Home ยป Money Matters: Parmesan Tilapia

Money Matters: Parmesan Tilapia


My mom recently got a bike. They live in the city and my only memory of her on a bike was the time she ran into a parked car, many, many years ago. The car sustained no injuries. Her ego, however, didn’t fair quite as well. Its probably taken her nearly 20 years to decide bike ownership is, once again, something she’d like to pursue. So, my dad got her a bike for Mother’s Day and her birthday and she talks about it a lot. She also uses it a lot as her work and the gym, the two places she travels to the most, are each no more than 3 blocks away.

At lunch yesterday, she was telling us how in the wee hours of the morning as she was heading to the gym, there were 2 hooded “boys” that were under the viaduct, blocking the entire sidewalk. “Show no fear!” she said, and describer herself, on bike, continuing to bike right at them, all just-over one-hundred pounds of her. She said they parted and let her through at the last second, but I thought that was pretty fearless of her.


I am not nearly as brave. Yes, I play ice-hockey in 20 pounds of padding and a helmet…but riding my bike straight through two men in the dark, no thanks! I’m also not brave when it comes to cooking certain things. Tilapia being one of them. Plus, I had kind of decided I didn’t like tilapia…maybe because of how I was cooking it?

Maybe I should start a new blog series, “The foods I thought I hated”.

As I was taking inventory of all that was in Ohio and in need of being eaten, I groaned out loud when the depths of my freezer revealed not one…not two, but THREE bags of frozen tilapia filets. We served tilapia as one of the entrees at our wedding…we like(d) tilapia, but it’s fair to say this tilapia was probably on sale and we had learned that tilapia can be a bit…boring. Salmon – throw it on the grill and hand me a lemon slice. Tilapia – it needs some jazz.


This recipe has come across my Google Reader a LOT, which in and of itself says something. But, I’m not one to take others’ opinions all too seriously if it’s a food I’ve grown a distaste for. For the sake of not wasting food, I got brave and tried tilapia.

And…IT. WAS. DELICIOUS! Truly delicious.

Better yet, Mr. Prevention asked, “How long did dinner take!?” totally impressed by the taste. Because I’m all about quick meals and the end result, not the impressive (or unimpressive) means of getting there, I proudly reported, “Ten minutes, start to finish!”



Parmesan Tilapia originally from Mrs.B.Cooks, as seen on and adapted from The Way to His Heart

1 lb tilapia filets (about 4)
1/4 cup (1 oz) Parmesan cheese, shredded
2 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1 Tbsp nonfat plain Greek yogurt
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 tsp dried Italian seasoning
salt and ground black pepper, to taste

Pre-heat the oven broiler (500-550 F). Line a baking pan with foil and spray with cooking spray.

In a small bowl, combine all ingredients (except fish). Mix well and set aside.

Arrange tilapia filets in a single layer on baking pan. Broil a few inches from heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the filets over and broil for an additional 2-3 minutes.

Remove from oven and cover top side of filets with Parmesan cheese mixture. Return to broiler and continue cooking, 1-2 minutes, until the top is lightly browned.

Yield: 4 tilapia filets.

Nutrition Information (per filet): 182 calories; 8.5 g. fat; 6 mg. cholesterol; 313 mg. sodium; 0.8 g. carbohydrate; 0.1 g. fiber; 25.5 g. protein

Result: Best fish recipe in a long time…best tilapia recipe ever! I think this is a must-make and PERFECT for a quick meal with loads of flavor. You could certainly use the same method with any type of fish, but I think the flavors are perfectly suited for a white, mild-flavored fish. Enjoy!

Money Matters: Tilapia is an eco-friendly, super healthy, and affordable fish – usually about $6/lb. Parmesan is usually $12-16/lb for the good stuff (~$0.95/oz). Butter is roughly $0.11/tablespoon and the remaining ingredients add up to ~$0.35. The cost per recipe comes to $7.52 and the cost per serving $1.88!


Sleeping in a BED was nice last night. The days of an air mattress are getting a little old! Off for a relaxing day in Chicago!

Be well,

Share With Your Friends!


  1. Jackie C
    June 27, 2012 / 7:34 am

    I’ll be making this over the weekend. Thanks!! My husband was the same way, he hated salmon, but I think it was all in the preperation. He’s tried mine and now he loves it.

