Haddock Marsala

Low Carb Fish Marsala RecipeWhen reducing starchy carbs from your diet, it becomes necessary to rebalance your nutrition sources. My personal approach has been to severely restrict high glycemic load carbs – mostly in the form of the so-called starchy carbs and increasing the amount of fruit and vegetables in my diet while also increasing protein.

I try to keep the protein I consume on the lean side in the way of poultry and fish. Unfortunately, I’ve never been much of a seafood lover and have stayed completely away from anything that tasted even remotely “fishy”. That pretty much eliminated everything except shrimp, canned tuna (Albacore only), and the occasional crab cake (I’m from Maryland after all). I’d pretty much head in the other direction from any kind of white fish as that would be crossing my “fishy” threshold.

I’ve since reversed my hardline stance against fish and have begun introducing it gradually into my low carb eating plan. Though I still have a long way to go before becoming a complete convert, the dish below has made a big difference towards getting me headed in that direction. It’s a variation on one of my favorite chicken dishes: Chicken Marsala and it goes great with Broccoli Parmesan Bake on the side to soak up the excess Marsala sauce (the lead photo may look familiar).

Before you scream at me in outrage about the flour coating defeating the low carb nature of the dish, please keep in mind that the coating is very minimal and is just enough to give the fish a nice brown outer coating while keeping the fish tender inside and providing a surface for the Marsala sauce to adhere to. This is a very low glycemic load ingredient that more than makes for up things by adding a heightened taste component to the dish.

Tip: I always thought that it was an old wives’ tale about soaking fish in milk for a few minutes before cooking in order to reduce the fishy taste. It might actually be, but I think it does wok and it also helps the flour mixture adhere better to the fish. Just be sure not to leave the fish in the milk too long or else it will become too mushy when you cook it.

Haddock Soaked in Milk Bath


  • I medium sized haddock filet – best if skin is removed from both sides. Frozen filets are great for this.
  • 1/4 c milk – whole or skim, doesn’t matter
  • 1/2 c white flour
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp garlic salt or powder
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 think lemon slices with seeds removed + 1 tsp of extra lemon juice from an end piece
  • 1/4 c Marsala wine


  1. Soak filet in milk bath for 10 minutes – flip a few times during soaking.
  2. On a large plate add flour, garlic salt, black pepper, and paprika. Sift together with a fork.
  3. Remove fish from milk bath and gently squeeze out excess milk being careful not to break the flesh
  4. Coat both sides of the fish with the flour mixture. Use a large metal soup spoon to help distribute the flour mixture to the fish.
  5. Heat butter and olive oil in a medium sized stainless steel saute pan.
  6. Once butter and oil are sizzling, carefully place filet in the saute pan.
  7. Cook approximately 6 minutes per side or until the coating is well-browned.
  8. Carefully remove the filet using a spatula and place on a plate.
  9. Reduce heat on the pan and pour in Marsala. De-glaze the pan with a wooden spoon.
  10. Add lemon slices and juice to the pan and let simmer until the sauce begins to thicken.
  11. Carefully add back the filet to the pan and let simmer for about 2 minutes. Spoon the wine over top the fish to create a glaze.
  12. Place the fish on a plate and top with the lemon slices.

Servings: 1