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The 23 Best, Easiest Sides For Tilapia You’re Gonna Love

Looking for easy but GOOD tilapia side dishes? This collection of delicious recipes are the perfect couplers to your tender white fish!

Tilapia is a mild fish that is popular on many dinner tables, known for being an economical option and a flavor that complements many ingredients. 

Since the fish has a mild flavor, you might need an array of great recipes that matches the entree. And we’ve got you covered! 

Whether you’re preparing baked tilapia, parmesan crusted tilapia, or tilapia fish tacos, you can’t go wrong with this list! 

You’re going to flip for recipes like our tried-and-true lightly sweet Rice And Fruit, hearty and nutty Warm Farro Salad With Roasted Vegetables, and the fresh tomato packed Braised Artichokes!

Psst, my absolute favorite green vegetable that I love with seafood is #11. Let me know if you’ve ever had it. 


Fact: Even the picky eaters in your family will love our sides for tilapia.

If you’re wondering what to serve with tilapia, I always recommend pairing the fish with this cilantro lime rice fragrant with lime juice (or lemon juice), lemon zest, and fresh cilantro. 

The fluffy texture and noticeable lime taste of this recipe pair well with the mild flavor profile of tilapia. 

They’re truly a match made in heaven, especially if you are looking at a southwest-style Tilapia main.

Another rice-based dish that sings in harmony with tilapia fillets, is the garlic herbed rice pilaf. 

It’s fluffy and utterly flavorful!

The secret to its nice fluffy texture is rinsing the rice under cool water several times to get the starch off. Then simmer with fresh garlic, spices, and chicken base. 

VY-OH-LAY, restaurant-quality food at home!

This ratatouille has simple ingredients like red onions, bell pepper, tomatoes, eggplant, zucchini, and herbs—layered beautifully and cooked until tender. 

The recipe is laden with a tomato-based sauce, black pepper, and salt, resulting in a burst of savory flavor!

A show-stopping platter of delicious vegetables. The gang over at Spend With Pennies made this an eye-popping wonder.

Preparing your tilapia fish fillets is already time-consuming, so you might need to accompany the entree with a side that’s quick to put together—a-ha, oven-roasted corn!

Start by combining melted butter, chives, sea salt, and pepper. Brush the mixture over the corn and place them on the prepared baking sheet. Then bake until the kernels become golden brown. 

For cheesy flavors, sprinkle the roasted corn with grated parmesan cheese. 

This roasted cauliflower is a healthy dinner and delicious on its own, but you shouldn’t miss serving this delectable side along with your favorite deep-fried tilapia. 

The best part about this recipe is the medley of butter and olive oil which then caramelizes the florets as it’s baked to crisp-tender perfection.

You can customize the seasoning with what you have on hand, too. Paprika? Yes, please!

This creamed corn casserole is a great side dish for your tilapia dishes. Why? Because it’s savory, rich, and filled with bold flavor that’s ideal for any mild entree. 

To make this casserole, you need to remember three things: throw all the ingredients in a bowl and mix, transfer the mixture to a greased baking pan, then bake until lightly browned.

What goes well with tilapia? How about serving the mild fish alongside these flash-sautéed cherry tomatoes over pasta? 

The bright colors of tomatoes and fragrant flavors of garlic scapes and chives will convince you that this dish is an ideal side dish for the entree. 

No garlic scapes? Don’t worry! Replace them with a finely chopped garlic clove, shallot, or minced garlic.

Sauteeing spinach is a great way to bring out the full potential of the vegetable. It’s a versatile ingredient, indeed.

For quick meals, I simply toss olive oil, salt, garlic, and mushrooms to my spinach then pair the side with chicken, prime rib, or grilled tilapia. Yum!

This garlic Swiss chard is a suitable sidecar for almost any main meal, but you would love the sauteed green even more when you pair it with tilapia. 

The combination of red pepper and garlic in this chard dish heightens up the flavor of the healthy fish. 

For a satisfying eating experience, drizzle the greens with olive oil and shavings of parmesan cheese.

These braised artichokes are perfectly tender, cradling the sauce made from whole peeled tomatoes then served with inviting pistachio basil pesto. 

What more could you ask for? -chef’s kiss-

The perfect balance of the meaty pistachios with fresh basil and mint is great when combined with the savory tomato sauce.

Want to serve a side that won’t overpower your main dish? This broccoli rabe recipe is sure to deliver! 

Blackened, roasted, or grilled are all great, but this recipe is a simple, loose, brothy saute that works well and doesn’t take much time. 

Mom Foodie says it’s bitter but I’ve never found it unpleasant, especially with plenty of salt and garlic stirred in with it.

The vibrant green color of the vegetable will add a pop of color to your plate, too. It really is one of my favorite veg with fish.

If you’re a fan of carrots, this is for you!

The highlight of this simple carrot salad is the orange turmeric dressing—it’s truly flavorful! 

Brace yourself, serving this side with tilapia will have your family asking for seconds. 

Be sure to double the recipe.

This is one of several of our mashed potatoes recipes, and while they’d all go great with grilled tilapia, the aromatic garlic here will be a nice accoutrement.

It’s hard to beat mashed potatoes with nearly everything, but add a hearty green vegetable like #11 or an asparagus, and you’re set!

This fresh corn salad complements beautifully with any of your favorite summer main dishes—ribs, steak, tilapia—you name it!

It combines onion, bell pepper, avocado, corn, avocado, and Dijon mustard-based salad dressing, resulting in a light and refreshing side dish destined for endless entertaining. 

