This list of leftover fish recipes will make you see seafood in a whole new light!
Years ago, when I first discovered my honest and intense love of cooking, fish wasn’t something I thought of as versatile. You could bake it, fry it, or grill it—end of story.
I enjoyed fish, but I didn’t know how to be creative with it. Truth be told, my lack of creativity is probably why I discovered all these recipes.
I was a boring seafood cook, and we always had plenty of leftovers.
Finally, I started looking online and talking to other people who loved to cook, and I finally found out that fish was just as adaptable as any other protein!
This list contains my favorite of all the fun fish recipes I’ve discovered over the years.
They’re all perfect for leftover fish, but you can, of course, make them fresh, as well.
1. Fish Cakes
Want to make more than a dozen tasty treats in half an hour using only six ingredients? You can!
These cakes are similar to crab cakes, but you’ll make them with flaky white fish instead.
Aside from the fish, all you’ll need to make them are eggs, green onions, lemon juice, a seasoning mixture, and breadcrumbs.
Then mix everything into patties and fry them.
Serve them with some tartar sauce, and you’re good to go!
2. Tuna Tacos
If you thought 30-minute fish cakes were great, you’ll love 10-minute tacos! This recipe is mostly mixing, although you’ll want to saute your tuna first.
You can top these with whatever you like – guacamole, cheese, salsa, pico de gallo. Use all your favorites!
Whether you use leftover salmon or canned salmon from the pantry, this pasta is something you’ll want to try.
The linguine is soft and well-seasoned, and the creme fraiche sauce is smooth, creamy, and delicious. Even people who don’t like fish enjoy this pasta when I make it.
The flaked salmon has a very mild taste, and mostly, you taste the garlic, dill, and sauce. Call this one the seafood pasta for people who hate seafood.
This is the first recipe on the list that’s required much cooking, and even it’s ready in 40 minutes or less.
This chowder is one of my favorite fall dishes. It’s warm, thick, and comforting.
If you’re lucky enough to live by the ocean, it’s the perfect meal for throwing on a sweater and eating while you’re sitting on the porch, listening to the waves crash against the beach.
Plus, it has healthy, stick-to-your-ribs ingredients, too – bacon, onions, chicken stock, potatoes, corn, and the salmon, of course.
It’s one chowder you won’t want to miss.
If you’re looking for a light and colorful lunch salad, check out this recipe for salmon Nicoise salad.
It combines lettuce, salmon, green beans, white beans, onions, and cherry tomatoes.
Top it off with a couple of soft-cooked eggs and some bleu cheese dressing, and lunch is ready to eat.
6. Salmon Dip
I love dips so much! This one requires only five ingredients, and you can make it in about 15 minutes.
It has a fantastic salmon and onion taste and just a tiny bit of heat from the chiles. Serve it with crackers, mini toast, baguette slices, or anything else.
It tastes so good, you could serve it by itself, and people would still eat it.
This nutritious casserole is an excellent option if you’re trying to get rid of leftover fish because it works with almost any type, from salmon to cod to tuna.
Plus, it contains two of my favorite things: spinach and parmesan cheese. Depending on the type of fish you use, this dish can have a mild or strong fish flavor.
Either way, it’s cheesy, spinachy goodness, and I’m here for it.
8. Wahoo Salad
Although it’s called wahoo salad, you can make this yummy salad from any white fish.
It’s remarkably tasty, containing onions, celery, dill, garlic, and Old Bay seasoning.
Be light with the seasoning and garlic; otherwise, it can completely mask the taste of the fish.
If you’re working with leftovers, this recipe requires no cooking; you’ll mix everything in a bowl.
If you only have fresh fish, you’ll have to bake it for about 15-25 minutes first.
My family likes to eat their wahoo salad on toasted bread, but I prefer mine with crackers.
This beautiful, colorful, flavorful grain bowl is dairy- and gluten-free.
It’s also relatively low in calories, considering how much stuff is packed in it! Best of all, it’s good for you.
