Fish Tacos with Cumin Lime Slaw

Earlier this week I made a big batch of sunny and fresh Cumin Lime Coleslaw, but I didn’t intend to just eat coleslaw all week. So, I used the coleslaw to top these super simple fish tacos. I’m an absolute taco fiend because they’re so easy, fresh, delicious, and just plain fun. And while it can be tempting to pile ten different ingredients into a taco, I find that simple is better. Fewer toppings lets you taste each one and keeps the juxtaposition between cold and warm, and soft and crunchy distinct.

For these fish tacos I seasoned some white fish filets with a simple mix of chili powder and salt, quickly sautéed them up in a skillet, then topped them with sweet corn kernels and tangy Cumin Lime Coleslaw. Oh, and some fresh cilantro because I’m a “cilantro on everything” type of person. Got some fresh lime leftover from making your slaw? Squeeze that over the tacos for some extra zing!

Top view of three Fish Tacos with Cumin Lime Slaw

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4.95 from 20 votes

Fish Tacos with Cumin Lime Slaw

Fish Tacos with Cumin Lime Slaw are a light and refreshing meal that evokes the feeling of summer anytime of the year.
Total Cost: $5.44 recipe / $1.36 serving
Author: Beth - Budget Bytes
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Servings: 4 (2 Tacos each)


  • 8 small corn tortillas ($0.32)
  • 2 white fish filets (about 2/3 lb. total)* ($2.66)
  • 2 tsp mild chili powder blend ($0.20)
  • salt ($0.05)
  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed ($0.50)
  • 1/2 batch Cumin Lime Coleslaw ($1.50)
  • 1/4 bunch fresh cilantro (optional) ($0.23)


  • Toast the tortillas in a dry skillet over medium heat until golden brown on each side (2-3 minutes per side). Stack the tortillas and cover with a clean cloth to help them stay warm.
  • Season the fish with a generous dusting of chili powder and a sprinkle of salt on each side. Cut each filet into four equal portions (if using smaller filets, just make sure you have 8 similar sized pieces).
  • Preheat the vegetable oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the fish filets and cook for about five minutes on each side or until they are opaque, white, and firm all the way through.
  • Top each toasted tortilla with a piece of fish, and sprinkle of corn kernels, a small handful of Cumin Lime slaw, and some fresh cilantro leaves if desired.


*You can use just about any type of white fish for this, like tilapia, mahi mahi, or sea bass.
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Serving: 2TacosCalories: 339.3kcalCarbohydrates: 33.53gProtein: 18.45gFat: 15.95gSodium: 509.38mgFiber: 6.9g
Nutritional values are estimates only. See our full nutrition disclaimer here.

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Fish Tacos with Cumin Lime Slaw

Side view of three Fish Tacos with Cumin Lime Slaw

Step by Step Photos

Two fish filets and a small bowl of corn thawing

Start by allowing one cup of frozen corn kernels and two fish filets (about 2/3 lbs. total) thaw. If your fish is vacuum packed, you can run them under cool water to quickly thaw. Any white fish will work for this recipe, like tilapia, mahi mahi, sea bass, or swai.

Toasting Tortillas in pan

I like to toast my tortillas first, so they’re ready to go when the fish is hot and ready. Toasting the tortillas helps solidify them (so they don’t fall apart when bent) and it deepens the flavor. Toast 8 small corn tortillas over medium heat in a dry skillet until they’re golden brown on each side.

Seasoning fish with chili powder, bottle of chili powder on the side

Season each side of the fish with a generous sprinkle of chili powder and salt. The chili powder used here is a blend of mild chiles and other spices. It is not cayenne pepper or straight hot chile powder. It’s a pretty widely available ingredient in the U.S., but you can read more about it here.

Cooking fish in skillet

Cook the fish in a skillet over medium heat until white, firm, and opaque all the way through. The time needed to cook the fish will depend on the size and thickness of your fish pieces, but it should only take 3-5 minutes on each side.

Assembling tacos with toppings

Top the tacos by adding one piece of fish to each tortilla, then adding a sprinkle of corn kernels, followed by a small handful of Cumin Lime Coleslaw and some fresh cilantro. The recipe for Cumin Lime Coleslaw can be found here.

Dish of three Fish Tacos with Cumin Lime Slaw sitting on a yellow napkin, cilantro on the side

Although I love the combination of warm fish and cold slaw, I reheated some of these tacos from the photo the next day (microwave) and they were still great!