Quick Easy Fish Stew

VideoSoup and StewGluten-FreeLow CarbFish and Seafood

Quick, easy, and absolutely delicious fish stew! Fresh fish fillets cooked in a stew with onions, garlic, parsley, tomato, clam juice and white wine.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

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.

How to Make Quick and Easy Fish Stew

Quick Easy Fish Stew Recipe

  • 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 tablespoons extra virgin 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 (oregano, thyme, Tabasco). Add salt and pepper to taste. Ladle into bowls and serve.

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

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Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

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397 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Lori

    I made this recipe. Added potatoes, canned clams , shrimp and paprika. Delicious!

  2. Mark

    Quick, easy, and versatile. I’ve made this many times; most recently we roasted cubed squash and sweet potato and added it to the soup at the time of serving. I also add rosemary to the broth. Never fails.

    xxxxxyyyyy

  3. Anne

    Looks fantastic Elise! I always have great success with your recipes. Will make soon. My New Englander hubby loooooves fish stew. So if i want to use a combination of fish should i keep the amount to 1.5 lbs?

    Show Replies (1)
  4. Greg

    OMG, this stew was divine. I used cod that I had flown in from Alaska. For me, I would not use cod again just because I don’t like it. But all the other flavors were amazing. I was concerned about the Tobasco, but I am so glad I bought it and used a lot because it really filled out the canned tomato and the juices. Next time I want to try a trio of shrimp, scallops, and clams.

    xxxxxyyyyy

  5. Tina

    My husband and I love this soup. I make it often in the cold months. I do add extra fish and sometimes a chicken boullion cube. Plus husband is a bread baker and it goes wonderfully with his sourdough loaf!

    I’m wondering how it freezes, though? I couldn’t find mention of it in the feedbacks…

    xxxxxyyyyy

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