Skip to Content

Easy Spice Rubbed Fish Tacos

It’s so super easy to make your own  Easy Spice Rubbed Fish Tacos at home. Here, I just pan-seared some tilapia after letting it sit for a short time in a lime/spice rub to cook up a simple 25 minute Taco Tuesday weeknight dinner, but grilled is great too. 

plate of fish tacos

Up today in Sunday Scratchups (your weekly recipe from scratch around grocery sales and affordable ingredients), we have some Easy Spice Rubbed Fish Tacos! It’s so super easy to make your own fish tacos at home: Here, I just pan-seared some tilapia after letting it sit for a short time in a lime/spice rub, but grilled is great too.

Easy Spice Rubbed Fish Tacos: It's so super easy to make your own fish tacos at home: Here, I just pan-seared some tilapia after letting it sit for a short time in a lime/spice rub, but grilled is great too. Optionally gluten free (use corn tortillas), dairy free (don't top with cheese!), or low carb (use a low carb wrap).

I used tilapia to make my spice rubbed fish tacos this time, because hello: half price sticker! (These red stickers are among my favorite ALDI finds, but tilapia is an affordable choice in general.) Any firm white fish fillets will do if you’re not a tilapia fan, however; cod is good, or I sometimes use mahi mahi for fish tacos (yum!) when it goes on sale.

Easy Spice Rubbed Fish Tacos

Ingredients

1 pound fresh tilapia fillets (or other firm white fish of choice)
Juice from 1 small lime
1 Tbsp chili powder
1/2 Tbsp cumin
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (omit if sensitive to spice)
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp oregano
Black pepper, to taste
1 tsp Kosher salt
1 Tbsp olive oil
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 a medium yellow onion, diced
Taco fixings of choice, such as tortillas, pico de gallo, black beans, cabbage slaw, fresh lime wedges, sour cream, salsa, avocado, cilantro…

Directions

Easy Spice Rubbed Fish Tacos: It's so super easy to make your own fish tacos at home: Here, I just pan-seared some tilapia after letting it sit for a short time in a lime/spice rub, but grilled is great too. Optionally gluten free (use corn tortillas), dairy free (don't top with cheese!), or low carb (use a low carb wrap).

Place the tilapia in a baking dish or on a large plate. Combine the lime juice with chili powder, cumin, cayenne, smoked paprika, oregano, black pepper, and Kosher salt to create a paste.

Easy Spice Rubbed Fish Tacos: It's so super easy to make your own fish tacos at home: Here, I just pan-seared some tilapia after letting it sit for a short time in a lime/spice rub, but grilled is great too. Optionally gluten free (use corn tortillas), dairy free (don't top with cheese!), or low carb (use a low carb wrap).

Rub the lime/spice rub into both sides of the tilapia and let it sit to marinate for about ten minutes.

While fish is marinating, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add onion and garlic and saute for two minutes.

Easy Spice Rubbed Fish Tacos: It's so super easy to make your own fish tacos at home: Here, I just pan-seared some tilapia after letting it sit for a short time in a lime/spice rub, but grilled is great too. Optionally gluten free (use corn tortillas), dairy free (don't top with cheese!), or low carb (use a low carb wrap).

Add tilapia to the same skillet and cook it for 2-3 minutes per side (depending on thickness), until fish becomes opaque and flakes easily with a fork.

Easy Spice Rubbed Fish Tacos: It's so super easy to make your own fish tacos at home: Here, I just pan-seared some tilapia after letting it sit for a short time in a lime/spice rub, but grilled is great too. Optionally gluten free (use corn tortillas), dairy free (don't top with cheese!), or low carb (use a low carb wrap).

Flake the tilapia into pieces and serve with any taco fixings of your choice!

Note: You’ll definitely want to use your oven fan if pan-searing the fish as I did here, but can grill instead if you prefer. If using frozen fish, let it thaw before doing the spice rub.

