Classic Fish Pie Recipe

Classic fish pie

  • serves 6
  • Easy

A comforting pie filled with white fish, smoked haddock, prawns and leek, topped with fluffy mash, that you can make in advance and freeze. A classic family dish special enough to serve to guests too


Try our classic fish pie recipe, then also check out our easy fish piehealthy fish piefish pie lasagne, and more fish pie recipes.

Which ingredients do you use in a fish pie?

Fish pie is a brilliantly versatile dish which allows you to mix and match your favourite fish and seafood. The most common ingredients are a firm white fish like cod, haddock or pollock, salmon and smoked haddock and most supermarkets sell a ready-prepared fresh or frozen fish pie mix of these. You can also add prawns, mussels, crab and even lobster for a super-luxurious pie. Spinach, frozen peas and quartered boiled eggs are often used to bulk out the pie and add extra texture.

How do you make fish pie sauce?

The sauce for a fish pie is traditionally roux-based where an equal amount of flour and butter is cooked until toasty then milk is whisked in to give a thick white sauce. As fish will give out water when cooked it’s important to have a sauce that binds all of the ingredients and doesn’t split. Chopped parsley, dill or tarragon are all traditional herbs to flavour the sauce. You can also add a splash of cream or white wine for extra indulgence and a little lemon zest to lift the flavour.

Fish pie toppings

Creamy, buttery mashed potato is probably the most traditional fish pie topping but puff pastry is also popular. If topping with mash be careful not to add too much milk when mashing – you don’t want it to be too sloppy as it means the finished pie won’t have any structure and you’ll end up with fish pie soup! You can mix grated cheddar or gruyère into the mash for extra savouriness or scatter over grated cheese for a melty topping. If using puff pastry put the fish pie base in a pie dish with a good lip so the pastry doesn’t fall into the sauce and get soggy on the bottom.

Fish pie recipe



  • leeks 2, sliced and rinsed
  • butter 100g
  • plain flour 2 tbsp
  • white wine 250ml
  • double cream 150ml
  • flat-leaf parsley ½ small bunch, chopped
  • firm white skinless fish such as cod or coley  300g, chunked
  • skinless smoked haddock 300g, chunked
  • cooked peeled prawns 200g
  • Maris Piper potatoes 750g, peeled and chunked
  • milk for the mash


  • Step 1

    Heat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Gently cook the leeks in half the butter until really soft. Stir in the flour and cook for a couple of minutes. Gradually stir in the wine until you have a sauce and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the cream and bring gently to a simmer for a couple of minutes. Stir in the parsley, fish and prawns, then take off the heat. Tip into a baking dish.

  • Step 2

    To make the mash, boil the potatoes in salted water until tender. Drain, then tip back into the pan over a low heat to dry out slightly. Add the rest of the butter, a splash of milk and some seasoning. Mash really well. Spoon over the fish, then spread out using a fork so you end up with a rough surface. Dot or brush with more butter for a golden top.

  • Step 3

    Bake the pie in the oven for 30-35 minutes until the top is crisp and golden, and the filling is bubbling and piping hot.

  • Step 4

    To freeze the pie, cover with clingfilm and freeze after assembling (but before cooking) for up to 2 months. Defrost completely in the fridge overnight. Cook following the instructions above.

Try our mushy pea fish pie for something a little different

Best Fish Pie Recipe with Mushy Peas

Nutritional Information

  • Kcals 526
  • Fat 28.7g
  • Saturates 17.3g
  • Carbs 28.9g
  • Fibre 4.2g
  • Protein 28.3g
  • Salt 2g