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Coconut Crusted Walleye with Broccoli, Orange and Mandarin Sauce

Coconut Crusted Tilapia and Broccoli
Coconut Crusted Walleye with Broccoli, Orange and Mandarin Sauce

This recipe and photography were provided courtesy of local cookbook author and chef, Carla Snyder. Learn more about Carla and discover her recipes at or in her cookbook, One Pan Whole Family. 

When we were kids, my siblings and I loved the coconut coating on coconut fried shrimp. We used to order it in this little Chinese place in Wheeling, West Virginia where our parents took us for special occasions. You know the movie My Cousin Vinny when Marisa Tomei makes the statement “I bet they have really bad Chinese here”? It was pretty much that place, but…we loved it. I can still taste that crispy coconut coating doused in Chinese sauce. This is my homage to that memory: a slightly less sweet crusted fish with good-for-you broccoli and the same sweet sauce.

It’s that easy: Two Brother’s Mandarin Orange Sauce is a staple in my fridge. My grandkids love to dip their chicken nuggets in its orange sweetness and I drizzle it on my chicken every now and then, but it is perfect when paired with a coconut coated piece of fish or shrimp. Buy a bottle and experiment with it. The kids even douse their broccoli in it and I say whatever… they’re eating broccoli, right?

Coconut Crusted Walleye with Broccoli and Mandarin Orange Sauce

Start to finish: 30 minutes
Hands on time: 20 minutes
Serves 4


  • 1 bunch broccoli
  • 1 shallot
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2-lb walleye filets
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Juice of one orange or 1/4 cup bottled juice
  • Two Brother’s Mandarin Orange Sauce
  • Preheat the oven to 425°F
  • On a large cutting board, trim the broccoli and cut it into long thin spears, no more than 1/2-inch thick. Cut the shallot in half lengthwise and then cut into 1/2-inch slices.


  1. In a wide, shallow bowl, beat the egg with a fork. Pour the coconut and flour onto two separate plates.
  2. Salt and pepper the fish, dredge into the flour, shaking off the excess, dip it into the egg wash and then dredge it into the coconut, patting it on so that it adheres.
  3. Heat a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat and add the oil. When it shimmers, add the fish to the pan (don’t crowd the pan as it will take two batches) and brown it on all sides, about 1 minute per side. Transfer the fish to a plate. It will not be cooked through at this point.
  4. Add the shallot and broccoli to the hot pan along with a sprinkle of salt and pepper and sauté for two minutes to get the cooking started. Add the orange juice and bring to a boil then top with the fish.
  5. Transfer the pan to the oven and roast, uncovered, for 10 minutes or until the fish is cooked through and broccoli is tender. It should flake when pulled apart with a fork.
  6. Divide the fish and vegetables between heated plates and drizzle with the pan juices and Mandarin Orange Sauce.

Extra Hungry Kids? Add a can of drained, sliced water chestnuts and a can of drained bamboo shoots along with the broccoli.

Adult Taste Buds? Skip the sweet sauce and drizzle adult plates with a mix of 2 tablespoons lime juice, 2 teaspoons soy, 1 teaspoon Asian sesame oil and 1/2 teaspoon chili garlic sauce or sriracha.

In the glass: Trimbach Gewurztraminer from Alsace is the real deal. With a nice balance of minerality and notes of guava and white pepper, this wine will partner up with the sweeter notes in the dish.

For more recipes from this series on how to cook Walleye, visit the index here

Click Here to Print the Recipe for Coconut Crusted Walleye

Carla Snyder in her kitchen
By Carla Snyder
Carla has spent the past 30 years in the food world as a caterer, artisan baker, cooking school teacher, food writer and author of 6 cook books including the James Beard nominated Big Book of Appetizers. Her passion is sharing fresh, cooked-from-scratch weeknight meals that cut prep time and practically eliminate that nightly sink full of dishes.

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