Halibut Karista's Kitchen Kid Friendly Salmon Seafood Shrimp

Grilled Salmon Tacos with Chipotle Lime Crema and Fresh Cilantro Slaw

Grilled Salmon Tacos with Chipotle Lime Crema and Cilantro Slaw

I wish I could tell you this is a new recipe.  It’s not.  Actually it’s a revision, maybe adaption is a better word.  Most likely due to changes in my palate as well as changes in my culinary style.   I’ve been making assorted fish tacos for years.  Assembling the little lovelies differently each time.  Allowing my playful culinary visions to shine through.   I posted the original recipe way back in 2010, when I used my little point and shoot Canon to take food photos.  A hearty little silver blue camera that did the job for a while.

But then I started getting fussy about my food pictures.  I read somewhere that chef’s are the worst food photographers.  At first glance I took offense to that statement.  But it couldn’t have been more true, especially way back in the day when I started this website.  For me, It’s always been about the food.  The explosion of flavor that happens when something delectable hits the palate.  But somewhere in the mix, I realized a great photo was a true representation of my masterpiece.  And it should look as good as the food tastes.  Not to mention, the old photo made me cringe.  Literally, it kept me up at night.

This is a lovely dish that certainly deserves a lovely photo.  And it’s a lovely dish that can be prepared so many different ways.  Grilled or Roasted Salmon (or any fresh fish you have on hand), spicy or sweet crema, spicy or sweet slaw, with our without pineapple and/or mango.  And if you love avocado as much as I do, toss a slice on top of your taco to complete this lush recipe.

I’ve included some fun options for these tacos in the recipe below.  Different ideas to season, additional options for the slaw and the crema… or as my family likes to say “the sauce”.

Delicious Wishes and Loads of Love,


Grilled Salmon Tacos with Chipotle Lime Crema and Fresh Cilantro Slaw

Serves 4


For the Salmon

1 1/2 lbs fresh salmon filets

Olive oil

½  teaspoon chili powder

½ teaspoon ground cumin

½ teaspoon smoked paprika

½ teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

Options:  Instead of using my fish spice mixture, feel free to use your favorite spicy fish taco seasoning or Emerils Essence Seasoning also makes a delish option for these tacos. 

For the Chipotle Lime Crema

½ teaspoon chipotle chili powder (you may want to begin with 1/4 teaspoon, taste, and then add more if you like)

1 cup crème Fraiche or sour cream

zest of 1 lime

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

1 teaspoon sugar

Options: substitute mayonnaise for the sour cream and Sriracha or hot sauce for the chipotle chili powder. 

For the Cilantro Slaw

2 cups shredded fresh cabbage

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

½ cup mayonnaise

2  tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

Salt and fresh cracked black pepper

Options:  add diced fresh pineapple, mango or papaya to the slaw. If you don’t like cilantro, substitute with sliced green onions.


Your favorite salsa or pico de gallo

8 – 10 corn tortillas, steamed or warmed (I either warm them over my grill, gas stove top or in the microwave.

Fresh sliced Avocado (optional)

Lime wedges


Heat the grill to 400F. Brush the grill racks with oil.

Mix together the chili powder, cumin, oregano, paprika, salt and pepper.  Rub the salmon with oil and then sprinkle liberally with the spice mixture.

When the grill is hot, place the salmon flesh side down on the grill. Let the salmon sear and cook for about 4 minutes, and then carefully flip the fish with a wide spatula and grill another 4 minutes, or a little longer for salmon that is cooked through.  If the salmon doesn’t want to flip, it’s probably not ready.  Just let it sit for another minute or two, turning the heat down if needed.  Rule of thumb: fish should cook 10 minutes for every inch of thickness.

Transfer the cooked salmon to a platter to cool.

While the salmon is cooling, whisk together the creme fraiche, chipotle chili powder, lime zest, lime juice and sugar. Season to taste with salt and fresh cracked black pepper. Set aside.

Wisk together the mayonnaise, sugar, cider vinegar and season to taste with salt and pepper.  Toss the dressing with the shredded cabbage and cilantro.

Flake the grilled salmon, removing any bones. Fill the steamed tortillas with the grilled salmon, top with chipotle lime crema, your favorite salsa or pico de gallo, and the shredded cabbage with cilantro. Serve with lime wedges and fresh avocado slices. Enjoy!



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  • Reply
    July 31, 2014 at 12:51 pm

    Well, you certainly are proof that fantastic chefs CAN take gorgeous photographs! The lighting is beautiful!

    We do the same thing with fish tacos…they are little experiments each time with new ingredients or with a different fish. Salmon is my very most favorite fish and I can’t wait to make these! That crema sounds incredible and I bet it goes so well with the crunch of that slaw!

