Lemon-Garlic Grilled Tilapia


Learn how to grill tilapia with this quick recipe. A flavorful garlic-butter mixture coats the grilled tilapia while charred lemons add a boost of acidity and brightness. Serve alongside rice and green beans or use the fish as a filling for tacos.

Active Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
20 mins


  • 1 medium lemon

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 1 clove garlic, grated

  • 4 (6 ounce) tilapia fillets, patted dry

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • ½ teaspoon cracked black pepper

  • Canola oil for the grill

  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley


  1. Preheat grill to high (450-500°F). (Alternatively, preheat a grill pan over high heat.) Zest lemon to yield 1 teaspoon. Cut the lemon in half crosswise.

  2. Combine butter, garlic and lemon zest in a small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on Medium until the butter is melted, about 90 seconds, stirring halfway through. Sprinkle tilapia with salt and pepper; brush 1 side of each fillet with about 1 teaspoon of the butter mixture.

  3. Oil the grill rack by soaking a paper towel in oil and holding it with tongs to rub over the rack. Place the tilapia, buttered-sides down, on the oiled rack. Brush the exposed sides of the fish evenly with the remaining butter mixture. Cook until charred on the bottom, 3 to 4 minutes. Flip gently and continue grilling until the fish is opaque, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate and let rest for 5 minutes.

  4. Place the lemon halves, cut-side down, on the grill rack; cook until charred, about 2 minutes. Squeeze the charred lemons over the fish, and sprinkle with parsley.

    Lemon-Garlic Grilled Tilapia
    Photographer / Jennifer Causey, Food Stylist / Karen Rankin, Prop Stylist / Christine Keely

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

218 Calories
9g Fat
1g Carbs
34g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Serving Size 1 fillet
Calories 218
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 1g 0%
Protein 34g 68%
Total Fat 9g 12%
Saturated Fat 5g 25%
Cholesterol 100mg 33%
Vitamin A 259IU 5%
Vitamin C 4mg 4%
Vitamin D 211IU 53%
Vitamin E 1mg 4%
Folate 44mcg 11%
Vitamin K 19mcg 16%
Sodium 381mg 17%
Calcium 24mg 2%
Iron 1mg 6%
Magnesium 48mg 11%
Potassium 534mg 11%
Zinc 1mg 9%
Vitamin B12 3mcg 125%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

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