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Grilled fish tacos with cabbage slaw on a white serving tray.

Grilled Fish Tacos with Spicy Slaw

Summer means lots of easy Grilled Fish Tacos with Spicy Slaw, tucked into smoky, grilled corn tortillas and topped off with a squirt of lime. When you’re not eating them, you’ll be dreaming about them.
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4 servings (3 tacos each)
Calories 300kcal


For the slaw:

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 to 3 chipotle chiles in adobo sauce minced (see note 1)
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice from 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 head green cabbage cored and shredded (about 6 cups)
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro chopped (see note 2)
  • 3 scallions sliced (white and green parts)

For the fish:

For serving:


To make the slaw:

  • In a large bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, chipotle chiles, lime juice, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, and garlic. Season to taste with salt and pepper (I like 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper).
  • Stir in cabbage, cilantro, and scallions. Cover and chill while preparing the fish.

To make the fish:

  • In a small bowl, combine chili powder, coriander, and cumin. Pat fish dry with paper towels and brush with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Rub with spice mixture, then season with salt and pepper (refrigerate while preparing the grill).
  • Preheat grill over high heat for 10 minutes and leave burners on high. Clean grate, then rub generously with well-oiled paper towels until grate is black and glossy, about 5 to 10 times.
  • Place fish on grill, ideally in a direction that is perpendicular to the bars of the cooking grate (the world won't end if your grill marks are different). Cook until the fish flakes apart when gently poked with a paring knife, about 10 to 14 minutes, gently flipping fish halfway through cooking time using 2 spatulas (fish should register 145 degrees on an internal thermometer). Transfer fish to platter, tent with foil, and let rest for 5 minutes while grilling tortillas.
  • Working in batches, place several tortillas in a single layer on grill and cook until warm, about 10 seconds per side. Wrap tortillas in a clean dish towel or large sheet of foil.
  • To serve, cut each fish fillet into 3 equal pieces. Serve with warmed tortillas, cabbage slaw, and lime wedges.


  1. Chipotle chiles: These canned, smoked jalapeños packed in adobo sauce add the spice to our cabbage slaw. Add them to taste, or if you're worried about the heat, leave them out entirely (or add just a bit of the sauce for a hint of smokiness).
  2. Cilantro: If you don't like cilantro, leave it out or substitute something else.
  3. Fish: This recipe calls for mahi mahi filets, but any firm-fleshed, white flaky fish will do nicely. Think halibut, cod, flounder, grouper, or even swordfish. Look for fresh fish, preferably wild-caught from ocean waters. Tilapia and catfish are also sustainable options, but the flavors might not be as "clean" tasting as ocean fish.
  4. Tortillas: I love a 6-inch corn tortilla warmed from the grill, but flour tortillas taste great too. Look for a small size so everyone can enjoy a few tacos each. You can also warm the tortillas in a hot, dry skillet on the stove (they take about 10 to 20 seconds per side, and each tortilla needs to be heated individually).


Serving: 3tacos | Calories: 300kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 12mg | Sodium: 267mg | Potassium: 273mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 776IU | Vitamin C: 45mg | Calcium: 66mg | Iron: 1mg