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Best Spicy Cajun Pan Seared Snapper Recipe

This super quick and easy Spicy Cajun Pan Seared Snapper recipe with a cool and creamy mango-avocado salsa uses all fresh ingredients and takes less than 30 minutes to prepare. It’s a delicious and healthy dinner the whole family will love.

Best Spicy Cajun Pan Seared Snapper Recipe

Spicy Cajun Red Snapper Recipe

Pan seared Cajun salmon is one of the easiest and quickest dinner recipes you can make. The thing that makes this dish so spectacular is the fillets are seasoned with a homemade Cajun spice rub, then pan seared until it has a nice golden crust. For the most delicious finishing touch, the dish is topped off with a simple homemade avocado-mango salsa! It’s fancy enough for a dinner party but easy enough for a busy weeknight meal.

Fish recipes are always my go-to for when I need last-minute dinner. If you’re looking for other great fish recipes this Pan-Fried Grouper and this Pistachio Crusted Salmon are always a hit. This Pan Seared Mahi Mahi has a unique mediterranean twist to it.

Why We Love this Recipe

  • This is a super easy recipe that uses really fresh ingredients. It’s perfect for those times when you want a satisfying meal but you’re short on time.
  • The sweet and creamy mango-avocado salsa provides a nice balance to the heat of this spicy pan-seared Cajun snapper.
  • Red snapper is a packed with many nutrients and minerals associated with numerous health benefits that you can read more about in this article.

What’s Needed for This Spicy Cajun Red Snapper Recipe

red snapper seasoned and ready to be seared

For the Fish

  • Red snapper fillets
  • Extra virgin olive oil

For Spicy Cajun Seasoning:

  • Paprika
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Cayenne pepper (to taste)
  • Dried thyme
  • Dried oregano
  • Sea salt (or kosher salt)
  • Ground black pepper
chopped avocado, red onion, garlic, jalapeno, mango and lime for salsa on cutting board

For the Salsa:

  • Mango 
  • Avocado
  • Red onions 
  • Jalapeño pepper
  • Garlic clove
  • Cilantro
  • Fresh lime juice 

Substitutions and Additions

  • Fresh fish: If you can’t find fresh red fish, you can use grouper, seabass, cod or any mild white fish you like. 
  • Seasonings: If you’re not a Cajun fan, you can use blackening seasoning, lemon pepper or any seasoning that can handle direct heat cooking.
  • Salsa ingredients: It’s super easy to put your own spin on the salsa. You can add diced bell pepper or jalapeno pepper and for added creaminess you can add a little goat cheese. You can also add other herbs like fresh parsley or fresh basil. 
  • Optional sauces: If you want to add additional sauce to the snapper, you can use a lemon butter sauce with butter, fresh herbs and some lemon zest. A homemade balsamic reduction is also great drizzled over the top of this fish. Of if you want something super simple, you can make a pan sauce by deglazing the pan with a little white wine, butter and a little lemon juice. 
cajun fried fish with salsa on serving platter

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How To Make Cajun Snapper with Avocado-Mango Salsa

  • Prepare the spice rub: Using a small bowl, combine the ingredients for the spicy Cajun seasoning. Stir to combine and set aside. 
  • Make the salsa: Using a large bowl, combine the mango, avocado, red onion, jalapeño, garlic, and fresh cilantro. Add fresh lime juice and season with salt and black pepper, to taste. Stir to combine and set aside. 
  • Season the fish: Rinse the fish under cold water, then dry any excess moisture off the fillets with paper towels. Place the fish on a clean dry work surface and sprinkle the Spicy Cajun Seasoning on both sides of the fillets. Rub gently to ensure the seasoning is evenly distributed and adheres well. 
red snapper fried in cast iron skillet
  • Cook the redfish fillets: Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat to medium-high heat. Place the seasoned fish fillets into the hot pan and cook until they are nice and golden brown and the fish flakes easily with a fork, approximately 3-5 minutes per side. Cook time will depend on the thickness of the fillets.
  • Serve and enjoy: Transfer fish to a serving platter. Serve immediately with some of the mango-avocado salsa on top. Enjoy!
chopped ingredients for salsa in bowl

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I Leave the Skin on Red Snapper?

