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Blackened Tilapia Soft Tacos - A Family Feast

These Blackened Tilapia Soft Tacos are a simple, delicious, and affordable weeknight meal – as well as a great addition to any taco night buffet.

Last month, we hosted a potluck taco night at our house where we prepared a variety of taco fillings including our pulled chicken, pork carnitas, and more.  But the star of the evening was the Blackened Tilapia Soft Tacos that one of our neighbors brought to the party.

Tilapia is a mild, freshwater fish that can be found at most supermarkets these days. Sprinkle the fillets with a blend of chili powder, garlic powder, kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper – then fry the fillets in a skillet.

Blackened Tilapia Soft Tacos - A Family Feast

Shred the blackened tilapia with two forks. Then stuff into soft flour tortillas along with shredded lettuce and cheese, and top with pickled red onions – or any other favorite taco toppings.

Blackened Tilapia Soft Tacos - A Family Feast

Our neighbors served these Blackened Tilapia Soft Tacos with a homemade hot sauce that was absolutely incredible! We’ve included the recipe for the hot sauce below as well – but to make things easier, feel free to use your own favorite hot sauce instead.

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Blackened Tilapia Soft Tacos - A Family Feast

Blackened Tilapia Soft Tacos

  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 10 mins
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4 tacos


  • 1 pound fresh tilapia fillets
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder (feel free to use more if you like it spicier)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil

Hot Sauce

  • 2 teaspoons chopped jalapeno, seeds removed
  • 1 teaspoon garlic chili sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil


  • 4 7-inch flour tortillas
  • Lettuce, shredded
  • Colby Jack Cheese, shredded
  • Pickled red onions, sliced


  1. Lay out tilapia filets and pat both sides dry with paper towels.
  2. Mix the chili powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper in a small bowl and sprinkle over both sides of the fish.
  3. Heat a cast iron skillet to medium high heat and add the oil.
  4. Once the oil is hot and shimmering, add the fish and cook 2-3 minutes on each side using a fish turner to flip. The fish should be blackened on the outside and soft and flaky in the center.
  5. Remove to a platter and with two forks, flake into bite sized pieces.
  6. While the fish is cooking, place all sauce ingredients in a small food processor and puree until smooth.
  7. To assemble, line a flour tortilla with a little sauce, then lettuce, pieces of fish, cheese and pickled red onion. Serve with additional hot sauce.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.

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Blackened Tilapia Soft Tacos - A Family Feast

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