Blackened Catfish

Catfish has a fairly high fat content and it’s even better with bacon grease, but then, aren’t most recipes? It’s best to prepare this one outdoors. Whenever you pepper-coat something and burn it in a pan, it will create fumes that make it difficult to breathe when you’re in close quarters. Add to that a mess of splattering bacon grease and you’ve got trouble. If you decide to cook it indoors, open the windows, rank up the fans and listen for the smoke detector alarm. Might be a good time to check the batteries! This recipe is best with thick fillets from large catfish. You can substitute commercial blackening seasoning or Cajun spice. If you make your own and are missing an ingredient or two, nobody will notice.

Blackened Catfish


  • 4 catfish fillets 6 – 8 ounces each
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons bacon grease
  • 4 tablespoons sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • pinch sugar
  • Blackening Seasoning
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon basil leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 teaspoons salt


  • Combine Blackening Seasoning ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Rub fish with olive oil and then coat evenly with spice mixture. Cover and refrigerate for 30 – 60 minutes. Heat bacon grease in a heavy skillet, preferably cast iron, over high heat. Add fish and sear on one side until blackened. Flip over and sear other side, but only until fish is just cooked and not overcooked.
  • Place fish on plates, blackest side up. Combine sour cream, lime juice and sugar and spoon over fish.

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