Fish Pie (An Easy Fish Quiche)

A golden baked quiche on white marble surrounded by fresh thyme.

A simple quiche style Fish Pie featuring home canned (or store bought) fish, eggs, and herbs. Easy to prepare and absolutely delicious for lunch or dinner.

Homemade pies can be intimidating for many people. Here on the blog, there are many styles of pies from Mushroom Hand Pies, to lattice topped Cherry Amaretto Pie. They all start with a basic Food Processor Pastry that is guaranteed to make you a pie baker in under 5 minutes.

A golden baked quiche on white marble surrounded by fresh thyme.

Fish Pie

Flaky golden pastry is filled with the most delicious filling featuring home prepared savoury canned fish, fresh thyme and farm eggs.

This family fish pie smells absolutely amazing while it’s baking away in the oven. For me, it brings back so many childhood memories of my mother canning freshly caught fish and baking up my grandmother’s pie using her old recipe.

Who knew that my Grandma, the original author of this recipe, had essentially recreated a quiche? I love it. I love that my Grandma ‘invented’ quiche!!

Pink raw fish ready in a quart jar.

Ingredients for this Fish Pie

  • single pie pastry case
  • fresh fish
  • passata
  • garlic powder
  • vinegar
  • brown sugar
  • fresh thyme
  • salt and pepper
  • onion
  • eggs
  • olive oil
  • cream

Which Fish is Best for Fish Pie?

I highly recommend buying fresh fish, then processing it to achieve maximum flavour with this pie. Keep in mind that shelf stable canned fish must be made using a pressure canner for safety reasons.

Steelhead Trout or Fresh Salmon are the best options for flavour and texture. One large fillet will end up filling 3 500 ml jars. If you must use pre canned fish, use the highest quality fish you can find.

For a very fancy Fish Pie, source a can of lump crab meat and make a delicious crab pie!

Ingredients for Fish Pie

A Few Words on Canning Fish

Fresh caught fish, preserved in jars with a bit of vinegar, herbs, and tomato is the backbone of this recipe. It has a superior flavour and texture to any store bought canned fish.

Hot water processing is NOT recommended for meat or fish. Just because Grandma or mom did it doesn’t mean that it is 100% safe. For shelf stable canned fish please use the pressure canner method.

That said, you can go with the hot water bath method if you are using the fish immediately. Keep the jars refrigerated for up to two weeks.

This recipe makes 3 pints of fish and only one is needed for the pie. There are so many other great ways to use up this delicious canned fish!

  • mix with mayo and diced celery for an amazing fish salad sandwich
  • fish noodle casserole
  • fish melts (just like a tuna melt!)
  • mix into alfredo sauce and eat with pasta or layer into a lasagna
An unbaked pie shell filled with pink canned fish.

How to Make Canned Fish

Begin by washing, inspecting, and sterilizing three quart jars and their lids. Place 3  500 ml jars in a pan containing an inch of water. Sterilize in a 225 F oven for ten minutes. Meanwhile, heat the lids and rings in a pot of boiling water.

If hot water bath processing, fill a large canner (with a rack) with water and bring to a rolling boil.

Next, prepare the fish. Cut it into 2 inch slices and place in a bowl along with the passata, brown sugar, and garlic powder. Stir so that the fish becomes coated well. Divide the fish evenly between sterilized jars.

Pour 1/4 cup vinegar into each jar, along with two sprigs of fresh thyme then screw on the lids. Place in the water bath canner and ensure the water level is approximately 1 inch higher than the jars. Process at a rolling boil for 2 hours, topping up water when necessary.

An unbaked pie shell filled with pink canned fish, beaten eggs, and fresh thyme.

For Pressure Canning (recommended method) add 2-3 inches water then place a rack in the bottom of the canner. Add hot jars of fish to the canner, seal, then allow to come to pressure. Process at 10 lbs pressure for two hours. For more pressure canning tips visit this post by The Prairie Homestead.

How to Bake a Fish Pie

This pie is more like a quiche than a traditional Baked Fish Pie. It doesn’t contain a white sauce, nor does it have a top pastry layer. It’s a simple single crust pie.

Preheat the oven to 350 F and roll out the pie pastry to fit a 9 inch pie plate.

Next, add the diced onions to a pan along with some olive oil and cook until they become softened. Set the onions aside.

Drain the fish (reserving liquid), break it up into small flakes and scatter into the waiting pie pastry shell. Add the reserved liquid to a small bowl, along with the eggs, thyme leaves, and salt and pepper.

