Cod Fish Tacos
This recipe for Cod Fish Tacos is seasoned white fish layered with corn cabbage slaw, a creamy sauce, avocado slices and a squeeze of fresh lime; all tucked inside warm corn tortillas. It’s a crowd-pleasing meal that’s quick, easy, and packed with flavor!
Love! Love! Love! We grilled in a cast iron pan and added pico de gallo to the fish tacos. We’re making it again tonight with more family coming over. We will probably add a Mexican cheese like cotija. So so good. So glad you could share. Thank you!— Rob
It doesn’t have to be Tuesday, in my house, for Taco Night! We regularly enjoy Fish Tacos, healthy turkey tacos, or salmon tacos. These are so tasty and definitely better than anything you’d get in a restaurant.
Why you’ll love this recipe
- Quick & easy. You will not believe how quickly this fish tacos recipe comes together. Just marinate the fish, prepare the slaw and sauce, cook the fish by using one of the four cooking methods, and assemble.
- Versatile. You can prepare these so many different ways! You can grill, bake, broil or pan sear the fish and then add whatever toppings you like best.
- Healthy & gluten free. Served with corn tortillas, these make a great gluten-free meal option and a nutritious dinner.
- So delicious. These are seasoned cod fillets (you can honestly use any white fish) seared to perfection, then layered with a corn cabbage slaw, a drizzle of creamy fish taco sauce, and topped with avocado slices and a squeeze of lime. Major taco perfection! You’re going to find yourself putting these tacos on the menu often!
It may seem like there are a lot of ingredients, but it’s mostly just spices and things you likely already have in your kitchen. Plus, each component in this fish taco recipe makes it unique and so tasty. Here’s what you’ll need:
- For the fish. We’re using about a pound and a half of cod and marinating it with a little avocado oil, lime juice, and spices like chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, paprika, salt & pepper. So much amazing flavor!
- Cabbage slaw. For delicious texture and crunch, we’re mixing together a dressing of mayo, lime juice, cilantro and honey. Then, you’ll toss to coat shredded purple cabbage, corn and some minced jalapeño.
- Fish taco sauce. To add a wonderful creaminess and kick of heat to the tacos. This is a blend of sour cream, mayonnaise, lime juice, garlic powder, paprika and cayenne pepper.
- For serving. Load everything up onto corn tortillas (or another tortilla variety of your choice) and top with some extra sliced avocado, cilantro, and a drizzle of fresh lime juice.
How to make this recipe
- Marinate the fish. Start this recipe by rubbing the fresh fish fillets with a flavorful taco seasoning. We recommend marinating it for about 15 minutes and that’s when you can toss together the slaw and mix up the creamy sauce.
- Make the slaw. In a large bowl, stir together mayo, lime juice, cilantro, and honey. Add in cabbage, corn, and jalapeño. Toss to coat. Season with a dash of salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Make the sauce. Combine all taco sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.
For cooking the fish there are four different methods you can choose from. Our favorite way to cook the cod for these fish tacos is by pan-searing it. It’s quick and we like the way the outside of the fish gets slightly crisp. All of these cooking methods work really well though!
- Broiler. Set oven to high broil. Position fish on a baking pan sprayed with cooking spray. Broil fish for about 5 minutes, or until fish flakes when pierced with a fork.
- Bake. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Place fish in a baking dish sprayed with cooking spray. Bake for 8-12 minutes, or until fish flakes when pierced with a fork.
- Pan. Heat a bit of oil or spray with non-stick cooking spray in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Alternatively, you can use a cast iron skillet. When the pan is hot, add fish. Lay in a flat layer and don’t overcrowd the pan or the fish will steam, not sear. Cook the fish for 3 minutes without moving it — this helps get a good browned crust. Flip the fish after 3 minutes and cook for another 2-3 minutes, until just cooked through. Remove from heat.
- Grill. Heat the grill to medium-high heat. Grill the fish for about 3-4 minutes before turning and cooking on the other side, or until fish is completely white and cooked through.
Once the fish is cooked and all other ingredients are prepared, carefully break up the fish using a fork, into bite-sized pieces. Divide the fish among heated tortillas and top with slaw and avocado slices (or guacamole). Squeeze lime juice on top and drizzle on the sauce and enjoy!
- To save on prep time, you can season the fish with 1 tablespoon of taco seasoning from a package instead of all of the individual spices.
- Do not overcook the fish – white fish, like cod typically cooks very quickly (depending on thickness).
- For convenience, I typically buy a bag of pre-shredded cabbage for making the slaw.
- Use Greek yogurt for making the slaw and creamy sauce to save on fat and calories.
- Make ahead. The creamy fish taco sauce can be made a day in advance.
