These fish taco bowls are packed with spicy blackened mahi mahi served over a bed of warm rice with mango avocado salsa, shredded cabbage, fish taco sauce, and a generous squeeze of lime for the ultimate quick and healthy meal.
Fish taco bowls are never in short supply around our house! We love making them for weeknight dinners, as an alternative to classic fish tacos.
In this recipe, each bowl starts with a base of warm rice, layered with tender, flaky chunks of blackened mahi mahi. The blackening seasoning brings a smoky, spicy character to this mild fish. And the best part? A fresh mango avocado salsa for a tangy-sweet contrast to the heat of the fish.
Why You'll Love Fish Taco Bowls
These fish taco bowls are one of our favorite recipes to date! Here’s why:
- Healthy & nutritious: These fish taco bowls are high in protein and loaded with fresh ingredients. They’re as good for you as they are delicious!
- Quick to make: The fish is ready in less than 10 minutes, and the rest of the ingredients come together as it cooks.
- Great for meal prep: The ingredients in these bowls store well, making this recipe perfect for meal prep whenever you need it.
Ingredients and Substitutions
Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make these fish taco bowls:
- Mahi mahi: Provides a sweet taste and a firm texture. If you can’t find mahi mahi, you can try salmon, cod, halibut, snapper, or tilapia filets.
- Olive oil: Extra-virgin olive oil adds depth of flavor and helps cook the fish. Canola or avocado oil can be used as an alternative.
- Blackening seasoning: Gives the fish a spicy, smoky flavor. Feel free to make your own blackening spice blend with spices like chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, and pepper. Or, use your favorite store-bought variety. For a milder option, use this fish taco seasoning instead.
- Rice: Forms the base of the bowl. You can use white, brown, quinoa, or even cauliflower rice based on your dietary preferences and needs. Swap in precooked or frozen rice for a faster option and get dinner on the table in less than 15 minutes.
- Mango: Adds a tropical sweetness to the salsa. If you don't have any mangoes on hand, you can use pineapple, cucumber, or peaches.
- Avocado: Provides a creamy texture to the salsa. If avocados aren't available, try extra mangoes or a mild, creamy cheese like queso fresco.
- Cilantro: Adds a burst of fresh, herbaceous notes. If you're not a fan of cilantro, you can replace it with flat-leaf parsley instead.
- Red onion: Gives a sharp, pungent bite. If red onion is too strong for your liking, try using green onions or shallots instead.
- Lime juice: Fresh lime juice imparts a tangy acidity that balances the rich flavors of the fish. Lemon juice also works in a pinch.
- Red cabbage: Adds a nice crunch and a pop of color to the bowls. Green cabbage, iceberg lettuce, or coleslaw mix will also work.
- Optional sauces: Try homemade fish taco sauce or cilantro lime sauce for extra flavor. You can also use your favorite hot sauce, salsa, or a drizzle of Greek yogurt.
What is the best type of fish to use for fish taco bowls?
Mahi Mahi is a great option due to its firm texture and sweet flavor, but you can also use other types of fish like cod, tilapia, snapper, or even salmon.
How To Make Fish Taco Bowls
Follow these simple steps to make restaurant-style taco bowls in less than 30 minutes.
1. Season The Fish
Begin by cutting your mahi mahi into chunks and tossing them gently with olive oil and blackening seasoning. Make sure to evenly coat your fish with the blackening seasoning for maximum flavor.
2. Cook The Fish
Once the fish is seasoned, cook it until it's perfectly flaky and moist. If you have an air fryer, you can cook it at 400F for about 5 minutes. If you don’t have an air fryer, cook it in a skillet over medium-high heat for a few minutes per side.
You can also broil the fish in the oven for about 5 minutes if you prefer. Whichever method you choose, be sure to keep a close eye on the fish to prevent an overcooked, dry texture.
If you prefer crispy "fried" fish, use the breaded fish in this Baja Fish Tacos recipe.
3. Prepare The Toppings
While your fish is cooking, prepare your mango avocado salsa. Allow it to sit for a little while before serving so the flavors develop and meld together.
4. Assemble The Bowls
Once everything is ready, it's time to assemble your bowls! Start with a layer of rice, followed by your cooked fish, a generous spoonful of salsa, and a sprinkle of shredded cabbage. Don't forget to add your favorite sauce and toppings before digging in!
What To Serve With Fish Taco Bowls
This recipe makes a complete meal on its own, but if you want to add a little something extra, test out some of these options:
- A side of black beans or pinto beans
- Warm corn or flour tortillas
- Blackened corn or corn salsa
- A spicy cabbage and corn slaw
- Crunchy baked corn tortilla chips
Storage & Reheating
If you end up with leftover fish taco bowls or want to meal prep them, follow these steps:
- Fridge: Store leftovers in separate airtight containers for up to 3 days.
- Freezer: The cooked fish and steamed rice can be frozen, but the other components of the bowl are best kept in the fridge.
- Reheating: Reheat the fish gently in a skillet over medium heat until warmed through. Assemble the bowls with fresh toppings.
- Prep ahead: You can marinate the fish, prepare the salsa, and cook the rice in advance to save time when you’re ready to eat.
If you’re looking for ways to mix up your fish taco bowls, try some of these:
- Protein swap: Use grilled shrimp or chicken instead of fish.
- Grain-free: Swap out the rice for cauliflower rice for a gluten-free and low-carb version.
- Vegetarian: Use grilled tofu or a mix of roasted veggies in place of the fish.
- Spicy: Add a chopped jalapeño to your fresh mango salsa for extra heat.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are the most common questions about making these quick and easy fish taco bowls.
Yes, feel free to use frozen fish for this recipe. Just be sure to fully thaw it before cooking so that it cooks evenly. You can also swap in tuna, shrimp, scallops, chicken, or tofu.
Of course! For a vegetarian option, you can substitute the fish with grilled tofu or a mix of roasted veggies.
Fish Taco Bowls
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- 1 lb mahi mahi, cut into 1 inch chunks (or salmon, cod, snapper, white fish)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp blackening seasoning (or taco seasoning)
- 2 cups cooked white rice (or brown, quinoa, or cauliflower rice)
- 1 mango, chopped
- 1/2 avocado, chopped
- 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
- 2 tbsp red onion, chopped
- 1 lime, juice
- 1 cup shredded red cabbage
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- Nutritional Information
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* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.
Homemade blackening seasoning: 1 tbsp paprika, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1 tsp onion powder, 1/2 tsp oregano, 1/2 tsp kosher salt, 1/4 tsp dried thyme, 1/8 tsp black pepper, 1/8 teaspoon dried cayenne pepper
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