Tilapia is a mild, flaky white fish that's perfect for so many fish recipes like Baked Tilapia with Lemon Butter Sauce, Easy Baked Fish Tacos and Asian Fish with Ginger and Soy. It's a pescatarian all-star! But what side dish goes with tilapia?
Choosing the perfect side dishes to serve with your tilapia meal is half the fun of cooking! It's so versatile you have a million good options for amazing side dishes to serve with this flaky white fish. Today, we will look at 28 of my very favorite side dishes to serve with tilapia that complement it's flavor and texture...and make you look like a 5-star chef.
Fresh asparagus spears are marinated and grilled, then topped with an amazing creamy dressing and grated hardboiled eggs. It will be an amazing side for any tilapia dish you put on the table.
2. French Fries
Crispy breaded cod or halibut are great pairings for French fries – one of the most popular side dishes for fish. And if you really want to take your fish and chips meal over the top, go for Parmesan Truffle French Fries, that bring sophisticated flavor to one of the my favorite side dishes for fish.
Your taste buds will throw a party with this Persian-inspired pasta salad, the perfect side dish for your tilapia fillets. Full of tangy feta, fresh herbs, caramelized zucchini and lemon juice, this is one of the most delicious recipes I've tasted this year. Make it today!
4. Garlic, Lemon & Almond Seasoned Green Beans
Green beans are one of my favorite healthy side dish options to serve with fresh tilapia. The parmesan cheese adds beautiful richness and the toasted almonds bring a rich, nutty flavor. They are buttery and herbaceous and all the best things you look for in a vegetable dish to go with your seafood dinner.
5. Fresh Corn on the Cob
Corn on the cob is the perfect sweet and crunchy side dish to serve with your favorite tilapia recipe. Whether grilled, boiled or even microwaved, your healthy meal will be completed by a buttery corn cob. And if you have any leftover corn, use them in Seafood Boil Stuffed Potatoes tomorrow!
The most delicious fried potatoes and onion dish, perfect with a tray of your favorite baked or fried tilapia. The mild fish flavor goes so well with the richly flavored potatoes and buttery herb onions. The best potato side you can imagine!
7. Fresh Gazpacho Salad
Cucumber gazpacho salad is the best way to bring the cool, refreshing flavors of the famous Spanish chilled soup, but in a fresh, crunchy salad – no blending required! The fresh basil leaves, sweet bell peppers and pumpkin seeds all add the perfect balancing flavors and crunch, making it a great light side for a healthy tilapia dinner.
This Italian style beans and greens recipe is super savory, comforting and nutritious. It's perfect as a hearty side dish for healthy and nutritious tilapia. This classic Italian recipe is just what you need for your delicious side Pinterest board!
9. Jerusalem Salad
This simple salad is full of crunchy veggies, but the real stars of the show are the fresh herbs and lime dressing. Think of the herbs as a co-star, not just the garnish. This Jerusalem salad is especially delicious paired up with Middle Eastern Yellow Rice.
10. Roasted Eggplant
Simple, oven roasted eggplant slices are a great side dish to add rich, earthy tones to a Mediterranean fish meal. Dressed simply with olive oil, salt and pepper, roasted eggplant is an easy way to add extra flavor to your fish dinner. If you’re looking for a vegetarian appetizer to serve before your tilapia dish, try Mediterranean Roasted Eggplant bruschetta.
11. Mexican Caesar Salad
If you’re hoping to create a leafy side dish for your tilapia fish tacos, you have to make this Mexican Caesar Salad. It’s rich and spicy and creamy and and makes even the most boring head of greens taste like joy and sprinkles. Delicious paired with sweet and smoky Mexican shrimp, baked fish tacos and octopus ceviche.
12. Mediterranean Yellow Rice
When tilapia is on the menu, this amazing yellow rice is one of the best side dishes to add to your repertoire. The cumin, coriander, turmeric and fresh garlic make a deeply flavorful rice recipe that is ideal with any Middle Eastern or Mediterranean dish. My two personal favorites are Middle Eastern Yellow Rice and Mediterranean Lemon Dill Rice.
13. Garlic Brown Rice & Quinoa
This nutrient-dense, garlicky bowl of goodness brings amazing flavor to the party with just a few simple ingredients. If you’re looking for a vegan option for your party guests, this will be an all star in your supporting cast. This roasted garlic and grain dish is especially delicious with shrimp and crab stuffed salmon and stuffed flounder florentine.
14. Napa Cabbage Slaw
If you’re looking for a coleslaw side for your seafood meal, this savory napa slaw is a perfect way to add crunchy cabbage, tomatoes, radish and peppers to your main dish. This savory slaw is a pretty healthy option and it’s especially complementary to the yellow rice recipe, if that’s on the menu!
