Irresistible Smelts Baked with White Wine Recipe

Behold, fish enthusiasts! Today, I present an exquisite recipe that will elevate your love for fish to a whole new level. Say hello to Smelts Baked in White Wine. A dish that is as succulent as it is mouth-watering. Trust me, with this recipe, you’re in for a delectable experience that will have you salivating from start to finish.

Not only does the dish hold the powerful flavors of smelt elevated with cayenne pepper, garlic and white wine, but it’s also incredibly easy to cook, making it a staple at dinner parties or for cozy family meals. This fish recipe features smelt baked in white wine – a classic combination that infuses the delicate fish with richness and life.

Whether you’ve had smelt before or are completely new to it, Smelts Baked in White Wine is an excellent way to enjoy this small but mighty fish fillet. So let’s get right down to the recipe and discover what makes this dish so special!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Smelts Baked in White Wine
Smelts Baked in White Wine

Are you tired of the same old fish recipes? Look no further than this baked white wine smelt recipe. Not only is this dish delicious and easy to make, it also offers a unique twist on traditional fish recipes.

The smelt fish used in this recipe are small and crispy, making them the perfect bite-sized treat. The addition of cayenne pepper gives these little fish a kick of spice that will leave your taste buds dancing with delight. Plus, with the use of dry white wine, the flavors are elevated and make your ordinary fried fish look amateurish.

Not only is this recipe tasty, but it’s also versatile. It can be served as an appetizer or as a main course with rice pilaf, swiss chard, or even spaghetti if you’re feeling Italian. You can even dress up this recipe with mushroom or celery toppings.

So why not add a new dish to your repertoire? Your taste buds will thank you for trying something new with this baked white wine smelts recipe.

Ingredient List

 Dive into this delectable dish of baked smelts in white wine!
Dive into this delectable dish of baked smelts in white wine!

Below is the list of ingredients needed for Smelts Baked in White Wine Recipe:

  • 4 cups of smelts, dressed, washed, and dried
  • 1/2 cup of dry white wine
  • 2 cups of fine breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup of parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup of celery, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup of mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) of butter
  • 1/2 cup olive oil

Note: Adjust the amount of salt and pepper according to your preference. Also, you can add or reduce the amount of cayenne pepper depending on your tolerance for spiciness.

The Recipe How-To

 These smelts won't disappoint when served alongside a crisp white wine.
These smelts won’t disappoint when served alongside a crisp white wine.

Now that you’ve gathered all the ingredients, it’s time to start cooking! Follow these easy steps to create a delicious dish of smelts baked in white wine.

Step 1: Preheat the Oven

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Step 2: Prepare the Smelts

First, make sure your smelts are dressed, washed, and dried. Then, season them generously with salt and pepper.

Step 3: Coat the Smelts

Dip each of your seasoned smelt in some cup fine breadcrumbs, making sure it is fully coated. Repeat for every smelt.

Step 4: Arrange the Smelts in a Baking Dish

Prepare a baking dish by greasing it with some cooking spray or olive oil. Arrange the breaded smelts in the dish.

Step 5: Add Vegetables

You can also add some vegetables like celery, mushrooms, garlic, and/or parsley around the smelts to add flavor.

Step 6: Pour White Wine on Top

Pour wine recipe whisked with salt and pepper fried with garlic and drizzle over the top of your smelts.

Step 7: Bake for Around 20 Minutes

Bake your smelts in the oven for around 20 minutes or until fully cooked.

And there you have it, perfect smelts baked in white wine!

Substitutions and Variations

 The white wine elevates the flavor of the smelts in this baked recipe!
The white wine elevates the flavor of the smelts in this baked recipe!

If you’re looking to switch things up a bit with the smelts recipe, there are plenty of substitutions and variations you can try. Here are some ideas:

– Instead of white wine, you could use rice wine, which will impart a slightly different flavor.

– Swiss chard can be substituted for the parsley for a heartier green addition.

– For a spicier kick to your smelt baked in white wine recipe, add 1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper or smelt chilies to your mix.

– Crispy fried smelts are another way to cook this small fish fillet: roll them in a mixture of salt, pepper, and 1/2 cup fine breadcrumbs before pan-frying in butter or vegetable oil. This Italian take on the smelt is often called fish piccata.

– Switch out the baking method for deep frying or pan frying if you’re looking for a different texture. Simply dredge your dressed and washed dried smelts in flour, dip them in an egg wash, then coat in breadcrumbs before frying until golden brown. Salt pepper fried smelts are often served with garlic white wine.

Remember that each substitution or variation may lead to slight changes in flavor or texture, so don’t be afraid to make adjustments to best fit your preferences.

Serving and Pairing

 Pair these irresistible baked smelts with your favorite white wine for a perfect dinner combo.
Pair these irresistible baked smelts with your favorite white wine for a perfect dinner combo.

This smelts baked white wine recipe is simple yet elegant, making it ideal for a special dinner or occasion. When it comes to pairing, the light and delicate flavor of the smelt fish is complemented by dry white wine. I recommend serving this dish with a crisp and refreshing glass of Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio to enhance its flavor.

Pairing wine with fish may seem daunting, but the general rule is to pair white wine with lighter fish dishes and red wines with richer and heavier dishes. You’ll also want to consider the preparation method and seasoning used in the dish when pairing it with the right wine.

