Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Sweet Potato Crusted Fish with Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette

There is a nearby local restaurant called Leftovers that has a very unique (and delicious) menu.  It’s one of those places that I have yet to try something that I haven’t liked!

They have this phenomenal sweet potato crusted fish that I L.O.V.E.!  However, at a bank breaking $26-30 bucks a pop (depending on the type of fish you select), it’s not a meal I get to eat often. I have a really hard time justifying spending $30 bucks on ONE plate.  Unless it’s a special occasion, I just can’t do it.

I decided it was time to figure out a way to recreate this dish at home (and on the cheap)! Sometimes the at-home re-creations of our favorite meals are pretty close, but not quite as good as the real thing (you know what I’m talking about!).

Well, my friends, I am happy to say I have actually done it! This dish is JUST as good, if not – dare I say it – BETTER! The hubs and I took one bite, looked at each other, and said “Holy cow!” followed by, “Oh my gosh!” and then “WOW!” We had a difficult time speaking in complete sentences after that! haha

We served this over a salad of mixed greens with crumbled goat cheese, blanched green beans (still has some crunch to it), black beans, and tomatoes. We then drizzled the vinaigrette over everything. WOW.

You could also serve the fish with a side of coconut rice and Plantains (or beans n’ rice). Whatever your little heart desires! But please be sure to make the vinaigrette and use it as a sauce if even if you don’t serve this on top of a salad! The tangy lime dressing with the sweet crusted fish is a match made in Heaven!

Note: I used a cast iron skillet which I think got a bit TOO hot (as you can see by the extra dark brown parts!). Thankfully I pulled it off just in the nick of time, it didn’t taste burned at all.  It’s okay to have some dark spots (they always do at the restaurant… I think it’s the natural sugars in the sweet potato). I may use a non-stick next time!

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Sweet Potato Crusted Fish with Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette


Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette (Yields: 1/2 cup):
1 cup cilantro - packed
1 medium clove garlic
2 limes- juiced (about 1/4 cup)
1/2 cup light olive oil
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
pinch of sugar (1/2 tsp)

1 pound mild flaky fish (Dolphin, Tilapia, Grouper, Snapper, Halibut etc)
2 medium sized sweet potatoes, peeled and shredded
1 egg plus 2 egg whites
1/2 cup flour - seasoned with a little salt & pepper
2 TBS canola oil (or any light oil)
2 TBS butter

Mixed Greens
2-4 oz Goat Cheese
1 cup fresh green beans, blanched
Handfull of Grape or Cherry Tomatoes
Black beans, drained and rinsed


Combine vinaigrette ingredients into a food processor, mini chopper, or blender and pulse until well combined. Refrigerate until ready to use.

If serving over salad, prepare salad now so it is ready to go.

Add flour to a pie plate (or any dish with sides) and season with salt and pepper. In another one, whisk together 1 egg plus 2 egg whites.

Preheat oven to 375°. Heat a large oven-safe skillet over medium to medium high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of butter plus 1 tablespoon oil (you may need extra if it's a large skillet - you want the entire bottom coated). Allow this to heat up.

Eyeball the size / shape of the pieces of fish and then, add a thin layer of shredded sweet potatoes about the same size & shape (one for each piece of fish).

Quickly dredge the fish into flour mixture, then egg wash, and set on top of the sweet potatoes in the pan. Repeat with each piece of fish. Cook for about 4 minutes (the fish should have a nice golden crust), lift fish out of pan with a spatula.

While holding fish with the spatula, add another thin layer of the shredded sweet potatoes to the pan (again matching the size of your fish filet). Carefully flip the fish onto the new "bed" of shedded sweet potatoes. Place entire skillet into the oven and allow to finish cooking (about 4-7 minutes depending on fish size).

The fish doesn't dry out due to the natural moisture in the potatoes! When fish is fully cooked (opaque in color), remove from oven and immediately serve over mixed salad. Top with cilantro lime vinaigrette.


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112 Responses to “Sweet Potato Crusted Fish with Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette”

  1. 1

    Peter @Feed Your Soul — October 22, 2012 @ 12:34 pm

    saw this retweeted and had to check it out. looks amazing.

  2. 2

    EJ — November 20, 2012 @ 9:07 am

    Thanks for the recipe. I’m a big fan of Leftovers and Food Shack too. I prepared hogsnapper with the shredded sweet potatoes and it came out wonderfully. It even reheats well in the toaster oven.

    Because of the comments about scorching, I’d used only canola oil, no butter, and kept the stove temperature closer to medium and this eliminated the scorching altogether.

