Home > Dinner > Blackened Tilapia with a Pineapple Salsa Blackened Tilapia with a Pineapple Salsa July 9, 2019 | 10 Comments SAVE TO RECIPE BOX Jump to Recipe This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy. Pan-seared Blackened Tilapia with delicious and simple pineapple salsa. This Blackened Tilapia is quick and easy to whip together, packed with good-for-you ingredients and nutrients, and has such a great fresh flavor. Because we can’t get enough of this pineapple chicken, we’re revisiting the components from that meal with Blackened Tilapia. While the salsa is pretty much the same, we’re switching up the base and blackening some fish instead of marinating chicken. As I’ve been working to reduce food waste as much as possible, we’re adding the “leftover” ingredients from the salsa to the rice base. So we’ll use the red onion, cilantro, jalapeno, and lime juice in the rice base AND in the salsa. Score! What goes well with Blackened Tilapia? Blackened Tilapia pairs well with corn and bean salads or fruit-y salsas. So the black bean and red onion rice, plus the pineapple salsa (included with this recipe) are the perfect pairings for this recipe. With all the components here, I don’t think there’s a need for too many other side dishes, but here are a few ideas to consider: Italian Salad Cowboy Caviar Elote Roasted Brussel Sprouts Roasted Asparagus In case you’ve never heard of the term, do you know what it means to blacken fish? What does blackened fish mean? Blackening is a cooking technique. The fish is seasoned with a spice blend (to keep things simple, we’re using a store-bought seasoning mix!) and then it’s cooked in a very hot skillet. The spices become “blackened” giving it the name. It’s not black-as in burnt- but is more like charring. This technique was created to replicate the flavor of charcoal grilling in an indoor environment. What is blackening seasoning made of? I mentioned we’re using a store-bought spice blend to keep things simple and prep fast. This dinner truly is a perfect candidate for a busy weeknight meal! I like the Cuban-inspired mojo seasoning by Simple Truth Organic (I grab this at my local Smith’s — a Kroger® store (not sponsored)). Any similar seasoning blend will work! If you want to make your own seasoning mix for the tilapia, try this recipe. QUICK TIP Blackening the tilapia can make your kitchen a bit smoky. To prevent the smoke detector from going off, be sure to have good ventilation going: turn on all the fans and open the windows! Time-saving tips for Blackened Tilapia When it’s a busy weeknight, I’m all about shortcuts in the kitchen! Beyond the seasoning blend, here are a few other shortcuts for Blackened Tilapia: Pineapple: If your grocery store sells pre-cored pineapple with the skin removed and you’re in a big hurry — grab it! They’re rarely too much more expensive when in season and the pre-cored/skinned pineapples are usually perfectly ripe. (If you’ll be coring it yourself, here’s a great guide to cutting one). Alternatively, a pineapple corer/slicer will also save time and is great to have if you eat a lot of pineapple! Make rice ahead of time: If you want to save time, make a big batch of rice at the beginning of the week and use it in recipes throughout the week. You can also use leftover rice in chicken stir fry, coconut curry chicken, and mango chicken. Juicer: Blackened Tilapia requires quite a bit of fresh lime juice, so invest in a good juicer or citrus reamer. You don’t need anything special or crazy expensive; this one is pretty cheap and a great investment if you juice a lot of citrus. More seafood: Cilantro-Lime Shrimp Bowls Shrimp Tacos reader favorite One-Pan Easy Baked Fish and Chips Mojo Salmon Bowls Shrimp Couscous FOLLOW ALONG! Subscribe to my newsletter and follow along on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram for the latest updates, recipes and content. Blackened Tilapia 5 from 3 votes - Review this recipe Pan seared Blackened Tilapia with delicious and simple pineapple-cilantro salsa. SAVE TO RECIPE BOX Print Recipe Blackened Tilapia 5 from 3 votes - Review this recipe SAVE TO RECIPE BOX Print Recipe Pan seared Blackened Tilapia with delicious and simple pineapple-cilantro salsa. Course Dinner, Main Course Cuisine American Keyword blackened tilapia Prep Time 20 minutes Cook Time 8 minutes Total Time 28 minutes Servings 2 -4 servings Calories 