Grilled tilapia is one of the easiest fish recipes to make, but it can get a little boring if you constantly make it the same way. Even though it might seem like a very basic ingredient, grilled tilapia can be prepared in a wide variety of different ways to help keep it from getting boring or bland. Below you’ll find a list of some great grilled tilapia recipes to help you spice up your weekly meal rotation and include more fish in your diet.
Many of the marinades in these grilled tilapia recipes can be made ahead of time so your fish is ready to cook whenever you are. Cooking tilapia successfully depends on a wide variety of fresh herbs and spices, so make sure your pantry is stocked. With the right ingredients, you’ll make better fish dishes than you’d ever thought possible.
20 Healthy and Delicious Grilled Tilapia Recipes
1. Spicy Grilled Tilapia
This Caribbean-influenced African tilapia recipe is one of the more fiery recipes on this list. The hottest inclusion is the use of Scotch bonnets, a type of habanero pepper that can add tons of heat to the dish and a deep fruity flavor. The tilapia in this type of recipe is usually fried, but in this recipe from Sims Home Kitchen the tilapia is oven grilled instead to make it a healthier option. Coconut rice is a good choice for serving with this tilapia since the coconut milk in it helps to cut the spices in the fish.
2. Grilled Tilapia in Banana Leaves
Grilling tilapia in banana leaves is another way to add traditional flavor to this grilled fish. The banana leaves also help to keep the tilapia moist while it grills so it doesn’t dry out from the heat. Even though the grilled tilapia in this recipe from Dreamy Table gets most of its flavor from the spices added such as green chili and kaffir lime, the banana leaves also add their own botanical flavor.
3. Grilled Tilapia with Mango Salsa
Fruit salsas are a popular condiment to help spice up any grilled fish recipe, and this mango salsa from The Girl Who Ate Everything is the perfect sidekick for her grilled tilapia dish. This grilled tilapia recipe is marinated with a little olive oil to keep it moist, but otherwise, it is a very light and healthy option for cooking fish. The tilapia is also marinated in parsley, lime, and garlic. Since tilapia is such a mild fish, it will take on the flavor of any spice you add to it. You can use this to your advantage by experimenting with different flavor combinations.
4. Southwest Grilled Tilapia Salad
Many people take up eating grilled tilapia as a way to try and clean up their eating habits, and what better way to make grilled tilapia a healthy meal choice than to add it to a fresh salad? This Southwest grilled tilapia salad from Colleen Christen Nutrition takes only a few minutes to prepare but is full of spicy and satisfying flavors. A grilled tilapia salad is also a great way to get more vegetables into your diet.
5. Oregano-Lemon Tilapia with Corn and Avocado Salad
Since tilapia takes on the flavor of whatever you spice, serve, and cook it with, this grilled tilapia recipe from Dreamy Table takes advantage of that by blending the textures of crunchy corn and creamy avocado while adding citrus and herbs to the flesh of the fish for a punch of extra flavor. A single skillet can be used to prepare both the fish and the condiments for this dish, making it a great option for a quick weeknight meal.
6. Grilled Tilapia Tacos
Fish tacos are a popular way to use grilled tilapia since the mild meat of this fish makes a perfect blank slate for all of the condiments that make tacos fantastic. Since all of the cooking in this recipe from The Modern Proper is done on the grill, it’s a great way to keep your kitchen cool during the hottest summer months. Sprinkle tacos with a squeeze of lime to add a delicious final touch before serving. Seasoning the tilapia filets ahead of time can make throwing this weekday dinner together a snap.
7. Indonesian Spicy Grilled Tilapia
If you want a grilled tilapia dish that is more on the fiery side, this Indonesian spicy grilled tilapia from Daily Cooking Quest is your best bet. If you want to adjust the amount of heat and spice in this dish, you can either reduce the number of chilies, remove all the seeds from the chilies before cooking, or even substitute in a more mild type of pepper to bring the temperature down. Serve with cold leafy greens to provide a contrast to the hot spicy fish.
8. Grilled Fish Taco Bowls
Taco bowls are a popular way to serve the ingredients that traditionally make up a taco in a bowl of rice while eliminating high-calorie carbohydrates like tortillas from your diet. These grilled fish taco bowls from Lisa’s Dinnertime Dish have all of the flavors of fish tacos such as Mexican spices and pico de gallo, but in a recipe that is easy to whip up and clean up in a flash too. A creamy sour cream sauce helps add fat and mouthfeel while keeping this tilapia dish light.
9. Pan-Seared Tilapia with Grilled Watermelon and Eggplant Salad
Grilled tilapia is a popular ingredient in summertime meals, and a few other ingredients that also find their way onto summer plates are fresh seasonal watermelon and eggplant. Most people may never consider grilling watermelon along with their fish, but cooking the fruit on the grill this way caramelizes the sugar in it and makes the flavor of the watermelon even sweeter. Serve this recipe from Melinda Strauss with a silky avocado sauce to seal the deal.
