The Best Fish Tacos Recipe with crispy battered fish, diced avocado, crunchy cabbage, and delicious, easy fish taco sauce. I promise, these fish tacos are better than any food truck!
We also love these grilled fish tacos.
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This is the best fish tacos recipe! Yes, I’m that bold but just read reviews for yourself.
I think the best fish tacos are crispy, battered and fried, just like you get at any surf and turf joint. Fish has to be spicy and flavorful enough to help the plain veggies a bit.
It is a quick healthy meal you can make at home even on a busy weeknight! Fish tacos are a complete meal. So easy, just 25 minutes from fridge to table including making the fish taco sauce!
What Is the Best Fish for Fish Tacos?
The best fish for fish tacos is any firm white fish like wild cod, halibut, bass, haddock, rockfish, mahi mahi or snapper. This fish taco recipe uses battered fish rather than flaked fish, so choose fish that holds its shape well.
You can even use salmon or trout if that’s what you have. It does not have to be white fish but rather fish that doesn’t flake easily and fall apart.
Ingredients for Fish Tacos Recipe
As always, my fish tacos recipe ingredients are super simple. And I even give you options for flours to use.
- Fish: Any firm white fish fillets that holds its shape. Cod, halibut, bass, haddock, rockfish, mahi mahi or snapper are great. Tilapia will not work.
- Flour: Any flour works! Almond flour or almond meal, regular white flour or whole wheat flour, spelt flour, gluten free flour, or even breadcrumbs. Anything that will make fish crispy.
- Simple spices: I use homemade taco seasoning and garlic powder.
- Yogurt and mayo: I call my fish taco sauce healthy because I use 75% plain yogurt and 25% mayonnaise unlike any restaurant’s 100% mayo white sauce.
- Cabbage, tomato, avocado, fresh cilantro, and lime are our fish taco toppings but you can use what you have on hand.
- Tortillas: You can use corn tortillas or flour tortillas for serving. We use corn tortillas because they are more authentic and nutritious.
How to Make Fish Tacos
I doubled this fish taco recipe and tacos were gone by morning. So, if serving a crowd, definitely double the recipe!
There are 3 steps to making fish tacos: cook the fish, make the fish taco sauce and prepare the taco toppings. It doesn’t get easier than that.
Prep fish and its dredging: Cut fish into 1 inch cubes and in a medium bowl whisk flour, taco seasoning, garlic powder, cornstarch, salt and pepper.
To cook fish: Dip fish pieces into flour mixture and pan fry for 2 minutes per side in preheated large ceramic non-stick skillet on medium high heat.
Best Fish Taco Sauce
Make fish taco sauce while fish is cooking. In a medium bowl, whisk yogurt, mayo, fresh lime juice, taco seasoning, cayenne pepper and black pepper.
Adjust amount of cayenne pepper to your taste or add some sriracha if you like your fish tacos spicy. If the sauce is too thick, add 1 teaspoon of water at a time until desired consistency is reached. This could be the case if you used Greek yogurt.
I also like to transfer fish taco sauce to a drizzling bottle.
Fish Taco Toppings
The finishing touch on these fish tacos are the toppings! Set up a taco bar and let each family member customize their taco how they like them for a peaceful and delicious dinner.
Chop toppings: Thinly slice or shred the cabbage or lettuce. Freshly shredded cabbage adds the best crunch but store bought coleslaw mix or broccoli slaw will work as well. Dice avocado, tomato, cilantro and red onion. Crumble cotija cheese or feta cheese.
I like to place fish tacos toppings in a large baking dish, cover with linen towel and set aside.
To assemble tacos: Warm tortillas in a cast iron skillet on high heat for 10 seconds per side and press on them with spatula. It makes fish tacos extra delicious! Fill each tortilla with 3-4 pieces of fish, add toppings and drizzle with sauce.
What to Serve with Fish Tacos?
These fish tacos are quite filling meal, so you will not need many side dishes. Here are a few ideas:
- Fruity salsas: Sweet with heat mango salsa recipe, pineapple jalapeno salsa or pico de gallo round out flavors of any tacos very nicely.