  2. June 27, 2012 / 8:15 am

    I love tilapia because it does require some jazzing but I love adding stuff to fish to make it taste way better. This looks like one of those recipes!

    Enjoy the day in Chicago…jealous.

  3. June 27, 2012 / 8:26 am

    I’m going to have to make this for Jason. While I love tilapia, he thinks he doesn’t like it. Maybe this will change his mind.

  4. June 27, 2012 / 9:16 am

    This is exactly the kind of recipe I’ve been looking for! I’m trying to eat more fish and I’ve been super busy lately, so I need delicious meals that come together quickly. Bookmarking this! Thanks!

  5. Jenn
    June 27, 2012 / 9:37 am

    Sounds DELICIOUS! How do you set your Google Reader to find awesome recipes like this? That’s exactly what I need to start doing!

    • Nicole, RD
      June 27, 2012 / 9:41 am

      Hey Jenn! I subscribe to a TON of blogs. Unfortunately, I don’t get to read them all, but I try to peruse most of them ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Addie
    June 27, 2012 / 10:15 am

    Firstly. I’m glad your mom was brave and all, but tell her to be careful and listen to her gut! If something seems fishy or dangerous, tell her to get the H out.
    Secondly… what is this “Google Reader” you speak of? I think I want it.
    Love your blog and your recipes, thanks!!!

    • Nicole, RD
      June 27, 2012 / 10:17 am

      I agree! And Google Reader – love it! It’s a great way to read a bunch of blogs in an “organized” fashion ๐Ÿ™‚ http://www.google.com/reader/

  7. June 27, 2012 / 10:24 am

    Love this!!!
    I have only tried tilapia once and never made it myself. I REALLY need to step out of my comfort zone.

  8. June 27, 2012 / 11:43 am

    I’ve wondered many times if I should maybe give fish another chance. I mean, really the only reason I don’t like fish is because of salmon. I hate salmon a lot, and it’s probably the only thing I’ve tried.
    Plus, what isn’t delicious when you put cheese on it?

  9. June 27, 2012 / 12:44 pm

    For some reason tilapia has a weird aftertaste to me – and never thought you could pair cheese with seafood! It looks pretty though.

    Gorgeous day for a trip to Chicago – enjoy!

  10. June 27, 2012 / 1:04 pm

    My sister recently acquired a bike and forced me to ride it when I went to visit her. I felt like a 6 year old child as she watched me ride around in circles in her apartment parking lot being paranoid of hitting something and crashing my helmet-less head into the pavement. I don’t do well on bikes.

  11. STH
    June 27, 2012 / 3:50 pm

    This looks good; I’ll have to give it a try. I need to do a little sales job on my boyfriend, who’s a Brit and only likes his fish battered and fried (and served with chips, of course).

    Biz, I’m sure this would work fine with a different kind of white fish. You might have to adjust the cooking time if you get thicker fillets, though.

    And yay to your mom!

  12. June 27, 2012 / 9:27 pm

    My mom never liked biking when I was growing up. she cried when my dad got her a bike for her birthday. But when her last boyfriend was an avid bicyclist she got all into biking.

  13. Samantha
    June 29, 2012 / 8:52 pm

    I am still struggling to like tilapia, I think it’s the texture for me. Tried this recipe anyway & it was pretty good!

  14. Pingback: Seafood
  15. Lizzie
    February 19, 2013 / 2:20 pm

    I just tried this last night.. it was really great! I was looking for a quick, easy tilapia recipe. This definitely fit the bill. It was really good and I already had everything but the fish. Plus, my store frozen tilapia bags on sale buy-one-get-one-free, so it was really cost effective!

    I’ll definitely be making this again, but next time I might try baking my fish for a little longer at a lower temperature, then just turning it up to broil for the last few minutes with the stuff on top. My junky old oven isn’t the best at broiling.

  16. Laura p
    September 25, 2014 / 10:48 pm

    Hi there, just wanted to send you a quick note that I made this recipe tonight and my whole family loved it! Even my picky 7 yr old asked for seconds. It was so quick and easy. I get stuck in a rut with tilapia…usually fish tacos or two or three other dishes I rotate through. This one is definitely a keeper! So Thanks!

    And good luck with your impending arrival! I remember those last few days before my first came, I really enjoyed the time off work before she came. Congratulations.

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