Panko-Crusted Fish Tacos with Kiwifruit Salsa
Need a fresh, fun recipe for Taco Tuesday? Then these fish tacos with kiwifruit salsa are just the thing! Baked, panko-crusted cod is served on a warm corn tortilla and topped with a sweet and juicy kiwifruit salsa that makes this meal a hit with kids and adults alike!
Disclosure: I received free samples of Zespri SunGold Kiwifruit mentioned in this post. By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by Zespri Kiwifruit. I was not compensated for my time. All opinions are my own.
We often have kiwifruit sitting in our fruit bowl. Kiwi has more vitamin C than most other fruits and my 10-year old loves to eat one with a spoon as part of his lunch or snack. I mean, how cool is it to be able to eat your fruit by just scooping it out with a spoon?
But aside from occasionally adding kiwi to fruit salads or smoothies, we generally just eat it plain. So I was excited when The Recipe Redux announced a challenge to create a new recipe with Zespri SunGold kiwifruit.
I had been working on creating a fish taco recipe with a Scandinavian twist, but had finally admitted defeat, realizing that corn tortillas and mild dill sauce just don’t really go together! So this recipe contest gave me new energy to continue with the fish part of the taco recipe, but ditch the nordic veggies and sauce (at least for now) and instead add a fruity salsa.
Fortunately, this recipe was an instant hit with both my husband and kids. Panko-breaded fish is always a hit in our family. (These cod nuggets a sure way to win kids over on fish!)
Adding kiwifruit and the currently seasonal nectarine to the salsa made for a fun twist on this classic Tex-Mex staple. Best of all, Zespri SunGold kiwifruit really surprised me with it’s sweet, tropical flavor.
If you are new to Zespri SunGold as I was, here are some fun facts:
- Unlike green kiwifruit, SunGold kiwifruit is hairless and yellow on the inside with a sweet, tropical taste.
- 2 Sungold kiwifruits provide 3x more vitamin C than an orange and as much potassium as a medium banana!
- Both green and SunGold kiwifruit contain an enzyme called actinidin. Actinidin helps break down protein and can be used as a meat tenderizer. This kiwi-fruit unique enzyme can also ease digestive discomfort by increasing the breakdown of proteins and helping with digestion and stomach emptying.
- You can eat the skin of this and all kiwifruit!
I think it’s totally cool that you can eat the skin, but my kids still prefer it without. Therefore, this recipe calls for kiwi without the skin, but you could leave it on if you don’t mind the texture and want some extra fiber.
Kid-approved SunGold kiwifruit helps make a delicious fish taco recipe that packs in the nutrients. Two tacos provide 32 grams of protein and 12% of daily iron needs! Click To Tweet
Get the Kids Involved
If you are looking to get your child involved in cooking, ask them to shake the bag with the fish and panko. This never gets old! (Check out my Instagram feed to see a picture of my 10-year old in action).
Taste-testing the salsa is also fun! Do you want it to taste more like fruit salad or do you want it to have some kick to it? I made the salsa mild because that is how my kids like it, but if you like it hot just add some cayenne pepper to the panko mix, chopped jalapeno to the salsa, or some hot sauce to the finished taco.
This salsa would work well with any kiwifruit, but Zespri SunGold kiwifruit is definitely worth seeking out in the store, especially if your family finds classic green kiwi a little too tart. It makes for a sensational salsa that goes really well with fish.
- 2 kiwifruit, skin removed and diced
- 1 nectarine (or peach), diced
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- 3 tablespoons chopped green onion
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 1 large egg
- 1.25 pounds cod, cut into 2-3 inch pieces
- 1 cup whole wheat Panko bread crumbs (or half whole wheat, half regular)
- ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon coriander
- Cooking spray (such as coconut or olive oil)
- 8 corn tortillas
- 4-6 romaine lettuce leaves, chopped
- (hot sauce - optional)
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Make the salsa by combining the kiwifruit, nectarine, green onion, cilantro, and lime juice in a small bowl and tossing. Set aside.
- Crack the egg into a shallow bowl. Beat lightly and add the cod pieces.
- Add panko, salt, garlic powder, and coriander to a resealable gallon-sized plastic bag. (A bowl works too). Add the cod to the bag, seal, and shake to coat evenly.
- Place the panko-crusted cod on a baking sheet and spray top lightly with the coconut or olive oil. Bake for about 12 minutes, or until starting to brown and cooked through.
- Wrap all corn tortillas in foil and heat in the oven during the last 3-5 minutes of cooking fish. (Alternatively, you can heat them individually on a skillet).
- Serve immediately as fish is best when freshly cooked. Assemble tacos by topping the heated corn tortillas with the shredded lettuce, panko cod, and kiwifruit salsa. (Drizzle with hot sauce if desired.)