To take it up a notch, including black beans, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, and feta cheese into the mix.

If you have extra zucchini, make these little veggie pancakes! The crispy texture of these fritters would perfectly match your pan-seared, creamy-fleshed tilapia. 

The recipe is quite easy: first up, grate your zucchini in a food processor or a hand-grater.

 Combine grated zucchini, egg, flour, until everything is nice and mixed. 

Scoop out the fritter mixture and place it on parchment/baking sheet then cook until golden brown on each side. 

I can vouch for how great these are fresh out of the oven, crisp and cheesy. Just as good as a snack leftover too, reheated in the air fryer.

You need this copycat olive garden salad to elevate your eating experience with your tilapia. 

Its super-tangy Italian vinaigrette dressing pairs wonderfully with this savory main dish. 

To create the olive garden dressing, simply blend all the ingredients in a blend or food processor then chill it in a fridge for at least two hours.

A hearty tilapia deserves to be accompanied by a tasty salad filled with sweet apples and crunchy walnuts.

The secret to a delicious kale salad is to massage the vegetable with olive oil, lemon, and salt as this process helps tenderize the kale. 

Who doesn’t love a good massage, anyway, right? Kale’s got it made.

The apples add a more crunchy texture and the feta topping provides a creamy and tangy indulgence into the mix.

This strawberry spinach salad is easy to whip up yet full of flavor in every bite. 

And did I mention that it blends well with your delicate tilapia? Yep, yep, yep!

All you need are fresh spinach, juicy strawberries, slivered almonds, creamy avocado, sliced red onion, and sweet dried blueberries.

Sweet potato fries and tilapia are destined to be together!

A light coating of paprika, olive oil, salt, and 35 minutes in the oven transforms slices of potatoes into savory fries that everyone will beg for. 

If you’re into sweet stuff, try adding cinnamon and allspice into the coating. Or be creative with your seasoning with garlic or any spices to your liking. 

These carrot fries are heavenly too! Amazing what a dry heat will do for root veg.

 🐠 Try these popular side dishes for baked catfish! 🐠

These are as cheesy, garlicky flavored as you want them to be, and as parmesan lovers, we went as far as we could and still see the green beans.

Can you ever have enough cheese? That said, these are tangy with parmesan and garlic but the green beans come out crisp-tender. 

Don’t skimp on the salt. Fresh green beans just need it. Your tilapia will thank you for this one.

Imagine dunking these thick and crispy potato wedges into ketchup or ranch sauce. 

Heavenly! And when you serve them with tilapia? Perfection! Especially for those who aren’t going to budge on any green vegetables tonight.

These potato fries are seasoned with steak seasoning and paprika then bake until golden brown and crispy. Can you say no to these? Me? Never!

I made up this recipe out of my sheer desire to create something memorable with the love of my life, pearled farro. 

Before I discovered that my gut wants me to go gluten free (weeps), I would make farro on the stove top, drain, then add whatever I had in my fridge. Goat cheese, green onion, pistachos? Check. Cranberries, apples, and brown sugar? Yep. 

But this recipe made it on the blog because of its versatility and I’m such a fan of using the air fryer that I push this recipe like a dealer.

This nutty, chewy grain is milder than barley, more flavorful than brown rice, is close in taste and texture to the wheat berry, and has a bit of quinoa earthiness.

So, this is good warm or chilled, and may outshine your tilapia. Just sayin’.

I know this sounds weird. And as you are making it you will wonder if you’ve ruined perfectly good berries and rice. 

But it’s so lightly sweet, you’ll realize you didn’t just make a fruit salad in the traditional sense, and it’s not boring old rice-and-butter. The strawberries had a bright tangy that is a nearly citrus finish, and it’s not a loose texture. Eat this one warm or cold, too. 

I couldn’t keep my fork out of it while we were taking pictures. It’s an amazing coupler for any mild fish dish, like cod, tilapia, or salmon.

🐠🐠 Even more: Get 25 Sides For Fish 🐠🐠

The bottom line

I’ve tried brussels sprouts with oven-baked tilapia and guess what? They taste great together too! Pfft, I should include that on this list of tilapia sides. Bonus recipe.

Tilapia may have a mild taste, but with the right side dishes—this popular seafood entree is sure to be a hit!

🐟 Try our fish recipe for broiled haddock, too. 🐟

23 Best Side Dishes For Tilapia

23 Best Side Dishes For Tilapia

Discover some of the best side dishes for tilapia, from flavorful, zesty cilantro lime rice to roasted parmesan green beans!

Ingredients

  • Cilantro Lime Rice
  • Herbed Rice Pilaf
  • Ratatouille
  • Roasted Corn
  • Roasted Cauliflower
  • Creamed Corn casserole
  • Garlic Scape & Cherry Tomato Pasta
  • Sauteed Spinach
  • Garlic Swiss Chard
  • Braised Artichokes
  • Broccoli Rabe
  • Carrot Salad
  • Garlic Mashed Potatoes
  • Corn Salad
  • Zucchini Fritter
  • Copycat Olive Garden Salad
  • Kale Salad
  • Strawberry Spinach Salad
  • Roasted Green Beans With Parmesan
  • Sweet Potato Fries
  • Easy Oven Baked Steak Fries
  • Warm Farro Salad With Roasted Veg
  • Rice And Fruit Salad

Notes

  1. Choose one or more options from our list of side dishes for tilapia here!
  2. Create your new favorite dish.
  3. Pat yourself on the back for making food at home for you to enjoy!
  4. Share and comment! Did you make any tweaks so it’s all your own?

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