I prefer to take the skin off before pan searing because I like to have the seasoning coat both sides. If you want to leave the skin on one side of the fish, you certainly can. Place the seasoned fish in a hot skillet, starting with the flesh side of the fillets. Once it has a nice golden color, flip it, skin side down until it’s done.

Before plating it, remove the skin by using the tip of a sharp knife to get it started on the edge of the fillet. Gently pull it until the skin has been completely removed.

How to I Store Leftovers?

Allow the fish to cool until room temperature then place the leftovers in an airtight container for up to a couple of days. Store the leftover avocado mango salsa separately in a covered small bowl.

What Goes with Snapper?

Snapper is such a versatile main dish that goes with just about anything you’d like to serve with it. You can serve it with Mashed Potatoes or with over a simple bed of rice.

For low carb options, there are many great vegetable recipes, like Oven Roasted Asparagus, Butternut Squash or these Mediterranean Roasted Vegetables are all great choices.

What Does Snapper Taste Like?

Red snapper is a mild tasting white fish that is most often described as having a slightly sweet and subtle nutty flavor. Because if has a much less fishy taste as compared to other types of fish, snapper is a great choice for kids or people that aren’t huge fish lovers.

Want More Healthy Dinner Recipes?

red snapper with cajun seasoning and mango salsa on a white plate with a fork

Spicy Cajun Pan Seared Snapper

Published By Stephanie
This super quick and easy Spicy Cajun Pan Seared Snapper recipe with a cool and creamy mango-avocado salsa uses all fresh ingredients and takes less than 30 minutes to prepare. It's a delicious and healthy dinner the whole family will love.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 8 mins
Total Time 23 mins
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 4 servings
Calories 76 kcal

Equipment

  • Large Cast-Iron Skillet
  • Thin Metal Fish Spatula

Ingredients
  

Fish

  • 4 5 oz Filets red or yellowtail snapper
  • 2 T Extra Virgin Olive Oil divided

Spicy Cajun Seasoning

  • 1 T Paprika
  • 1 t garlic powder
  • 1 t onion powder
  • ½-1 t cayenne pepper to taste
  • ¾ t dried thyme
  • ¾ t dried oregano
  • t sea salt
  • ¾ t ground black pepper

Mango Salsa

  • 1 lg mango peeled and diced
  • 1 lg avocado peeled and diced
  • ½ sm red onion diced
  • ½ med jalapeno pepper seeded and diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 3 T cilantro fresh, finely chopped
  • 3 T fresh lime juice

Instructions
 

  • Using a small bowl, combine the ingredients for the spicy Cajun seasoning. Stir to combine and set aside. 
    dry seasoning for fish in bowl
  • Using a large bowl, combine the mango, avocado, red onion, jalapeño, garlic, and fresh cilantro. Add fresh lime juice and season with salt and black pepper, to taste. Stir to combine and set aside. 
    chopped avocado, red onion, garlic, jalapeno, mango and lime for salsa on cutting board
  • Rinse the fish under cold water, then dry any excess moisture off the fillets with paper towels. Place the fish on a clean dry work surface and sprinkle the Spicy Cajun Seasoning on both sides of the fillets. Rub gently to ensure the seasoning is evenly distributed and adheres well. 
    raw fish on platter with bowl of seasoning beside
  • Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat to medium-high heat. Place the seasoned fish fillets into the hot pan and cook until they are nice and golden brown and the fish flakes easily with a fork, approximately 3-5 minutes per side. Cook time will depend on the thickness of the fillets.
    red snapper fried in cast iron skillet
  • Transfer fish to a serving platter. Serve immediately with some of the mango-avocado salsa on top.
    cajun fried fish with salsa on serving platter

Nutrition

Calories: 76kcalCarbohydrates: 3gProtein: 1gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 875mgPotassium: 62mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 223IUVitamin C: 8mgCalcium: 20mgIron: 1mg
Keyword fish, Quick
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Recipe Rating




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