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Pan-Fried Tilapia with Fresh Salsa

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Pan-Fried Tilapia with Fresh Salsa

Pan-Fried Tilapia with Fresh Salsa

Jessica Braider
This fresh salsa, also known as pico de gallo, is so versatile. (It might be a fun to discuss with your family over dinner why fresh chopped salsa would be called “rooster’s beak” in Spanish.) In addition to livening up a mild fish like tilapia, you can also use the salsa as a dip for chips, a topping for chicken, or a filling for a burrito or wrap on top of beans or meat.
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 4 servings


  • 2 tomatoes seeded and diced
  • 1 jalapeño or sweet Italian pepper seeded and diced
  • 1/4 red onion finely diced about 1/2 cup
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh cilantro or parsley or more to taste, chopped
  • 1 lime juice only, about 2 Tbsp.
  • 1/2 tsp. salt or more to taste
  • 1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 lbs. tilapia fillets or other thin white fish fillets
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cumin or more to taste
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder or more to taste


  • To make the salsa, in a medium serving bowl, combine the tomatoes, peppers, onions, cilantro or parsley, half the lime juice, and about ¼ tsp. salt. Set it aside to let the flavors meld.
  • In a large nonstick or cast iron skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Place the fillets in the pan and press down with a spatula to ensure each fillet is completely touching the pan. Season the tilapia lightly with half of the remaining salt, and about half of the cumin and garlic powder.
  • Brown the tilapia on each side until it is lightly brown, about 3 minutes per side. After flipping the fish, squeeze the remaining lime juice on the fillets and season it with a little more salt, cumin, and garlic powder. Serve the fish immediately, topped with the salsa.


Do Ahead or Delegate: Seed and dice the tomatoes and the pepper, dice the onion, chop the herbs, juice the lime, prepare the salsa.
Scramble Flavor Booster: Use a jalapeño and the juice of a whole lime to make the salsa.
Tip: When seeding hot peppers, wear rubber gloves or use a piece of plastic wrap on the tip of your fingers so your skin doesn’t come in contact with the spicy seeds. Once the seeds come in contact with your fingers you can easily burn your eyes if you accidentally touch them.
Nutritional Information Per Serving (% based upon daily values): Calories 180, Total Fat: 5g, 8%; Saturated Fat: 1g, 5%; Cholesterol: 80mg, 27%; Sodium: 360mg, 15%; Total Carbohydrate: 4g, 1%; Dietary Fiber: 1g, 4%; Sugar: 2g; Protein: 29g
Like this recipe? Check out The Scramble's family-friendly meal plans to see just how simple getting dinner on the table can be!
Keyword 30 Minutes (or less) Meals, Company/Entertaining, Dairy-Free, Dinner, Gluten-Free, Kosher, Low Fat, Low Sodium, Main Dish, No Added Sugar, Nut-Free, Summer
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