Quick Easy Fish Stew

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One of our favorite family recipes of all time is this simple and easy fish stew. It takes less than 30 minutes, start to finish, and is absolutely delicious!

The key ingredient to this stew is clam juice, which they sell in shelf stable 8-ounce jars, so we usually keep a couple in our pantry. I have prepared the soup for people with shellfish allergies; the thing to do is to substitute the clam juice with white wine, fish stock, or water. It works, it’s just not quite as tasty.

Quick and Easy Fish Stew

The stew works best with a firm white fish, such as halibut or cod. You could also use red snapper or even tilapia. Just stay away from delicate fish such as sole for this stew, or oily fish such as tuna.

If you want, you can add some shrimp, clams and/or scallops to the stew as well.

One of our favorite recipes for Lent, updated from the recipe archive

Quick Easy Fish Stew Recipe

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  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

For a variation, add 1/2 pound of shrimp, mussels, clams, and/or scallops to the stew. If adding shellfish, add them a couple minutes before the fish; they need more time to cook and open.

Ingredients

  • 6 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 2/3 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups of fresh chopped tomato (about 1 medium sized tomato) OR 1 14-ounce can of whole or crushed tomatoes with their juices
  • 2 teaspoons tomato paste (optional)
  • 8 oz of clam juice (or shellfish stock)
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine (like Sauvignon blanc)
  • 1 1/2 lb fish fillets (use a firm white fish such as halibut, cod, red snapper, or sea bass), cut into 2-inch pieces
  • Pinch of dry oregano
  • Pinch of dry thyme
  • 1/8 teaspoon Tabasco sauce (or more to taste)
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Salt to taste

Method

1 Heat olive oil in a large thick-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté 4 minutes, add the garlic and cook a minute more. Add parsley and stir 2 minutes. Add tomato and tomato paste, and gently cook for 10 minutes or so.

2 Add clam juice, dry white wine, and fish. Bring to a simmer and simmer until the fish is cooked through and easily flakes apart, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add seasoning. Salt to taste. Ladle into bowls and serve.

Great served with crusty bread for dipping in the fish stew broth.

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Showing 4 of 151 Comments

  • Ann Marie

    Made this tonight and it was fabulous! Very tasty and so easy. Will definitely make it again.

  • Al

    I’m cooking for one. Can this be preserved if I make more than one meal worth?

  • Kristy

    I made this recipe for dinner today. It was delicious, the entire family loved it. I used fresh Salmon and completely forgot to add the Tabasco sauce and it was still delicious. I also used tri-color peppers since I don’t like onions. I served it over white rice. I can’t wait to make it again.

  • florence kabot

    Delicious! I will make this again many times. The only ingredient that I don’t always have on hand is the parsley. I can always pick that up at the grocery store in an afternoon and have a wonderful dinner in a short time . Healthy, too! I cooked a chopped potato in water and added it at the end..

  • Matt

    I made this for my wife and me on Friday, following the directions but adding a celery stalk (with its leaves) and using sriracha instead of Tabasco because it’s what I had. I served it in a shallow bowl with a portion of brown rice on top. We both loved it – definitely a keeper and is something I will make again soon! Thanks for the great recipe!

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