Pan Fried Tilapia Fillet

How to Fry a Tilapia Fish Fillet

Two Methods:

The Luo People of Kenya refer to tilapia as brain food, and give it credit for their high intelligence. It is a mild flavored and cooks quickly. It is a perfect fish for a southern style fish fry. Add collard greens, potato or macaroni salad, cornbread and sweet iced tea and your fish fry meal is complete. Who knew you could enjoy a southern fish fry and increase brain activity at the same time?



  • 16 oz tilapia
  • 2 tbsps (30 g) extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/8 cup (20 g) white flour
  • 1 tsp (5 g) garlic powder
  • 1 tsp (5 g) black pepper
  • 1 tsp (5 g) salt


  • 4 16 oz tilapia fillets
  • 1 quart cooking oil (or Crisco)
  • 1 1/2 cups (145 g) seasoned flour



  1. Pat dry the tilapia with a paper towel.This, of course, is after you've rinsed it under cold water.
  2. Place flour, salt, pepper and garlic powder in bag.Mix it up thoroughly to distribute the flavors. If you have more than one fillet, adjust the recipe as necessary.
  3. Add fish and shake to coat.Once it's adequately covered, shake off any excess.
  4. Heat olive oil in skillet over medium heat until hot.You may use other oils, but olive oil is tasty and one of the healthier oils.
  5. Add floured fillets to the skillet.Pan fry for two minutes on each side or until cooked through.
  6. Remove and place on a paper towel to absorb oil.It'll be ready by the time you grab plates and silverware.
  7. Serve hot with side dishes and tartar or hot pepper sauce.


  1. Heat the oil in a 3 or 4-quart pan to at least 375° F (190°C).Just a couple of drops of water flipped off your hand will really crackle when the oil has reached this heat level.
  2. Roll the dry and thawed fish in the flour.Shake off the excess flour and let the fillets sit on a rack or on wax paper for 5-10 minutes.
    • Roll the fillets in the flour a second time. As before, shake off the excess flour. Now they're ready for the pan!
  3. Deep fry those bad boys.No more than 2 at a time, however. Frying more than 2 fillets at once drives down the oil temperature which will make the fish and coating soggy. Turn once in the pan after a minute or so and remove when golden brown.
    • They should be done in under 4 minutes; white and flaky inside at the thickest section of the fillet. Do not overcook!
  4. Drain each fillet on paper towels for a few seconds and serve immediately.Garnish with sauces and sides for taste and presentation.
  5. Finished.

Community Q&A

  • Question
    How should I use lemon on tilapia?
    Community Answer
    The best way to use lemon on tilapia is to squeeze it on after you've finished frying it. However, if you prefer a bit of caramelization on your fish, you can put it on after you've fried one side.
  • Question
    Why does the coating fall off fish when frying?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Be sure to flour fish prior to dipping in the egg wash; this helps hold the coating on.
  • Question
    How much oil do I use in the skillet for deep frying?
    Top Answerer
    Use enough to submerge the filet. Depending on the thickness, an inch or two will do.
  • Question
    How long do I fry fish if it is frozen?
    Community Answer
    It's not feasible to try to coat frozen fish, so to follow these recipes you need to thaw it first. However, you can put a little water in the pan, make sure you have a tight lid, and steam the plain frozen fish. When the flesh flakes apart easily with a fork, it's done.
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Quick Summary

To pan-fry a tilapia fish fillet, mix some flour, salt, pepper, and garlic powder in a bag. Then, drop your fillet into the seasoning mix and shake it up. Next, heat some olive oil in your skillet. Once the skillet is hot, pan fry the floured fillet for 2 minutes on each side. After you remove the fish from the heat, place it on a paper towel to absorb the oil.

Did this summary help you?
  • Tilapia cooks more quickly than cod, snapper or catfish. Do not overcook.
  • Zatarain's is a good cornmeal based seasoned fish fry coating.


  • When oil is hot, it burns. Be careful.

Things You'll Need


  • Skillet
  • Tongs
  • Paper towels


  • Deep pan or skillet
  • Tongs
  • Paper towels

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Date: 01.12.2018, 04:40 / Views: 84575