The Best Cioppino Recipe In The World

The best cioppino recipes can be found anywhere, but the ones made in Italy and the Mediterranean are the most popular. These traditional soups are based on a rich seafood broth flavored with white wine and lots of tomatoes, and they are often served with San Francisco sourdough bread. You can also buy artisanal pizza to accompany the soup.


Cioppino Nutrition Facts

cioppino nutrition facts

What Is Cioppino?

Cioppino is customarily made with the day’s catch. San Francisco is usually a combination of Dungeness crab, clams, shrimp, scallops, squid, mussels, and fish, all sourced from the ocean, in this instance, the Pacific. In a wine sauce, the shellfish is mixed with fresh tomatoes.

Toasted bread, either local sourdough or French bread, can be served with the entrée. The bread is dipped into the sauce and acts as starch, similar to pasta. Italian-Americans created Cioppino, who lived in San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood. It was inspired by old country fishers’ regional seafood stews, which they made on their boats while at sea.

The Best Cioppino Recipe In The World

This tomato-based seafood stew, which originated in San Francisco, is customarily loaded with whatever seafood is fresh at the market. We chose four of our favorites from the abundance of seafood accessible all year: shrimp, clams, mussels, and halibut. You can omit them or replace the halibut with a less expensive white fish. (Cod or tilapia are excellent substitutes!)Although there are many ways to make Cioppino, it is one of the best ways to make it.


  • 1/4 c. extra-virgin olive oil 
  • One bulb fennel, chopped, fronds reserved
  • Two shallots, minced
  • Two garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes Kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 c. dry white wine
  • (28-oz.) can crushed tomatoes
  • (8-oz.) bottle clam juice
  • Two c. water
  • Two dried bay leaves
  • 1 2″-thick strip orange zest (optional)
  • One dozen littleneck clams, scrubbed
  • One a dozen mussels, scrubbed
  • One lb. shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • One lb. halibut, skin removed and cut into 1″ pieces
  • 1/4 c. freshly chopped parsley for serving
  • Lemon wedges, for serving
  • Baguette, for serving


  • In a big pot over medium heat, heat the oil. Cook for 6 minutes, or until fennel and shallots are tender and transparent. Season with salt and pepper after adding the garlic, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Cook for another minute or until aromatic.
  • Allow 3 to 5 minutes for the wine to decrease by half, scraping away browned parts with a wooden spoon. Tomatoes, clam juice, water, bay leaves, and orange zest are added to the pot (if used). Stir to incorporate, reduce to a low simmer, and cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Remove the bay leaves and orange zest from the dish. Cover and boil the clams for 5 minutes in the simmering liquid. Uncover and stack mussels, shrimp, and halibut in a uniform layer. Stirring is not allowed. Cover and boil for another 5 minutes, or until all clams and mussels have opened and the shrimp and fish are opaque and cooked through. Any mussels or clams that haven’t been opened should be discarded. To taste, season with salt and pepper.
  • Ladle soup into dishes and garnish with fennel fronds and chopped parsley to serve. On the side, serve with baguette and lemon slices.

Points To Remember

Here are some essential points to remember while preparing this dish:

  • Rich seafood stock is the foundation of an excellent cioppino. To make a tasty dish, you’ll need this broth. The shellfish is perfectly poached in the broth, and the meal is finished off with a rich and delightful roasted red pepper salsa.
  • A well-made cioppino requires a little weekend preparation, and a few hours of prep work is required on the weekend. The main ingredient is the fish, which should be parboiled separately.
  • The fish stock will be simmered for three hours and frozen for use during the week. The leftover sauce can be used for sauteed seafood on weekdays in a pinch. The fish trimmings can also be added to the soup for a quick and tasty meal.
  • Cioppino dishes that are made using fresh ingredients are the tastiest. The fish should be cooked appropriately and steamed before serving, as the soup has a strong flavor.
  • The soup is typically served with sourdough bread and is traditionally made with local Dungeness crab. While it is true that the recipe is Italian, it can be adapted to incorporate other ingredients.
  • While the Cioppino is often considered a delicious Italian stew, the quality of the broth is essential. The stew should be rich in seafood stock, which can vary according to your location.
  • A strong seafood stock can add a lot of flavor to Cioppino, so make sure to find the best recipe possible. This recipe can be modified according to the ingredients you have at hand.
  • Whether you are looking for a traditional or authentic version, it is essential to find a cioppino recipe that suits your tastes. While many cioppino recipes in Italy call for only finfish and no shellfish, other Italian cioppino recipes include shellfish and other seafood that has not been previously included.

How Healthy Is Cioppino?


Here are some health benefits of eating Cioppino:

  • Traditional holiday recipes are typically fattier, sweeter, and heavier than our everyday diet, so when a traditional dish is genuinely healthy without any modifications, it’s cause for celebration!
  • So, if Cioppino isn’t on your holiday menu, let’s make that happen. Cioppino is a tomato-based fish stew with flavor from essential (and healthy!) ingredients, and it’s also the perfect guilt-free comfort food.
  • Cioppino is a dish that can be used in a variety of ways. Depending on the seafood you use, you may make it as straightforward or as elaborate as you want. Anything from the most outstanding catch of the day at the fishmonger to frozen seafood mixtures would suffice. And eating a variety of fish and seafood at least once a week is one of the healthiest things we can do for our brain and heart.
  • My cioppino recipe is speedy. The result is a light and delicious tomato soup that satisfies without filling you up, making it the ideal foil for those holiday dinners that make you loosen your belt.
  • The recipe is quick and easy to make, making it ideal for entertaining (spend more time with your guests!) and weekday post-work meals.


A classic cioppino recipe is the one that has the most authentic flavor. It is made with rich seafood stock. The fish is usually cooked in layers in the broth, so the dish is very thick. The most authentic Cioppino is also one that has a rich seafood stock. The broth should be very salty, as it will ruin the flavor of the Cioppino. A great cioppino recipe should be made with a variety of seafood. While the best cioppino recipe uses a lot of seafood, it can be messy if you don’t want to overeat it. The best cioppino recipe will be the one that has a balance of flavor and looks fantastic.