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Chili Lime Air Fryer Cod

Air Fryer Chili Lime Cod is a high-protein impressive main dish to enjoy any night of the week! Marinate the fish ahead of time or whip it up on the spot for a quick and easy meal!

Four cod filets in an air fryer freshly air fried and ready to eat.

If you’re looking for easy ways of adding protein to your meals without simultaneously adding a lot of fat or calories, cod is your new best friend!

Inspired by my Chili Lime Baked Cod recipe, this easy air fryer recipe is packed with bright citrus flavors, garlic and sweet mild chili powder. 

I wanted to make cod in the air fryer that boasted generous flavor. We all know cod can taste fairly boring otherwise due to its natural mild flavor.

And that’s exactly what this basic recipe accomplishes. With a handful of straightforward ingredients, this healthy main dish provides a hefty dose of protein while remaining lower in calories and large in flavor.

This highly satiating protein is perfect for weeknight meals and is also a great meal prep recipe for the workweek. 

Plus, it’s an air fryer cod recipe without breading for those who are looking to keep it gluten-free or low-carb.

Let’s discuss the basic ingredients for this easy air fryer cod recipe. You can find them at all grocery stores.

Ingredients for Air Fryer Chili Lime Cod:

Cod Filets: Pick up 1 to 1.5 pounds of cod filets from the grocery store. The fish fillets can be fresh or frozen!

If using frozen fish, be sure to thaw the fish completely before proceeding with this recipe. I buy frozen wild-caught cod that comes pre-portioned into 4 ounce filets.

You can use any fresh fish. White fish like tilapia or halibut works great. 

Avocado Oil: Used to add fat and flavor to the fish and also to protect it during the air frying process, we need a high-temperature cooking oil. I prefer using avocado oil over olive oil because it has a higher smoke point. 

Lime Zest and Lime Juice: Fresh lime juice and lime zest get added to the marinade for a fresh burst of citrus flavor. You can replace them with fresh lemon juice and lemon zest if you prefer.

Fresh Garlic: A few cloves of fresh garlic brings a boost of flavor to the otherwise neutral flavor of the fish.

Chili Powder: A mild chili powder gets mixed into the marinade to add a festive pop of flavor. Chili powder is a combination of paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and ground cumin.

Most store-bought chili powders are mild so you shouldn’t need to make adjustments to the recipe if you don’t like spicy food. For spicy fish, add cayenne pepper.

Dried Oregano: the sweet herby flavor of dried oregano brings a certain vibrance that we all love about herbs.

Sea Salt and Black Pepper: Season the fish with sea salt and black pepper to your personal taste. If you enjoy lemon pepper seasoning, feel free to apply it here. 

Cod on a blue plate with green beans and cauliflower rice and slices of limes.

Now that we’ve covered the simple ingredients for this basic air fryer cod recipe, let’s make it!

How to Make Chili Lime Air Fryer Cod:

Remove the cod from its packaging and place it on a plate or cutting board. Pat off any excess moisture using a paper towel. Note: be sure the filets are completely thawed to ensure the fish cooks evenly.

Stir together all of the ingredients for the marinade in a measuring cup or a mixing bowl until well combined.

Chili lime marinade mixed up in a measuring cup for any type of seafood or chicken.

Place cod filets in a zip lock bag (or sealable container) and pour in the marinade. Seal the bag (or container) and move it around until everything is well-coated in marinade.

Cod in chili lime marinade inside of a zip lock bag.

Refrigerate at least 30 minutes, up to 10 hours.

When you’re ready to cook the cod, preheat the air fryer to 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 5 minutes. Spray the basket of air fryer with cooking spray for easy removal.

Transfer the marinated cod filets to the air fryer basket in a single layer and cook for 8-12 minutes (depending on the thickness of the filets), or until the fish reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees F.

Marinated cod in an air fryer, ready to air fry.

For a golden-brown crisp, you may want to cook the filets longer, until they reach your preferred level of crispiness.

The exact cooking time depends on the size, thickness, and temperature of the fish fillets going into the air fryer. Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the fish to check the internal temperature for the best results. 

Serve cod with a lemon slice and your choice of side dishes, such as steamed rice, cauliflower rice, Air Fryer Green Beans or Air Fryer Asparagus.

Store leftover cod in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days. 

How Long Does Cod Take in Air Fryer?:

At 400 degrees F, cod takes about 8 to 12 minutes in the air fryer. The FDA considers cod to be fully cooked once it has reached an internal temperature of 14 degrees F. To be safe, it is best to check the internal temperature using a digital thermometer.

The exact time it takes to cook cod in the air fryer depends on four factors: The size of the filet, the thickness of the fillet, whether or not the air fryer is preheated, and the temperature of the fish going into the air fryer.

Thin room temperature filets require less time in a preheated air fryer than thicker filets that have been sitting in the refrigerator. 

What is The Best Air Fryer Temp for Fish?:

In general, 400 degrees is the perfect temperature for all types of fish in the air fryer. This temperature results in crispy fish on the outside and tender fish on the inside, so you end up with the perfect texture.

If you’re looking for a very crispy cod recipe, I recommend using Panko breadcrumbs to coat the outside of the fish. This crispy coating mimics the deep fried experience without the need for excess oil. 

This healthy dinner is one of the best ways to enjoy fish on busy weeknights when you’re looking for a quick meal without a lot of effort.

This simple air fryer fish recipe can be your base recipe for all your air fryer fish adventures. Apply it to your favorite type of fish any night of the week.

​While this chili lime air fryer cod recipe doesn’t come out miraculously crispy, the light fish turns out nice and flaky.

Chili lime cod on a plate with cauliflower rice and green beans.

This healthy air fryer cod recipe requires zero deep frying or breading, which is an ideal method for cooking fish when you’re looking for something simple and nutritious without any excess. 

Any time you’re seeking air fryer fish recipes without breading, this no breading air fryer cod recipe is here to please!

If you love cooking in the air fryer, also try these healthy air fryer recipes.

More Healthy Air Fryer Recipes:

A little lime in the cod filet!

Four cod filets in an air fryer freshly air fried and ready to eat.
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4.67 from 3 votes

Chili Lime Air Fryer Cod

An easy air fryer cod recipe featuring citrus sweet chili flavors. A simple high-protein main dish that's perfect for weeknight meals.
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time8 minutes
Marination Time30 minutes
Course: Main Dishes, Seafood Main Dishes
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4 Servings
Calories: 252kcal
Author: Julia

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 1.5 lbs cod cut into 4 individual filets
  • ¼ cup avocado oil
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • 2 Tbsp lime juice
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp sea salt to taste
  • ¼ tsp black pepper

Instructions

  • Remove the cod from its packaging and place it on a plate or cutting board. Pat off any excess moisture using paper towels. Note: be sure the filets are completely thawed to ensure the fish cooks evenly.
  • Stir together all of the ingredients for the marinade in a measuring cup or a mixing bowl until well combined.
  • Place cod filets in a zip lock bag (or sealable container) and pour in the marinade. Seal the bag (or container) and move it around until everything is well-coated in marinade.
  • Refrigerate at least 30 minutes, up to 10 hours.
  • When you’re ready to cook the cod, preheat the air fryer to 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 5 minutes.
  • Transfer the marinated cod filets to the basket of the air fryer and cook for 8-12 minutes (depending on the thickness of the filets), or until the fish reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees F. For a golden-brown crisp, you may want to cook the filets longer, until they reach your preferred level of crispiness.

Nutrition

Serving: 6ounce filet | Calories: 252kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 100mg | Sodium: 1087mg | Fiber: 1g

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