Paksiw Na Tilapia Recipe

IMAGE Patrick Martires | Styling by Lady Badoy

Say "paksiw" and the first thing that normally comes to mind is a fish dish in a tangy broth or paksiw na isda recipe. What kind of fish is up for debate since in a country surrounded by seas and an ocean, seafood options such as fish can be as diverse as there are fish in the sea. For this recipe, we use the humble tilapia

This paksiw na isda recipe version is one of six recipes that we are featuring as one of your favorite karinderya recipes you love to eat. As one of Yummy's October digital cover recipes, this karinderya dish is sure to satisfy your love for all things food on Yummy.

What Is Paksiw Na Tilapia 

A paksiw is a simple dish made by simmering a dish in vinegar with spices. This sour, soupy Filipino food it similar to an adobo recipe but without the usual soy sauce. It's commonly known to be a fish dish using bangus but you're not limited to just that one fish! We use the tilapia in this recipe which is simmered in a seasoned vinegar broth that is delicious paired with lots of rice. 


How To Serve Paksiw Na Tilapia 

This is yet another Pinoy ulam recipe that is best served with lots of rice. The tangy broth is poured over the rice which is then scooped up with some of the fish for that perfect spoonful. 

How to Make Paksiw Na Tilapia 

This paksiw na isda recipe is made more affordable using tilapia.
Photo by Patrick Martires | Styling by Lady Badoy
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There are numerous variations of this dish such as lechon paksiwpaksiw na bangus (milkfish), and paksiw na pata (pork leg). However, the most common way of cooking a paksiw is with fish. This version is cooked in vinegar, garlic, black peppercorns, red onions, and salt in order to make a delicious yet still tangy broth. You just have to remember to cook the vinegar properly until the sharpness has been cooked out before serving for the best results.

In this recipe, we also use tilapia which is one of the most affordable fish in the palengke beating galunggong and even bangus prices per kilo. So, if you're on a budget, using tilapia is a great option for all your fish recipe ideas for the week. 

Tips to Make Delicious Paksiw Na Tilapia 

The most important tip that you need to know is to cook the vinegar properly. The tartness from the vinegar is addictive and delicious if the sharpness from it has evaporated, leaving you with a dish that's both tangy and savory. 


Are you worried about the lansa or the fishiness of the fish? One way to avoid this is to ensure you always get the freshest fish from the palengke with these tips: 

When choosing fresh fish, keep an eye out for these tell-tale signs: 

  • • Fish eyes are bulging and clear, not cloudy or red.
  • • The scales adhere tightly to the skin of the fish.
  • • If the fish has slime, it should be clear.
  • • The flesh springs back to its original shape when you press the body with your thumb.

You can certainly fry the tilapia first before adding it to the pot and this is a unique way of ensuring that you both have a great flavor as well as eliminating that fishy taste. 

How To Store Paksiw na Tilapia 

Did you know that cooking in vinegar actually preserves food? Just like adobo, paksiw is another method of food preservation using vinegar back before refrigerators were non-existent. However, fish is more prone to spoilage faster than other kinds of meat such as pork, beef, or chicken.


To more safely preserve your paksiw, simmer it well for at least five minutes before placing in an air-tight container, and storing in the refrigerator. The combination of heat to kill bacteria, the air-tight container to limit external bacteria, and the cold of the refrigerator will help your paksiw na tilapia last until the next day or even the next. 

Paksiw Na Tilapia Recipe

Prep Time
15 mins 
Cooking Time
30 mins 
Ready In
45 mins 
Cooking Method

Paksiw Na Tilapia Ingredients

How to make Paksiw Na Tilapia


Thinking about what to cook next? Join our Facebook group, Yummy Pinoy Cooking Club, to get more recipe ideas, share your own dishes, and find out what the rest of the community are making and eating!

Got your own version of the classic dishes? Pa-share naman! Get your recipe published on by submitting your recipe here.

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