This easy Fish Tacos recipe is the perfect dinner for busy weeknights! Taco ’bout a flavor explosion! Perfectly seasoned fish, loads of fresh ingredients all topped with a creamy fish taco sauce – this recipe is one the whole family will fall in love with!
Fish Taco Recipe
I love making fish tacos for my family. It’s amazing how one bite can instantly transport me to some of my favorite vacation destinations and memories. The tacos are so light yet so full of amazing flavor – I could eat a dozen in one sitting!
Fish tacos are one of those recipes that can absolutely be made year round. Pop the fish on a grill or on a cast iron skillet or indoor grill and you’re set. In fact, you can even bake the fish if you prefer! I find myself craving them more during the summer mostly because of the lightness of the tacos and the hint of citrus flavor you get in both the fish and the fish taco sauce.
I like to use halibut for my fish tacos but often wait to see what looks the best at the store before making a decision. Mahi Mahi, cod and tilapia are all great choices.
One of the great things about this recipe is that frozen fish works too so if you don’t have access to fresh fish, just grab some high quality frozen filets and thaw in the refrigerator. The rest of the recipe will proceed as directed.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Amazing Flavor. Choose your favorite white fish and an assortment of your favorite toppings for a fish taco recipe that can’t be beat.
- Quick and Easy. Fish is one of those ingredients that cooks up so quickly, it’s great for weeknights. This fish taco recipe comes together in a flash. In fact, it’s so quick to make, that I prepare the fish taco sauce in advance so it has time to chill.
- Fish Taco Sauce. Speaking of the fish taco sauce, this sensational sauce makes the tacos. Don’t skip it! It adds so much amazing flavor and that creaminess that every fish taco needs.
- Nutritious. Not only are these tacos extra delicious and flavorful, but they’re also packed with nutritious ingredients like fresh fish, avocado and purple cabbage.
This fish taco recipe is perfect on it’s own but if you’re looking to raise the bar, consider adding one or more of these side dishes:
- Mexican Rice: This flavorful side dish is always a good choice to serve with these tacos.
- Crockpot Refried Beans: Creamy and delicious, refried beans round out the menu nicely.
- Guacamole or Pico de Gallo and Chips: A classic option that never disappoints. Pairs perfectly with the tacos.
Fish Taco Recipe Ingredients
These tasty fish tacos are topped with our zesty homemade fish taco sauce and classic fish taco toppings. Prep to plate in just about 30 minutes! As always, you can find the full printable recipe with complete instructions in the recipe card at the end of this post. Let’s take a look at what you’ll need…
For The Tacos
- fresh white fish – I like to use halibut for my fish tacos but often wait to see what looks the best at the store before making a decision. Mahi Mahi, halibut, cod and tilapia are all great choices. Keep in mind that the cooking time largely depends on the thickness and type of fish.
- lime juice and lime zest – I grab about 3 to 4 limes when I’m making fish tacos because I use it to season the fish, use it in the fish taco sauce and always serve lime wedges with the tacos to squeeze fresh juice right on top.
- fajita seasoning – I use my own fajita seasoning but a store bought package of fajita seasoning is a great time saving option. Taco seasoning can also be used in this recipe.
- oil – I use avocado oil or another high smoke point oil to grease the grill so the fish doesn’t stick. If baking the fish, drizzle a little olive oil over the top of each filet or top with a small pat of butter.
- tortillas – I used yellow corn tortillas but white corn tortillas or even flour tortillas will work.
- cabbage – I like to use either purple or green cabbage or grab a bag of blended cabbage at the store.
Fish Taco Sauce Ingredients
- sour cream – Adds both creaminess and a hint of tang to the taco sauce. Greek yogurt or Mexican crema can be substituted.
- mayonnaise – Creates an extra creamy sauce.
- lime juice and lime zest – Really amps up the freshness of the taco sauce.
- cilantro – One of my favorite things about fish tacos is the fresh cilantro right on top. I think cilantro in the fish taco sauce is amazing!
- seasonings – A blend of garlic powder, ground cumin and smoked paprika create a smoky, complex flavor profile that really takes these tacos to the next level.
- hot sauce – While totally optional, a little hot sauce or sriracha can add a nice bit of heat to the sauce.
- queso fresco
- chopped onions
- pico de gallo
- lime wedges
- sliced radishes
I chose to season the fish with my favorite homemade fajita seasoning and lime juice and zest. You can absolutely grab a packet of fajita seasoning at the store though if you don’t want to mix up the seasoning.