  3. 3

    Jerry — November 26, 2012 @ 12:12 pm

    Being unable to wait until our yearly trek to Juno Beach during January we had to have a Leftovers fix now! When I googled for a sweet potatoe crusted fish recipe, I could not believe it when a copy cat of the Leftovers recipe appeared. I made it for lunch today and it was fabulous!

  4. 4

    Alisa — November 30, 2012 @ 8:58 pm

    I was in PBG this week on business. I had the pleasure
    of going to Leftovers. The sweet potato encrusted flounder
    was AWESOME. I will definitely be trying this
    recipe at home.

  5. 5

    Adele — December 1, 2012 @ 4:21 pm

    My hubby & I moved from Jupiter to the smoky mountains 17 years ago & miss the great restaurants in SFL so a few years ago my hubby was on a business trip & his brother took him 2 foodshsack this was the dish he got & loved it so much he txted me a pic. Now whenever we return we go 2 which ever resturant we can get 2 for this. He refuses 2 try any thing different on the menu. Can’t wait 2 surprise him with this. Thanks for figuring it out.

  6. 6

    Autumn — December 1, 2012 @ 5:11 pm

    Brilliant! I’ve got some cod on hand and just might try this paired with my kale gratin.

  7. 7

    "B" BECHHOLD — December 31, 2012 @ 1:45 pm


  8. 8

    Kevin — January 5, 2013 @ 6:36 pm

    Friends took my wife and I to Leftovers last month when we were down at PGA National on vacation. I wanted to try to replicate the crusted fish, so thank you for posting this recipe. I did make one adjustment to the recipe. I tossed the grated sweet potato with some horseradish. SO good!

  9. 9

    Kristina — January 10, 2013 @ 7:42 pm

    Hello, Kristina! Another “K” replying to say that I made this last night, and it was wonderful! I served it over the salad (I don’t like goat cheese, gave it a shot, and will leave it out next time), with coconut rice on the side. Glorious! My husband and the kids ate it well enough – one of my girls really liked it, the other was less crazy about it, but she did okay. I’m going to be doing it again, and I’ll just leave half of them more plain, and Caroline and I can enjoy every minute with our sweet potato pizazz!

    We had leftovers (it took such restraint!) and I just had them at work, and it was still beautiful.

    I’m a Canadian, who doesn’t know this restaurant, but I love this recipe!

  10. 10

    A LONG list of recipes I use on a regular basis. For those who are interested. - Coffee Talk - RenewedReflections — January 23, 2013 @ 2:20 pm

    […] […]

  11. 11

    Sweet Potato Crusted Fish with Cilantro-Lime Vinaigrette | windykitchen — January 23, 2013 @ 9:41 pm


  12. 12

    Diane — January 24, 2013 @ 12:31 pm

    Leftovers is our favorite restaurant in Florida. Have tried several items on the menu and never disappointed. So happy when this recipe popped on my pinterest newsfeed this morning. I am now following you. When you figure out how to duplicate white chocolate creme brûlée cheesecake let us know. Best dessert I’ve ever eaten at a restaurant. Last time we ate there, I only got a cup of soup so I still had room for a piece of this!

  13. 13

    Rory — February 7, 2013 @ 7:27 pm

    I just made this for my mom and I, and we are in loooove. Thanks!!

  14. 14

    Ron — March 10, 2013 @ 11:52 pm

    Looks fantastic! I like the presentation on the salad as well. Nice!

  15. 15

    Sweet Potato Crusted Fish with Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette | The Fashionable Hostess — March 19, 2013 @ 10:15 am

    […] FHH absolutely LOVES sweet potato, so I was thrilled when I found this recipe that gave them a new spin rather then the classic ‘baked potato side dish’. I think […]

  16. 16

    Debra — April 24, 2013 @ 8:23 pm

    Made it. It’s excellent. Didn’t make the dressing but will next time. We cooked it in coconut oil. This could compete with leftovers or food shack. Always have this there

  17. 17

    Natalie — May 1, 2013 @ 7:49 pm

    Found this pin yesterday and made it this evening. Although I love cilantro, I didn’t think the sauce would pair well. It was AMAZING! I have VERY picky eaters. Not a single crumb was left!

  18. 18

    Weekly Menu + Some Recipes | The Granberg Family — May 6, 2013 @ 8:54 am

    […] Sweet Potato Crusted Tilapia Salad Clean Eating Chicken Kebobs Spinach Stuffed Sweet Potatoes Chicken with Spinach Pesto Quinoa Stuffed Peppers Avocado Rice […]

  19. 19

    H — July 23, 2013 @ 10:47 pm

    Made this tonight and it was fantastic!! Absolutely no leftovers because the entire family LOVED it. The cilantro sauce is a MUST!! Thank you so much for sharing this recipe.

