Curried Tilapia Stew

I used to make a version of this stew all the time. I just realized recently that I hadn’t made it in years. My passion for food variety has probably kept this recipe on the shelf for a while. I pulled it out only because I had cilantro that needed to be used ASAP, I had leftover steamed rice from Chinese takeout that I didn’t want to waste, I had a freezer full of tilapia that I found on sale, plus I needed a relatively fast recipe for dinner. No time to create!

Curried Tilapia Stew

Curried Tilapia Stew

Well, I actually did create a little. I realized the original recipe is missing one of my favorite seasonings, curry powder!! How’d I miss that? I revised this version to include the curry and a few other minor changes to ramp up the flavor a bit. If you like spicy Caribbean dishes, add a pinch of cayenne pepper while simmering for that extra kick!

This dish got 5 “mmm mmm’s” from the hubby and kids. Translation: it’s yumderful!!! 😉

Curried Tilapia Stew

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Yield: about 20 servings


  • 1 cup lime juice
  • 2 tbsp curry powder
  • 2 tbsp cumin
  • 2 tbsp. paprika
  • 2 tbsp garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp seasoned salt
  • 2 tsp black pepper
  • 4 lbs tilapia filets, cut into chunks
  • 2 tbsp oil (I used grapeseed)
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 large red onion, chopped
  • 2 large bell peppers, cut into medium chunks
  • 3-16 oz. cans diced tomatoes, drained
  • 2-16 oz. cans coconut milk
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped


  1. In a large bowl, combine lime juice and all spices (cumin, paprika, garlic, salt, pepper). Mix well.
  2. Add tilapia to mixture and toss well.
  3. Cover and refrigerate tilapia for at least 20 minutes (marinate overnight for added flavor).
  4. In a dutch oven or large pot, heat oil on medium-high heat.
  5. Add onions and bell peppers to pot and cook until tender (about 4 minutes).
  6. Add tilapia mixture to pot.
  7. Top with diced tomatoes.
  8. Pour coconut milk over the mixture.
  9. Top with cilantro..
  10. Reduce heat to medium. Cover pot and let simmer about 20-30 minutes until tilapia is cooked throughout.
  11. Garnish with more cilantro if desired.
  12. Serve hot with or without rice and enjoy!


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2 Responses to Curried Tilapia Stew

  1. Toya Booker says:

    Hi Joyce,
    I’m going to make this tonight. What color bell pepper do you suggest?
    PS- Love your site!

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