Whisk well, then pour the egg mixture over the crumbled fish.

Bake for 40 minutes, or until the pastry is golden and the eggs have set. Enjoy with a nice green side salad or creamy cucumber salad.

A golden baked quiche on white marble surrounded by fresh thyme.

Dealing with Leftovers

Cover any leftover quiche with a piece of aluminum foil and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in a 350F oven for ten minutes or microwave on a piece by piece basis.

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Pinterest double image featuring a golden baked quiche and ingredients used in the fish pie.
Yield: 6 servings

Fish Pie

A golden baked quiche on white marble surrounded by fresh thyme.

A Simple Fish Pie made with home canned (or store bought) fish, eggs, and herbs. Easy to prepare and absolutely delicious for lunch or dinner.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes

Ingredients

FOR THE CANNED FISH

  • 1 large steelhead trout filet
  • 3 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup passata
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup vinegar; divided into 3 amounts of 1/4 cup
  • 6 sprigs fresh thyme

FOR THE FISH PIE

  • pastry for single pie crust
  • 500 ml jar canned fish (or 2-213 g cans of fish)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion; diced
  • 2 tbsp cream
  • 2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • salt and pepper

Instructions

    FOR THE CANNED FISH

      1. Wash, inspect, and sterilize three pint jars and their lids. Place 3  500 ml jars in a pan containing an inch of water. Sterilize in a 225 F oven for ten minutes. Meanwhile, heat the lids and rings in a pot of boiling water.
      2. If hot water bath processing, fill a large canner (with a rack) with water and bring to a rolling boil.
      3. Cut fish into 2 inch slices and place in a bowl along with the passata, brown sugar, and garlic powder. Stir so that the fish becomes coated well.
      4. Divide the fish evenly between sterilized jars. Pour 1/4 cup vinegar into each jar, along with two sprigs of fresh thyme then screw on the lids.
      5. Place jars in the water bath canner and ensure the water level is approximately 1 inch higher than the jars. Process at a rolling boil for 2 hours, topping up water when necessary.

      For Pressure Canning (recommended method) add 2-3 inches water then place a rack in the bottom of the canner. Add hot jars of fish to the canner, seal, then allow to come to pressure. Process at 10 lbs pressure for two hours. Refer to owners manual for tips on Pressure Canning.

    FOR THE FISH PIE

    1. Roll out pastry and arrange in a 9 inch pie plate.
    2. Heat olive oil in a frying pan. Add diced onions and sweat them until they are translucent.
    3. Drain fish, saving the juice. Break up the fish and scatter over the pastry. Top with sautéed onions.
    4. In a small bowl, beat eggs with 1/2 cup of the saved juice. Season with salt and pepper.
    5. Pour egg mixture over all. Sprinkle with fresh thyme.
    6. Bake for 40 minutes, or until it is set and slightly browned.

Notes

Prep time for pie does not include time required to process fish.

*If using canned fish, use 2 - 213g store bought canned fish.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving:Calories: 308Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 153mgSodium: 282mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 1gSugar: 4gProtein: 15g

Nutritional calculation was provided by Nutritionix and is an estimation only. For special diets or medical issues please use your preferred calculator.

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20 comments

  1. shannondobos

    I have never had fish pie, and that looks amazing! My original thought was that I would use fish in a can (my laziness is powerful!) However, I bet that canned fish would be so much more flavourful. I bet the trout was a great improvement from jack fish…I recall all too well the super fishy taste of jack caught in shallow Alberta lakes when I was a kid!

    Reply

    1. dishnthekitchen

      Blech. Jackfish is so gross. haha. I still won’t eat it unless it’s smoked.

      Reply

  2. Debi @ My Kitchen Witch

    It was fish sticks for my sister and myself – every Friday! Yuck, still can’t bring myself to look at them in the supermarket, though I love good fish and chips and have been known to enjoy a good British fish pie (no crust – a fish version of shepherd’s pie). I love how you’ve canned the trout. Must give this a go.

    Reply

    1. dishnthekitchen

      You’re going to laugh, but I would have killed for fish sticks. HA. My family NEVER bought any processed food and I was jealous of my city cousins and friends because they got to have some. Let me know if you give it a try!

      Reply

  3. Gabby Peyton

    I can’t believe this dish wasn’t around in Newfoundland, it seems like the kind of dish that would have been everywhere! I also hated fish growing up, dreading the way the house smelled when the family did a big ‘fry up’ with cod, and now I love it! I will definitely have to try this recipe.