  20. 20

    Greg — October 5, 2013 @ 6:04 am

    Amazing! We have been going to Leftovers for years and always bring visitors there. I made the recipe with grouper for my in laws and they loved it!! I may now be the favorite son in-law

  21. 21

    Happy Larry — October 25, 2013 @ 6:43 pm

    Fab rec… go Fish !!!!! Thanx !!

  22. 22

    What's for Dinner? November 2013 - Taunya's Place — November 2, 2013 @ 3:17 am

    […] 17:  Sweet Potato Crusted Fish + […]

  23. 23

    carolinelarnach — January 20, 2014 @ 3:24 am

    “1 pound mild flaky fish (Dolphin, Tilapia, … etc)” YOU EAT DOLPHIN?! Seriously? I am stunned and disgusted.

    • Tina replied: — January 23rd, 2014 @ 2:29 pm

      Dolphin is the common name used for Mahi Mahi here in Florida. The FISH. See here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mahi-mahi – not to be confused with Dolphin the porpoise. Two totally different things. See above comments where I already responded to this.

  24. 24

    jamie — January 27, 2014 @ 1:40 pm

    this is my most favorite resturant!!! better than ffod shack too. I have made this dish at home twice now. Thank you for the recipe. Have you tried their crispy avacado rolls?you can use the same dressing. Yummy!!

  25. 25

    Sweet Potato Crusted Fish - studioVIBE — January 28, 2014 @ 2:16 pm

    […] Patty shared this yummy recipe for a sweet potato crusted fish with a cilantro lime vinaigrette.  She substituted in coconut flour and said it was very good.  Plus, it’s Whole Life Challenge compliant!  For the full recipe, head on over to My Life as a Mrs. […]

  26. 26

    Patrick — February 12, 2014 @ 11:22 am

    OK, I was lucky enough to catch a very nice cobia yesterday fishing offshore the Jupiter vicinity. We frequent both Food Shack and Leftovers and I have made a sweet potato crust before but am planning on trying your approach tonight with our fresh fish, it sounds very good and am sure we will not be disappointed, thanks for the post.

  27. 27

    Elizabeth — March 8, 2014 @ 1:11 pm

    This is the first time I pass by, glad I did. I just saw the picture and it looks sooo good, I just have a dummy question. Can the leftover dressing be stored in the fridge, if so for how long?

    Thank You.

  28. 28

    Angela — March 24, 2014 @ 10:18 am

    Does anyone have the recipe for their White Chocolate coconut creme brûlée cheesecake or a variation of it…Oh My it is so good!!

  29. 29

    Sandy — March 30, 2014 @ 1:50 pm

    Made this few weeks ago. Everyone loved it, even the kids!!
    Thank you for posting the recipe :))

  30. 30

    Faith — April 7, 2014 @ 7:46 pm

    [I was beginning to think that there was no yummy way to cook fish. I prepared fish once a week but it was a chore for my three little girls and I to eat. Then I miraculously found this recipe on Pinterest!! I made it tonight and my girls, husband and I all LOVED it!! My three year old told me to make fish this way every time I make fish. Thank you for an amazing recipe that’s easy to follow and turns out exactly the way it’s supposed to. AMAZING!!!!

  31. 31

    Tessa — April 30, 2014 @ 6:22 pm

    I have made this dish twice not and both times the sweet potato would not stick to my fish. It just became a soggy mess. 🙁

  32. 32

    Lisa — July 10, 2014 @ 8:36 am

    I went to Left Overs, had this exact meal, fell in love with it…googled and your recipe came up!!! I cant wait to try this!!!!! PS. I am with you, 25.00 a meal…yikes!

  33. 33

    KJ — July 10, 2014 @ 9:29 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. I’m a newlywed with no cooking experience and I cooked it tonight and my husband and I absolutely loved it.

  34. 34

    Dinnertime — July 14, 2014 @ 7:58 am

    […] sweet potato crusted fish with cilantro lime vinaigrette via my life as a mrs.  […]

  35. 35

    Dave Mertz — July 15, 2014 @ 5:39 pm

    We live in Michigan and vacation in Jupiter so we’ve been to both Food Shack and Leftovers. The potato-crusted fish is so good. Found your recipe yesterday and tried it with fresh Walleye last night. Instead of the salad, we just had the sweet potato-crusted Walleye with a side of steamed cauliflower. It was wonderful. I cooked the fish on my gas grill using a cast iron grill skillet. Worked perfectly at about 11 minutes total cook time.

