Guys, this dish might sound and look fancy… but I promise, IT’S EASY! It does, however, taste fancy AF… so that’s still a thing. Pan-seared Cod with Lemon Caper Sauce will impress your guests or keep it private and have a stay-at-home date night like I did! You can really make it your own with your favorite flavors. I used wild, fresh cod fish but you can use any white flakey (skinless) fish. I’ve also made this with scallops and it’s fabulous.
I’d recommend serving it with something to catch up that delicious sauce… like white rice, cauliflower rice, a sweet potato mash or maybe just some of your favorite (paleo/GF) bread to soak up the juices! If you’re doing Whole30… I’d stick with the cauliflower or potato. I used a homemade “compound” ghee that I made with fresh herbs, but it’s totally OPTIONAL, you can use plain ghee and it will be amazing still. One requirement is to use a non-stick pan for this, cod is very delicate and will stick usually! You can also use a cast iron.
Pan-seared Cod with Lemon Caper Sauce – Recipe
Pan-seared Cod with Lemon Caper Sauce (Paleo, Whole30)
4.41 from 5 votes
This simple but restaurant-inspired dish will make for a fancy, buttery, flavorful dinner! The sauce is so versatile, you can use on any seafood or skinless fish you'd like.
26ozpieces of cod (or other skinless, white flakey fish)
pinchdried rosemary, crushed
1Tbspextra-virgin olive oil
1/3cupbone broth or chicken/veg stock
2Tbspghee (optionally use herbed ghee - recipe below)
Herbed Compound Ghee (optional)
1garlic clove, minced
2scallion stalks, cleaned and chopped
other desired herbs (I used a pinch of fresh thyme and cilantro)
1-2tspolive oil (as needed)
Herbed Compound Ghee (optional)
Combine all ingredients in a food processor and mix until you have a chunky mixture that's smooth. Only use the olive oil as needed (if your food processor isn't mixing well) - store in a small mason jar in the fridge and use!
Pan-seared fish & sauce
Clean and dry pieces of fish (if it's wet, it will be stickier on the pan). Season with salt, pepper, rosemary and set aside.
To a non-stick pan, add olive oil over medium heat. Once well heated, add your fish (presentation-side down), you should hear a sizzle. Add 1 Tbsp plain ghee and swirl it around. Let cook for approx. 6 minutes.
Slide a spatula under fish carefully, it should not be sticking - if some sides are, try to find a way under to get the bulk of the fish flipped over. Cook for another 2-3 minutes depending on how thick the pieces are. Once done, set aside and keep warm.
Next, deglaze the pan by lowering the heat a bit and adding minced garlic, stir around and don't let it burn. Quickly add the lemon juice, broth, and de-glaze the bottom of the pan (with any sticky bits) with a wooden spoon. Next, you can add the capers and season with sea salt and pepper.
Now add more ghee (or the herbed compound ghee for extra flavor!), continue to stir here and there, for 3-5 minutes, this will help thicken up your sauce.
Add your fish back to your pan, or simply plate the fish and pour the sauce over top. I like to add it back to the pan to warm it up again and spoon the sauce over top and bottom.