Containing quinoa, white fish, cabbage, radishes, avocado, tomatoes, and lime, you’ll feel terrific about yourself after having this nutritious, ready-in-10-minutes lunch.
10. Salmon Rillettes
Here’s another excellent dip you can whip together in no time. It’s also really versatile. I call it a dip, and that’s how I eat it most of the time.
You could also use it as a spread for bagels or veggies, or you could even eat it like wahoo salad, in between two pieces of toasted bread.
If you’re looking for something with a more ethnic flair to it, these cold fish wraps are just the thing.
I usually make them with salmon, but most fish would do. They even taste great with shrimp.
Containing chives, mushrooms, and various seasonings, these have a fresh earth and sea flavor combo.
You can dip them in any sauce you like, but I like the included recipe for the homemade dipping sauce.
The combination of ginger, scallions, soy sauce, and black vinegar is the perfect addition to the flavor of the fish.
If you can make fried rice, you can make this simple dish. It requires a few ingredients and about 35 minutes of your time.
The result is a mild-flavored Asian treat that works perfectly as a main dish or a side item.
13. Smoked Fish Dip
I can’t help myself; when it comes to leftover fish, I love using it to make dips and spreads. Day-old fish lends itself nicely to these types of foods.
This one is super easy to make. It literally involves throwing all the ingredients into a food processor and hitting on the ‘on’ switch. That’s it. Recipe over.
Serve it with whatever you like, but again, I prefer to eat mine with whole wheat crackers.
Salmon spring rolls aren’t “turning on the food processor” easy to make, but they’re pretty quick and easy, nonetheless.
To make them, you’ll need your salmon, some rice paper, and also cilantro, mint leaves, vermicelli, a carrot, and some crisp lettuce.
In about 20 minutes, you should have enough for five oversized, overstuffed, and super tasty spring rolls.
15. Smoked Fish Pate
This is another dip/spread you can make with various smoked fish, but I like to make it with catfish because catfish has a very distinct, river-like flavor that I love.
To make this pate, you’ll throw everything except the chives into the food processor and blend.
Then you’ll stick it in the fridge overnight. Be sure to add your chives before serving it the next day.
This creamy sandwich spread has a delightfully tangy, zesty flavor that takes you right up to the border of being outright sour and pulls back just in time.
The garlic, sprouts, and pepper help ground out the tanginess of the dill, lemon, yogurt, and sour cream. This is one I prefer to eat on bread instead of crackers.
I like to serve it with thick, dark bread, such as Russian black bread, whole wheat, or sourdough.
I also like to throw a sliced cucumber on my sandwich to add a bit of crunch, though I’ve been told that’s weird.
17. Tuna Casserole
Tuna casserole is a staple in many households, and you’ve probably made it dozens of times.
With this recipe, though, you can have it done and ready to eat in a little over 30 minutes.
It’s also a great way to get the little ones to eat their peas and celery.
I’d never thought about making Caesar salad with salmon until I ran across this recipe. Now, it’s one of my go-to lunch meals when I’m in a hurry.
It takes about 15 minutes, and all you need for it is lettuce, salmon, bread, and olive oil.
You can make avocado dressing using the provided recipe, but if you’re really pressed for time, store-bought Caesar dressing tastes almost as good.
19. Tuna Salad
I’ve used several recipes for tuna salad over the years, but this is one of my favorites. It takes 15 minutes to make enough of the stuff to feed four people!
It also tastes fantastic. I think it’s because of all the herbs, the red onion, and the Dijon mustard.
The mustard, especially, gives it a unique flavor, unlike most other tuna salad recipes I’ve tried.
Finally, why wait till dinner to enjoy your leftover fish when you can have it the very next morning instead?!
This scramble takes 20 minutes to cook and tastes great on top of a piece of warm, buttery toast. Plus, it’s a pretty healthy way to start the day.
Best of all, most of what you need to make it is probably already in your kitchen.
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