Frequently asked questions
Flakey white fish fillets are typically used to make fish tacos because they are mild in flavor, cook quickly and are relatively inexpensive. And we highly recommend wild-caught. Cod is a popular choice, as it’s a mild white fish loaded with heathy Omega-3s without the ‘fishy’ flavor that can be found in some seafood. Other mild white fish that would work are tilapia, snapper, halibut, or mahi mahi.
Fish tacos are traditionally served in corn tortillas, but you can really use any favorite tortilla for serving these. You can even use hard taco shells, if you prefer.
Heating the tortillas
Whether you’re using corn or flour tortillas, we recommend warming them up. It will help them to fold and hold ingredients without breaking. It will also make them more flavorful! Here’s some options:
- Wrap a stack of 5 tortillas in a damp paper towel and microwave for 15-30 seconds at a time until warmed through.
- Place on a gas stovetop over a medium-low flame — place the tortilla right on the flame on the stovetop and flip after 10-15 seconds.
- Cook in a hot, dry skillet, griddle, cooktop, or grill grates — flip after 10-15 seconds.
These cod fish tacos already include a few toppings, like the slaw and sauce. I also always add avocado or guacamole and lime, but you can even add other toppings to your liking. Here’s some options:
- Pico de gallo
- Pickled red onion
- Pickled radishes
- Mango salsa
- Shredded cheddar cheese or crumbled cotija cheese
- Sliced jalapeños
- Chopped cilantro
If you have any leftovers, we recommend storing each component (cod, slaw, and sauce) separately in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to about 3 days, so that the ingredients stay fresh.
I know you’re going to LOVE these fish tacos because they’re SO delicious! The perfectly seasoned hot fish pairs wonderfully with the cool cabbage and creamy sauce. This makes the perfect weeknight meal when you don’t have much time to cook. The fish cooks up super quick and the sauce can easily be made ahead of time.
If you try this recipe, let me know! Leave a comment and if your family loves them as much as mine does, be sure to give it a five star ⭐️ rating! Also, tag @kimscravings on Instagram with a picture of your creation. Be sure to subscribe to our mailing list to receive more healthy delicious recipes straight to your inbox.
Cod Fish Tacos
For the fish
- 1 1/2 pounds cod or other white flaky fish
- Juice of 1 lime
- 2 tablespoons olive or avocado oil
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika (or cajun seasoning for more heat)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
For the slaw
- 1/4 cup mayo or Greek yogurt
- Juice of 1 lime
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 cups shredded purple cabbage (or a combination of green and purple)
- 1 cup canned or frozen corn (if canned, drained and if frozen, thawed)
- 1 jalapeño, minced
For the sauce
- 1/4 cup sour cream (or Greek yogurt)
- 2 tablespoons mayo
- Juice of 1/2 lime
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional for extra spice)
- salt, as needed to taste
- corn tortillas, diced or sliced avocado, lime wedges
- In a shallow dish, whisk together lime juice, oil, chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, paprika, salt, and pepper. Add cod, tossing until evenly coated and gently rub all of the seasoning into the fish on all sides. Let marinate 15 minutes, if you have the time.
- Meanwhile, make the slaw: In a large bowl, stir together mayo, lime juice, cilantro, and honey. Add in cabbage, corn, and jalapeño. Toss to coat. Season with a dash of salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Make the sauce: Combine all taco sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.
- For cooking the fish there are four different methods of cooking you could use:Broiler: Set oven to high broil. Position fish on baking pan sprayed with cooking spray. Broil fish for about 5 minutes, or until fish flakes when pierced with a fork.Bake: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Place fish in baking dish sprayed with cooking spray. Bake for 8-12 minutes, or until fish flakes when pierced with a fork. Pan: Heat a bit of oil or spray with non-stick cooking spray in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Alternatively, you can use a cast iron skillet. When pan is hot, add fish. Lay in a flat layer and don’t overcrowd the pan or the fish will steam, not sear. Don’t move fish for 3 minutes once you’ve placed them in the hot pan — this helps get a good browned crust. Flip them after 3 minutes and cook for another 2-3 minutes, until just cooked through. Remove from heat.Grill: Heat the grill to medium-high heat. Grill the fish for about 3-4 minutes before turning and cooking on the other side, or until fish is completely white and cooked through.
- Once fish is done cooking, carefully break up the fish using a fork, into bite-sized pieces. Pop the tortillas in the microwave for 20-30 seconds, on a skillet for about 20-30 seconds per side, or on the grill for 20-30 seconds or just until they get a few char lines on each side.
- Divide fish among heated tortillas and top with slaw and avocado. Squeeze lime juice on top and drizzle on sauce. Serve with chips, salsa, and margaritas! Enjoy!