In The Kitchen: Fish Tacos 2 Ways

Fish taco’s are a Southern California – Baja Mexico delicacy.  They drive a following of people so dedicated to the taste that one will even go as far as to write a blog called, Fish Taco Magazine, in which the author searches the world for the best fish tacos on the planet.  In San Diego it was the legendary El Zarape, an authentic Mexican restaurant serving up fish tacos, for only $2 a pop or our local Pacific Beach favorite, Taco Surf. A shop still  living in a 70’s California Surf Dream, dishing up traditional and not so traditional Mexican food.

Here in Los Angeles I have yet to try a few of the places that have been deemed the best Fish Tacos is LA, by local foodies.  On my list to devour are:

  1. Senor Fish – Eagle Rock
  2. The Best Fish Taco in Ensenada – Los Feliz
  3. Ricky’s Fish Tacos – Silver Lake

Living with and dating a San Diego native, I have come to appreciate eating and cooking Mexican everyday of the week.  I have tried several versions of my own fish tacos, made with tilapia, mahi mahi, red slaw, cabbage slaw, fried, baked, grilled, sautéed.  The options and the combinations endless.  I have however finally mastered two healthy versions of our favorite Fish Taco recipe.

Baked Fish Tacos

Baked Fish Tacos

  • 2 fillets of mahi mahi (or a similar white fish, tilapia is the most cost-effective)
  • 1 c. panko (japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 1/2 c. flour
  • 1 egg
  • salt & pepper

Heat oven to 475 F.  Rinse fillets well under cold water, pat dry.  Cut fillet along the grain into 1-inch thick strips. Season well with salt & pepper.  In three shallow dishes place flour, a beaten egg, and panko.  Take fish strips and work down the assembly line.  Role in flour, then dip into egg and finish by covering with the panko.  TIP:  Use one hand to dip in the egg and one to roll the fish in the breadcrumbs.

Set up fish on an aluminum foil lined baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray.  Bake fish for 15 minutes or until panko begins to darken, turning once at the 7 minute mark.

While the fish is baking prepare slaw, sauce, and toppings.  See recipes below.

sautéed Fish Tacos

sautéed Fish Tacos

  • 2 fillets of mahi mahi (or a similar white fish, tilapia is the most cost-effective)
  • 1 tbsp of vegetable oil


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • pinch of pepper
  • pinch of salt

Marinate fish in a plastic bag with all the above ingredients in the refrigerator for 2 – 6 hours.  Once fish is marinated heat a fry pan on the stove with 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil.  Once pan is heated, place all ingredients from the marinade in the pan and cook until fish is cooked all the way through.  About 4 minutes on each side.  Once fish is cooked remove from pan and let cool.

Serve with sides below.

Spicy Fish Taco Sauce

  • 1 lime
  • 1/2 c. non-fat greek yogurt
  • 2 tbsp lite mayonnaise
  • 2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 jalapeno, seeded and chopped finely

Mix greek yogurt, mayonnaise, cayenne, and jalapeno together.  Juice the lime into the mixture, and stir until it has thinned. Typically mayonnaise and sour cream are used to make this sauce.  However Greek Yogurt is a great and healthy alternative.  The taste is exactly the same!

Cabbage Slaw

  • 1/4 of a large cabbage (you can use regular, red, or my favorite napa cabbage*)
  • 2 tbsp of Spicy Fish Taco Sauce

Thinly slice cabbage into strips, break apart and mix with Spicy Fish Taco sauce, just enough to lightly coat it.

Must Have Sides:

  • Cilantro
  • Red Onion, thinly sliced
  • Lime wedges
  • Guacamole (need a recipe, check out my next post!)

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