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Traditional British Fish Pie Recipe

User Rating 5 Star Rating (3 Reviews)



Traditional British Fish Pie

Photo © Elaine Lemm

A fish pie recipe is nutritious, easy and can be cheap to cook. Ask your fishmonger for a selection of fish off-cuts and usually they will charge you under the market price. If the fishmonger isn't willing then I suggest you change fishmonger.

Buy chunks of fresh seasonal fish whenever you can, frozen is fine as long as you defrost it first, if you don't you will end up with a lot of water in the bottom of your dish.

As you can see in this recipe which contains fish, leeks, milk, butter and potatoes, a Fish Pie is an all-in-one supper dish. Some like to sprinkle a fish pie with grated cheese but this is optional, as is the addition of hard boiled eggs seen in some recipes for fish pie. I like to serve the pie with peas or other fresh greens.

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Yield: Serves 4


  • 8 ½ fl oz/250 ml fish stock
  • 8 ½ fl oz/250 ml milk + 2 tbsp for the potatoes
  • 12 oz/350g asstd. fish pieces (see note below)***
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 750g warm, creamed, mashed potatoes
  • 2 oz/ 55g butter
  • 1 medium sized leek, the white, washed and finely sliced
  • 2 oz/ 55g all purpose/plain flour
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
  • Salt and pepper
  • Handful grated cheddar cheese (optional)


Serves 4

  • Heat the oven to 355 °F/180 °C
  • Pour the fish stock and milk into a large saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer. Add the fish pieces and bay leaf and poach for 5 mins. Remove the fish pieces with a slotted spoon and keep to one side. Reserve the liqueur.
  • Melt the butter in a medium sized saucepan over a medium heat. Add the sliced leeks and cook for 5 minutes until the leeks are soft.
  • Whilst still hot, add the flour and stir well with a wooden spoon. Pour the fish liqueur into the pan and stir again, raise the temperature and cook for 3 minutes until the sauce is slightly thickened. Turn the heat off. Remove the bay leaf. Add the fish, chopped parsley and season with salt and pepper. Leave to one side.
  • Place the fish and sauce into an ovenproof dish, cover with a thick layer of mashed potato fluffed up with a fork or for a more professional look, pipe from a piping bag and large nozzle.
  • Sprinkle with grated cheese if using.
  • Put the dish onto a baking sheet and cook in the center of the preheated oven for 20 - 30 minutes or until the sauce is bubbling beneath the potatoes. Serve immediately.

***Either buy one type of fish (skinless and bones removed) and cut into bite-sized chunks. Or mix different fish and/or prawns together, for a pie though I would choose non-oily, fleshy fish such as salmon, cod, smoked haddock, coley.
User Reviews

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 5 out of 5
Yummy and quick to prepare, Member annieupnorth

I had fish pie growing up as my dad was British; I made the pie using halibut and Alaskan King crab leg meat (my husband works in Alaska off and on and he brought it back); very yummy as halibut is a nice mild and dry fish and the crab added a bit of color and distinctive flavor.

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