Blackened Tilapia Bowls

A delicious new spin on fish tacos, these yummy Blackened Tilapia Bowls are a healthier option while still being a filling, guilt-free meal. 

Blackened Tilapia Bowls

Do you and your household fight over food? Like despite everyone getting 3+ meals a day and healthy snacks, there never seems to be enough?

Or the spouse comes home and instead of waiting 30 minutes for dinner to be done, they’re voraciously digging through the pantry and eating all the things that you’d carefully planned out for specific meals throughout the month?

Or teenage boys who decide the middle of the night is the perfect time to have 3 glasses of milk, a banana, the second half of the opened pack of cookies, and some breakfast waffle.

I swear little trolls throw a party in my kitchen every night while I’m asleep.

Blackened Tilapia Bowls 3

I really hope it’s not just me. They’re always complaining there’s nothing to eat, yet they always find something to chow down on and it seems to almost always be that one thing I need.

Case in point: the hubs and my stash of tilapia whenever I buy it. I don’t even know how he knows it’s in the house. I don’t buy it all the time and when I do it’s with a recipe in mind and I smuggle it in like it’s hot.

Somehow he always knows. Always.

And wouldn’t you know a few days later when I finally get around to making my fish– it’s mysteriously gone. It’s enough to make me question my own sanity, except I do the dishes, even after his afternoon ‘snacks’.

I will be buying my fresh fish just before dinner form now on, or if you’re luckier than I am I encourage you to keep some on hand in the freezer.

You know those nights when you want something light, something easy but totally yummy. That’s when you thank the stars of fortune that you had the forethought to keep tilapia on hand because now it’s no trouble to whip up a couple of these Blackened Tilapia Bowls. 

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If you’re a fan of fish tacos, you’ll love this tasty new spin. Traditional taco toppings like corn, black beans, peppers, and red onion are served over a bed of rice.

Chunks of spicy blackened tilapia, creamy slices of avocado, a sprinkling of cilantro leaves, and a splash of fresh lime juice round out this zesty dinner bowl. Fresh flavors abound in this healthy meal– all the flavor, no guilt.


Blackened Tilapia Bowls

A filling dinner bowl that takes the flavors of the much loved fish taco and serves them up over a bed of rice with a splash of lime for a guilt free meal.
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Course: Dinner, Lunch, Main Course, Salad
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 564kcal


  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • scant 1/8 tsp oregano
  • lime zest
  • 4 tilapia filets or other white fish filet of your choice
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 cup cooked corn kernels canned or cut off the cob
  • 1 red bell pepper diced
  • 1 can black beans drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups cooked cilantro lime rice
  • fresh cilantro diced avocado, shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, pico de gallo, thinly sliced red onion, lime wedges, shredded cheese, sour cream, use as many or as few as desired


  • Add all the spices to a small bowl and use a fork to stir together until evenly incorporated. Evenly divide the spices between the pieces of fish and use your hands to gently rub/press them into both sides. Liberally salt and pepper the fillets.
  • Drizzle a large cast iron skillet, or dutch oven, liberally with olive oil and heat over medium high heat. When the oil's hot quickly add in the garlic and saute while stirring for about 20 seconds.
  • Working in batches of two, add in the fish fillets. Let the fish cook undisturbed for about 2-3 minutes so it develops a nice deep sear, almost char-like. Use a spatula to carefully flip the fish over and continue cooking on the other side for 2 minutes. When the fish is completely cooked through use a spatula to transfer the fillets to a platter. Repeat this with the second batch, adding more olive oil before continuing.
  • Transfer the second batch of cooked fillets to the same platter and sprinkle each filet with a bit of lime zest.
  • Use the same, now empty skillet and add a bit more olive oil. Stir in the corn and red bell pepper. Cook for 1-2 minutes without stirring, then stir and continue cooking for a few more minutes, or until the veggies are tender.
  • Add in the black beans and stir to evenly incorporate, and cook just until heated through. Remove the skillet from heat, and set aside.
  • Add 1/2 cup cilantro lime rice to a bowl and top with some of the veggie mixture, pieces of blackened fish, and any/all of the assorted toppings.


recipe adapted from The Chunky Chef


Calories: 564kcal | Carbohydrates: 87g | Protein: 43g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 85mg | Sodium: 132mg | Potassium: 841mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 1862IU | Vitamin C: 41mg | Calcium: 68mg | Iron: 3mg





Blackened Tilapia Bowls Collage

8 thoughts on “Blackened Tilapia Bowls

  1. Looks delicious Meaghan – I’m yet to use fish in my Mexican dishes as it’s too easy to just go to chicken or beef. Check out the Fiesta Friday guidelines to see how simple it is to make your post eligible for this week’s features selection!

    1. Those do seem like the go-to options right? It’s easy to swap fish though and it’s such a fresh, healthy substitution!

    1. You didn’t miss it, April. I didn’t think to include it as it’s not really a recipe or mandatory. Regular rice works just fine, and for the other version I just stir in fresh lime juice and chopped cilantro leaves, to taste.

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