Finished fish tacos in under 30 minutes

Easy Spice Rubbed Fish Tacos! It's so super easy to make your own fish tacos at home: Here, I just pan-seared some tilapia after letting it sit for a short time in a lime/spice rub, but grilled is great too. Optionally gluten free (use corn tortillas), dairy free (don't top with cheese!), or low carb (use a low carb wrap).

Easy spice rubbed fish tacos are a great choice for a quick weeknight dinner, since you can have your finished tacos on the table in about 25 minutes start to finish! The fish tacos themselves are naturally gluten free (if you serve them on corn or other GF tortillas), low carb (if you serve them on a low carb wrap), and dairy free (if you don’t top with cheese), making this an easily adaptable recipe for different dietary needs or preferences.

These simple & flavorful tilapia tacos were a hit here with all three boys, although everyone topped theirs with something slightly different — and MashupDad went the low-carb route. I’ll call that a win-win-win for Taco Tuesday, fish on Friday, or an easy dinner idea for any busy weeknight.

Easy Spice Rubbed Fish Tacos, printable recipe

Easy Spice Rubbed Fish Tacos

It's so super easy to make your own fish tacos at home: Here I just pan-seared some tilapia after letting it sit for a short time in a lime/spice rub, but grilled is great too.
Course dinner
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4

Ingredients

  • 1 pound fresh tilapia fillets (or other firm white fish of choice)
  • Juice from 1 small lime
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1/2 Tbsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (omit if sensitive to spice)
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • Black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tsp Kosher salt
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 a medium yellow onion, diced
  • Taco fixings of choice, such as tortillas, pico de gallo, black beans, cabbage slaw, fresh lime wedges, sour cream, salsa, avocado, cilantro...

Instructions

  • Place the tilapia in a baking dish or on a large plate. Combine the lime juice with chili powder, cumin, cayenne, smoked paprika, oregano, black pepper, and Kosher salt to create a paste.
  • Rub the lime/spice rub into both sides of the tilapia and let it sit to marinate for about ten minutes.
  • While fish is marinating, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add onion and garlic and saute for two minutes.
  • Add tilapia to the same skillet and cook it for 2-3 minutes per side (depending on thickness), until fish becomes opaque and flakes easily with a fork.
  • Flake the tilapia into pieces and serve with any taco fixings of your choice!

Notes

You'll definitely want to use your oven fan if pan-searing the fish as I did here, but can grill instead if you prefer. If using frozen fish, let it thaw before doing the spice rub.

More recipes?

*** Find more recipe ideas with the Recipe Search!

Recipes in the real world

And don’t miss the free weekly ALDI meal plans that show you how to use these recipes to meal plan affordably and realistically for your family!

Recipe Rating




AJ

Wednesday 19th of February 2020

what day does Aldi put the 1/2 price stickers out? I shop on Sunday ams and I never see them at my store.

rachel

Wednesday 19th of February 2020

There is no particular day -- it's when they have items that are reaching expiration or need to go. At my own stores I most often will see them on Sunday evening or Monday morning when they're clearing out what doesn't sell over the weekend, but that is not a hard-and-fast rule.

Best Budget Meals | 20 Easy Dinners to Save You Money!

Friday 25th of May 2018

[…] Spice Rubbed Fish Tacos  | Mashup Mom […]

Last Minute Dinners – 30 Minute Dinner Recipes For Busy Nights – The Blog Box

Monday 15th of January 2018

[…] Easy Spiced Rubbed Fish Tacos| Mashup Mom: Change up your Taco-Tuesday with a dish from the sea. These delicious fish tacos have a flavorful rub you’ll love. […]

Last Minute Dinners - 30 Minute Dinner Recipes For Busy Nights

Sunday 14th of January 2018

[…] Easy Spiced Rubbed Fish Tacos| Mashup Mom: Change up your Taco-Tuesday with a dish from the sea. These delicious fish tacos have a flavorful rub you’ll love. […]

Simple Share Buttons