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Pescado Frito (Ecuadorian style fried fish)

Serves ~4-6 Prep ~10 mins Cook ~5-10 mins Ready ~20 mins

Ecuadorian style fried fish is a simple, quick dinner that my family usually makes during lent, but is great to have year round! My Abuelita and Mom's fish is always perfectly crispy, topped with pickled onions (with extra lemon juice), chopped tomatoes + cilantro. And of course, always accompanied by white rice.

Note: I used tilapia, but any white fish works!


  • 6 tilapia fillets

  • 1 cup of all purpose flour

  • 2 tablespoons of Abuelita’s aliño

  • 1 red onion

  • 4 lemons

  • 3 chopped roma tomatoes

  • a handful of cilantro (no stems)

  • vegetable oil

  • olive oil

  • salt & pepper

  • 2 cups of rice

  • 1 garlic clove

Pickled Onions Prep:

1. Thinly slice 1 red onion.

2. In an air-tight container, combine the onions with ~1-2 tablespoons of salt (to taste) and the juice of 4 lemons.

3. Cover and let sit in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours; 48hrs+ is best!

Fish Prep:

1. In a large shallow bowl, add in the flour + 2 tablespoons of Abuelita’s aliño and mix until combined.

2. Pat the fish dry with a paper towel + season with salt and pepper.

3. Place the fish in the seasoned flour and flip over several times until the fish in completely covered.

4. Shake off the excess flour and let sit for 10 mins before frying.

5. Fry at medium high heat in a pan with about 1/2 inch of vegetable oil. Note: fish fries very fast and should be your last step before serving, it only takes about 2-3 mins on each side.

6. Once the fish thoroughly cooked and golden brown, remove from the pan and let sit on a paper towel for a few mins to absorb the excess oil.

Rice Prep

1. In medium size pot, add 2 cups of rice + 4 cups of water and bring to a boil.

2. Add 2 teaspoons of salt, 1 teaspoon of olive oil and a whole peeled garlic clove, mix until combined + cover and cook on low heat for 20 mins. Turn off heat and let rest for 10 mins before serving.


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