Catfish Po Boy

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This catfish po boy is a classic Louisiana favorite that everyone is going to love. Seasoned, pan-fried catfish is paired with lettuce, tomato, and a seasoned mayo sauce on a soft bun for the ultimate fish sandwich experience.

Closeup shot of catfish po boy.

If you love fish sandwiches, then this po boy is for your. With its fried catfish filet, classic lettuce and tomato combo, and a zesty mayonnaise mix with a ton of flavor, this sandwich will have you smacking your lips with every bite!

Why You'll Love This Recipe

  • Limited Ingredients: It only takes a few simple ingredients to make these po boys.
  • Convenient: This recipe comes together quickly, making it perfect for any night of the week.
  • A Classic Southern Sandwich: Po boys are world-famous for their fried meat and zesty flavor.
  • Kid-Friendly: This is a zest sandwich, but it's not hot. Even kids love it!

Top Tip

Only flip your fish one time while frying it. This helps get the batter nice and crispy and cooks the fish evenly.

Closeup shot of hand holding half of a catfish po boy.


This easy recipe only takes a few simple ingredients to make, and you can find them all in your kitchen and with one quick trip to the grocery store to snag the catfish.

All the ingredients you need to make this recipe are listed here, but you can find their exact amounts in the recipe card at the end of the post.

  • Vegetable Oil: Oil crisps the fish as it fries and keeps it from sticking.
  • Catfish filets: The star of the show, catfish, has a mild, slightly sweet flavor perfect for these po boys.
  • Egg, Flour, Salt, and Sugar: These ingredients create the batter for your fried catfish filets.
  • Mayo, Sweet Pickle Relish, Minced Garlic, Horseradish, and Worcestershire Sauce: These ingredients create a sweet and savory spread with a kick of flavor and a touch of heat for the sandwiches.
  • Sub Bun, Shredded Lettuce, Sliced Tomato: These are the classic finishers for your po boy, giving you a soft bread bed for the sandwiches and bright, classic flavors for the sandwiches.
Overhead shot of individual catfish po boy ingredients in bowls on table


1: Whisk the egg, flour, salt, and sugar until smooth.

Closeup overhead shot of egg, flour, salt, and sugar in bowl

2: Dredge the catfish in the mixture to fully coat on both sides.

Closeup overhead shot of catfish filet being dredged in coating.

3: Fry in hot oil until golden on both sides.

Closeup overhead shot of golden brown catfish frying in skillet.

4: Place the filets on a plate lined with paper towels to absorb excess oil.

Closeup overhead shot of breaded fried catfish filets on plate lined with paper towels

5: Combine the mayonnaise, pickle relish, garlic, horseradish, and Worcestershire sauce in a bowl.

Closeup overhead shot of spicy mayo ingredients in bowl.

6: Spread the mayo mixture on the insides of the buns and top the bottom buns with lettuce and tomato.

Overhead shot of sub rolls topped with seasoned mayo, lettuce, and tomato

7: Top with the fried catfish filets and enjoy!

Closeup overhead shot of open-faced catfish po boys on plate.

Substitutions and Variations

  • Use your favorite white fish. Any mild white fish will work for these po boys.
  • Shellfish is a classic po boy meat. Use shrimp, lobster, or crab in place of catfish.
  • Make it hot. Try adding red pepper flakes to your mayo mixture.


  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Mixing bowls
  • Skillet
Closeup shot of catfish po boy


This recipe makes two sandwiches, so there should be no need to store them. However, if you choose to multiply the recipe, refrigerate the catfish separately in an air-tight container to keep the breading from getting soggy from the other ingredients.

To reheat any leftovers, cover them loosely with a damp paper towel and microwave until heated through. If you're reheating extra catfish filets, bake them uncovered on a wire cooking rack over a baking sheet at 350 until heated through.

How long do catfish po boys last in the fridge?

Your po boys will stay fresh and delicious for up to 2 days in the refrigerator in an air-tight container.

Can I freeze catfish po boys?

I don't recommend freezing whole sandwiches, but you can freeze the catfish filets wrapped in plastic wrap and stored in an air-tight, freezer-safe container or heavy-duty freezer bag for up to 3 months.

What to Serve with Catfish Po Boys

These classic southern sandwiches are perfect when paired with classic sides for a complete meal everyone will love. Try them with:

  • French fries
  • Potato wedges
  • Tater tots
  • Potato chips
  • Coleslaw
  • Mac and cheese
  • Casseroles

Tips for Making the Best Catfish Po Boys

  • Be sure your oil is hot enough. If water flicked on the oil dances, you're ready to fry your catfish.
  • Use a large skillet so the filets don't reduce the heat of the oil too much.
  • Only flip your filets once while cooking. This allows them to get nicely crispy and golden on both sides and evenly cook the fish.


What does catfish taste like?

Catfish has a mild, slightly sweet flavor with a firm, flaky texture. They do not taste dirty, which is a common misconception.

Do catfish filets have bones?

Fileting a fish is meant to bypass the bones, so no filet should have them. However, it's important to check anyway, as bones can sometimes sneak by.

How do you remove bones from fish filets?

Run your fingers along the filets against the grain, feeling for any slight pricks or pointy areas. These are the bones. Use a pair of tweezers, and pull the bone from the filet with the grain so it comes out smoothly.

Why didn't my breading stick to my fried fish?

If your oil isn't hot enough, the breading will soak up the oil, becoming soggy an potentially falling off the fish.

What are po boys?

Po boys are a Louisiana sandwich made with fried fish, seafood, or chicken and topped with lettuce and tomato.

More Seafood

Yield: 2 sandwiches

Catfish Po Boy

Catfish Po Boy

This catfish po boy is a classic Louisiana favorite with fried catfish, lettuce, tomatoes, and a zesty mayo spread.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Additional Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes


  • ½ vegetable oil (for frying)
  • 2 catfish filets
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • 3 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp sweet pickle relish
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp prepared horseradish
  • 1 tsp worcestershire sauce
  • 2 sub-style buns
  • ½ cup shredded lettuce
  • 1 medium tomato, sliced


  1. Heat vegetable oil in a medium skillet over medium-low heat.
  2. Place catfish filets on a plate lined with paper towel to absorb any moisture.
  3. In a small bowl, combine egg, flour, salt, and sugar.  Whisk until smooth.
  4. Test oil by sprinkling a small amount into oil.  If it “dances” it is ready.
  5. Dredge catfish filets into batter, covering them completely. 
  6. Gently place them in your hot oil.
  7. Cook each side for about 4 minutes or until fish is golden brown on the outside and flaky inside.
  8. Place cooked fish on a plate lined with paper towel to absorb excess oil.
  9. Prepare sauce by combining mayonnaise, pickle relish, garlic, horseradish, and worcestershire sauce. Spread sauce evenly over the top and bottoms of your buns.
  10.  Sprinkle lettuce evenly on the bottom buns followed by the tomato slices.
  11. Finally, place cooked filets on each sandwich and enjoy.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 1486Total Fat 75gSaturated Fat 18gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 51gCholesterol 364mgSodium 3267mgCarbohydrates 110gFiber 5gSugar 14gProtein 89g

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