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Tilapia is Fish Kids Eat

Updated on July 8, 2009

Microwave Tilapia

  • 4 5-7 oz. fresh Tilapia fillets
  • salt & pepper
  • 2 Tbls. butter
  • 2 Tbls. lemon juice
  • ½ cup seasoned bread crumbs
  • 1/8 tsp paprika

Melt butter in microwave and add lemon juice. Place fish in a pyrex and brush butter/lemon juice mixture over fish. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, bread crumbs, and paprika. Cover with a paper towel and microwave for 4-5 minutes, until fish flakes with a fork.

We know we're supposed to eat more fish, but how do you get kids to eat fish? The answer is to feed them fish that doesn't taste fishy! Tilapia is cheap, easy to cook, and best of all mild. I swore to my children I would never make them eat fish sticks. There are just too many bad memories of mushy fishy patties. But we've got to have fish in our diets. Bless the day I found my first inexpensive box - yes box! - of Tilapia.

What is Tilapia?

Most tilapia you get at the grocery store is farm-raised fish. It is fairly bland tasting so you can dress it up however you like. The texture is soft, almost like sole, but stays together enough to be fried. It is a lean fish, but moist and delicate. (Weight Watchers point counters will love that a fillet is only two points!)

Best of all it's inexpensive. You can find frozen, farm-raised Tilapia anywhere from $3 to $8 dollars per pound, depending on quantity. I buy a box at Wal-Mart for $9 with about 15 - 20 fillets inside. They come individually vacuum packed so you can pull out just what you need. They thaw quickly on the counter too.

If your kids still resist, Tilapia has another parental benefit. It's so subtle, you could flake it and sneak it into something else!

Fried Tilapia

My kids call this one 'Best Fish'.

  • 4 5-7 oz. fresh Tilapia fillets
  • salt & pepper
  • olive oil spray
  • olive oil for frying - as much or little as you like
  • ½ cup seasoned bread crumbs

Spray fish with olive oil spray, coat with bread crumbs. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and fry for 2 minutes per side. That's it!

Tilapia with Tomatoes, Olives, & Garlic

  • 4 5-7 oz. fresh Tilapia fillets
  • 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes
  • 1 cup olives - any kind you like - greek, black, green, etc.
  • ¼ cup capers
  • 2-3 cloves crushed garlic
  • 1 Tbls. olive oil

Cut the tomatoes and olives in half and cook with garlic, capers and olive for 5 minutes on medium heat - until tomatoes start to soften. Add fish and cover, cooking for 5 more minutes until fish flakes with a fork. This dish is great with couscous or rice to sop up the sauce.

How to Cook Tilapia

Tilapia can be cooked almost as many ways as chicken and it's even easier for kids to eat. You can't mess it up and it doesn't get fishy tasting even when overcooked. The quickest and easiest way to prepare it is to put some butter and lemon juice on top and pop it into the microwave for four or five minutes.


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