Tilapia is a tasty, quick, and delicious seafood made right in your air fryer. This recipe is fantastic. A simple flavoring, but it is full of flavor! An Ideal weeknight supper your whole family will adore!
This fish is very versatile as a meal. You can serve it on top of a fresh green salad, alongside some pilaf rice, make tacos out of it, or make it even healthier with roasted vegetables like my Air Fryer Roasted Cauliflower or my Air Fryer Roasted Vegetables.
Why You’ll Love This Air Fryer Tilapia Recipe
- Absolutely delicious and filling
- Very simple to make
- Flavorful ingredients
- Heart healthy
- Quick meal option for busy days
- Great for meal prep
- Low carb, so it’s great for the keto diet
Air-Fryer Tilapia Ingredients
- Tilapia Fish: Use good-sized pieces. They will be easier to cook. I recommend about 5 ounces each. Fresh fish filets work best, but you can also use frozen fillets that have been thawed.
- Grapeseed Oil: You can use any high-heat oil, such as Avocado Oil, Vegetable Oil, or even Coconut Oil.
- Grated Parmesan Cheese
- Pine Nuts
- Seasonings: Lemon Balm Leaves, Basil Leaves, Lemons, Garlic powder, Sea Salt, Black Pepper, Red Pepper Flakes, and Minced Garlic
How To Make Air Fryer Tilapia
Step 1: Prep the ingredients
Prepare the lemon balm pesto. Roughly chop lemon balm and basil leaves and place them into a food processor.
Add garlic cloves, minced shallot, parmesan, pinenuts, and lemon juice. Puree into a paste, then add grapeseed oil, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Puree for 15 to 20 seconds more.
Step 2: Preheat your air fryer
Preheat the air fryer to 400 F for five minutes. Just press the preheat button if your air fryer has one. Otherwise, just let it run for 3-4 minutes to preheat.
Step 3: Season the tilapia
Season tilapia with a pinch of salt and pepper. Add a slice of butter on top of each of the fish filets.
Step 4: Air fry the tilapia
Spray the air fryer with olive oil spray or another cooking spray. Then place the tilapia fillets into the air fryer basket in a single layer and cook for 5 minutes.
Flip the tilapia over, add a dollop of pesto on top of each filet and cook for five more minutes.
Serve tilapia with pesto and garnish with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and some extra lemon wedges.
- Change up the seasonings of your yummy flaky fish. If you like a kick, try some cajun seasoning or chili powder.
- Try adding some fresh herbs for an extra flavor boost.
- Top with some capers or sun-dried tomatoes for a pop of color and texture.
- Serve with mashed potatoes, roasted vegetables, or even some quinoa.
- Pesto Sauce: Today, I made a homemade pesto sauce. If you want a quick weeknight meal, feel free to switch to a store-bought pesto sauce. My favorites are Trader Joe’s Pesto Sauce, Prego Basil Pesto, and Alessi Pesto Sauce.
- Batches: Be careful not to crowd your air fryer basket. Otherwise, you will end up with unevenly cooked fish. Most air fryer baskets will hold between 2 to 3 tilapia filets. If you are using an air fryer oven, you should be able to fit 5 to 7 tilapia filets.
- Flipping: Depending on your air fryer, you may need to flip the tilapia fish halfway through the cooking process.
- Parchment Paper: I sprayed my air fryer basket, allowing the tilapia to slide out of the basket easily, but you can use parchment paper or a reusable silicone liner.
With just a few ingredients, you can cook this up in your air fryer basket or air fryer oven; It will be delicious. Remember, depending on the air fryer you are using, you may need to add a couple of minutes to your cooking time.
Tilapia should be cooked to at least 145 F. For the best Air Fryer Tilapia, make sure that you watch your tilapia as it cooks up, so you don’t overcook it. The result will be a delicious piece of Air Fryer Tilapia!
This is a mild white fish that has been farm-raised.
Tilapia is a healthy fish and makes for a fantastic air fryer healthy recipe since it’s a source of protein and nutrients. It’s great for a heart-healthy meal, and with simple seasoning, your family will love them. Even picky eaters will like this tilapia since it is a mild-tasting fish and will take on the flavor of the seasonings you choose to add.
Let the leftover tilapia cool to room temperature, then place them in an airtight container. They will last for 2 to 3 days when stored in the refrigerator. Then, heat it back up in the microwave or even pop it back into the air fryer for a few minutes to warm it up.
Tilapia is the perfect fish to make into another delicious dinner of tacos, salads, and other dishes. You can prepare it in many ways, such as filets or chunks!
To enjoy this tasty treat at its best, you should serve it with fresh lemon juice on top. Then, serve alongside some vegetables like Air Fryer Broccoli or a bowl of Air Fryer Mashed Potatoes. Or serve with your other favorite sides for a fantastic flavor experience that will satisfy your taste buds!
Test your fish for doneness by gently testing it on an angle with a fork at the thickest part of it. When the fish is finished, it flakes easily, loses its translucent color, and turns white.
Cooking fish to an internal temperature of 140 to 145 degrees is a decent general rule of thumb, so be sure to check it with a meat thermometer.
More Air Fryer Recipes
Looking for even more Air Fryer Recipes? Some of my favorites are:
- AIR FRYER GARLIC BREAD
- AIR FRYER BREADED EGGPLANT
- Easy AIR FRYER IRISH SODA BREAD
- AIR FRYER PIZZA HUT BREADSTICKS
Don’t Forget To Pin:
Air Fryer Tilapia
- 1/4 cup lemon balm leaves
- 1/4 cup basil leaves
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 1 large lemon , juiced
- 1/2 ciup grapeseed oil
- 6 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1/2 tablespoon minced shallot
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 4 6 ounce tilapia fillets
- 4 tablespoons butter, unsalted
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Serve with lemon wedges
- Prepare lemon balm pesto. Roughly chop lemon balm and basil leaves and place them into a food processor. Add garlic cloves, minced shallot, parmesan, pinenuts, and lemon juice. Puree into a paste, then add grapeseed oil, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Puree 15 to 20 seconds more
- Preheat the air fryer to 400 degrees F for five minutes.
- Season tilapia with a pinch of salt and pepper. Add a slice of butter on top of each filet.
- Spray your air fryer basket with cooking spray.
- Place tilapia fillets into the air fryer basket and cook for 5 minutes. Flip tilapia over, add a dollop of pesto on top of each filet and cook for 5 more minutes.
- Serve tilapia with pesto and garnish with lemon wedges.
- Air Fryer