WSG News Blog

Coconut-crusted Alaskan rockfish tacos recipe

July 7, 2023

By Katalin Plummer, WSG Graduate Science Communications Fellow

We have another #DiscoverWestCoastSeafood recipe for you! This recipe for coconut-crusted Alaskan rockfish tacos, courtesy of Alaska Seafood, really celebrates summertime. The crispy panko coating pairs perfectly with an herby slaw to highlight the rockfish’s sweet and nutty flavor. The recipe also includes a Vietnamese-inspired sweet and sour sauce that you’ll want to put on everything. Happy cooking!

You can also check out the Alaska Seafood website and the rest of the Discover West Coast Seafood Series for more sustainable seafood recipes.


  • Tacos
    • 1 lb wild Alaska rockfish fillets
    • ½ cup flour
    • 2 large eggs
    • 2 tablespoons water
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • ½ teaspoon black pepper
    • ¾ cup panko
    • ¾ cup unsweetened coconut, shredded
    • 1 avocado, cut into 1/2” thick slices
    • 8 (6 to 7 in) flour tortillas
    • 1 lime, sliced into wedges
  • Slaw
    • 1 cup purple cabbage, shredded
    • 1 cup white cabbage, shredded
    • ¼ cup red bell pepper, thinly sliced
    • 2 scallions, thinly sliced on the bias
    • ¼ cup combined Thai basil, cilantro, and mint leaves, roughly torn
  • Nuoc cham (sweet & sour sauce)
    • ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons lime juice
    • ¼ cup sugar
    • ¼ cup fish sauce
    • ¼ cup water
    • 5 garlic cloves, minced
    • 2–4 Thai chilis, thinly sliced (or 1 Tbsp. red chili flakes)


  1. Make the sauce: In a small saucepan, add all ingredients except for minced garlic. Bring to a low boil then simmer on medium low until sugar is dissolved. Stir in garlic; simmer additional one minute. Remove from heat; cool to room temperature.
  2. Cook the fish: Preheat fryer oil to 375°F. Thaw rockfish if frozen. Pat dry with paper towels. Salt and pepper the fish fillets then slice into 2 oz. strips; set aside. Add flour to a wide shallow bowl. Beat eggs with 2 Tbsp water in a separate bowl. Mix panko and coconut flakes and place in a third shallow bowl. Coat each piece of fish in the flour, then the egg mixture and finally the panko and coconut mixture. Set fish on a wire rack that’s placed on a rimmed sheet tray until ready to cook. Gently place fish strips into the oil and fry about 4 minutes or until golden brown.
  3. Assemble tacos: Mix shredded cabbages, red bell pepper, scallion and herbs in a bowl and set aside. Heat flat top or cast iron skillet on high temp. Heat tortillas for about 15 seconds per side. Place one strip of fish on each tortilla. Top with cabbage, bell pepper, scallions and herb mixture, and slice of avocado. Serve with nuoc cham sauce on the side or drizzle on top just before serving. Serve with lime wedges.


Washington Sea Grant, based at the University of Washington, helps people and marine life thrive through research, technical expertise and education supporting the responsible use and conservation of coastal ecosystems. The National Sea Grant College Program is part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce.

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