Once upon a time, seafood scared me. Staring at the piles of shrimp, mussels, and whole fish was intimidating as I tried to decide what to make for dinner. Ultimately, I would scoot myself about 10 feet over, right in front of the packaged chicken. SAFE.
Since then, my love for seafood eventually took over and I convinced myself to give home cooked fish, shrimp, and more a try. It’s healthy, easy to make, and fast—the ultimate cooking trifecta. What’s my secret? Go in with a gameplan.
Before I step foot in the grocery store, I know exactly what I want to make. Then I think about what I have at home. And then, I go to the store. This saves me from being overwhelmed and confused about what to buy. Now, I end up with ingredients for an actual meal, instead of a basket full of kale, cereal, and ice cream.
This Panko-Crusted Baked Tilapia recipe is so legit for those busy weeknights you crave a healthy, home-cooked dinner. And your trip to the grocery store will be very quick since this ingredient list is pretty short! If tilapia isn’t available, just ask. Anyone working the fish counter will be able to throw out some other options—Dover sole or snapper work well in this recipe too. We served our fish with a Persian salad made up of diced cucumber, tomato, and onion, all marinated in a lemon vinaigrette.
Similar to shake ‘n bake style chicken, this fish is dipped in the egg, which acts like a glue. Then, the tilapia is coated in a mixture of panko breadcrumbs, garlic powder, paprika, and lemon zest. (Btw, we use paprika in our Shakshuka and Healthy Tuna Salad too.) You can never go wrong with lemon, herbs, and garlic when it comes to seafood. Just remember that and you’ll be golden!
Try our easy baked tilapia recipe? Show us how it turned out by tagging your photo on Instagram using #confettikitchen!
What You Need
4 tilapia fillets
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¾ cup panko bread crumbs
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon paprika
Zest from 1/2 a lemon
2 shallow pans
1 baking sheet
Remove a wire rack from your oven. Lightly grease the rack with non-stick cooking spray, or use a paper towel to rub with oil. This keeps the fish from sticking to it.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
In a shallow dish, stir egg, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. In another shallow dish, mix bread crumbs, garlic powder, paprika, lemon zest, and remaining salt and pepper.
Pat tilapia fillets dry with a paper towel. One at a time, dip each fillet into the egg mixture followed by the dry mixture. Use your hands to pack the bread crumbs onto both sides of the fish.
Arrange the fish in a single layer on the rack.
Bake and serve!
Carefully place rack back into the oven, in the middle position. Place the large sheet pan on the rack below to collect any crumbs.
Bake for 18 minutes or until light golden brown. Serve immediately with lemon wedges.
Why the rack? This helps air circulate below the fish, keeping the bottom crispy instead of soggy. The sheet pan under the rack collects any rogue crumbs.
|Panko bread crumbs||Plain bread crumbs|
|Paprika||Cayenne pepper for a kick!|