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.
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
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.
- 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
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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