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Restaurant Style Poor Man’s Lobster

Impress your friends with this Restaurant Style Poor Man’s Lobster recipe! Make this baked fish for your next restaurant meal at home that’s so simple you’ll look like a pro!

A Midwest Friday Favorite

In the Midwest, a Friday night fish fry is a staple, but not everyone likes fried fish. That is why many restaurants also offer a poor man’s lobster special as well. When served with drawn or melted butter, it is sure to satisfy even some picky fish eaters.

Restaurant Style Poor Man's Lobster Pin

Does Poor Man’s Lobster Taste Like Lobster?

The fish used in poor man’s recipes are “whitefish.” They have a very similar taste to lobster, although not quite the same. Lobster is usually sweeter, but when you’re on a budget, this comes very close.

There are many types of whitefish. The ones recommended most for this recipe are cod and haddock while halibut works too. Pick whatever whitefish suits your tastes.

Baked Haddock Whitefish

How do you know when Fish is Done Baking?

The baking time on the recipe says 15-20 minutes or until the fish is flaky, or about 10 minutes per inch of thickness. You do not want to over bake the fish as it can become a little tough. Therefore, it is always a good idea to test for doneness of the fish. 

Baked Poor Man's Lobster

To test the doneness, carefully pierce the thickest portion of the fish with a fork and twist slightly. If the fish flakes without resistance, it is done. If it does not, cook a few minutes longer. Additionally, when the fish is not cooked, it will have the opaque coloring and when it is done, the meat will be white.

Flaky Cooked Haddock Fish

What Sides go well with Baked Fish?

In the Midwest, traditionally Restaurant Style Poor Man’s Lobster is served with coleslaw, rye bread, and a potato such as french fries. However, baked fish would also go well with mixed vegetables, a lightly flavored pasta, or even wild rice pilaf.

Cheesy Potato and Ham Bake
Cheesy Potato and Ham Bake

How do you Reduce Fishy Flavor?

Some people are very sensitive to fish’s flavor. Here are some ideas to reduce the fishy taste.

Melted Butter

Soak the fish in milk. This helps absorb some of the fishiness and seems to make the fish taste a bit milder.

Disguise the Fishy Flavor. Use spices, or a glaze, or garlic and lemon flavors. Any type of citrus helps mask the fish flavor.Choose mild flavored fish. Some types of fish are less fishy than others. Do your research to pick the best option for sensitive guests.

Restaurant Style Poor Man's Lobster Pin
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Restaurant Style Poor Man’s Lobster

Impress your friends with this Restaurant Style Poor Man’s Lobster recipe! Make this baked fish for your next restaurant meal at home that’s so simple you’ll look like a pro!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: copycat, dinner recipe, easy recipe, fish, restaurant recipe
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 192kcal

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Ingredients

  • 1 ¼ Pounds Fish Fillets Cod, Haddock, or Halibut
  • 1/2 Tsp Seasoned Salt
  • 1/2 Tsp Paprika
  • 3 Tbsp Butter melted or drawn

Instructions

  • Place fish in a greased or oiled baking dish. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • If the fish is frozen, thaw it. Once thawed, slice the fish into serving portions. Place them in the prepared baking dish(s). This can all be baked in an 11 X 7 baking dish or smaller individual baking dishes. Sprinkle with the seasoned salt and paprika.
    Seasoned Raw Whitefish
  • Depending on the day, I may drizzle butter over the fish before baking or use it as dipping sauce after. The choice is yours. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the fish flakes easily with a fork.
  • Serve as is or serve with melted butter
    Flaky Cooked Haddock Fish

Nutrition

Calories: 192kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 84mg | Sodium: 442mg | Potassium: 589mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 338IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 25mg | Iron: 1mg

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