    Thanks for sharing. We will be using your recipe often!

  36. 36

    Jonah Gibson — August 22, 2014 @ 4:33 pm

    I’ve made this dish several times now. Doing it again this Sunday for my sister-in-law’s birthday dinner. She asked for it. I’ve made it with Tilapia, Sea Bass, and Pompano. Pompano is best if you can get it. Of course it’s the best tasting fish God ever made, so there’s that. If you include enough salad and beans, there’s really no need for a side, but I’m liking the idea of fried ripe plantanos. Key lime cake for dessert. Thanks for sharing.

  37. 37

    Helena — November 20, 2014 @ 1:52 pm

    Love love love this recipe! My husband and I are fans of the food shack and drive 2 hours just to eat there. The flavors in the recipe are exactly like the restaurant. I had the same problem as another person with the sweet potatoes not sticking to the fish. Do you have any recommendations for that? Thank you!

  38. 38

    Bryan — December 18, 2014 @ 7:52 pm


    We use to live in Jupiter, and we also LOVE the Food Shack. We live in Houston now and seldom get back to the old stomping ground. Wanted to add one thing I have discovered (honestly can’t remember where – but most likely the internet) for helping just a little more with binding the sweet potatoes and the fish. Instead of an egg wash, I make a wash with some of the ends and pieces of the fish, whole cream, and an egg…..use a blender to create a paste to use to “glue” the potatoes to the fish….Works great!

  39. 39

    Kate — August 14, 2015 @ 5:48 pm

    I can’t wait to try this. I get it with salmon at Leftovers and wanted to make it at home. Also, can’t afford this dish as much as I’d like to order it so i Googled for recipes, yours was the first one I looked at and was very happy to read in the first sentence that your inspiration was Leftovers. So I knew your recipe was on the right track. I will enjoy following you and your recipes now. Thank you for sharing.

  40. 40

    Heather — September 10, 2015 @ 9:06 am

    I just came from Jupiter, Florida and ate at the Food Shack and had this exact dish!!! I was so exited to find your blog and recipe! I actually snuck a peak in the kitchen and saw them cooking this amazing fish!!! Thanks for the info!!!! They did have an extra sauce and it was mango-ish =)

  41. 41

    Eileen — December 11, 2016 @ 1:34 pm

    Just moved to Jupiter from New York last year, and, of course, tried and loved the sweet potato crusted fish at The Food Shack. Thanks for the recipe. I picked up grouper at the Fresh Market today, and I was happy to see your recipe when I went looking to replicate the yummy Food Shack one.

  42. 42

    Betty — June 24, 2017 @ 9:37 am

    So fun to get this receipt……Fish Shack our favorite as well! I have wondered so many times how they fry the fish with shredded sweet potatoe!!!! Thanks for figuring it out ! Ha. Can’t wait to try it…

  43. 43

    Debbie More — June 26, 2017 @ 6:06 pm

    So amazing. And I rarely review.

  44. 44

    Erica — February 17, 2018 @ 8:27 pm

    Leftovers is one of our favorite restaurants,too. We left the area a little over a year ago and miss the crunchy potato crusted fish immensely. Thank you for posting this recipe. We absolutely love it! I did not make the dressing yet, as I didn’t have the mayo but, my oh my was it good even without! We look forward to visting Leftovers but,love how we can make it ourselves in between visits. Thanks so much, again! 💓💓💓

  45. 45

    Patrick — July 22, 2018 @ 6:32 pm

    I caught a wonderful and tasty blueline tilefish deep dropping in 650 feet in the lower Florida Keys a few days ago…returned to my other home in Jupiter and have frequented Food Shack and Leftover multiple times and love their dish with snapper, wahoo and tilefish. I have tried making this dish previously with large snapper…I am sure it will be great with my latest catch, thanks for posting your version of this wonderful dish.

  46. 46

    Alane — October 22, 2018 @ 6:36 pm

    I made the fish tonight with yellowtail filets and used my large all clad frying pan. I live in Jupiter and just had this dish the other night. In fact, I asked the server how it was made and it was similar. It was delicious but the grated sweet potato didn’t hold up to the fish. Next time I make it I will put less potato on the bottom and use either my nonstick all clad or my black 50 year old cast iron. It was a lot of work and there was grated sweet potato all over my kitchen.

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