How Do You Clean Channel Catfish?

How do you clean channel catfish and do you skin them and how. thanks

Yes, you have to skin (all catfish…not just channel catfish) catfish to clean them. Many people catch catfish only to release them back in the water, because they mistakenly think they are difficult to clean. This could not be less true, and in fact, they are some of the easiest fish to clean. The first tip to help you easily clean a catfish is to clean it when it is really fresh. The fresher, the better. Also, the bigger the fish, the tougher the skin will be. For this reason, if you are trying to clean a bigger fish, it will be easier to get the skin off if you blanche the fish in boiling water before attempting to skin it. To blanche the catfish, bring a pot of water to a boil. Put a stopper in your sink. Place your fish in the sink. Pour the boiling water over the fish and allow them to sit in the water bath for no more than five minutes. Remove from the water and dry them well. Grasp the fish firmly in one hand. You can use a cloth (a piece of clean, old, t-shirt material works well) to keep the fish from slipping if it feels slippery to you. Use a super sharp knife to make a shallow cut all the way around the head. Cut just through the skin, but not into the meat. Pull the skin down, toward the tail until you have all the skin down to the tail, and cut the tail off with your knife. Discard it.


Dan Eggertsen is a fellow catfish fishing enthusiast to the point of obsession. :) He's been providing solid advice on catfish fishing since 2004.

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