How to Reheat Fried Catfish

There is a lake full of catfish in the local park. You brought your fishing pole and never had such luck. You brought so many catfish home for dinner that you couldn’t eat all of them. There is fried catfish in the refrigerator that you want to reheat the next day.

Reheating fried catfish is easy in the microwave oven, but your fish will be mushy and the crust will be soggy. Reheating your fried catfish in the conventional oven is an excellent method but is wasteful of energy. The toaster oven is the best way to reheat your fried catfish because it gives an excellent result, is energy efficient, and it is easy to clean up.

Make sure you have some air freshener because cooking fried fish will stink up your house. Your roommate will not appreciate having the apartment smell like a Long John Silver. You can try adding a few tablespoons of baking soda to some water and cooking it along with the fish. The baking soda will capture some of the fishy smell.

Reheating fried catfish is a lot like reheating fried calamari, except it is a lot stinkier.

How to Prepare Your Fried Fish for Reheating

There will probably be a bunch of crusty batter and small pieces of catfish mixed in with larger pieces of fish. Feed these smaller pieces to your cat or dog. The fish is excellent for their digestion and will make their coat shiny and smooth. Don’t feed them too much or they will smell like fried catfish for a couple of days.

Coat the catfish with a thin layer of cooking oil. You can use vegetable oil, canola oil, corn oil or olive oil. To give your catfish a unique flavor, try coating them with sesame seed oil. 

You will need aluminum foil to reheat your catfish unless you use the microwave. Use a thicker aluminum foil such as Reynolds Wrap. The thinner and cheaper aluminum foils will disintegrate when you cook with them and you will have aluminum foil in your teeth.

Do not use scented paper towels when you cook your catfish in the microwave oven. You will be left with a catfish that smells like artificial flowers. It is best to not use a paper towel with artificial colors. Your catfish came out of the lake in pristine condition, and you don’t want to contaminate them with industrial products.

How to Reheat Your Catfish in the Microwave Oven

Please clean your microwave before using it. Most people’s microwave is coated with food that has exploded all over the walls and ceiling. A piece of food stuck on the ceiling may fall in your catfish and ruin the flavor.

To clean your microwave, get a soft sponge with a little soapy water. Wash out the entire microwave oven removing all pieces of food. Clean the door of the microwave so you can look inside and see how your catfish is progressing.

The Microwave Oven

  1. Make sure your microwave is clean. I mention this again because I know you did not clean your microwave as shown. We are all lazy, and a dirty microwave oven is the clearest sign that we are slacking on our duties.
  2. Set the microwave for one minute.
  3. Put a cup of water with 3 tablespoons of baking soda in the microwave.
  4. Heat the water in the microwave. It should be close to boiling. 
  5. Now, put a piece of plain paper towel on a microwave safe plate.
  6. Put the catfish on the paper towel. Make sure the pieces are not touching.
  7. Put the microwave safe plate with the catfish in the microwave oven.
  8. Microwave on high for one minute. Keep the cup of water with the baking soda in the microwave oven so that it absorbs the odors of the fish.
  9. Take the fish out of the microwave.
  10. Enjoy immediately with some rice and vegetables.
  11. Enjoy with your favorite beverage, such as leftover beer from when you were at the lake catching the fish. Fresh lemonade will do if you drank all your beer.

How to Reheat the Fried Catfish in the Oven

If you have permission from your roommate and landlord to reheat that stinky catfish you hauled out of the lake, then follow these steps. Don’t forget to use the baking soda because you can stink up your oven for weeks. Write a letter apologizing for the stench in your house in advance. Your roommate might not be as mad if you apologize in advance.

The Conventional Oven

  1. Preheat the oven to 420 degrees.
  2. Wrap the fish in individual pieces of aluminum foil. Do not put over one piece of catfish in the same foil.
  3. Find a cookie sheet or some other oven-safe tray to put the catfish on.
  4. Put the catfish in the oven.
  5. Make sure you put the water with the baking soda in the oven.
  6. Open as many windows in the kitchen as you can.
  7. Turn on the oven fan.
  8. Consider spraying air freshener.
  9. Take the catfish out of the oven after 10 to 12 minutes. 
  10. Remove the catfish from the aluminum foil.  Be sure not to burn yourself because you can get a catfish burn, which is far more painful than a catfish sting.
  11. Enjoy the catfish with sauces such as catsup, tartar sauce, barbeque sauce or hoisin sauce.
  12. Drink your favorite beverage, such as pilsner or a stout.

How to Reheat Fried Catfish in the Toaster Oven

The toaster oven is the most energy efficient way to reheat your fried catfish. The toaster oven is small, easy to learn how to use, and easy to clean. Cleaning a toaster oven is considerably easier than cleaning a regular oven. You have successfully made waffles in the toaster oven. Be confident that you can use it to reheat your fried catfish.

Make sure your toaster oven is clean before reheating your catfish. A dirty toaster is a fire hazard. One time I tried to reheat my catfish in a dirty toaster oven and I caused a fire that killed my cat. He was all fried like a stinky catfish.

The only disadvantage of using the toaster oven is that there is no room in the toaster to use the cup of water with baking soda. Make sure you open all the windows of your house and turn on the oven fan. Try turning on other fans, such as the bathroom fan or even the furnace fan. Your roommate will thank you for being so conscientious. 

Steps to Reheat Your Catfish in the Toaster Oven

  1. Line a toaster tray with aluminum foil.
  2. Place the catfish on the toaster tray. Be sure that the pieces are not touching each other.
  3. Put aluminum foil over the fried catfish..
  4. Set the toaster to bake at 420 degrees.
  5. Place the toaster tray in the toaster oven.
  6. Press the start button.
  7. Reheat the catfish for 2.5 minutes.
  8. Open the toaster and remove the top layer of aluminum foil.
  9. Reheat the catfish for another 2.5 minutes.
  10. Your catfish is done when you can hear it sizzle and it has gotten crispy.
  11. Enjoy with your favorite beverage, such as fresh orange juice or a stiff cocktail.
  12. Try eating your reheated catfish with some sauces such as teriyaki sauce, cocktail sauce, or steak sauce.


The biggest hurdle to overcome when reheating your fried catfish is the smell. Your roommate barely tolerated the first night you cooked the catfish, and the reheated catfish smells even fishier. 

You can reheat your catfish in the microwave oven, but it will turn out soggy. The conventional oven is a great way to reheat your catfish except it uses way too much energy. The toaster oven is the best way to reheat your fried catfish except there is no good way to control the catfish stench.