    Reply

    1. dishnthekitchen

      Well, fried fish is an entirely different thing. I didn’t mind it, though I was always wary about those bones. That is strange this pie seems more like a prairie thing? Or maybe more French Canadian? Did your family can fish?

      Reply

      1. Gabby Peyton

        No canning, but always salt fish!! It was always drying on the beaches or being soaked overnight in the sink.. I hated it lol

        Reply

  4. Isabelle Boucher

    I’ve never seen a fish pie like this, but I’m very intrigued! I’m more familiar with the east coast style, which I think borrowed heavily from the British – it’s more like a very thick fish chowder that’s covered in mashed potatoes and baked, which is really delicious and all, but I love the sound of this lighter quichey version. (Quichey is a word, right?) 🙂
    Also, mad respect to anyone who cans their own fish from scratch. You rock! I’m sure it made all the difference in the finished dish!

    Reply

    1. dishnthekitchen

      Oh yeah. I guess I never thought about a fish pie like that. Kind of like a chicken pot pie. The family cookbook is full of all sorts of gems, I laughed when I read the recipe was pretty much a quiche. I don’t think the fish is really shelf stable, at least I wouldn’t keep it out of the fridge like my mom does (I guess we haven’t died yet!) haha. I kept the rest of the jars in the fridge and we use them for fish sandwiches.

      Reply

  5. diversivore

    I’ve always wanted to try my hand at canning fish – in fact, I’m just one step away from working on my first attempt (pickled herring). I’m going to agree with you about despising little bones, primarily because it took me such a ridiculous amount of time to get a sufficient number of the spiky little buggers out of the fillets. UGH. Now, as for fish PIE – well I haven’t even TRIED that before! But you can bet that I want to! I haven’t eaten pike in years, but I remember liking it a lot. I’d love to have that in a pie – but your trout version sounds pretty exquisite. In any case, go fish 🙂

    Reply

    1. dishnthekitchen

      ah, yes. Pickled fish. My family made a lot of it when there was extra fish and it wasn’t being canned. We didn’t preserve it any farther, just a huge ice cream pail full of pickled fish, with onions and pickling spice. Or smoked fish. Mmmm I miss my grandpa’s smoked fish. Basically all the fish during family card tournaments. And head cheese (that’s a story for another day)

      Reply

  6. Dana

    As a pescetarian, I’m probably going to sound biased, but this dish sounds AH-MAZING. It looks fantastic, too. Honestly, I just want to dive right into this. My grandma used to make salmon pie, and though my friends thought I was completely absurd for liking it, I could not be stopped. Funny, because my Mom (growing up a Frenchy) makes tourtière, and I am so not into it at all; yet everyone else is. For me, salmon pie > tourtière. Great recipe, Bernice!

    Reply

    1. dishnthekitchen

      Well I grew up eating tourtière too! Definitely more than a few French influences there. Was your grandma’s Salmon pie like this recipe?

      Reply

  7. Cassie @ Crumb Kitchen

    It’s funny, I was just having this conversation with my dad last weekend where he was saying he just got back from an ice fishing trip and caught “white fish.” I asked, Like what type? Lots of fish are white. And he just replied, I don’t know, white?

    I know nothing about fish and/or ice fishing so this makes sense with context. 😉

    Sometimes what we hate as children we love as adults. It’s great that you’re keeping your family’s tradition alive by posting this recipe, Bernice!

    Reply

    1. dishnthekitchen

      That IS funny Cassie. I actually have no idea what kind of fish ‘white fish’ actually are either. That’s just the name I grew up with.

      Reply

      1. Cassie @ Crumb Kitchen

        It must be a common name to call them, then! 😉

        Reply

  8. Chomp Chomp Food

    Classic home recipes are the best, thank you for sharing your family’s fish pie and canned fish recipe 🙂

    Reply

    1. Chomp Chomp Food

      Would fresh salmon and or fresh tuna work for the canned fish recipe?

      Reply

      1. dishnthekitchen

        Well I used fresh trout and also mentioned that you could use salmon as well. I don’t really know about fresh tuna, we don’t get an opportunity to buy that here in Alberta. Not sure if the texture would be the same. But for the pie, the fish should be canned (by using my method) or of good quality canned fish.

        Reply

    2. dishnthekitchen

      Thank you for stopping by and checking out my blog!

      Reply

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