GF Pepita and Herb Crusted Tilapia

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Mother Nature has some attachment issues to winter but I think spring has finally sprung here in the Midwest. The temp usually likes to linger in the mid 50’s around March/April but this weekend we finally hit, and surprisingly stayed, in the 70’s and I could not be more excited. I say this at the start of every new season, but I really do adore spring. The colors, the freshness, the changing menus and wardrobe, I love it all.

Last week I had my first appointment with a naturopath and in an effort to sort out a few health issues, we agreed that it was best for me to cut out most gluten and grains. I’ve done two rounds of Whole30 so this wasn’t really startling or scary for me to do. Luckily I had a few recipes up my sleeve that I was more than ready to adjust to fit my new lifestyle.

To make the crust for this tilapia, all I did was grind up some pepitas and Simple Mills crackers, tossed in some parsley and seasonings, added some garlic, then threw it on the fish before I popped it in the oven and finally topped it off with some parmesan because why not. This tilapia is not only easy and quick to make, but the pumpkin seeds help to give the dish an extra nutritional boost.

Let’s break it down:
Pumpkin seeds are a great source of magnesium; just two tablespoons contains a quarter of the daily recommended amount. Responsible for over 300 enzymatic reactions in the body, magnesium is essential for muscle function and aids in the metabolism of food and synthesis of protein and fatty acids. Increasing magnesium intake not only benefits the heart, but can even decrease the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.*

Let’s get into it:

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 400° and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Grind the pumpkin seeds and crackers in a food processor. Pour mixture into a small bowl and add parsley, salt, pepper, and onion powder. Mix and set aside.

Drizzle avocado oil on each tilapia filet and rub to coat both sides, then season with salt and pepper. Add 1/4 tsp. crushed garlic to each tilapia filet then generously top with crumb mixture. Lightly spray the tops of each filet with avocado oil spray.

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Bake for 15 minutes or until cooked through. Once fish is cooked, remove from oven and top each filet with 1/2 tsp. parmesan cheese. Change oven setting to broil and place fish back in oven for 1 minute; keep an eye on it to ensure crust does not burn.

*Source: Medical News Today

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