    • Reply
      July 31, 2014 at 2:04 pm

      Lol! Thank you so much Caroline! It has been a very slow learning curve I might add. I’ve gone to every class I could find, watched dozens of videos and read every book I could get my hands on. I have so much more to learn and the perfectionist part of my nature is chomping at the bit to master food photography. It’s been a fun journey though.

      I love your description “little experiments”. So true! 🙂

  • Reply
    The Attainable Gourmet
    July 31, 2014 at 7:07 pm

    Oh darling…how I’ve missed reading your blog.

    This is going top of the list for my next girl’s dinner.

    Miss you lots!


    • Reply
      August 1, 2014 at 10:49 am

      Thank you Erina! Enjoy the tacos, they’ll make a fun dinner for your girls night… Along with a few cocktails of course. 🙂

  • Reply
    August 1, 2014 at 12:16 am

    You do take glorious pics, Karista – and this dish seems like the perfect solution for summer!

    • Reply
      August 1, 2014 at 10:50 am

      Well thank you for the kind compliment Nick. I have so much more to learn, but it’s a fun ride! We LOVE our salmon here in the Pacific Northwest and tacos seem like the perfect way to enjoy it. 🙂 Happy Summer!

  • Reply
    August 1, 2014 at 6:35 am

    Very much agree with you regarding food photography, Karista! Makes such a difference/has made such a difference for me, as well.

    These are a wonderful, fresh new take on a favorite!

    • Reply
      August 1, 2014 at 10:54 am

      Yes it does make a difference Ksenia. Especially lighting. I’ll always remember the day I figured out I needed to turn off my overhead lights and let the natural light do it’s thing. Lol!

  • Reply
    August 1, 2014 at 2:55 pm

    Thank you Karista – they look so delicious and I am making them tonight 🙂 I will add some local prawns as well 😉

    • Reply
      August 7, 2014 at 6:31 pm

      You are so welcome Anne! Hope you enjoyed 🙂 The prawns sound divine!

  • Reply
    Carol at Wild Goose Tea
    August 1, 2014 at 6:20 pm

    I love fish tacos. Bu I am moderately judgmental. I eat them all of course. I am not THAT judgmental. The sauce, the use of salmon, the slaw combo, I can tell this is fab. Who cares if its a new recipe. It’s tried and true. Those are often the best ones!

    • Reply
      August 7, 2014 at 6:30 pm

      Thanks Carol! I think I could eat just about any kind of taco myself. 🙂 Have a fabulous Friday and weekend!

  • Reply
    Lilly Sue
    August 3, 2014 at 11:07 am

    Yum! I absolutely love fish tacos! I love making a cilantro slaw as well but have not done the crema- going to have to try that next time!

    • Reply
      August 7, 2014 at 6:29 pm

      Thanks Lilly Sue! I could sip the crema! Lol! Hope you’re doing well 🙂 Thank you for stopping by.

  • Reply
    Bam's Kitchen (@bamskitchen)
    August 4, 2014 at 1:08 am

    Karista, this is a beautiful version of fish tacos and yes it is always about the sauce! Chipotle lime creme sounds dreamy. You are the sauce guru! I know exactly what you mean about looking at our old photographs when we first starting blogging. I don’t think your photographs were bad it is just that your photography is just gorgeous now. Take care, BAM

    • Reply
      August 7, 2014 at 6:28 pm

      Bam you are way too kind! Thank you for the sweet compliment but there are moments I do cringe when looking at my old photos. Lol! Wishing you a fabulous Friday and weekend!!

  • Reply
    Judy (@Imbored-letsgo)
    August 23, 2014 at 6:03 pm

    Yum! These sound so good. I love fish tacos. Your photography is BEAUTIFUL!

    • Reply
      August 25, 2014 at 3:24 pm

      Thank you so much Judy! I’ve had quite the learning curve (sometimes painful!) when it comes to food photography Lol! Sadly, there were no photography classes in culinary school. 🙁 We too adore fish tacos and probably have some sort of taco dinner each week. Thank you so much for stopping by!

  • Reply
    January 27, 2015 at 9:15 am

    This recipe looks delicious! About how much pineapple do you suggest adding to the slaw? Thanks!

    • Reply
      January 27, 2015 at 10:19 am

      Kim, I like about 1/2 cup of diced pineapple. Maybe a little extra for garnish. 🙂

      • Reply
        January 27, 2015 at 10:31 am


        • Reply
          January 27, 2015 at 11:19 am

          Sometimes I don’t mix it into the slaw and just use it as a topping on the salmon… but that’s because Ranger Craig isn’t crazy about pineapple. Lol!

  • Reply
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