Basque seafood stew recipe

(260 ratings)

A great one-pot meal of seafood with a tomato, herb and spice flavour. It serves 6 and is delicious with rice or crusty bread. For more recipes using tomatoes go to

  • healthy
Preparation Time10 mins
Cooking Time30 mins
Total Time40 mins
Nutrition Per PortionRDA
Calories233 Kcal12%
Fat6 g9%
Saturated Fat1 g5%

A glorious one-pot Basque seafood stew in a fresh tomato and garlic sauce.

This seafood stew originates from the Basque country, in the northern corner Spain and stretching up into southern France. Since it's a coastal region, seafood has always been important in Basque cuisine, and this recipe celebrates that. The fish here is spiced up with cayenne pepper and paprika, and cooked in a rich sauce of stock, tomatoes and dry white wine. This will serve six and because it has potatoes and peppers in the stew, it's a whole meal in itself. Not bad for only 233 calories per portion. That said, we usually serve it with a piece of chunky bread to dip in the sauce.


  • 2-3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 med onion, peeled and sliced
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 yellow and 1 red pepper, deseeded and roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • 500g (1lb) potatoes, peeled and cut into small cubes
  • 150ml (¼ pint) dry white wine
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1 fish stock cube
  • 200g (7oz) raw peeled king prawns
  • 350g (12oz) sea-bass fillets, cut into big chunks
  • 4-5 large plum tomatoes, skinned, quartered and deseeded
  • 1 tbsp fresh chopped parsley

To serve:

  • Extra olive oil, fresh chopped parsley, fresh chopped garlic




  1. Heat 2 tbsp of oil in a large sauté pan. Add the onion and celery and sauté for a few mins. Add the peppers for a couple of mins and then the garlic and potato cubes.
  2. Turn up the heat, pour in the wine and sprinkle in the paprika and cayenne. Let the mixture simmer for a few mins, until the liquid is nearly reduced by half.
  3. Add the fish stock cube and 600ml (1 pint) hot water. Simmer for 10 mins or until the potato is just cooked.
  4. Add the prawns, sea bass, tomatoes (halved again if large) and parsley. Reduce the heat and simmer for a few mins, stirring gently once.
  5. Serve drizzled with more olive oil and sprinkled with parsley and more fresh chopped garlic and lemon zest, if you like. Serve with crusty bread.

Top tips for making Basque seafood stew

Fish stews are always inspired what was caught that day, so you can change up the fish/shellfish used here according to your own taste, or what is available. Squid, scallops or chunky bits of cod would all work well, just try to have a variety. You could even use a pre-packed fish mix. Fresh tomatoes with taste more authentic, but you can use tinned whole tomatoes in a pinch. Add them about five minutes before the fish and let them bubble for a bit.

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Octavia Lillywhite
Food and Lifestyle Writer

Octavia Lillywhite is an award-winning food and lifestyle journalist with over 15 years of experience. With a passion for creating beautiful, tasty family meals that don’t use hundreds of ingredients or anything you have to source from obscure websites, she’s a champion of local and seasonal foods, using up leftovers and composting, which, she maintains, is probably the most important thing we all can do to protect the environment.