925kcal Ingredients3 tablespoons finely diced jalapeño pepper separated (~1 large jalapeno)1 medium red onion, divided dice one half to get 1/2 cup and then thinly slice the other half to get 3/4 cup1 bunch cilantro separated3 juicy limes separated1 cup uncooked basmati rice + water to cook in2 and 1/2 tablespoons olive oil separated2 tablespoons finely diced jalapeño pepper1 teaspoon minced garlic1 can (15 ounces) black beans drained and rinsedFine sea salt and freshly cracked pepper3 cups (~18 ounces) diced pineapple1 pound (~3 fillets) tilapiaCuban-inspired mojo seasoning (I use Simple Truth Organic) InstructionsPREP: We're going to use a lot of these ingredients for the rice and then again for the salsa! Dice a jalapeño to get 3 tablespoons. Halve a red onion. Cut half of that half into thin strips to get about 3/4 cup. Finely dice the other half to get 1/2 cup. Finely dice cilantro to get 3/4 cup (for salsa; measure 3/4 cup loosely and then finely dice) and 2-3 tablespoons (for rice). Zest and juice limes to get 4 tablespoons juice and 1 teaspoon zest. Cut the remaining lime into wedges to serve alongside plates.BLACK BEAN RICE: In a small pot, cook rice according to package directions. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to a large nonstick pan (the same one you’ll use for the fish later on), and heat to medium-high heat. When oil is shimmering, add 1 tablespoon diced jalapeño and the thinly sliced red onion (3/4 cup). Saute, stirring frequently, until softened. Add garlic and stir for about 30 more seconds. Add in black beans and stir until warmed through,, 2-3 more minutes. Remove from heat and then add black bean mixture to the cooked rice. Add the juice of 1 lime (2 tablespoons lime juice) and 2-3 (or to taste) tablespoons diced cilantro. Season rice mixture to taste with salt and pepper (I use about 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper). Toss and taste for seasoning; adjust according to personal preference. Cover to keep warm and set aside.PINEAPPLE SALSA: (SEE NOTE 1) Zest and juice 1 lime to get 2 tablespoons juice and 1 teaspoon zest (avoid the white pith). Add to a bowl along with the 3/4 cup diced cilantro, remaining 2 tablespoons diced jalapeño, remaining 1/2 cup diced red onion, and diced pineapple. Add salt and pepper to taste (I add about 1/4 teaspoon salt and a generous pinch of pepper). Stir until combined and set aside.TILAPIA: Heat 1 and 1/2 tablespoons olive oil in the large NONSTICK pan (the same one used for the beans/jalapeno) over medium-high heat. Pat tilapia dry with a paper towel, season all over with 1-2 teaspoons mojo spice mix (to taste preference, we use about 1 and 1/2 teaspoons), 1 teaspoon salt, and pepper as desired, and then gently rub seasoning on all sides of the fish. When oil is shimmering, add tilapia. Fry (working in batches as needed) until browned on the bottom, 3-5 minutes. Flip and cook until spices are blackened and fish is cooked through (opaque and flakes easily with a fork) about 3-5 more minutes. Remove fish from the heat. Season if needed with additional salt.TO SERVE: Divide the rice evenly between plates and add tilapia right on top. Generously spoon pineapple salsa on top of everything. Serve with fresh lime wedges (drizzle lime on right before serving) and enjoy! Recipe NotesNote 1: You will likely have more pineapple salsa than needed to top the fish, but we like a lot on top! Or, you can finish off the extra salsa with chips. You can halve the pineapple salsa recipe, but I like it as written, so I don't waste the rest of the veggies. Nutrition FactsCalories: 925kcal | Carbohydrates: 129g | Protein: 55g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 113mg | Sodium: 132mg | Potassium: 1372mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 39g | Vitamin A: 880IU | Vitamin C: 220mg | Calcium: 107mg | Iron: 3mg We do our best to provide accurate nutritional analysis for our recipes. Our nutritional data is calculated using a third-party algorithm and may vary, based on individual cooking styles, measurements, and ingredient sizes. Please use this information for comparison purposes and consult a health professional for nutrition guidance as needed. DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE? I love hearing from you when you've made one of my recipes! Tag me on Instagram at @ChelseasMessyApron or leave me a comment below.