Pan Fried Tilapia

Pan Fried Tilapia is something of a “I’m tired of pork/beef, let’s have fish” dish for my family. I think most of you can relate to this especially if you want something quick and easy to cook. Popularity of this fish came about due to its easy preparation, and mild taste. With this recipe though, I made a sauce to compliment the tilapia. So if you cannot decide on what to prepare for lunch or dinner… Try this recipe with fried rice and your family will surely enjoy it!

tilapia on plate
Quick and easy to make!

Did you know?

  • Tilapia is now the fourth most-consumed seafood in the United States, after shrimp, tuna and salmon.
  • This fish is probably the oldest farm raised fish in the world.
  • Biblical scholars suggest that it was tilapia that Jesus used to feed the crowds at the Sea of Galilee. The so-called ‘St. Peter’s Fish’.
  • Tilapia has a low to moderate fat content, and is a rich source of high quality protein.
fried tilapia scallion
Some spicy sauce to compliment the tilapia!

The secret ingredient is always LOVE

Tips for Pan Fried Tilapia

  • If fresh tilapia is not readily available, you can buy the frozen one. Just make sure that it thaws properly.
  • To minimize oil splatter when cooking the fish, pat dry to remove moisture from the fish.

Pan-fried tilapia with spicy sauce

Tilapia has a low to moderate fat content, and is a rich source of high quality protein. It’s easy to prepare and has a mild taste. 
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Total Time50 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Filipino
Keyword: fried, spicy sauce, tilapia
Author: Mia


For frying tilapia

  • 2 medium-sized tilapia cleaned and scales removed
  • 1 cup cooking oil
  • 1 tbsp salt

For the sauce

  • 1 tbsp cooking oil
  • 2 cloves garlic chopped
  • 1 thumb size ginger finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp green onion
  • 5 tbsp ketchup
  • 3 tbsp hot sauce add more if needed
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tbsp water and 1 tbsp cornstarch mix and diluted


  • Rinse the tilapia and make a slits on each side of the tilapia deep enough to reach the bones.
  • Rub salt all over the fish including the insides. 
  • Heat oil in a wide frying pan. When the oil is hot, put-in the tilapia. Cover the frying pan, but make sure leave some opening so that steam can come out. Fry each side in medium heat for about 6 to 10 minutes.
  • When you don’t hear any oil splattering. This means that the liquid is gone and the fish fried. Remove from the pan and set aside

For making the sauce.

  • Heat 1 tbsp cooking oil in a saucepan. When oil is hot, add garlic, ginger and green onion then saute for 10 seconds.
  • Add ketchup, hot sauce, sugar, salt, ground pepper, sesame oil and 1/2 cup water the stir. Taste and adjust seasoning. Add the cornstarch and water mixture and stir. let simmer for 5 minutes.
  • When sauce is done, arrange the tilapia in a serving plate and pour the sauce. Serve and enjoy! Bon Appetit!

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