Veracruz Style Fish

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Do you want full-flavored, delicious dinner on the table in under 30 minutes? Maybe even for Lent? Then this Veracruz style fish recipe is for you.

It is full of aromatic favorites like onion and garlic, spices like oregano and cumin and a basic can of crushed tomatoes. What makes this sauce special are the briney capers and olives. And the fish? Any firm white fish, like cod, tilapia or halibut, but you can also use large shrimp. Strictly vegan or curious to try something else?…then sauté strips of mushrooms and cactus for a delicious surprise. 

Start this meal by making plain white rice so that by the time it is done, you’re ready to serve the fish with that delicious briney-tomato sauce.

Yield: 4

Veracruz Style Fish

Veracruz Style Fish
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 17 minutes
Total Time 27 minutes


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, finely chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 1 jalapeño, finely chopped (seeds optional)
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1/2 cup sliced green olives
  • 2 tablespoons capers
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes (15 ounce can)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 cod fish fillets
  • salt, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste


  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once it is hot, sauté the onions and jalapenos 3 minutes.
  2. Add garlic, oregano, cumin and chili powder and cook 1 minute, stirring constantly to prevent the garlic from burning.
  3. Add cherry tomatoes, olives and capers and sauté 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Carefully pour in the crushed tomato sauce and add the bay leaves. Stir to combine. Allow it to cook until it simmers, about 3 minutes.
  5. Taste your sauce for salt. Season your fish with salt (if needed) and pepper. Nestle the fish in the tomato sauce, spooning sauce over the fish. Cover and cook just until the fish is cooked through, about 7 minutes. Remove the bay leaves and serve hot over plain white rice.


Substitute the fish for large shrimp or make it vegetarian by adding strips of sautéed Portobello mushrooms and nopales.


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1 Comment

  1. I have made this recipe three times in one week and I have never tried this recipe before! Everyone loves it. Thank you for sharing this recipe.

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