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Sea Bream Fillet with Lemon Parsley Crumb

Simple pan fried sea bream fillet is topped with an equally simple parsley and lemon zest crumb to create an elegant and simple dish.

Portrait close up image of pan fried sea bream fillet served with a parsley crumb and puy lentils with fennel

Pan Fried Fish Fillets.

Growing up fish came in 3 different ways, battered chip shop fish, fish cakes or breadcrumbed from the freezer.

I don’t think I ate a pan fried fillet of fish until I was well into my 20’s.

Which is crazy really because contrary to popular opinion cooking fish like this is so simple!

Cooking pan-fried sea bream fillets takes just 5 minutes, yes you read that right. I think that they look stunning and they taste incredible!

I use pretty much exactly the same technique here as I do in my fancy fish curry and pan-fried hake recipes. It is also not too far removed from the technique used in my pan-fried skate wings recipe.

Cooking the breadcrumb separately rather than crumbing the fish is just pure lazy.

But it makes this whole recipe stupidly simple and gives you all of the crunch of crumbed fish with an elegant twist.

Portrait overhead image of pan fried sea bream fillet served with a parsley crumb and puy lentils with fennel

Preparing the Bream.

The best advice that I can give you here is to buy the bream prepared.

If you can not then look for trout, sea bass or zander (walleye).

That, of course, is not to say that it is not possible to fillet the bream at home. I do, although I have to confess that it is my least favourite fish to fillet.

As with most round fish, the process is relatively simple.

  • Scale.
  • Remove the innards.
  • Remove the head by making a cut from the top of the head down behind the gills to the belly.
  • Cut alongside the backbone from the head to the tail.
  • Then work systematically to cut the remaining flesh from the bone.
  • Flip over and repeat.

Then it is just a case of pin boning and this is the bit I specifically I do not like doing with sea bream.

The bones are a pain to free up. You can either use proper fish tweezers or some bent needle-nosed pliers.

Run your fingers along from the head end of the fillet, find a bone then grab it.

It is important that you pull towards the head end of the fish and parallel to the fish.

If you pull towards the tail or straight up you will snap the bone and make a mess.

Portrait image of pan fried sea bream fillet served with a parsley crumb and puy lentils with fennel

Serving Suggestions.

I have a side dish that I simply love serving with pan fried fish.

It is a pickled fennel and puy lentil salad, it is what features in these pictures, but I also serve it with pan fried salmon.

When you are looking for a side for this dish you want something with a defined flavour that stands on its own.

However, you should not go too bold or you will rapidly overwhelm the flavour of the fish!

Something like my stir fried broccoli with the chilli omitted would be great as would green bean amandine.

Sticking with the green bean theme another great side would be a take on this Italian green bean and potato salad.

Square overhead image of pan fried sea bream fillet served with a parsley crumb and puy lentils with fennel
Yield: 2 Servings

Pan Fried Sea Bream Fillet Recipe

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

Cooking fish is a great deal easier than most people believe, this recipe takes some sea bream fillet, pan fries them to get a perfectly crispy skin and finishes it with lemon juice before topping with a simple crumb.


  • 2 Sea Bream
  • 30 g (1/3- 1/4 Cup) Breadcrumbs
  • 15 g (1/2 Cup) Parsley
  • 1 Lemon
  • 30 g (2 Tbsp) Butter
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • Salt to Taste


  1. If you have fish on the bone remover the fillets.
  2. Chop the parsley as finely as you can.
  3. Zest the lemon and cut it in half.
  4. Heat half of the butter in a pan over a medium heat and when it begins to foam add the breadcrumbs.
  5. Cook the breadcrumbs until golden brown this will take 5-7 minutes.
  6. Remove from the heat and stir through the chopped parsley and lemon zest.
  7. Transfer to some kitchen cloth and allow to drain.
  8. Heat the olive oil in a separate pan over a medium high heat.
  9. Make shallow cuts through the skin if the bream about 1.5cm apart.
  10. Season the fish generously with salt.
  11. Place the fish skin-side down in the pan and LEAVE IT ALONE for 3 minutes.
  12. After 3 minutes flip over the fish and cook for a further 60 seconds.
  13. Squeeze in the juice from half of the lemon and cook for 60 seconds.
  14. Serve with the golden crumb on top of the fish.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 326Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 96mgSodium: 578mgCarbohydrates: 15gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 21g

Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.

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