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Hoover City's Baked Lemon Pepper Tilapia

Recipes Across the Nation!

Susan Wood, our Alliance Healthy Schools Program Ambassador from Hoover City Schools, Hoover, AL, brings us her school district’s “Baked Lemon Pepper Tilapia” dish. Jackie Davis, Program Specialist in Hoover City, said the following about this popular dish: "Students at Spain Park High School in Hoover, Alabama line out the door when tilapia is on the menu. Due to the tremendous acceptance from students we added this to the menu once a week. The first time Baked Lemon Pepper Tilapia was served, by the time our third lunch wave came through it was all over the school that the cafeteria was serving tilapia and students were so excited. Response from one of our senior students was, ‘I can't believe we are becoming a gourmet restaurant!’"


CCP: Heat to 145° F or higher for 3 minutes.

  1. Thaw fish in cooler before preparing.
  2. Coat baking sheet pan with cooking spray.
  3. Place 20 thawed fillets into full size sheet pan
  4. Melt margarine
  5. Mix melted margarine with lemon juice and seasonings
  6. Brush generously on each piece of fish
  7. Bake at 375 degrees for approximately 12-15 minutes until fish flakes easily with a fork when tested at the thickest part and internal temperature reaches 145 degrees.

CCP: Hold for hot service at 135° F or higher.


NOTE: Make sure tilapia is thawed completely before prep. If you place on sheet pans to thaw then pour water off before you brush with seasonings to bake.

Additional Serving Suggestions

  • Transfer cooked fillets to hotel pans and place on steamtable.
  • Garnish with slivers of lemon and parsley leaves.


1 fillet = 2 M/MA

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Makes 20 (3-5oz) servings

  • 20 (3-5oz portion) raw tilapia fish
  • 8oz margarine
  • 1 TSP salt
  • 2 TBSP paprika
  • ¼ cup lemon juice, canned or bottled
  • 1 TBSP Italian seasoning mix