Garlic Buter Baked Tilapia Recipe

Garlic butter baked tilapia is great for when you want lots of flavor without a lot of work. Make this recipe for dinner in less than 30 minutes!

I have several other fish recipes that use the same garlic butter sauce like my Simple Garlic Butter Salmon RecipeGarlic Butter Cod, and Garlic Butter Rainbow Trout in Foil.

cooked tilapia fillets with garlic butter sauce in a white baking dish

I love fish especially salmon and tilapia. They go with everything, like in my Easy Chopped Salmon Salad. I love tilapia because it’s such a versatile fish because it’s neutral in flavor, which means it takes on the flavor of whatever it’s cooked with. For this recipe, the tilapia is cooked in a simple and delicious garlic butter sauce made with a few simple ingredients that you probably already have on hand.

What’s great about this sauce is that it can be used for just about any protein you want to make.


  • Tilapia fillets – Use either fresh or frozen. Be sure to completely thaw frozen fillets in the refrigerator before using in this recipe.
  • Fresh parsley
  • Garlic
  • Unsalted butter – For paleo or Whole30, use ghee instead. Any vegan butter alternative will work as well.
  • Lemon juice
  • Spices: onion powder, paprika, salt and pepper

How to make garlic butter baked tilapia

This garlic butter tilapia recipe couldn’t be any simpler – just bake the fish in a homemade butter sauce until done!

While there is a little bit of prep work, the tilapia only takes about 10 minutes to bake.

side by side photos of ingredients for garlic butter sauce separated and mixed together

Mix together butter sauce

  1. Melt the butter or ghee, mince the garlic, and chop the fresh parsley.
  2. Next, combine them in a small bowl with the onion powder, paprika, and lemon juice.
  3. Whisk until well combined, then set aside.

rectangle baking dish on a counter with tilapia fillets covered in salt and pepper

Season the fish

  1. Grease a baking dish and lay the tilapia fillets inside in a single layer.
  2. Then, season the fish well with salt and pepper.

white fish covered in garlic butter sauce inside a baking dish

Bake and serve

  1. Next, pour the garlic butter sauce evenly over the top of the fish.
  2. Place the pan in the oven and bake until the fish is done. It will be an opaque white color instead of translucent and will flake easily with a fork.
  3. Serve immediately with your sides of choice and enjoy!

close up of garlic butter baked tilapia

What to serve with baked tilapia

Because this garlic butter tilapia recipe has such simple, classic flavors, the side dish options are endless! Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Rice or cauliflower rice
  • Mashed potato
  • Tossed green salad
  • Roasted veggies
  • Pasta
  • Butternut or acorn squash

Recipe notes

  • Storage – Leftover fish can be kept in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days. Store in an airtight container or wrapped in foil.
  • Reheating – Heat fish in the microwave or in the oven at 350 degrees F until warmed through.
  • Greasing the pan – Using a nonstick cooking spray is the easiest option, but if you don’t have any you can brush the pan with a thin coat of olive oil instead.

Other fish recipes to try

There’s no reason simple dishes can’t be delicious. However, if you want something a little more complex, try one of these other recipes:

cooked tilapia fillets with garlic butter sauce in a white baking dish

Garlic Butter Baked Tilapia

Garlic butter baked tilapia is great for when you want lots of flavor without a lot of work. Make this recipe for dinner in less than 30 minutes!
3.43 from 21 votes


  • ¼ cup unsalted melted butter - use ghee for paleo and whole30
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • 3 garlic cloves - minced
  • 2 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 4 fillets of tilapia
  • Salt and black pepper


  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Grease an 9x13 baking pan with cooking spray*.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together butter, parsley, onion powder, paprika, garlic and lemon juice. Set aside.
  • Season tilapia with salt and pepper, to taste and place onto the prepared baking dish.
  • Pour the butter mixture over the tilapia fillets.
  • Place into oven and bake for about 10-12 minutes or until tilapia flakes easily with a fork.
  • Serve immediately with rice, cauliflower rice, mashed potato, mashed cauliflower or roasted veggies.


*If you don’t have cooking spray, use a cooking brush and olive oil.
Click HERE to watch the Web Stories for this recipe.
Serving: 1/4, Calories: 193kcal, Carbohydrates: 2g, Protein: 18g, Fat: 14g, Saturated Fat: 8g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 72mg, Sodium: 194mg, Potassium: 32mg

If you make this recipe, follow @primaverakitchen on Instagram, snap a photo and hashtag it #primaverakitchen. I'd love to see what you're making!

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Check out the Web Story HERE.

overhead view of 4 pieces of fish in white baking sheet