All the attention around the health benefits of fish may have more families choosing fish sticks for dinner, and while there can be a lot of lean protein and some Omega 3s in boxed fish sticks, this make-at-home version is even healthier!
If you have a picky fish eater at home and the battered, boxed varieties in the grocers freezer is all they will eat, they are actually pretty healthy. Most are made from pollack, haddock or sole and all are a great source of fish protein, a 4 oz serving contains up to 20oz of lean protein. As long as the fish sticks are baked in the the oven, not fried with butter or deep fried in oil, your fish stick dinner is going to be a healthy choice.
To make fish sticks even healthier (and maybe teach the kids how easy make-your-own can be) try this recipe. Not only does it provide a great use for those crust ends of the bread that no one ever wants, it gives you the opportunity to add in even more ingredients to boost the fibre, omega and nutrition value and make fish sticks for dinner healthy enough to have every week.
Make Your Own Breading
Don’t toss those ends from the whole grain bread, put them in the freezer and once you have 10-20 ends get them out and make your own bread crumbs.
Place bread crusts in a single layer on a cookie sheet and either air dry over night or dry on low heat (250 degrees) in the over for 30-45 minutes. When bread is crispy (snaps in pieces easily) it is ready to be ground into bread crumbs.
Use a high speed blender or cuisinart food processor and grind the bread crusts into fine bread crumbs and then add in some or all of the below healthy options. Mixed all together and store in a ziplock bag in the freezer. When fish sticks are on the dinner menu, the fish can be breaded and ready for the oven in less than 5 minutes.
Healthy Bread Crumbs Add-Ins
2 tbsp Flax ( try Omega Crunch Roasted Garlic Shelled Flax Seed)
2 tbsp Bran
2 tbsp Chai Seeds
2 tbsp Hemp Seeds
2 tbsp parmesean cheese
Make At Home Fish Sticks
Milk, whipped egg or egg whites in a bowl
From freezer, pour just what bread crumbs you will need onto a plate – any left over will need to be thrown out after fish has been presses into it.
Defrost and pat dry fish fillets. Cut into any size fish stick or keep the fillet whole for fish dinner. Dip fish into milk or eggs then press both sides of fish into bread crumbs, covering completely. Place on a parchment covered cookie sheet and bake in oven for 10 minutes or until fish is cooked through.
Fish sticks have become on of my favourite quick meals and the breading makes it one of the kids favourites! Keep a supply of fresh fish in the freezer with your prepared bread crumbs on hand and on busy weeknights you can have a healthy dinner on the table in 15 minutes.
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