Best Fast Food Fish Sandwiches: Top 5 Drive-Thru Bites Most Recommended By Experts

If you are hungry while on the go, fast food is an easy, affordable choice. But if you aren’t in the mood for a burger and fries, what should you eat? A fast food fish sandwich is a tasty option to consider that’s often overlooked but is featured on so many different menus. The best fast food fish sandwiches come breaded or fried and always packed with flavor.

The fast food fish sandwich swims against the tide of culinary expectations, effortlessly flipping the notion that fast food can’t deliver a mouthwatering seafood experience. With a delicate balance of flavors, the crispy breaded fish patty takes center stage, perfectly complemented by a symphony of tangy tartar sauce, crisp lettuce, and a toasted bun that offers a satisfying crunch. Every bite is an oceanic adventure, transporting your taste buds to coastal shores. So whether you’re a landlocked epicurean or a seafood aficionado craving convenience, the fast food fish sandwich proves that sometimes, the most unexpected catch can be the most delightful.

Heading to your favorite fast food joint for something new can be a daunting task. The drive-thru dilemma becomes a fierce battleground where hunger and indecisiveness collide. Your taste buds stand at attention, eagerly awaiting their culinary conquest, as your eyes scan the menu, each option more tempting than the last. Should you embark on a fiery quest for spicy chicken or surrender to the siren call of a juicy cheeseburger? The battle rages on, as the clock ticks and the line grows impatient. It’s a clash of cravings and a contest of choices, where the victor holds the key to gastronomic bliss. In this drive-thru theater of war, only the boldest decision-makers emerge triumphant, leaving lesser souls to dwell in the purgatory of menu contemplation. So muster your courage, embrace your cravings, and emerge victorious from this gustatory battlefield, knowing that your chosen meal awaits, a glorious reward for your valiant decision-making skills.

Ready for your next fast food run? StudyFinds is here to help you prep for it. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the top five best fast food fish sandwiches from ten expert websites to find the most recommended delicacies on menus today. As always, we’d like to see your own recommendations in the comments below!

A person holding a bag of McDonald's food
A person holding a bag of McDonald’s food (Photo by Polina Tankilevitch on Pexels)

The List: Best Fast Food Fish Sandwiches, According to Reviews

1. Culver’s North Atlantic Cod Filet Sandwich

This hand cut, hand battered Midwestern delight is a top choice among reviewers. Why? “Culver’s cranks out a fish sandwich that’s tender, flaky, and downright buttery in a way that hearkens back to the crispy batter you’d see at a bona fide fish fry,” according to The Takeout.

Thrillist points out, it’s a “sizable piece of fresh, crispy, light cod you’d never mistake for a fast food-style fish patty. It’s dressed with tartar sauce that has actual flavor beyond boring old dill (capers! olives!), and a hint of creaminess courtesy of its shredded cheese.”

Available year-round, it’s served on a hoagie roll instead of a traditional bun. “The fish sits atop a bed of shredded lettuce, Wisconsin cheese, and a nice amount of tartar sauce you’ll love,” suggests Tasting Table.

2. Arby’s Crispy Fish Sandwich

Arby’s is well-known for its meats and curly fries. However, its Crispy Fish Sandwich doesn’t disappoint. “You’re getting a large piece of fish on a decent sandwich. The large fish filet is really good and is actually filling. There’s a good flake and seasoning,” according to UPROXX.

The fish is surrounded by a toasted sesame bun. Taste of Home points out, “the lettuce added a pleasant crunch and the tartar sauce was well distributed.” There’s also a spicy variety of this sandwich available. 

Eat This, Not That! adds, “it has low calories for a big slab of fish, plus, the minimal amount of topping allows for a lower intake of fat and sugars.” Just note, Arby’s Crispy Fish Sandwich is an occasional menu item, so keep an eye out to find it seasonally.

3. Wendy’s Crispy Panko Fish Sandwich

Another seasonal fish sandwich worth trying is this offering from Wendy’s. Allrecipes notes, “the fish is perfectly crispy and the pickle adds an extra crunch in contrast to the fluffy bun.”

If your taste buds crave a little kick, Wendy’s also makes this sandwich in a spicy version. “The Spicy Panko Fish Sandwich swaps out the tartar sauce for Wendy’s spicy sauce and also includes a melty blend of cheddar and Monterey jack cheese slices,” according to The Daily Meal.

Made of Alaskan pollock, “you can feel a little better knowing your fish comes from a certified sustainable fishery,” points out The Takeout.

4. White Castle Panko Breaded Fish Slider

Surprise! In addition to burgers, White Castle also makes a tasty fish slider. UPROXX adds, it’s “basic but delivers a decent fish patty with a small flake, good seasoning, and a nice crispy outer coating. The cheese moistens it along with the soft bun to create a good textural experience.”

Taste of Home notes, White Castle includes “the tartar sauce (a must when it comes to fish sandwich toppings) as a packet on the side. This was nice because we could then add as much or as little as we wanted to the sandwich, rather than it arriving in one big glob inside the bun.”

Available during the Lenten season, you can also get the fish slider without cheese, too. Although Eat This, Not That! points out, “it comes with quite a lot of calories, as well as sodium, for such a tiny breaded fish patty. If you’re the type of person that orders a few of White Castle’s mini sliders, for the sake of your body and overall health, try not to overindulge in too many of the seafood ones (if possible).”

5. McDonald’s Filet-O-Fish Sandwich

Rounding out the top five, is my personal favorite. McDonald’s Filet-O-Fish Sandwich has been a year-round menu staple since the 1960s. “The Filet-O-Fish doesn’t hope to compete with the artisanal-sounding ingredients found at other chains, and it never forgets who it is: A taste of mild, crispy fried fish, topped with a quart of tartar sauce and served on an angel’s kiss of a steamed bun,” according to Mashed

Restaurant Clicks notes, the fish is “covered in crispy breadcrumbs, then topped with cheese and tartar sauce, all in a steamed, white bun. It is simple, but delicious, and always a reliable choice if you want a good fish sandwich.”

Some more upsides? “A low price and consistent preparation make the Filet-O-Fish a failproof, no-frills option,” suggests The Takeout. However, if you are looking for knock your socks off flavor, skip this choice.

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Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations. This post may contain affiliate links.