Bake cod at 400°F (200°C) for around 15-20 minutes or until it flakes easily with a fork. Cooking time depends on the thickness of the fillets.
Thicker fillets might need a few more minutes. Always ensure the fish reaches an internal temperature of 145°F (63°C) for safe consumption.
Today, I’ll talk about the specifics of baking cod at 400. This includes factors like whether it’s fresh or frozen.
I’ll also discuss preparation tips for ensuring optimal taste.
It’s time to take your cod baking skills to the next level. Your dinner table is about to get a seafood upgrade!
How Long to Bake Cod at 400 in the Oven
This baked cod recipe is easy but delivers amazing results.
The cod is baked in butter, lemon, and white wine to elevate its flavor. It also has a crunchy, buttery, golden cracker crust on top.
1. Prep the cod.
If frozen, allow the cod to thaw completely. Pat the fillets dry with paper towels.
2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
3. Flavor the cod.
Coat both sides of the cod with melted butter and place them in a single layer on a baking dish. Season it with salt and pepper, if desired.
4. Make the cracker topping.
This one’s optional, but highly recommended. Combine crushed Ritz crackers and melted butter. Spread it over the cod fillets.
5. Bake the cod at 400.
Bake the cod at 400 for 10 minutes.
6. Season with lemon and wine.
Remove the baking dish from heat. Sprinkle the fillets with lemon juice. Pour white wine over for more flavor.
7. Bake some more.
Bake it again at 400 for 10 more minutes. Stick a meat thermometer to test for doneness. It should read 140-145 degrees Fahrenheit.
8. Garnish, serve, and enjoy.
Sprinkle the fillets with parsley and green onion. Serve them with lemon wedges. Enjoy!
How Long to Bake Cod at 400 in an Air Fryer
Preheat your air fryer (if needed) to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Air fry the fillets for 15 minutes at 400. Flip the fillets halfway through to ensure even cooking.
For thinner fillets, air fry them for 12 minutes. Thicker ones will need about 20 minutes.
How to Prepare Cod Before Baking
1. Thaw the cod if frozen.
Transfer the fillets to the fridge and let them thaw overnight. Or, soak them in a bowl of cold water for several hours until thawed.
2. Dry the cod.
Pat the fillets dry with paper towels. This will allow for even cooking. It’ll even help create a crispy outer crust.
3. Season or marinate the cod.
You can use whatever seasonings you like, but a sprinkling of salt and pepper will do. I like to coat the cod with melted butter and then season it with lemon juice.
You can also marinate it for 30 minutes for a deeper flavor. Use a simple blend of olive oil, vinegar, and aromatics.
How Long to Bake Fresh Cod at 400
It depends on the thickness of the fillets. The thicker the cod, the longer it takes to bake.
Here’s a simple guide for reference. If the cod is:
- 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick: bake for 10 – 12 minutes.
- 3/4 to 1 inch thick: bake for 12 to 15 minutes.
- 1 inch or thicker: bake for 15 to 20 minutes.
How Long to Bake Frozen Cod at 400
You can bake cod straight from the freezer, just do so for longer. On average, frozen cod needs a 25% longer baking time.
Here’s a simple guide for reference. If the frozen cod is:
- 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick: bake for 15 – 20 minutes.
- 3/4 to 1 inch thick: bake for 20 to 25 minutes.
- 1 inch or thicker: bake for 25 to 30 minutes.
Should Cod Be Baked in Foil?
If you’re worried it’ll dry out, then yes. Aluminum foil helps lock in moisture and keep the cod from drying out. It also keeps the fish from sticking to the dish. You can also use parchment paper.
Here’s how to bake cod in foil at 400:
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Butter the fillets and season them with salt and pepper. Wrap them tightly in foil; be sure to seal all the edges.
2. Bake the cod at 400 degrees as instructed.
How Can You Tell Cod Is Fully Cooked?
The best way to tell is by using a food thermometer. Insert it into the thickest part of the fish. You know it’s done when the internal temperature reads 140-145 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you don’t have a meat thermometer, check the visuals. The cod should be completely opaque. It should also fall apart easily when sliced with a fork.
How to Prevent Cod From Drying Out
Just like any type of fish or meat, cod will dry out when overcooked. Here are ways to keep this from happening:
- Cover the cod in aluminum foil or parchment paper. This will help lock in moisture.
- Cover the cod with crushed crackers. This adds a nice golden crust on top. It also protects the cod from overcooking.
- For thinner fillets, cook at a lower temperature. Bake them at 350 to 375 degrees Fahrenheit instead.
- Place a thermometer in the oven. This way, you can tell your oven’s temperature at all times.
- Check for doneness early. All ovens run differently. To be on the safe side, check for doneness at 18 minutes.
- Use a meat thermometer to test for doneness. Stick it into the thickest part of the fish. It’s cooked when the temperature is between 140-145 degrees Fahrenheit.
Ingredients for Baked Cod
- Cod Loin – Use thick-cut loin to prevent the fish from drying out. The fillets should be uniform in size for even baking. Go for about 4 ounces with similar thickness.
- Butter – For richness and flavor. Use the butter to add flavor to the cracker topping and the cod itself.
- Crushed Buttery Round Crackers – In short, Ritz. This will serve as the crunchy crust on top.
- Lemon – For that fresh tanginess that pairs beautifully with butter. You need both the juice and the actual lemon.
- Dry White Wine – It brings out the flavor of the cod. Use a light, dry wine such as Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc. Stick to cheap wine! Cooking diminishes wine’s subtle flavors, anyway.
- Fresh Parsley and Green Onion – A pop of color for garnish.
What to Serve with Baked Cod
As mild and delicate as its flavor, baked cod deserves to be the star of the show. Pair it with side dishes that highlight, not overpower, its taste. Here are some suggestions:
- Steamed Rice: This simple, versatile side helps soak up the buttery flavors from the baked cod.
- Sauteed Spinach: It adds a touch of earthy freshness, complementing the baked cod’s taste.
- Mashed Potatoes: It’s a creamy, comforting side that pairs well with any fish dish.
- Roasted Carrots: Their sweetness balances the savory cod. The crunch complements the flaky fish, as well.
- Potato Wedges: They provide a hearty, satisfying crunch to contrast the soft cod.
- Sauteed Green Beans: They’re a simple, fresh side that doesn’t overpower the cod’s flavor.
- Tartar Sauce: It’s a tangy condiment that enhances the fish’s flavor.
- Baked Broccoli: Its subtle, nutty taste works well with the delicate flavor of cod.
- Garnish: Sprinkle the cod with chopped onion and fresh parsley for the perfect finishing touch. Serve with lemon wedges, and voila.
How to Store Baked Cod
Allow the baked cod to cool to room temperature before storing it. Transfer the fish to an air-tight container and refrigerate it for up to 3-4 days.
If you want to keep cod around longer, freeze it. Once it’s come to room temperature, place the cod in an air-tight, freezer-safe container. Freeze baked cod for up to 2 months.
You can reheat frozen cod either in the oven or the microwave.
- Oven Method
- Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the cod in a baking dish and drizzle it with a bit of water.
- Cover it with aluminum foil and warm it in the oven for 10-15 minutes. Check the internal temperature with a meat thermometer.
- It should be between 125 to 130 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Microwave Method:
- Microwave leftover cod in 30-second intervals at low power until warmed through.
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