10. Saffron Lime Tilapia Filet
Saffron used to be an exotic spice worth more than its weight in gold, and it’s still not the cheapest spice you can use today. But this unique powder collected from saffron crocus flowers gives grilled tilapia a pleasing bright yellow color and an interesting flavor. Add lime to this tilapia recipe from Dish Tales for an acidic zing. Serve alongside cool greens or roasted tomatoes for some bright contrast on the plate too.
11. Grilled Tilapia Tostadas
One major cuisine that has elevated the grilled fish dish is Mexican cuisine, and these grilled fish tostadas from Parsnips and Pastries are a delicious example of how tilapia can be used to lighten up traditional Mexican fare. Oven-baking the tostada shells rather than deep-frying them also helps reduce calories and keep the meal fresh. Grilled tilapia tostadas can also be topped with many different condiments for a customized meal to fit any taste preference.
12. Blackened Tilapia with Pineapple Salsa
Blackening spice is a common spice mix used with grilled fish to give it a peppery and spicy flavor. To help cut the heat in the blackening spice, this tilapia recipe from Chelsea’s Messy Apron dresses the fish with a fresh pineapple salsa. The combination of heat and sweetness pairs well with the flaky tilapia and will convert even hardcore fish haters. This recipe is very fast to prepare and cook.
13. Tilapia with Black Bean and Avocado Relish
For a different kind of grilled tilapia, try pairing the fish instead with the black bean and avocado relish featured in this recipe from Pass the Sushi. Both black beans and avocados evoke a Mexican vibe in the dish and can help temper the spices used to season the fish. This relish tastes like a hearty guacamole and is so delicious you won’t even miss richer Mexican meals. Purchase fresh avocados a few days in advance since most avocados sold in the store are sold before they are ripe enough to cook with.
14. Grilled Tilapia with Smoked Paprika
Tilapia is a very mild type of fish and doesn’t have much flavor by itself. This makes it the perfect canvas to add any mixture of spices and seasonings you want. This recipe from Allrecipes features smoked paprika front and center. This powdered spice adds both delicious smoky flavor and a deep rich red coloring to the grilled fish. This makes it striking both to the palate and on the plate.
15. Grilled Tilapia with Herb Olive Oil
If you’re looking for a dead-easy grilled tilapia recipe, they don’t come any easier than this olive oil marinade at Side Chef. With just some olive oil, garlic, fresh black pepper, sea salt, and oregano, you’ll have a simple marinade that will still manage to add tons of flavor to your fish as it grills. The entire recipe comes together in only thirty-five minutes too, which makes it a good choice for a quick weeknight dish.
16. Grilled Bacon-Wrapped Tilapia
Bacon makes everything better, and this bacon-wrapped tilapia is no exception to the rule. By wrapping tilapia filets in bacon before grilling, you can coax even the pickiest eater into eating fish for dinner every once in a while. Since this grilled bacon-wrapped tilapia from Sugar Dale only requires three ingredients to make, it’s also a smart and tasty dinner option for when you’re trying to stretch your budget.
17. Lemon Garlic Tilapia
Lemon and garlic are classic companions for many different fish dishes, and they’re the perfect complementary ingredients to go with tilapia. This recipe from Whisk Affair can be either baked or grilled and can be put together in less than twenty minutes. This makes it one of the fastest recipes on this list to throw together when you’re in a hurry. You can also adjust the seasoning to be more mild or spicy depending on your preference.
18. Grilled Creamy Parmesan Tilapia
Cheese isn’t one of the first ingredients you think of being associated with fish, but the sharp tangy taste of Parmesan goes well with mild flaky tilapia in this recipe from Spend with Pennies. To add some extra flavor, try using fresh grated Parmesan instead of the pre-packaged stuff. Wrapping the fish in foil also helps keep it nice and moist while it’s grilling. Serve with fresh grilled vegetables and a salad to help cut the richness of the cheese in this fish dish.
19. Grilled Tilapia with Basil Aioli
Tilapia is so mild on its own that it might be considered bland to some people. However, dressing the fish up with a zesty and creamy sauce can help take it to the next level. This grilled tilapia from Lemons for Lulu is served with a Basil Aioli that complements the light seasoning of the fish and the crispy grilled texture. A sauce is one of the easiest ways to make grilled fish more flavorful and moist.
20. Grilled Tilapia with Sweet Lemon Butter
For another lemon-heavy tilapia recipe, this grilled tilapia from George Foreman combines spices, lemon juice, and brown sugar with plenty of butter to help infuse the fish with sweet and salty goodness. Use a high-quality Irish butter like Kerrygold to elevate the meal since these kinds of butter have a high fat content to make up for the lean texture of the fish.
Tilapia may be seen as a sort of boring protein to work with for home chefs that aren’t familiar with cooking it, but this white fish is actually one of the most versatile staples you can work with at home. Grilled fish cooks up quickly, can be seasoned with practically any combination of herbs and spices imaginable, and requires very little in the way of preparation if you buy pre-processed tilapia filets. If you’re struggling to add healthier options to your meals at home, try some of the listed grilled tilapia recipes to expand your roster of light and healthy meals. Whether you’re looking for a spicy fish recipe to keep you warm during cold winter months or a quickly grilled entree for a summer cookout, you’re sure to find something you like.