The white, flaky flesh of cooked cod, most commonly served as fish and chips, has a mild flavor that can stand up to bold sauces and seasonings. While typically fried, skin-on cod can be baked, poached or grilled for a healthier, protein-rich main dish. On average, one cod fillet contains 76 calories, 17 g of protein and less than 0.5 g of fat.
Fill a shallow-sided pot about 1 to 2 inches full of poaching liquid. White wine and low-fat, low-sodium broth combined with water add flavor without adding fat and calories.
Bring the liquid to a boil and reduce the heat to low until the liquid is simmering. Place each cod fillet in the pan in a single layer, skin side down. The fillets should be covered with the simmering liquid.
Allow the fish to simmer until the flesh turns an opaque white color and flakes easily, about five to seven minutes. Check for doneness in the thickest part of the fillet. If it appears undercooked, return it to the poaching liquid for another couple of minutes.
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil lightly sprayed with nonfat cooking spray to prevent sticking and help with cleanup.
Pat dry your cod fillets and season the skinless sides to taste. Place the cod fillets skin side down on the baking sheet.
Place the baking sheet in the center of your oven for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the flesh of the fish is milky white and flaky.
Spray your grill lightly with nonfat cooking spray to prevent sticking. Heat the grill to medium-high.
Season both sides of each cod fillet to taste with dry seasonings. Sauces or marinades will burn in the high heat of the grill, so hold off on these until after the fish is cooked.
Place the cod fillets on the grill skin side down. Cook for eight to 10 minutes, flipping the fillets halfway through the cooking time. The center should be opaque and flaky when done.
For crispier cod fillets in the oven, coat the skinless side with a mixture of breadcrumbs, dry seasoning and olive oil.
The internal temperature measured with a meat thermometer should read 175 degrees Fahrenheit when the fish is done.
Cod is low in mercury and safe for pregnant women to eat 8 to 12 oz. per week.
Avoid overcooking cod, as the flesh easily dries out.