Cajun Blackened Tilapia Fish Tacos (Gluten and Dairy free!)

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These were some UBER delish fish taco‘s that I made cause I felt like having some fish but needed to find a way to try something new.  I knew when I was making it, that I wanted something with a spicy flair, that was healthy and had so much flavor I didn’t feel the need for things like cheese or sour cream.  It’s all part of my new lifestyle that I am working towards, including being gluten and dairy (cow’s milk) free.  I got the idea for these taco’s from a recent trip to The Cheesecake Factory, where we had some tacos that were served in butter lettuce, rather than the traditional taco shell.  They were yummy and were what I had in mind when I decided what to make.

What you need:

  • Your favorite white fish.  *I like tilapia because its tender and not very “fishy” in taste or smell.  Cod, Haddock or other types of mild white fishes would also work well.
  • Cajun Blackening Seasoning (I used this recipe here as a guideline, but added some chipotle chili powder and ground cumin to give it that Mexican flair.)
  • Coconut Oil
  • Butter lettuce
  • Shredded green cabbage
  • Ripe Avocado
  • Black Bean and Corn Salsa
  • Lime Juice
  • Diced jalapeno (I used canned this go around)
  • Diced green chili (I used canned this go around)
  • Corn gluten free tortillas *Optional    (I was lucky enough to find some that are gluten free and don’t seem to bother me which means little to no cross contamination!)

To start this recipe, you will want to prep your veggies first.  You’ll want to clean your leafs of butter lettuce.  Don’t cut them!  You’ll want to keep them whole if you’re not using the tortillas.  They will act as your “taco shell”.  For your cabbage, you can either shred it yourself or cheat like I did and fine shredded cabbage in your local grocery store.  I liked the finely shredded for this recipe.  You’ll also want to make up your black bean and corn salsa or once again, cheat like I did and find a nice fresh salsa at your store.  It doesn’t have to be black bean and corn, that’s just what I wanted for my tacos.  The next part is important.  Lime Juice.  Fresh.  A MUST HAVE!  Just because these are Cajun blackened fish tacos doesn’t mean we can’t capitalized on what Mexican cuisine does right.  The lime juice is a perfect complement to the heat of the seasoning and the jalapeno and chili on the taco.  Wait to do the avocado until you serve up the tacos.  No one likes the look of browning avocado.  Once your veggies are prepped, you can start the fish.

Now most blackened fish recipes have you dip the fish in melted butter first.  Well, since this is dairy free and trying to be healthy, what I did is merely run my fish under some cold water before putting it into the blackening seasoning.  I made sure that my fish was good and covered and let it sit in the blackening seasoning for a spell (with plenty on the top of the fish too so the moisture from the water helped make sure it was well coated).  While it was sitting, I melted about 1 tablespoon of coconut oil in my non-stick skillet.  I really like coconut oil because it isn’t to heavy of an oil and for a fat, its a fairly healthy one.  I like to get the organic coconut oil from Trader Joe’s.  Once the oil was nice and hot (a little smoke coming off of it without the oil burning) I carefully added the tilapia.  My filets were fairly thin so they only took a few minutes on each side to finish (about 3 per side).  You are looking for your fish to be tender but flaky.  Nobody likes dried out fish.  If you make a fist and press on the pad of flesh at the base of your thumb (below your pointer and middle finger) that is about what your fish should feel like to touch.  The flesh should be white (tilapia starts out pink) and moist but flaky.

While your fish is cooking, you have the option to lightly fry your corn tortillas (if you are using them) or heat them.  I went for a very light fry in some more coconut oil this time.  Most times however, I’ll just heat them up.

Now you assemble your tacos.  Top with some fresh avocado and enjoy!

There is so much flavor in them that I didn’t even miss the sour  cream or cheese that I would of normally piled on before changing my way of eating.

2 thoughts on “Cajun Blackened Tilapia Fish Tacos (Gluten and Dairy free!)”

  1. Reblogged this on Done This Before and commented:

    I made these again this weekend and wanted to make a note to all those out there that if you make these with Tilapia or Catfish, it helps to soak the fish in buttermilk first. These fish can have a “muddy” taste to them that is the result of a chemical compound they have due to being fish that eat a high amount of algae. The buttermilk breaks this compound down without breaking down the fish and making it mushy. Lemon water also works (whatever you soak it in should be acidic in nature) but it can leave the fish mushy when it cooks.

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