The Snapper / Fish
For starters, if you’re looking to make the best-tasting fish nuggets you’ll want to firstly secure high-quality, fresh, wild-caught fish. Our recipe will be concocted with fresh Red Snapper from Wild Seafood Market out of Madeira Beach, Florida.
If you’re not sure where to go to find fresh, wild-caught fish, here’s a great article we put together to help: How to find and order wild-caught fish.
You can make fish bites (aka fish nuggets) out of most any fish however our personal favorites to use are Grouper and Snapper. Hogfish of course is also a great option with plenty of flavors. You will notice better results with firmer fish, such as Snapper as opposed to the flakier, thicker Grouper.
Red Snapper from Wild Seafood Market
The Red Snapper we’re using for this recipe was wild-caught in the Gulf of Mexico and we purchased the whole fish, followed by having it filleted at Wild Seafood Market’s dock. This fish started as a seven-pound fish and we used about a third of the fillets it yielded. Thus, we had roughly a pound of filleted Red Snapper to use for the Snapper bites.
Step by Step Snapper Nuggets/Bites Guide
The Batter mix
Prep the fish
Chop up your snapper into small bite-size pieces. The closer to square-shaped the better. Use a paper towel to mat the bites to remove all water from the outside of the fish. *This is critical to the batter adhering properly to the fish, and thus, critical to the proper outcome of the dish.
Prep the batter
Mix the flour, seasoning, salt, egg, and water in a medium-sized bowl until the consistency is fairly thick. Roughly a half cup of water or more should do the trick. Whip this up good so the egg and seasoning are fully mixed.
Breadcrumbs & Spice
*Like Spicey? Add a solid amount of cayenne pepper or your favorite hot spice to the batter mix.
Add about a cup of breadcrumbs to a separate small dish.
If you’re fast, go ahead and pour a good amount of canola oil into a skillet and set it to medium-high heat.
You’ll want enough oil in the pan so that at least 1/3 of the snapper nuggets is submerged. However, it can be done with less oil, and more flipping (three sides instead of two will need to cook).
Trick is, you don’t want to let this oil cook itself. Hence, be quick with prepping your nuggets, otherwise wait to turn the heat up on the oil till you are closer to done with the nuggets prep.
Prep the bites/nuggets
Dip the nuggets into the batter. You need them to be fully covered and the more you leave on, the thicker the crispy outside layer will be.
Next, roll them around in the breadcrumbs.
Cooking the Nuggets
Why the spiral?
Well, when you have 20 nuggets cooking in hot oil it might take you a full minute to remove all of them, hence if done wrong, you could end up cooking some nuggets a total of 5 minutes and others a total of 6 minutes. This may not seem like much, but when we are going after the perfectly cooked nuggets… it matters!
The epic Dipping Sauce:
We mixed a few of our favorite sauces and will give you our mix, however, any good seafood dipping sauce will work just fine.
Our sauce: Ranch, Yum Yum Japanese Sushi Sauce, Garlic Mustard Salad Dressing, Sriracha (the more you add, the spicier).
If you’re in the market for fresh, wild-caught red snapper, the perfect fish for these Snapper nuggets, be sure to see what we have in stock today.
If you use this recipe, be sure to comment below and let us know what you thought!
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