Recipe for sprats

This starter recipe shows how to cook sprats.  This fish recipe is served with a horseradish sauce and you could use whitebait instead of sprats if you wish.


Ingredients – 4 portions

  • 8 sprats per portion
  • 3tbs plain flour
  • 1 tbs cayenne pepper
  • Sea salt / pepper to taste
  • 1 lemon
  • Little gem lettuce to garnish
  • 1 tsp parsley
  • 4 tsp horseradish mustard
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • 4 slices brown bread & butter

Getting everything ready

  • Season the flour with sea salt and freshly milled black pepper.  Add most of the cayenne pepper (saving a little for dusting) and mix well.
  • Cut the lemon into wedges.
  • Wash and dry a few lettuce leaves.
  • Chop the parsley.
  • Wash the sprats.  Using a sharp knife, carefully remove the heads.  Rewash and pat them dry on a clean cloth.


  1. Heat the oil in a deep pan or work to around 200°C (Gas Mark 6).  Pass the sprats through the seasoned flour and shake off any excess flour.
  2. Carefully lower into the hot oil.  Fry about 6 at a time, so as not to lower the oil temperature.
  3. Fry for about 4 minutes until crispy and light brown in colour.
  4. Remove from the hot oil and drain on kitchen paper.  Keep warm while cooking the remaining fish.
  5. Arrange the lettuce leaves on your plates.
  6. Neatly arrange and add the lemon wedges and a spoonful of horseradish mustard.  Add a piece of bread and butter.  Sprinkle with chopped parsley and dust with a little cayenne pepper.  Serve hot.

Cooking sprats – hints and tips

You can exchange sprats in favour of whitebait, which are a little smaller.  Increase the number to about 16 per portion.  Don’t remove the heads and fry for about 2 minutes.

Fillet of plaice

This fish recipe is for a fillet of plaice. If looking for recipes for plaice, this pan-fried fillet of plaice will be ideal.

Essential tips for buying fish

The following gives some useful tips on what to look out for when buying and cooking fish, such as finding a fishmonger and looking into the fish’s eyes!

Different ways of cooking fish

There are different ways of cooking fish, including poaching, frying, grilling, stewing, steaming and baking. Find all you need to know about how to cook fish in different ways.

Monkfish fillets

This fish recipe is for monkfish fillets wrapped in bacon. If looking for monkfish recipes, this monkfish served with bacon and cous cous will be ideal.

Smoked haddock beignets

This haddock recipe is for smoked haddock beignets. If looking for recipes with haddock, this smoked haddock recipe is served with poached eggs and will be ideal.

Skate wings

This skate wing recipe is for skate wings served with darkened butter and capers. This skate wings recipe looks great on the plate and tastes fantastic.

Baked salmon with a herb crust

This salmon recipe is for baked salmon with a herb crust. If looking for salmon recipes, this baked salmon recipe will be ideal.

Smoked haddock chowder

This smoked haddock recipe is for a smoked haddock chowder. If looking for a recipe for haddock, this smoked haddock chowder will be ideal.

Fillet of cod in beer batter

This recipe for cod has a fillet of cod cooked in a beer batter. If looking for cod recipes, this cod in beer batter will be ideal and is great served with a pea puree and chunky chips.

Grilled sea bass

This sea bass recipe is for grilled sea bass served with asparagus spears and baby broad beans. If looking for sea bass recipes, this grilled sea bass recipe will be ideal.