Grilled Fish Tacos

Grilled Fish Tacos

28 Reviews
From: EatingWell Magazine, May/June 2010

Instead of deep-frying the fish for these fish tacos, we coat the fish with a flavor-packed chile rub and grill it instead. Make sure the fillets are no more than ½ to ¾ inch thick so they cook quickly. Sometimes flipping fish on the grill can be tricky since the fish can stick to the grill or fall apart. The solution is to invest in a grill basket that easily holds 4 to 6 fish fillets and secures the fish in the basket for easy flipping. If you don't have a grilling basket, make sure the grill is hot and well oiled before adding the fish.

Ingredients 6 servings

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Original recipe yields 6 servings
Nutrition per serving may change if servings are adjusted.
  • Adobo-Rubbed Fish
  • 4 teaspoons chili powder, preferably made with New Mexico or ancho chiles (see Note)
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 2 pounds mahi-mahi or Pacific halibut (see Note), ½- ¾ inch thick, skinned and cut into 4 portions
  • Coleslaw
  • ¼ cup reduced-fat sour cream
  • ¼ cup low-fat mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 3 cups finely shredded red or green cabbage
  • 12 corn tortillas, warmed (see Tip)


  • Active

  • Ready In

  1. To prepare fish: Combine chili powder, lime juice, oil, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Rub adobo rub all over fish. Let stand 20 to 30 minutes for the fish to absorb the flavor.
  2. To prepare coleslaw: Combine sour cream, mayonnaise, cilantro, lime zest, lime juice, sugar, salt and pepper in a medium bowl; mix until smooth and creamy. Add cabbage and toss to combine. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. Preheat grill to medium-high.
  4. Oil the grill rack (see Tip) or use a grilling basket. Grill the fish until it is cooked through and easily flakes with a fork, 3 to 5 minutes per side. Transfer the fish to a platter and separate into large chunks.
  5. Serve the tacos family-style by passing the fish, tortillas, coleslaw and taco garnishes separately.
  • Ingredient Notes: Mildly spicy dried chiles, such as ancho or New Mexico, add moderate heat and rich flavor to Mexican sauces like mole. Chili powder made from these chiles has more flavor than American-style blends. Look for whole dried chiles in the produce section of large supermarkets and New Mexico or ancho chili powder in the specialty-spice section of large supermarkets or online.
  • Mahi-mahi (also called dorado) from the U.S. Atlantic and halibut from the Pacific are both sustainably fished and considered best choices for the environment.
  • Tips: Two ways to warm corn tortillas: (1) Microwave: Wrap stacks of up to 12 tortillas in barely damp paper towels; microwave on High for 30 to 45 seconds. Wrap tortillas in a clean towel to keep warm. (2) Oven: Wrap stacks of 6 tortillas in foil; place in a 375°F oven for 10 to 15 minutes. Wrap tortillas in a clean towel to keep warm.
  • To oil a grill rack, oil a folded paper towel, hold it with tongs and rub it over the rack. (Do not use cooking spray on a hot grill.)
  • To make ahead: Prepare coleslaw (Step 2) up to 4 hours ahead.

Nutrition information

  • Serving size: 2 tacos
  • Per serving: 333 calories; 10 g fat(2 g sat); 5 g fiber; 30 g carbohydrates; 31 g protein; 28 mcg folate; 113 mg cholesterol; 3 g sugars; 1 g added sugars; 894 IU vitamin A; 17 mg vitamin C; 100 mg calcium; 3 mg iron; 735 mg sodium; 831 mg potassium
  • Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (28% daily value)
  • Carbohydrate Servings: 2
  • Exchanges: 2 starch, 4 lean meat, 1½ fat

Reviews 28

June 06, 2017
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By: eva
Easy to make. Husband & myself enjoyed it very much. Will make it again for sure. We added cheese & rice with it. Very tasty.
August 10, 2014
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By: EatingWell User
Easy & delish!! Delicious & easy to make. Substituted 1/2 cup (4oz) plain Greek yogurt in lieu of mayo and sour cream for the cole slaw. Picked up shredded cabbage & broccoli slaw from Trader Joes which has great texture and crunch for the tacos. Pros: Easy ingredient swaps Cons: None
August 10, 2014
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By: EatingWell User
A regular favorite in our house! I have made this recipe countless times with Mahi, tilapia, cod, and halibut. The rub has just the right amount of kick which the creamy ole slaw balances perfectly. Pros: Easy, fast, healthy
November 05, 2013
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By: EatingWell User
Best Ever Fish Tacos! The better the chilli powder you use, the better the tacos. And the coleslaw from this recipe is so good it's become my 'go to' for anytime I need a coleslaw. Pros: Mexico worthy! Easy, uses ingredients that live in my drawer all the time, delicious! Cons: A bib like you get eating lobster would be good!
April 14, 2013
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By: EatingWell User
First time making grilled fish tacos - success! I used splitnose rockfish (local) and mostly fresh ingredients. I like that I had all of the spices already in the cupboard. I used just regular chili powder, it probably would have been better with New Mexico chili powder. It would have been a lot easier had I bought lime juice in a bottle, but I always find that bottled lime juice isn't the same as fresh. Squeezing 4 T of lime juice is time consuming! I also don't own a zester, so I used the small grate side of the cheese grater to make lime zest. It worked fine. I bought a bag of coleslaw cabbage mix, rather than shredding it all myself. The mix also had purple cabbage and carrots, and I liked it. The coleslaw is super tasty - I'll eat the rest of it as a side on it's own. I cooked the fish on a griddle on the stove, and it was quite successful. I sprayed it with Pam before cooking, and flipping the fish was no problem. I'd make these again. Pros: Ingredients mostly found in the home already. Cons: Takes a while to get the lime juice from fresh limes.
March 20, 2013
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By: EatingWell User
Easy, tasty, and healthy! Tried this recipe after having fish tacos on Maui. Like another reviewer I made it easier by using bagged coleslaw cabbage. I also used small mango chunks and cubed tomatoes as nice additions as they had done on Maui. I don't like fish much but ended up loving these!
July 16, 2012
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By: EatingWell User
Absolutely delicious!!! These fish tacos are incredible! They are quick and super easy to make. Everone loves them! They were such a hit with the family and friends I've made them 4 times in the last six days! The first time I used fresh tilapia but since then I've used frozen tilapia from Trader Joes and Stater Brothers. To save time I use packaged shreded cabbage/coleslaw. Otherwise I've followed the recipe as written and every time they've been excellent!
July 12, 2012
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By: EatingWell User
Loved it This was tasty, quick and easy! We were to lazy to fire up the grill so my husband just pan fried. I added a little red onion and cayenne just to give it an extra zip. As others said; the coleslaw really makes this - excellent. A great week night dinner! Pros: flavorful, easy, quick, tasty
June 14, 2012
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By: Laura Martinez
Freakin' Awesome should be a rating! I've made fish tacos at home before but these were PHENOMENAL! The rub/adobo is soooo tasty and makes this dish. The slaw sent it over the top! I didn't even make it ahead of time, I just made it while the fish was marinating in the rub. It was still delicious. I could even see tweaking it by adding some heat with either chopped serrano or jalapenos. We had our meal with some mexican beer and it was a perfect little dinner. YUMMM! Pros: Flavorful, fast, healthy Cons: Can't think of any.
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