Perfect Baked Cod

This really is the best baked cod! The fish comes out perfectly tender and coated in our “magic” seafood seasoning. A dinnertime home run!

Baked cod

Looking for a home-run weeknight dinner? Try this incredible Baked Cod! We’ll admit, cod wasn’t always a fish on our radar. But this fish is truly special. It’s mild, tender, and buttery in flavor. The best part? It’s coated in our Magic Seafood Seasoning blend, which really does hold some kind of magic. It’s smoky, savory, and makes you want another bite before you’ve finished chewing. This baked fish is always a hit with our three year old, and really: the whole family! Here are the tricks to making this tasty dish.

How to buy a great fillet of cod

The most important part of making great baked cod? Start with a great piece of fish. We’ve been burned with a few bad pieces of cod, so here’s what to know:

  • Fresh tends to be best. With salmon you can find great fillets frozen or fresh. But the frozen cod we’ve tried has been sub-par, with a fishy aftertaste and watery texture. If you can, nab a piece from your local fish counter.
  • Buy wild caught. Wild caught is most sustainable, and it’s also the best quality. You can use this rule for most fish you buy. US caught is best if you’re living in the US.

What does cod taste like?

If you’re on the fence about cod, allow us to convince you. Cod has a mild, pure flavor that’s not got an ounce of “fishy” aftertaste. In fact, it’s even more mild than salmon. Cod is a great starting point for people who think they don’t like fish.

More ways to eat cod? Cod is versatile and works in many different types of preparations: like pan fried, in fish tacos, or grilled.

Baked cod

How to season baked cod: “magic” seafood seasoning

Sure, you can make baked cod with just a squeeze of lemon and salt and pepper. But we wanted to take this piece of fish over the top. The best way to season cod? Homemade Magic Seafood Seasoning! It’s a little smoky, savory, and salty, with a hint of celery seed and allspice for some intrigue. There really is some kind of magic in this blend. Mix up a big batch and it keeps for 1 year in your pantry. Here’s what’s in this magic seasoning blend:

  • Smoked paprika (or sweet paprika): A Spanish version of paprika (known as pimentón), made with peppers that are smoked over a fire. You can find it in most grocery stores; it’s also available online here.
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Thyme
  • Celery seed
  • Cumin
  • Allspice
  • Salt
How to bake cod

How to make baked cod: some tips!

Baked cod is one of the simplest ways to prepare this delicately-flavored fish! It comes out tender and seasoned to perfection. There are just a few things to note:

  • Let your fish come to room temp before baking. You can do this while the oven preheats; just pull the fish out the fridge. Cooking it from room temperature helps to ensure even cooking.
  • Bake at high temperature. 450 degrees Fahrenheit roasts it to perfection.
  • Cover with the magic seasoning blend. Don’t attempt to buy seafood seasoning: make the homemade version! It comes together in a flash.
  • Bake 8 to 10 minutes, or until the internal temperature is 130 degrees Fahrenheit. Cod is not nearly as touchy as salmon, so you can approximate without a thermometer. Get it just flaky!

Cod seasoning variations

OK, we’ve waxed on about the magic seafood seasoning enough. Want to mix it up a little? There are some great other seasoning variations to try:

  • Mexican-Style Cod: Add 2 tablespoons of this Fish Taco Seasoning before baking.
  • Cajun Cod: Try it with 1 to 2 tablespoons of this spicy homemade Cajun seasoning.
  • Blackened Cod: Sprinkle on 1 to 2 tablespoons Blackened seasoning, a more mild blend that still preserves the Cajun flavor.
Baked cod

Make it a meal! Sides to serve with baked cod

Impress your entire family with this baked cod to make an easy, healthy dinner! (Ours was seriously impressed…even our three year old!) The seasoning blend is pretty versatile, lending to lots of different side dish ideas. Here are some we’d recommend:

This baked cod recipe is…

Gluten-free, pescatarian and dairy-free.

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Baked cod

Perfect Baked Cod


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (7 votes, average: 4.86 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Description

This really is the best baked cod! The fish comes out perfectly tender and coated in our “magic” seafood seasoning. A dinnertime home run!


Scale

Ingredients


Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. While the oven preheats, allow the cod to sit at room temperature.
  2. If you haven’t already, make the Magic Seafood Seasoning.
  3. Brush the cod fillets with olive oil, then sprinkle them with the kosher salt and the seafood seasoning. Place the fish on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  4. Bake the cod for 8 to 10 minutes until flaky and just cooked; test it with a fork to assess doneness. The internal temperature should be about 130 degrees Fahrenheit when removing it from the oven. Watch the cod to make sure not to overcook it; the timing can vary based on the thickness of the fish. Serve immediately.
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Baked cod

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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.

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