum crispiness.
- Use dried breadcrumbs (not fresh) to coat your fish. White or golden breadcrumbs will work well, but try panko breadcrumbs for maximum crispiness. You can also use the breading mix we use in our Panko Crusted Fish recipe.
- Add more flavour to the breadcrumbs by adding a pinch of garlic powder or some lemon zest.
- Make sure your oil is hot in the pan before adding your breaded fish fillets to the pan. Adding the fish too early will make the coating absorb too much oil, so your fish will be less crispy and greasier.
- If you are doubling the recipe, make sure not to overcrowd the pan when frying the fish. You want them to have space to crisp up, otherwise, they will stew in their own steam and the coating will become soggy.
How to Make Tartar Sauce Without Relish?
We think the best burger sauce for this crispy fish burger recipe is homemade tartar sauce! You will need:
- mayonnaise: we used light mayonnaise.
- capers: the small ones work best.
- gherkins: use your favourite type. Cornichons will work too!
- dill: frozen, dried or fresh dill – whatever you have available!
- lemon juice: freshly squeezed or bottled.
- tarragon: we know lots of people who don’t enjoy the flavour of tarragon, so omit it if you must.
Simply mix all the ingredients in a small bowl (see quantities in a recipe card below). Taste and add some salt and black pepper as needed. Keep the delicious tartar sauce in the fridge until you’re ready to use it!
We also have a recipe for an easier 4-Ingredient Tartar Sauce!
How to Make Fish Burgers at Home?
Whisk a large egg and half a tablespoon of cold water in a shallow bowl. Spread the breadcrumbs on a separate plate or a shallow large bowl.
Cut your fish (pollock) fillets into portions the size of your burger buns. They should be 1-1.5cm thick, ideally. But if you have thin pollock fillets, you can simply stack a couple of pieces instead. Dip each piece of fish into the egg mixture and let the excess drip off. Then cover in breadcrumbs. Repeat with the other fish fillet.
Heat about ½ cm of oil in a small frying pan. Shallow fry fish for about 3-4 minutes on each side in hot oil (we used vegetable oil) on medium heat. The time needed depends on the thickness of the fish. Transfer the golden brown fish patties to a plate lined with paper towels, and sprinkle with salt.
Whilst the fish is cooking, grate the cheese. Scatter the cheese on the bottom halves of the brioche buns. Place them and the top halves in the preheated oven (or under the grill) for a minute, until the edges are starting to brown and the cheese has melted. Top the cheesy bottom brioche half with the fried fish. Spoon half of the tartar sauce and top with the lettuce. Cover with the top half of the bun.
Serve your fish sandwich with some french fries/ potato wedges and the remaining tartare sauce!
What to Serve Pollock Burgers With?
The obvious choice (and a great one) is French fries, chips or potato wedges, but if you’re looking for something slightly different, why not try it with:
Other Burger Recipes
For other burger and sandwich ideas, have a look at our recipes below:
- Ultimate Halloumi Burger with Chimichurri Relish
- Pulled Chicken Burger With Sweet Chilli
- Vegan Coronation Chickpea Sandwich
- Aubergine & Halloumi Panini
Homemade Fish Burger With Tartar Sauce
- 2 white fish fillets like pollock
- 1 egg small
- 50 g breadcrumbs
- 2 brioche buns cut in half
- 2 lettuce leaves shredded
- 20 g cheddar grated
For Tartar Sauce:
- 70 g mayonnaise
- 1 teaspoon capers finely chopped
- 1 small gherkin finely chopped
- ½ teaspoon dried dill
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 sprig of tarragon finely chopped, optional
- 1 teaspoon chopped chives
- salt and pepper
- Mix all the ingredients for the tartar sauce in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper and keep in the fridge until your burgers are ready to be assembled.
- Whisk an egg and half a tablespoon of water in a shallow bowl. Place the breadcrumbs in a separate bowl.
- Cut your fish (we used pollock) into portions. They should be 1-1.5cm thick, ideally. But if you have thin pollock fillets, you can simply stack a couple of pieces instead. Dip each portion into the egg mixture and let excess drip off. Then cover in breadcrumbs. Repeat with the other fish fillet.
- Heat about ½ cm of oil in a small frying pan. Fry fish for about 3 minutes on each side. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels, and sprinkle with salt.
- Scatter the cheese on the bottom halves of the brioche buns. Place them and the top halves in the preheated oven (or under the grill) for a minute, until the edges are starting to brown and the cheese has melted. Top the cheesy bottom brioche half with the fried fish. Spoon half of the tartar sauce and top with the lettuce. Cover with the top half of the bun.
- Serve with some french fries and the remaining tartar sauce!