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Almond Crusted Tilapia
with zucchini and sweet pea risotto

Active: 35 min Total: 45 min
With a little bit of prep this meal is simple but feels guest-worthy.
Smarts #1: The texture of the almond crust will vary depending on the type of almonds and how finely you chop them. In photos, we purchased sliced almonds and then finely chopped them by hand - it gave the fish lots of crunch. You can also pulse the almonds in a food processor for a more finely chopped texture or purchase almond meal which will have very little crunch.
Smarts #2: The risotto could be made in the Instant Pot. For tips, join the Cook Smarts Instant Pot Facebook Group.

Ingredients

Metric
Servings:
4
Almond Crusted Tilapia:
  • Almonds, sliced or slivered - 3/4 cup, finely chopped
  • Chives - 1 Tbsp, chopped
  • Soy sauce, low-sodium - 1 Tbsp
  • Mustard, Dijon - 2 tsp
  • Mayonnaise - 2 tsp
  • Honey - 1 tsp
  • Foil - for cooking
  • Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp
  • Tilapia - 4 (sub any white fish)
Zucchini and Sweet Pea Risotto:
  • Onions, medium - 1, diced
  • Zucchini - 8 oz, grated
  • Peas, frozen - 1 cup
  • Butter - 2 Tbsp
  • Rice, Arborio - 1 cup
  • Stock, any type - 3 1/2 cups
  • Cheese, parmesan (opt) - for serving, grated

Nutrition Facts

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Prep

  1. Onions / Almonds - Dice onions. Finely chop almonds (or pulse in the food processor). (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  2. Make crust - Finely chop chives. Combine chives, almonds, soy sauce, mustard, mayonnaise, and honey.
  3. Zucchini - Grate zucchini onto a paper towel or clean dish towel. Gently squeeze out excess liquid.
  4. Fish - Line a sheet pan with foil and brush with oil. Spread fish out in a single layer. Season fish with some salt and pepper. Spoon crust on top and gently press it down onto the fish to help it stick.
  5. Peas - Defrost peas.

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Make

  1. Heat oven to 425F / 218C. Place one rack in the upper third of the oven and one rack in the lower third.
  2. While oven warms up, heat an oven-safe Dutch oven with butter over medium heat. Add onions and zucchini with a pinch of salt. Saute until onions are softened, 4 to 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in rice and cook until rice is lightly toasted, 4 to 5 minutes.
  4. Add stock and bring to a boil.
  5. Cover risotto with a lid and transfer to the lower rack in the oven. Bake until all of the liquid is absorbed, ~20 minutes.
  6. When risotto is about halfway through cooking, transfer sheet pan with fish to the upper rack of the oven and bake until it flakes easily with a fork, 8 to 12 minutes (depending on thickness).
  7. When risotto is done, remove it (careful - it will be hot!) and stir in peas. Season with some salt and top with cheese (if using).
  8. Serve fish with risotto on the side. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts

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Reviews

Ratings

Original (46)
Gluten-free (3)
Paleo (9)
Vegetarian (6)

Most Helpful

This was good overall - I overcooked the fish, but that’s my fault! The topping was good. I had to cook the risotto a little longer than called for in the recipe, but it turned out well - I agree with comments that it was a little on the bland side, but some lemon juice helped brighten it up.

By: Melissa
Posted: Oct 31, 2020
Diet: Original
1 Helpful

42 reviews

Agreed that the risotto was bland compared to other CS risotto recipes. I used the Instant Pot, so only needed 4 cups of stock, which maybe reduced flavor. Too bad, because CS risotto's are my favorite! I steamed the fish, so I can't comment on the recipe for that.

By: Kirsten
Posted: Jan 20, 2021
Diet: Original
0 Helpful

Prefer other crusts. Used more zucchini and broccoli in risotto.

By: Cathleen
Posted: Dec 28, 2020
Diet: Gluten-free
0 Helpful

We used chicken instead of fish because toddlers but loved it and the risotto was a success.

By: Tiffany
Posted: Dec 22, 2020
Diet: Original
0 Helpful

Great simple healthy meal. I cook the carrots first and skipped onion because my kids don't like it. I'll add a simple salad today because calorie count is on the lower end.

By: Gabrielle
Posted: Nov 14, 2020
Diet: Paleo
0 Helpful

I absolutely loved this. So tasty, and risotto is always a comforting dish on a cold night. I think I must have had a flavorful stock, because my risotto didn't even need cheese and it was still powerful.

By: Jenna
Posted: Nov 11, 2020
Diet: Original
0 Helpful

Easy and delicious. The risotto needed more seasoning since I didn’t use cheese

By: Jennifer
Posted: Nov 10, 2020
Diet: Original
0 Helpful