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Here’s how to make the best fish taco seasoning! This dry rub brings in zesty, savory flavor that you can use on any type of fish.

Fish taco seasoning

Want to make fish tacos? Here’s the best fish taco seasoning that brings in just the right flavor! It’s got savory and smoky notes, with a barely perceptible hint of heat. Use it as a dry rub and the fish comes out tender with a beautiful crust of spices. Here’s how to make this seasoning blend and how to use it when you’re making fish tacos!

What’s in fish taco seasoning?

This fish taco seasoning has the typical cast of characters you’d expect in a Mexican seasoning blend! It’s similar to a fajita seasoning or taco seasoning, with a few tweaks. Here are the ingredients you need:

  • Chili powder
  • Cumin
  • Smoked paprika
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder

What’s smoked paprika? It’s a Spanish version of paprika that smokes the peppers before drying them, which infuses a hint of smokiness into each bite. If you can’t find it, you can use sweet paprika. But it adds great flavor here! If you buy a jar, you can use it up with these Best Smoked Paprika Recipes.

Fish taco seasoning

It works with any white fish!

This fish taco seasoning works with any kind of white fish that you want to use for tacos! Here are the best types of fish to use:

  • Tilapia: has a great mild flavor and buttery texture
  • Cod: the flavor is even milder! Cod is a great option here
  • Mahi mahi: also tasty: a bit meatier and richer

How to use this fish taco seasoning (as a dry rub!)

When you use this fish taco seasoning, you can use it as a dry rub. That means you don’t even need to add oil to the fish! It coats the tender fish in a lightly crisp layer of seasoning. Here’s what to do when you make it:

  • Salt the fish first, then add the dry rub. Pat the fish dry, then sprinkle it with salt first. This makes sure the fish is well seasoned. Add the fish taco seasoning as a dry rub and pat it to cover the fish.
  • Bake for 10 minutes at 400 degrees. Place the fish on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes, until tender.
  • Broil for 2 minutes (optional). If you’d like, you can broil for a few minutes until the top is lightly browned.
Fish taco seasoning

Double or triple it, and store for later use

You can make a single recipe of this fish taco seasoning, or make 2, 3 or 4 times the seasoning and use it for future batches. The key is to use 2 tablespoons of seasoning per pound of fish.

When you store the seasoning, place it in a sealed jar and store in a cool, dry place: like with your other spices and seasoning blends. It should last about 1 year.

Accessorize with fish taco sauce & slaw

How to make fish tacos? Accessorize it with our fish taco sauce and slaw! Add all the components and you’ve got tacos:

  • Fish Taco Sauce: A creamy, zingy sauce that works on just about anything.
  • Fish Taco Slaw: A quick and easy slaw that’s simple to make while the fish bakes.
Fish tacos

This fish taco seasoning recipe is…

Gluten-free, dairy-free and pescatarian (when served on fish!)

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Fish taco seasoning

*Best* Fish Taco Seasoning

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 2 tablespoons, enough for 1 pound fish 1x


Here’s how to make the best fish taco seasoning! This dry rub brings in zesty, savory flavor that you can use on any type of fish.


  • 1 tablespoon chili powder (makes enough for 1 pound fish; increase as necessary)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, for seasoning
  • 1 pound white fish, like tilapia, cod or mahi mahi (wild caught preferable)


  1. Mix the chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder. Store in a closed container until using. (You can also increase the quantities to make a larger batch: use 2 tablespoons of mix per 1 pound fish.)
  2. To use in fish tacos: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Pat the fish dry, then sprinkle it with 1 teaspoon kosher salt and pat it in. Add the fish taco seasoning as a dry rub and pat it to cover the fish. Place the fish on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes, until tender. Then broil for 2 minutes until the top is lightly browned.
  • Category: Seasonings
  • Method: Mixed
  • Cuisine: Mexican inspired
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Keywords: Fish taco seasoning

More seasoning blends

Making DIY seasoning mixes at home is so easy! They taste incredible—much better than store-bought—and are fun gifts, too. Try all our seasoning blends (listed by style):

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Meet Sonja and Alex Overhiser: Husband and wife. Expert home cooks. Authors of recipes you’ll want to make again and again.

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  1. I used this seasoning recipe on Barramundi and it was amazing! It adds a huge burst of flavor. This will be my go to recipe from here on out. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I tried the recipe because I had brought a lot of leftover veggies home from restaurant fish fajitas, so I bought a pound of swai and baked/broiled it following your directions with your seasoning rub. Wow, delicious! I can so see using this to eat fish on its own as the main dish. And I love that your 2T per pound ratio does completely cover the fish.