How To Make Fish Tacos
Prepare Fish Taco Sauce
- Combine. Whisk together all of the fish taco sauce ingredients in one bowl.
- Chill. Cover the sauce and chill for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator.
- Season Fish. Cut the fish into 4 to 6 inch filets and pat the dry with a paper towel. Sprinkle each side of each filet with lime juice and zest and rub in gently. Sprinkle seasoning onto the fish and pat into the fish making sure to get all sides of the fish.
- To Grill. Heat your grill to medium heat and grease it well with the avocado oil. Cook the fish for 5 to 8 minutes on each side or until the fish reaches an internal temperature of 140°F – 145°F.
- To Bake. drizzle the top of each filet with a little olive oil or a teaspoon of butter. Bake at 375°F for about 20 minutes, flipping over once, or until the internal temperature reaches 140°F – 145°F. Pop the fish in the broiler for a few minutes for additional browning if desired.
- Tortillas. Heat the corn tortillas on the grill or in the microwave, wrapped in a damp paper towel, until soft.
- Fish. Flake the cooked fish into bite sized pieces.
- Assemble. Top each tortilla with fish, cabbage, queso fresco, other toppings and finish with the fish taco sauce. Enjoy immediately.
For the best flavor and texture, enjoy these tacos immediately. Leftover fish should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. The toppings should all be stored separately (fish taco sauce, cabbage, cilantro, etc.)
To reheat the fish, place in a preheated oven at 350°F for 10 minutes, or until warmed through. Alternatively, you can microwave or air fry for 1 to 2 minutes or until heated through. The fish taco sauce is good for up to 1 week.
Trish’s Tips and Tricks
- Pat the fish dry with paper towels before seasoning to ensure the spices adhere well.
- Warm the tortillas before assembly to make them softer and more pliable. For added flavor, consider charring your tortillas slightly on an open flame or in a hot, dry skillet before assembling your tacos.
- Remember that the fish will continue to cook a bit even after you take it off the heat.
- Customize the fish taco sauce. If you prefer a smokier sauce, consider adding a bit of chipotle powder or adobo sauce. Or if you like things spicy, add a bit more hot sauce or sriracha.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, just make sure it has thawed completely in the refrigerator before preparing the recipe.
White fish like halibut, tilapia, mahi mahi or cod works best in this recipe.
It’s less a matter of how long than to what temperature. The important thing is to cook the fish until the internal temperature reaches 140°F-145°F.
Serve With These Favorites
- Pico de Gallo
- Homemade Tortillas
- Crock Pot Pinto Beans
- Black Bean and Corn Salsa
- Mexican Rice
- Queso Blanco
How To Make This Fish Taco Recipe
- 1 pound fresh white fish skinned and deboned (halibut, tilapia, cod, mahi mahi, etc.)
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 2 teaspoons lime zest
- 1 tablespoon fajita seasoning or taco seasoning
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil use butter or olive oil for butter
- 12 corn tortillas white or yellow
- 2 cups purple cabbage or green cabbage, thinly sliced
Fish Taco Sauce
- ½ cup sour cream
- ⅓ cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 2 teaspoons lime zest
- 2 tablespoons minced cilantro
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon hot sauce or Sriracha, optional
- queso fresco crumbled
- chopped onions
- pico de gallo
- lime wedges
Fish Taco Sauce
- Combine all of the fish taco sauce ingredients in one bowl and whisk to combine. Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes.
- Cut fish into 4 to 6 inch filets and pat the dry with a paper towel.
- Sprinkle each side of each filet with lime juice and zest and rub in gently. Sprinkle seasoning onto the fish and pat into the fish making sure to get all sides of the fish.
- To grill, heat your grill to medium heat and grease it well with the avocado oil. Cook the fish for 5 to 8 minutes on each side or until the fish reaches an internal temperature of 140°F – 145°F.
- To bake, drizzle the top of each filet with a little olive oil or a teaspoon of butter. Bake at 375°F for about 20 minutes, flipping over once, or until the internal temperature reaches 140°F – 145°F. Pop the fish in the broiler for a few minutes for additional browning if desired.
- While the fish is cooking, heat the corn tortillas on the grill or in the microwave, wrapped in a damp paper towel, until soft.
- Flake the cooked fish into bite sized pieces. Top each tortilla with fish, cabbage, queso fresco, other toppings and finish with the fish taco sauce. Enjoy immediately.