Have you ever tried fish finger sandwiches? They’re a popular British-inspired delight where crispy breaded fish fingers (fish sticks to us Americans) are sandwiched between slices of soft bread, often accompanied by our homemade tartar sauce or ketchup for a simple meal!
The Americans and the British have distinctly different styles of making sandwiches. In Britain, sandwiches are often known for their simplicity and focus on quality ingredients. The emphasis is on creating a well-balanced and satisfying combination of flavors. The bread used is typically sliced white or wholemeal, with a soft texture that allows the fillings to shine.
On the other hand, American sandwiches tend to embrace a bolder and heartier approach. We have big sandwiches with crazy fillings on a variety of breads, like bagels, ciabatta, or the famous hero or sub rolls.
We took a little British inspo here with this classic Fish Finger sandwich – right down to when we spread our sandwich bread with butter! That’s not something you see often in America, but it’s something I enjoyed the heck out of while overseas a few years back. Butter really does make everything better!
If you’re an American and have never seen fish fingers in the grocery store, worry not. They’re the same as fish sticks, we just have different names for them. Whatever you call them, this sandwich is a major win and it’s something I’ve been serving on repeat since I first tried one!
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Fish – Fish sticks and fish fingers are the same thing. In the US, they’re most often called fish sticks and in the UK, they’re most often called fish fingers. These commonly come frozen and precooked. We will use jumbo fish sticks and will therefore use only six of these for our recipe. If you prefer regular-sized fish sticks, you will need a total of 10 for this recipe.
Sandwich Ingredients- White sandwich bread, butter, lettuce, and dill pickles.
Homemade Tartar Sauce – You will need mayo, minced dill pickles, minced dill, lemon juice, and onion powder for our recipe. If you want an easier recipe, you can purchase premade tartar sauce from your grocer.
This is a popular sandwich in the UK and it seems that people are pretty split between topping their sandwich with ketchup or tartar sauce. You may use either. Some even use both sauces!
How to Make Fish Fingers in an Air Fryer:
- Fry the fish– Spritz your air fryer basket with an oil spray, or brush the oil onto your basket if you don’t have a mister. Then air fry your fish for 12 minutes at 400 degrees F.
- Make the tartar– Add all of the tartar sauce ingredients to a small bowl and stir to combine them. Easy as that!
- Assemble the sandwich– Grab all your bread slices and butter one side of each. This will be the inside of the sandwich for this recipe. On top of one of the buttered sides, add lettuce, 3 fish sticks, and pickles. Then drizzle your tartar sauce over the top and add your last slice of bread butter side down. Serve while the fish is still hot.
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It will stay good for five days if you store it airtight in your fridge.
We love potato chips or french fries with ours. Cottage cheese is also a great option!
Yes, depending on your region you may call them by either name!
Did you know?
Many people wonder what type of fish is in a fish stick. They are always made of white fish. The fish is most commonly pollock, cod, or haddock but there are a few other types that rarely show up in fish sticks.
Bread: The most classic bread for a fish finger sandwich is soft white bread, but this would also be tasty on wheat bread.
Butter: It’s decidedly British (and very delicious) to butter the inside of your sandwich bread and we highly recommend you try it. If you’re watching calories, you can skip this.
Fish: It’s not really a fish finger sandwich without the fish fingers, but it is easier to eat if you use a frozen fish filet in place of individual fish fingers. Both options work well. We use JUMBO fish sticks here, but you can use regular sized – just add more on for the best flavor.
Sauce: I’m a sucker for a good tartar sauce (and our homemade version is delightful), but many people use ketchup on their sandwich instead. Some people even use both! Do whatever makes your heart happy.
Fish Finger Sandwiches
For the sandwich:
- 6 fish sticks see notes
- 4 slices white sandwich bread
- 2 tablespoons softened butter
- ½ cup chopped lettuce
- 6 slices dill pickles more to taste
- Tartar sauce
For the tartar sauce:
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- ¼ cup minced dill pickles
- 1 teaspoon fresh minced dill
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
To make the sandwiches:
- Sprtiz an air fryer basket with oil spray. Arrange the fish sticks in a single layer leaving space between each for air to flow. Spritz with oil spray.
- Air fry at 400 degrees for 12 minutes or until hot and crispy.
- Butter one side of each slice of bread. Top two of the pieces of bread with lettuce, 3 fish sticks each, and pickles. Drizzle tartar sauce over the top. Top with the remaining slice of bread.
- Serve sandwiches immediately.
To make the tartar sauce:
- Add all of the ingredients to a small bowl and stir to combine.
- Store leftover tartar sauce in the fridge for up to 5 days.