Bouillabaisse Seafood Soup

Use at least 4 types of fish or seafood, the freshest possible
Bouillabaisse pinit

So you would you like to make a Bouillabaisse? Or maybe you should just play it safe and call it a french mediterranean seafood soup?

The reason I say this is that Bouillabaisse must include the scorpion fish (rascasse) to be considered an authentic Bouillabaisse. The history of the soup is fascinating since the french fisherman in Marseille simply made the soup from the fish they couldn’t sell that day. For sure that ugly Scorpion fish with the ugly name rascasse was there every time!

La Rascasse

The word sounds like something you would call someone you think is a jackass.

So in the end just be careful who you tell that your seafood stew is a a bouillabasse. You might just piss off a frenchmen:

C’est quoi cą? Ce n’est pas une bouillabaisse sans la rascasse! Quel connerie!

For me, what is important are these three things: Use the freshest possibile seafood, take care about the fish stock (it must be good or you will be disappointed!), and serve with a spicy rouille sauce. If you do these three things, you are in for a memorable meal!

Bouillabaisse Seafood Soup

Difficulty: Advanced Prep Time 60 mins Cook Time 60 mins Total Time 2 hrs
Servings: 4


Bouillabaisse is a classic French Mediterranean Soup. To serve properly, one places a toasted baguette in a soup bowl, adds a big dollop of spicy rouille sauce and some gruyère cheese. Then you ladle broth into the bowl. Finally you add some seafood from the seafood bowl. Personally, I skip this last step and keep the fish in the soup, so all you have to do is ladle the soup with the seafood into the bowl. Up to you. 


To Serve


  1. How to make a Bouillabaisse Soup

    Prepare the fresh seafood: cut the firm fish filets into bite size pieces and clean and prepare any other seafood, i.e. Shrimp, mussels, crab. Place all together in a large bowl. Add half the garlic, 3 Tablespoons of Olive Oil, and the large pinch of Saffron. Mix all together, cover, and let marinate for at least 2 hours.

    To make the fish broth, add 5 cups of fish stock to a large casserole dish. Add half the leaks, onions, and celery. Add the bouquet garni. Heat up and allow to simmer for at least 30 minutes.

    Heat the remaining olive oil in a large sauce pan and sauté the remaining garlic, onions, celery for about 5 minutes until nice and glassy. Add the tomatoes, orange zest, pastis, and fennel seeds. Allow to cook for 10 minutes, the add to the broth.

    Allow to simmer for at least 10 minutes. Once it is ready, you can turn it down to low. Its time to make the rouille and toast the baguettes.

    Here is the recipe for the rouille

    Slice the baguette into slices, spread butter on them and toast in the oven till they are just slightly brown. Set a side and prepare for serving.

    When all is ready and I mean really ready, you can add the fish to the broth. The reason I say this is you want it to be as fresh as possible, especially after all the work you have done! Heat the broth up to boil and then allow to simmer for about 10 minutes until all the fish is cooked.  Remove the bouquet garni.

    Remove the fish and place in a seperate serving bowl.

    Now every thing is ready!


How to serve a bouillabaisse - the french way

  1. You first put a slice of the toasted baguette in the soup bowl. Then you ladle a big dollop of rouille and some gruyère cheese on top of the baguette. 

    Now add a large soup ladle of the broth.

    Finally the selected fish for this bowl and off you go. Bon Appetit!

    Here is a video showing how much effort the French can put into their bouillabaisse

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size 1 Cup

Servings 6

Amount Per Serving
Calories 347kcal
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 18.2g28%
Saturated Fat 8.5g43%
Cholesterol 53mg18%
Sodium 657mg28%
Potassium 563mg17%
Total Carbohydrate 23.6g8%
Dietary Fiber 2.5g10%
Sugars 5.3g
Protein 22.8g46%

Calcium 29 mg
Iron 8 mg
Vitamin D 79 IU

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Keywords: Bouillabaisse, Seafood Soup

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