In addition to wine, this dish pairs well with a wide range of sides. One classic pairing is steamed rice and sautéed Swiss chard, which adds a touch of earthiness to the dish while still allowing the flavors of the smelt and white wine to shine through. You can also serve this dish alongside roasted mushrooms, garlic roasted potatoes, or even a simple green salad dressed with olive oil and lemon juice.

If you’re looking to elevate this dish even further, try drizzling some parsley butter on top before serving. The creamy herb butter contrasts beautifully with the crisp baked smelts and adds an extra layer of flavor.

Overall, this smelts baked white wine recipe is versatile enough to be served alongside a variety of sides and drinks. With its simple yet stunning flavors, it’s sure to impress any dinner guests.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 One bite of these baked smelts in white wine and you'll feel as if you're dining in Italy!
One bite of these baked smelts in white wine and you’ll feel as if you’re dining in Italy!

You can definitely make Smelts Baked in White Wine ahead of time for any special occasion or for your upcoming dinner party. Smelts baked in white wine can last in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours if stored properly. Allow the fish to cool down at room temperature first and then cover the baking dish with plastic wrap or aluminum foil tightly. You will want to reheat these smelts carefully so they don’t dry out or lose their texture.

To reheat these delicious smelts, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, cover the dish with aluminum foil, and bake them in the oven for about 10 to 15 minutes, or until they get heated through. Afterward, remove the aluminum foil and continue baking it for an additional 10 minutes, allowing them to be crispy on top.

If reheating isn’t something you’d like to try, you can also enjoy these smelts cold as they still pack a lot of flavors without needing to be reheated. The perfect serving suggestions include serving them alongside a green salad drizzled with all-natural olive oil vinaigrette dressing or even as part of your packed lunch with a side of crispy roasted potatoes.

Tips for Perfect Results

 Even non-seafood lovers will succumb to the flavor of this scrumptious meal.
Even non-seafood lovers will succumb to the flavor of this scrumptious meal.

To achieve perfect results with smelts baked in white wine recipe, I have gathered some tips that you can follow:

1. Use fresh ingredients: Make sure to use fresh smelt fillets for this recipe. Also, fresh parsley and mushrooms add an extra layer of flavor to the dish.

2. Preheat the oven: It’s essential to preheat the oven to the required temperature of 400 degrees Fahrenheit, which helps ensure that your smelts will cook evenly.

3. Grease your baking dish: Use cooking spray or olive oil to grease your baking dish before arranging your smelts. This step will prevent them from sticking to the dish during baking.

4. Season smelt fillets before cooking: Season the smelt fillets with salt and pepper before cooking them. This will enhance the flavor of the fish while balancing other flavors like garlic and white wine in this recipe.

5. Add breadcrumbs on top: Sprinkle extra breadcrumbs on top of the dressed and washed dried smelts to create a crispy and flavorful crust.

6. Don’t overcook them: Overcooking your smelts can make them dry and tough. Check their doneness after 15-20 minutes in the oven to avoid overcooking.

7. Pair with complementary dishes: Smelts baked in white wine pairs well with dishes like steamed rice, roasted vegetables or swiss chard as a side.

8. Experiment with different wines: While this recipe calls for dry white wine; you can experiment with different wines like rice wine or Italian white wine for a slightly different flavor profile.

By following these tips, you’ll be setting yourself up for success when making this scrumptious dish.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, smelts baked in white wine is a delicious and easy-to-make recipe that you must try at least once. The combination of butter, mushrooms, cayenne, parsley, and white wine creates a beautiful flavor profile that will make for a memorable meal. Plus, this recipe lends itself to various substitutions and variations, such as pan-frying or deep-frying the smelts.

Aside from being tasty, smelt fish is also an affordable and sustainable seafood option. By choosing to cook smelts, you are making an environmentally conscious decision that can also benefit your health. Smelts are low in mercury and high in omega-3 fatty acids, which can help reduce inflammation and potentially protect against heart disease.

To fully enjoy the flavors of the smelts baked in white wine recipe, consider serving it with a side of rice or swiss chard. You can also pair it with a dry white wine like rice wine or chenin blanc to complement the dish’s delicate white wine flavors.

Overall, smelts baked in white wine is a fantastic dish that every seafood lover should try. Not only is it easy to make and delicious, but it’s also a sustainable and healthy option that you can feel good about eating. So what are you waiting for? Grab some fresh smelts and get cooking!

Smelts Baked in White Wine

Smelts Baked in White Wine Recipe

Smelts are usually pan-fried. This is a different way to cook them. Adapted from Fish Cookery of North America.
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Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine European
Calories 520.9 kcal


  • 1 cup celery, chopped
  • 1/4 cup parsley, minced
  • 2 lbs smelt, dressed, washed and dried
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup fine breadcrumbs
  • salt
  • pepper
  • cayenne
  • 1 cup mushroom, sliced
  • 6 tablespoons butter


  • Preheat oven to 500°.
  • Place celery and parsley in a greased baking dish.
  • Lay the fish on top.
  • Pour wine over fish.
  • Sprinkle with bread crumbs.
  • Add salt, pepper and cayenne.
  • Arrange mushrooms on top.
  • Dot with butter.
  • Bake, uncovered, for about 10 minutes, or until fish is cooked through, basting once with pan juices.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 226gCalories: 520.9kcalCarbohydrates: 12.1gProtein: 54.1gFat: 25.2gSaturated Fat: 12.4gCholesterol: 250.1mgSodium: 450.3mgFiber: 1.3gSugar: 2g
Keyword < 15 Mins, Baking, Canadian, High In..., High Protein, Oven
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