15. Roasted Green Cauliflower
Gorgeous green cauliflower, roasted and topped with olive oil, anchovies, pine nuts and a squeeze of lemon. This veggie dish is the perfect side for so many different tilapia recipes. Sophisticated enough to be a great choice for a special occasion main dish, but it’s also quick enough to dress up a simple baked fish dish on a Tuesday night after work.
16. Seafood Stuffed Potato
If you're a fan of regular baked potatoes, wait until you get your fork into these seafood stuffed potatoes. A cross between a fancy steakhouse potato and your favorite neighborhood bar’s stuffed potato skins, these creamy, savory treats bring all the flavors of a fun summertime shrimp boil stuffed into a crispy potato skin.
17. Authentic Refried Mexican Beans
Are tilapia fish tacos on the menu this week? If you’re looking for a full menu of sides to complement the tacos, look no further than these delicious, creamy Mexican beans. A hearty, savory, satisfying side that’s about as cheap as they come when you use either pinto beans or creamy black beans! This dish is especially delicious when served with Mexican red rice.
18. Mexican Red Rice (Arroz Rojo)
Rice is a lot like fish – it’s simple and able to take on almost any flavor or twist you throw at it. This Mexican red rice is deeply flavorful and well spiced, the perfect companion for Mexican beans and pickled onions at your next Taco Tuesday Tilapia party.
19. Mediterranean Tossed Salad
Any simple green salad will add freshness to a seafood main course. But this Tossed Salad adds a little something extra. It’s a great choice if you’re looking for an all-in-one veggie side with leafy greens, tomatoes, pickled veggies, garbanzos, parmesan and pumpkin seeds. It’s my every-day salad full of all my favorite fresh veggies.
20. Chinese Eggplant with Oyster Sauce
If Asian Tilapia is on the menu, Chinese eggplant in oyster sauce is the perfect side dish for your dinner. With just a handful of ingredients, eggplant is transformed into a sweet, sticky, savory veggie that the whole family will enjoy. Try it with Asian fish with ginger.
21. Mashed Potatoes
Ahhhhh, good old mashed potatoes. The most comforting side dish in the universe. Any simple recipe on the internet will do the trick, but I’m especially fond of this mashed potato recipe. And if you have any leftovers, stay tuned! I’ve got a great solution for you.
22. Mashed Potato Latkes
All the best parts of traditional potato pancakes, but without the hours of shredding, soaking, salting and squeezing. Mashed potato latkes can be made with leftovers from last night’s dinner, or ready-made mashed potatoes from the grocery store. They are the perfect side for tilapia, and delicious dipped in spicy aioli or lemon dill sauce.
23. Lemon Dill Sauce
If traditional tartar sauce seems too boring to serve with your tilapia fillets, this sour cream sauce with fresh dill may add the creamy freshness you need on your seafood dinner. Herby and garlicky with a touch of lemon juice, this sour cream-based sauce is a great way to complement your fish. It’s also delicious as a topping for mashed potato latkes.
24. Spicy Aioli
It's an all-time favorite dipping sauce for seafood. Spicy aioli sauce. It is customizable to your family’s spice preference, but brings delicious flavor and a creamy heat to any seafood dinner, lunch, brunch or snack. Crispy breaded tilapia would be especially delicious in this sauce!
25. Salmon Patty Sauce
This creamy sauce for fish isn’t just for salmon or tuna cakes – it’s also perfect on grilled or baked tilapia, or as a dipping sauce for breaded tilapia fingers. I keep a batch in my refrigerator for all my emergency dipping needs.
26. Fresh Ginger Scallion Sauce
This fresh and zingy ginger scallion sauce is chock full of mild scallions, pungent grated ginger, neutral oil and a pinch of salt. Perfect to serve over simple steamed rice alongside Asian Tilapia with Ginger and Soy and a good choice for any Asian fish dish.
27. Seafood Boil Sauce
This buttery seafood boil sauce is a great option when you want to make a fish dish in a hurry. Use whatever baked or sautéed tilapia you have on hand then drench it in this garlicky butter sauce, and you have a stunning seafood dish in no time at all.
28. Mango Habanero Salsa
This sweet and spicy salsa is perfect with a simple grilled or blackened tilapia! Mango habanero salsa brings a lovely sweet heat to tilapia fish tacos. Habaneros might sound like an unpleasantly spicy pepper, but they also add a lot of unique flavor. You can substitute a milder option like a jalapeno or even poblano pepper, if that is a better fit for your palate. Once you combine with the other fresh veggies and lime juice, your tongue will be doing a happy dance.
So have you chosen your favorite sides to serve with your tilapia dinner? Mix and match from this list to create a full seafood lunch or dinner menu that is balanced, delicious and memorable.
What are your favorite sides for tilapia? I’d love to hear from you.