Eating White Bass: Preparation, Recipes, and more!

If you like eating white fish, than you need to try white bass. It might not be everyone’s favorite, but if prepared right, it can be a delicious and healthy meal. We’ll cover everything from catching to eating white bass.

Can you eat white bass?

Yes, you absolutely can eat white bass! White bass has white meat that is nutritious and delicious if prepared correctly. As the name suggests, it is a white fish with very light, almost transparent meat.

It is very important to understand local laws and regulations for harvesting white bass. Conservation is super important, and it is usually more important than you making a meal of some fish. If you can legally and ethically harvest some white bass, go for it! They will be delicious.

White bass prepared with lemon on a plate

What does white bass taste like?

White bass taste like many other white fish out there but with a twist. Fish like cod, walleye, and other bass subspecies will have a similar taste to white bass. However, white bass tend to have a little more of a “fishy” taste to it as compared to the other species listed.

This depends on how pure the meat is and how it is prepared. If you are used to bland fish that only tastes like the batter, white bass is not that. It has its own taste while still having the properties of white fish.

Best Ways to Eat White Bass

There are many ways to prepare and eat white bass. The two most popular ways to eat white bass are frying and roasting.


Pan frying is one of the most popular (and tastiest!) ways of preparing white fish. It’s quick, it’s easy, and you likely already have all the ingredients you’ll need. Here’s how you fry white bass.

A closeup of white bass being fried in a pan
Pan frying white bass


  • all-purpose flour 
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 egg
  • seasoned breadcrumbs
  • bass fillets
  • vegetable oil

Steps for frying white bass:

  1. Add vegetable oil to a pan and pre-heat.
  2. Add egg and a little bit of water in a bowl. Stir well with a whisk or fork.
  3. Combine salt, pepper, and flour in a separate bowl.
  4. Add breadcrumbs to a third bowl.
  5. Dip filet into the egg/water mixture. Ensure entire filet is covered.
  6. Place filet into bowl with salt/pepper/flour mix. flip over and ensure entire filet is covered with mix.
  7. Do the same in the bowl of breadcrumbs mix.
  8. Add filets to pan for, cooking for 4-5 minutes per side until fish is cooked through.


Another popular way to prepare white bass is to roast it in an over. This is a healthier alternative to frying since it doesn’t require oil, flour, or breadcrumbs.

White bass cooked in foil with veggies
Roasted white bass with lemon and butter


  • Salt and pepper
  • Butter
  • Lemon (optional)
  • bass fillets

Steps for roasting white bass:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees
  2. Season both sides of each filet with salt and pepper
  3. Coat a sheet of aluminum foil sheet with butter
  4. Wrap the fillets in a section in foil
  5. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until fished is cooked through
  6. Squeeze lemon juice over fillets if desired

Fishing for White Bass

We’re all about catching our supper, and this is especially true for white bass. White bass can be caught throughout the season. I’ve had the best luck in the spring. White bass aren’t very big individually, but you can usually find a school and catch enough to make a good meal.

A white bass in the grass

Fishing for white bass can be a fun and exciting experience. White bass can be found in many different types of water, including lakes, reservoirs, and rivers. They are typically an open water fish, but can also be found in the backs of creeks and small streams.

There are several ways to fish for white bass. The most common way is by using a spinning rod and reel. White bass can also be caught using baitcasting gear or fly fishing gear.

White bass tackle

The tackle you’ll use for white bass is pretty standard:

  • a light spinning rod
  • 8lb test line
  • Grubs or Warden’s Rooster Tails

Check out the best tackle for white bass for more information.


Once you catch all the white bass you can handle, the preparation is simple. You’ll just need to fillet it and clean it.

Filleting the fish

Filleting a fish is pretty basic, but each species has little quirks or tips needed for a clean cutting. White bass specifically require a basic filet that starts behind the gill plate and stretches to the bottom of the fish. Use the knife parallel to the backbone and cut all the way down.

Important: Always use a sharp fillet knife. We recommend the Rapala Fish ‘N Fillet Knife with Sheath and Sharpener.

One tip is when your first fillet is done, do not cut it all the way off. Flip it over and start the next as the previous one adds stability and keeps everything clean.

Cleaning the fillet

It is super important to clean the fillet in order to provide the most pure piece of meat possible. A big part of this is separating the fillet from the skin. The skin can harbor some tainted meat that can spoil the entire taste, so it is best to skin the fillet and just deal with the meat. Once the skin is gone, remove the mudline that shoots through the fillet, as this will taint the taste of the meat.

Also, use cold water to rinse the fillets and remove any additional blood or bones. The key is to make that meat as pure as possible.

Nutritional Benefits

Heart Health

Heart issues continue to be the leading cause of death in the United States. Keeping the ticker healthy is incredibly important, and a big factor of this relies on diet. White bass are rich in Omega-3. Omega-3 is great for the heart, so white bass being a part of your diet is beneficial.

This food also helps manage both bad and healthy cholesterol levels, blood pressure, and inflammation.

High Quality Protein

A 3-ounce serving of cooked white bass provides about 20 grams of protein. This is a ton of really good quality protein packed into a pretty small serving. These proteins contain all nine amino acids, so these bass are great for maintaining a balanced, healthy diet.

Immune System Support

There is a character in white bass called selenium that is an antioxidant that helps build up your immune system. Food like this can help your body in fighting off the cold and flu along with other alignments. White bass has a lot of selenium, so you will be a in good place to fight off any illnesses.


Can you eat white bass raw?

It is not recommended to eat white bass raw. Due to high mercury levels and potential parasites, eating raw white bass is far more of a risk than a benefit. Thankfully, there are delicious ways to prepare white bass safely for consumption.

Can you freeze white bass?

Like most fish, white bass can be frozen and saved for a later date. However, the longer it is frozen, the less fresh it becomes. This will sacrifice a bit of quality and pure taste. Fresh white bass will always taste better, but being able to freeze your catch is very convenient.

Generally, the life of frozen fish will be 3-6 months. However, some fish can last longer. It all depends on the density of fat and how you sealed the fish.

Fishing Fanatiks is reader-supported. If you buy via the links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you.