- Guacamole and tortilla chips.
- I recommend to make this super easy Instant Pot corn on the cob.
- Instant Pot refried beans or quickly open a can of store bought pinto beans or black beans.
Tips for Best Results
Here are my top tips for the best fish tacos I have been making for past 7 years!
- Skip non-fat yogurt: Do not use 0% yogurt for the fish taco sauce because it will lack flavor.
- Fish cooks fast: So don’t over cook it, otherwise it will come out rubbery.
- Do not overcrowd the skillet: Leave room for air to flow between fish pieces to keep fish tacos coating crunchy.
- Double the recipe for 4+ people: I highly recommend to double this fish tacos recipe. Single recipe makes 9 tacos and I find we all want 3-4 tacos each. And nobody minds the leftovers.
I think corn tortillas are best for fish tacos because they result in the most authentic flavor. I prefer to buy corn tortillas to save time and then warm them in the skillet. You can also make homemade corn tortillas. ALso if you would like to use flour tortillas, that’s fine too.
The best cheese for fish tacos is cotija cheese. It is Mexican cheese that is more mild and less salty than feta cheese and crumbles as you shred it. You can also use crumbled feta cheese.
Although fresh fish will always yield the best taste in fish tacos, you can use thawed frozen fish. I would not cook it straight from frozen as your breading will not stick to the fish.
While I have not tested this, I am sure it could work! Air fry fish at 390 F for 12-15 minutes total, flipping after 8-10 minutes. Air fryer makes and models differ, so keep an eye on the fish.
To be able to call these “healthy fish tacos”, we use almond flour as a breading, fry fish cubes in high smoke point and heart healthy avocado oil, and reduce mayonnaise in the fish taco sauce by 3/4. You can use any flour though.
More Tacos Recipes to Try
These fish tacos are lower in calories, yet battered and fried (a must!), easy to make and a perfect weeknight dinner! Here are a few other our favorite taco recipes.
- Shrimp tacos
- Bang bang shrimp tacos
- Ground chicken tacos
- Carne asada tacos
- Ground turkey tacos
- Instant Pot shredded chicken tacos
Best Fish Tacos Recipe
Fish Taco Sauce:
- Dredging for fish: In a medium bowl, add flour, taco seasoning, garlic powder, cornstarch, salt and pepper. Stir and set aside.
- Fish taco sauce: In a small bowl, add yogurt, mayo, lime juice, taco seasoning, cayenne and black pepper. Stir and set aside.
- Toppings: Chop and prepare the toppings.
- To cook fish: Preheat large ceramic non-stick skillet on medium-high heat and swirl 1 tbsp of oil. In batches, dredge pieces of fish in flour mixture and fry for 2-3 minutes per side or until crispy and brown. Fish cooks fast, so don't over cook. Do not overcrowd the skillet – helps to keep fish crispy. Remove onto a plate.
- To assemble tacos: Warm tortillas in a cast iron skillet on high heat for 10 seconds per side and pressing on with spatula. Fill each tortilla with 3-4 pieces of fish, add toppings and drizzle with sauce. Serve immediately with your favorite toppings (please see suggestions in notes).
- Store: Refrigerate leftover cooked fish, sauce and toppings covered or in a container for up to 24 hours. Fish is most crispy right after cooking.
- Make Ahead: Chop toppings and make sauce up to 2 days in advance. Refrigerate separately. You can also mix and store in a dry place flour with spices that you will use for dredging.
- Fish: You can use any firm white fish like wild cod, halibut, bass, haddock, rockfish, mahi mahi or snapper. Even salmon.
- Flour: Flour that will work is almond flour or almond meal, regular white or whole wheat flour, spelt flour, gluten free flour or even breadcrumbs.
- Yogurt: Please do not use 0% yogurt because sauce will lack flavor.
- Fish cooks fast: So don’t over cook it otherwise it will come out rubbery.
- Do not overcrowd the skillet: Leaving room and air to flow between fish pieces helps to keep it crispy.
- Double the recipe for 4+ people: I highly recommend to double the recipe. Single recipe makes 9 tacos and I find we all want 3-4 tacos each.