Flavorfully seasoned cod fillets enveloped in soft corn tortillas, topped with ruby red blood orange salsa, crispy green cabbage, and creamy guacamole, this is the best fish tacos recipe!
Why you’ll love it: Flaky fish pairs perfectly with this bright, citrusy salsa!
How long it takes: only 30 minutes!
Equipment you’ll need: 2 bowls, nonstick skillet, spatula
Just take a look at these fish tacos! Eye candy, right? Maize corn tortillas flecked with char marks, mild tasting flaky white cod, juicy ruby red blood orange salsa studded with lime green jalapeño peppers and cilantro, topped with finely shredded tendrils of cabbage, and creamy avocado. Easy on the eyes and a verifiable taste explosion!
I can hardly believe that something that tastes as mouth-watering good as these easy fish tacos can be healthy for you. Usually food that is over the top delicious is a once in awhile treat, right? Because of the butter, or the sugar, or the cream, or the carbs, or you name it, really delicious food usually has “treat” status.
You can treat yourself to these easy fish tacos as often as you like! Grilled cod (3 oz. serving) lightly seasoned, has only 90 calories, 1 gram of fat, and 19 grams of protein. Whole grain corn tortillas have a minimal amount of fat and are gluten free. Oranges, cabbage, peppers, cilantro–all great sources of vitamins, minerals and fiber. Avocado is also a healthy source of unsaturated fat, proven to help maintain healthy cholesterol levels.
So go ahead! Try this healthy easy fish tacos recipe. It may win you superstar status in your kitchen!
About These fish tacos
If fish tacos are offered on a restaurant menu, my decision is made. But why wait until you go out for dinner? You can make this easy recipe in a snap right in your own kitchen.
I’ll run through the recipe here and give you lots of helpful tips. Look for the printable recipe card near the end of the post for specific measurements, instructions, and nutrition information.
Start with cod fillets, rinsed and patted dry. Rub in a spice mix of chili powder, smoked paprika, salt and lime zest (or take a shortcut and use my fajita seasoning instead). Set the cod aside while you do the rest of the preparations, allowing the spices to marinate the cod.
Since the cod cooks very quickly, you’ll want to make the salsa next. Peel and segment the blood oranges. If you haven’t done this before, find your sharpest knife and watch this one minute video on how to segment an orange.
Once you’ve segmented the blood oranges, mix the segments lightly with finely chopped red onion, jalapeño, and cilantro. Use the excess orange juice for a refreshing drink. Your salsa is ready!
Next, prepare the avocado mash by mashing the avocados and lime juice together (guacamole is delicious, too!). Season with salt and pepper if desired. Chop or shred green cabbage to top the tacos. You could also buy a bag of coleslaw mix if you don’t want to bother with the cabbage but freshly chopped cabbage really does taste better.
How to make charred corn tortillas: You can use the corn tortillas right out of the package but I like to hold them over a gas burner with tongs to lightly char them. Use 2 tortillas per taco because there’s a lot of stuff for them to hold.
Okay, now heat up your skillet or grill pan. Cook the cod fillets until they’re browned and flake easily. Assemble your fish tacos and enjoy! Cilantro lime rice or Mexican rice are great sides. Baked tortilla chips (use up the leftover corn tortillas) and salsa are always good, too.
We love cod because it’s inexpensive, easy to find, easy to cook, and has a mild flavor. Mahi mahi, halibut, or grouper are also good choices. Salmon tacos with avocado slaw are simply amazing.
This is of course an “it depends” kind of answer. It depends on how the fish is prepared (baked, broiled, fried), and what toppings you put in your taco. If you choose a cooking method that is low in oil, and top with lots of fresh vegetables (and in this case, fruit!), fish tacos can be a very well balanced and nutritious meal.
Make It Your Own
Originating in Baja California, simple Mexican fish tacos probably have been around for centuries. Coastal fishermen bringing home the fresh catch of the day would fry the fish and wrap it in a stone ground corn tortilla. Simple and grand!
There are so many ways you can make this recipe your own. I love this variation of fish tacos: shrimp tacos with avocado mango salsa. Here are more suggestions for you:
- Use a different type of seafood: tilapia, shrimp, catfish, whatever you like best.
- Vary the cooking method: use your grill, or batter the fish and deep fry it.
- Can’t find blood oranges? Regular oranges would work fine. This yummy citrus salsa is made with orange, grapefruit, and lime segments.
- Top your fish taco with your favorite salsa or try this salsa verde. Try delicious jalapeño ranch dressing. Or sour cream. Or taco sauce. Or pickled red onions!
- Don’t care for cabbage? Use shredded lettuce instead.
Reheating & Storage Tips
Fish tacos are best eaten right away, but if you have leftovers, store the components separately in airtight containers in the fridge for up to two days. Reheat the cod in a frying pan or in an air fryer and assemble the tacos when ready to eat.
The salsa can be made a day in advance and refrigerated. Keep in mind you might have to remove some of the juice as it tends to get more juicy as it sits. Shred the cabbage and store in a zip top bag.
More taco recipes
Love tacos but not feeling the fish? I have more taco ideas for you:
- Healthier taco meat (a mixture of beef, turkey, onions, peppers)
- Homemade taco seasoning (without additives and preservatives)
- Slow Cooker Pork Tacos
- Instant Pot Carnitas
- Vegan tacos with roasted carrots, mushrooms, quinoa, and black beans
- Cauliflower tacos with chickpeas
- Crockpot Mexican shredded chicken (perfect for tacos, only 3 ingredients)
- Cherry chicken tacos with lime sour cream
- 3 tablespoons grapeseed or canola oil, divided
- 1 teaspoon lime zest, from one lime
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 pound skinless cod, cut into 4 equal portions
- 6 blood oranges, segmented (about ¾ cup)
- ⅓ cup finely chopped red onion
- ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 jalapeno, seeds and ribs removed, finely chopped
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 8 corn tortillas (or 16 if you want to double them up)
- 2 ripe avocados
- 1 teaspoon lime juice
- 2 cups finely shredded green cabbage or lettuce
- In a medium bowl, combine orange segments, onion, cilantro, jalapeno, and salt. Stir to combine and set aside. Mash avocados with lime juice.
- In small bowl, combine lime zest, chili powder, smoked paprika, and salt. Place fish In a shallow bowl, and coat with 1 tablespoon oil. Sprinkle with spice mixture and rub on both sides of fish.
- Heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add fish and cook, flipping once, until it flakes with a fork and internal temperature reaches 130°F, 3-5 minutes per side, depending on thickness of fillets.
- Flake the fish into large chunks. Serve in corn tortillas with mashed avocado, cabbage, and blood orange salsa.
- Double up the corn tortillas to better contain the filling. Hold tortillas over a gas flame with tongs to char.
- To learn how to segment an orange, watch this one minute video.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.