I have to admit, I’m not a huge fan of sardines, even though I’d like to be since they’re a great source of protein, omega-3 fatty acids, Vitamin B12 and Vitamin D. So when I asked an intern to recipe test these for me, I hesitantly tried one. They’re good! If you love sardines, you’ll love them. If you don’t, you might be pleasantly surprised. They make a wonderful appetizer for an event or a main course anytime. I don’t do a lot of recipes that utilize frying but in this one we use coconut oil so it is healthier than using highly processed or GMO vegetable oils.  Serves: 4-6 PREP TIME: 20 minutes COOK TIME: 10 minutes


  • 2 tablespoons Trader Joe’s jalapeno sauce or similar low FODMAP hot sauce
  • 2 tablespoons coconut aminos
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 head butter lettuce
  • Two tins of sardines, drained
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon garlic oil
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • ¾ cup almond meal
  • 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
  • Avocado oil for frying
  • 1 lemon cut in wedges


  1. Whisk the hot sauce, coconut aminos, and fresh lime juice together in a small bowl to make the sauce. Set aside.
  2. Select eight medium size leaves from a head of butter lettuce. Wash and dry them.
  3. To make the fritters, place the sardines, eggs, garlic oil, parsley, almond meal, and Parmesan cheese in a food processor. Process until all the ingredients are incorporated.
  4. Make small balls (approximately 1 inch in diameter) from the sardine mixture and set aside. 
  5. Heat about an inch of avocado oil in a large saucepan till it is hot but not smoking. 
  6. Fry the sardine fritters in batches, for approximately four minutes until golden brown, turning them once with tongs.
  7. When done, place the fritters on a plate with a paper towel to absorb the oil.
  8. Serve a couple fritters in each leaf with sauce over them.

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