Teriyaki Fried Sardine Fillets

While strolling through the seafood area of one of our local grocery stores, we noticed something we hadn’t see before. Frozen Sardines! Up until this point in our lives, we’d only ever eaten the canned variety…while tasty, those fall apart and lend themselves better to fish cakes or getting the tuna salad treatment…so we were very excited to find raw ones to work with. In the end, we decided to fillet, bread, fry, and toss them in teriyaki sauce!

We served our sardines over soba noodles infused with carrots and zucchini. However, they’d also go well with fried rice or even on a salad.

**As a word of caution. If your wife doesn’t like the smell of fish, fillet your fish outside or risk wrath!**

Time: 35 Minutes (more if you’re filleting multiple servings worth of fish)


  • Fresh Sardines (canned don’t work because they fall apart)
  • Egg
  • All Purpose Flour
  • Panko Bread Crumbs
  • Teriyaki Sauce


  • Fillet your fish:
    • Remove the heads by working your knife under the bone near the fish’s gills. You’ll need to do this on both sides, and then the head should come right off.
    • Slice the belly open, and remove the organs.
    • Work your knife down the length of the backbone, and then pull the backbone right out. Don’t worry about leaving little bones in…you won’t even notice them while you eat.
    • Remove the tails.
  • Place three bowls near your prep station. Pour some all purpose flour in one, whisk an egg in another, and pour some panko bread crumbs in the third.
  • Working one fillet at a time, coat in flour, egg wash, and then coat in bread crumbs.
  • Heat some oil in a heavy bottomed pan (we prefer cast iron).
  • When the oil’s hot, carefully place your breaded fish in, and fry until golden brown on the bottom.
  • Flip, and fry the other side until it’s also golden brown.
  • When your fish is cooked, remove from the pan, and place a fillet or two in a large bowl. Pour some teriyaki sauce atop, and toss to coat. Repeat until all of your fish is coated.
  • Plate, devour, and enjoy!


  1. These look nice – good job on cleaning them. I bought some ‘alice’ the other day, these are fresh anchovies, similar to sardines but smaller. They still have their skins and in this case their innards, but usually (in restaurants) you will get these very tasty fish in a sour marinade that makes them incomparable. They are usually a part of the Italian antipasti when you live close to the sea. In your parts you ought to be able to pick some up at an Italian market. The ones I got are still raw (actually more like ceviche), but were packaged without air and are good until sometime in 2022. Anyway, I recommend these. They’e usually served very simply in the marinade with a little bit of baguette to sop up the marinade.

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