Also known as:

Bream, mouthbrooder, St. Peter's fish, Nile perch, Hawaiian sun fish, mudfish, ngege (Africa), Mozambique tilapia, blue tilapia, wami tilapia.


Waters:Fresh waters of Asia and Africa fish farms in North and South America.

Similar in shape to sunfish and variously colored (pale red, white, gray, or gray-blue) can range in size from 1 to 5 lbs.

Tilapia has white or pinkish flesh that's firm, low in fat, sweet and mild in flavor. The tender skin is edible.

Best Cooking:

Tilapia can be baked, broiled, grilled, or steamed.

Buying Tips:

In the U.S., all tilapia is farm-raised and of lesser quality than the wild variety harvested in Asia and Africa. Tilapia is often marketed as a lower-priced substitute for red snapper, although its meat is not nearly as prized.

Nutrition Value:

Tilapia, 3.5 oz (99 grams), raw
Calories: 98
Protein: 18.5g
Carbohydrate: 0.0g
Total Fat: 2.4g
Fiber: 0.0g

Substitutes for Tilapia:

Porgy, sea bass, red snapper, flounder, sole, orange roughy, and ocean perch.


For ages, tilapia has served as an important staple food in Asia and Africa. The fish was introduced to U.S. waters in the late 1960s to minimize algae build-up (tilapia feeds on the plantlike organism).

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