We tried these Gorton’s Premium Tilapia Fish Fillets several times through the years, and found the breaded crust to be mildly spicy and quite tasty. The tilapia fish itself however, tastes significantly “fishier” than the haddock and pollack I’m used to in the Mrs. Paul’s fillets. But enough hot sauce, and that taste becomes sufficiently neutralized. It’s not bad really. I might be able to get used to it if I was to eat a few more boxes of these. To be fair, I’ll hold out on making any strongly negative judgements until I’ve had sufficient time to acquire a taste for these fillets, just as I had to acquire it for green tea and beer. Indeed, I welcome the change, as I’d been eating the breaded haddock fillets for decades. So with that said, here are my detailed thoughts on this (tentatively) delicious supper-time seafood delicacy:
Benefits, Pros, Advantages, and Features
- The box can be re closed with built-in tabs that fit into slots on the top flap.
- These fish fillets (at least the fish part anyhow, and not the breading) are a premium grade of tilapia without fillers. Tilapia is a stronger-tasting and full-bodied fish. Yet in spite of its sharper taste, it accepts flavoring spices well, and does not dominate the entire course.
- They hand-select and trim the cuts of tilapia fish for leanness and mild flavor.
- This product keeps well in the freezer; at least for the month or so that I kept it. The best-if-used-by date is a year and a half out. Surprising, given the absence of a locking freshness bag.
- The breading on these breaded fish fillets absorb lots of Frank’s hot sauce; my favorite topping to drizzle over them.
- I follow the twenty-eight to thirty minutes in the oven at 425 degrees instructions on the box. This always yields very hot, quite crunchy, and golden brown fish fillets.
- While baking, the fish fillets give off a mouth-watering aroma, so that when they’re finally ready to eat, I’m really anxious to devour them. This aromatic preamble makes actually eating them even more of a delectable treat.
Disadvantages, Cons, Problems, and Concerns
- I do not like the long list of flavoring and preservative chemicals found in this product.
- These breaded, premium fish fillets from Gorton’s have a pleasant but somewhat-fishy flavor. I think I could adapt however.
- At initial opening, the box seemed fragile, and I feared that I’d tear the top flap in half. It should more resemble cardboard than paper.
- Also, I found no resealable plastic bag inside. They just threw the fillets into the box, which is by no means air-tight. Without a bag, freezer life of this product would be limited. Give us a bag, will ya?
- Each serving (two small fillets) has 250 calories. Yet I must eat three or four servings to really feel full and fulfilled. The breading no doubt add lots of extra calories.
- Gorton’s makes the breading from enriched flour. I’d prefer that they use all whole grains in their seasoned coatings.The flour they apply appears to be bleached, though it does not say bleached on the box.
- These fillets are a bit high on the saturated fat content (5 grams per serving). I’d rather eat things with no saturated fat. But that’s probably more than offset by the omega-3s also contained within.
- They also have added sugar and preservatives. So these fish fillets definitely qualify as one of those “dreaded” processed dishes.
- There’s no indication on the box that this fish has been tested for mercury. That would be reassuring, given the concern these days over heavy metals in the food supply. But I’ve eaten these for so long now without discernible ill effects, that I’m not really worried about mercury in my fish.
- These frozen fish fillets do not heat up well in the microwave. In fact, the box does not recommend microwave preparation. But an ability to “nuke” them would shorten preparation time significantly.
The package says to keep this product frozen until you’re ready to cook it. Microwave oven preparation is not recommended. Also, remember that fully-cooked fish must have reached a temperature of 165 degrees F or higher.
Then, for the conventional oven, these are my own variation on the package instructions:
- Place oven rack on the middle rung of the oven.
- Set oven temperature to 425 degrees.
- Line a shallow metal baking pan with aluminum foil. This minimizes the hard-to-clean mess that baking can sometimes leave in a pan.
- While the oven heats, place the number of fillets you wish to prepare into this shallow, metal baking pan. But leave an inch or two of space between each fillet.
- When the oven reaches the desired temperature, put the lined pan, uncovered with the tilapia fillets on the middle rack in the oven, and let bake.
- Turn fillets over after 12 minutes.
- After 20 to 24 minutes total baking time, or until the bread coating is crunchy and golden brown, remove the pan.
- Allow the sizzling to stop, and then serve immediately, while still piping hot.
Tilapia, vegetable oil (soybean and / or cottonseed), enriched bleached wheat flour (flour, niacin, iron, thiamin, mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), water. Contains less than 2% of: yellow corn flour, yeast, salt, caramel color, colored with paprika, annatto, and turmeric extracts, citric acid, ascorbic acid, carageenan, modified corn starch, sugar, whey powder (baking soda, sodium aluminum phosphate), corn syrup solids, hydroxipropyl methylcellulose, garlic powder, dextrose, lemon juice solids, guar gum, monosodium glutamate, natural flavoring, spices, tocopherols (to protect flavor). Contains: Tilapia, wheat, milk.
- Serving size: 1 fillet, 113 grams. Servings per container: Approx. 4.5.
- Amount per serving: Calories: 250. Calories from fat: 110.
- Total fat: 12 grams, 18% DV.
- Saturated fat: 3.5 grams, 18% DV.
- Trans fat: 0 grams.
- Cholesterol: 25 milligrams, 8% DV.
- Sodium: 480 milligrams, 20% DV.
- Potassium: 270 milligrams, 8% DV.
- Total carbohydrate: 23 grams, 8% DV.
- Dietary fiber: 1 gram, 4% DV.
- Sugars: 1 gram.
- Protein: 12 grams, 24% DV.
- Calcium: 2% DV.
- Iron: 4% DV.
Though they could be better if prepared with less flour and sugar, they’re good eating nonetheless so long as you don’t gorge on them too often. Over all, I truly love the flavor of Gorton’s Breaded Tilapia Fillets. They cost a reasonably small amount, are pretty easy to prepare, taste delicious, and are on the whole quite good for you. So I’d highly recommend them to anyone who is hungry for the taste of decent fish. If you’re a fish lover as I am, you be quite pleased with the meals in which you serve these Gorton’s Tilapia Breaded Fish Fillets. I’d rate them at 89 out of 100.
Where To Buy Gorton’s Premium Tilapia Fish Fillets
We bought ours at Walmart, but have seen them at many grocery stores big and small. However, you’ll likely not find this product in very small grocery stores or convenience shops. Look for this in the bright yellow box that has the picture of the breaded tilapia fillets pictured, very large, on the front.
- Gorton’s Seafood Website
- Tilapia Fish on Wikipedia
- Where to Buy Gorton’s Premium Tilapia Fish Fillets
- : Moved this post to the Tom’s Diet Quest blog, added whitespace, adjusted ad placement, and tweaked the content.
- 2012-05-09: Originally published.