So, you’ve committed to giving up or reducing your meat intake for the season of Lent. Rather than looking at this as losing tasty protein options, consider it an opportunity to gain creative new recipes!
Going meat-free for lunch doesn’t have to be a chore, and it certainly doesn’t have to boring. Making pescetarian lunches that are convenient, healthy and fit for the whole family is easier than you think.
Blackened Tilapia Taco Bowls
If you’re looking for a dish that’s light but also filling, this is it. These protein-rich Tilapia taco bowls are full of spices, including paprika, cumin, cayenne pepper and chilli powder. And don’t worry if your palate isn’t overly fond of spicy foods—the lime, cilantro and fresh avocado cool it down wonderfully. And while the Tilapia offers a decent serving of protein, this dish also incorporates protein-dense, vitamin-rich black beans.
Some assembly is required for these gems, but every ingredient complements the others so well, it’s worth it.
Try the recipe: Blackened Tilapia Taco Bowls from The Chunky Chef.
Pan-Fried Tilapia Sandwich
A pan-fried Tilapia sandwich is the perfect go-to work lunch, as you can cook it the night before. The Tilapia fillets are loaded with protein (a whopping 21 grams per four ounce serving) and contain few carbs, calories or unhealthy fats. In other words, Tilapia will fill you up without overloading you with too much of the bad stuff.
Try the recipe:Pan Fried Tilapia Sandwich from allrecipes.
Broiled Tilapia Gyros
We all know how healthy a Mediterranean diet is, so try cooking up these juicy Tilapia gyros for a unique lunchtime treat. This broiled Tilapia gyros recipe not only includes the health perk of protein-filled Tilapia, they’re also complemented by a hefty serving of vegetables, heart-healthy avocado and a fresh, Greek yogurt-based tzaziki sauce.
Convenience is key for broiled gyros, as they require no utensils or—in this case—no reheating. So cook ‘em up and pack ‘em for lunch—we guarantee the kids will love them too!
Try the recipe: Broiled Tilapia Gyros from My Recipes.
Israeli-Style Fish Cakes
If you want to have a hands-on experience during your lunch break, give these tasty and surprisingly simple fish cakes a whirl. These bite-sized Middle Eastern marvels are packed with flavor and don’t taste overly ‘fishy’ due to the mildness of the Tilapia. The pine nuts add a wonderful nutty texture, as well as a hefty dose of nutrients. In fact, pine nuts are known to boost energy, reduce the risk of heart disease and help to suppress your hunger—which is ideal when you’re trying to fight those mid-afternoon snacking urges.
These fish cakes are great on their own or served in a bun like a burger, and pair perfectly with a tahini dipping sauce, aioli or sriracha, or even ketchup for the kiddies.
Try the recipe: Israeli-Style Fish Cakes from Tori Avey.
If you’re looking to avoid meat for all 40 days of Lent, be sure to incorporate some of these recipes into your diet to make the transition a little easier. Who knows—you might find that you don’t end up missing it at all.
For more fish-forward motivation, check out or list of 7 30-Minute Meals for Your Busy Work Week.