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Sichuan Braised Cod

Scott Phillips

Servings: 4

This one-pot meal is so flavorful, it’s hard to believe that you can prepare it in under 30 minutes. You’ll be tempted to save this recipe exclusively for company, but don’t. A Monday night is as good as any night to treat yourself to this warming dish.


  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tsp. cornstarch
  • 2 Tbs. rice vinegar, more to taste
  • 3/4 cup low-salt canned chicken broth
  • 1-1/2 Tbs. soy sauce
  • 1 Tbs. ketchup
  • 1-1/2 lb. thick cod fillets (“cod loins”), cut into 4 uniform pieces
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 3 Tbs. canola or peanut oil
  • 10 dried Thai chiles or other small whole chiles
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced, white and green parts separated
  • 1-1/2 Tbs. minced ginger

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size based on four servings
  • Calories (kcal) : 290
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 120
  • Fat (g): 13
  • Saturated Fat (g): 1.5
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 3.5
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 7
  • Cholesterol (mg): 115
  • Sodium (mg): 940
  • Carbohydrates (g): 11
  • Fiber (g): 1
  • Protein (g): 30


  • In a small bowl, mix the 2 tsp. cornstarch with the 2 Tbs. vinegar. Add the broth, soy sauce, and ketchup. Season the fish with 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. black pepper. Spread the remaining 1/2 cup of the cornstarch on a plate, and put the eggs in a wide bowl. Dredge the fish in the cornstarch. Heat 2 Tbs. of the oil in a 12-inch nonstick pan over medium-high heat until shimmering hot. Soak the fish in the egg for a couple of seconds, then add to the pan. Cook, flipping after 3 min., until the fish is browned and a little firm to the touch, about 5 minutes total (it should not be cooked all the way through). Transfer the fish to a large plate.
  • Add the remaining 1 Tbs. oil to the pan, then add the chiles, white parts of the scallions, and ginger. Cook, stirring, until the scallions become translucent and browned in places, about 2 min. Give the cornstarch mixture a quick stir and then pour it into the pan. It should come to a boil and thicken quickly. Reduce the heat to medium-low, return the fish to the pan, and flip it a couple of times to coat it in the sauce. Cover the pan, leaving the lid slightly ajar, and cook until the fish is just cooked through and starting to flake, 3 to 5 min. Taste the sauce for salt and vinegar and add more to taste. Serve immediately with the sauce spooned over the fish and sprinkled with scallion greens.

Serve with basic white rice.


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Reviews (19 reviews)

  • user-540272 | 09/07/2020

    Delicious flavours! I have added a little bit garlic on the frying oil together with ginger, scallions and red peppers. Added a little bit honey to the sauce. It came really good.

  • whatscooking | 10/16/2018

    I wanted to like this sauce. It just didn’t seem balanced, too acidic. The method of cooking worked well though. It produced nicely browned cod. I might play a bit and add brown sugar and garlic if I make it again. Maybe reduce the vinegar

  • ToddWynia | 08/03/2018

    We really didn’t like this much. I didn’t think I over-salted, but it tasted quite salty. The flavors seemed underdeveloped.

  • wordofmouth | 07/17/2018

    Just stumbled upon this recipe and fell in love. Big hit with the hubby even though I reduced the Thai chilis to 5 (it was still really really hot)!! The sauce was perfect for 2 6oz filets but definitely double if you prefer saucy or making 1 1/2 lbs of fish. I made a couple of adjustments only because I realized last minute my pantry was not up to date... vegetable broth for the chix broth, flour for corn-starch in the sauce and coconut flour for dredging the fish. Came out great but next time will try as written for a good comparison

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