This seafood soup is a quick and comforting one-pot recipe! every spoonful features a medley of seafood in a creamy and flavorful tomato base.
What do you get when you put Italian seafood soup (AKA cioppino) and New England seafood chowder together? This one-pot creamy seafood soup recipe!
We are a family of seafood lovers, and this soup is a fabulous way to pack tons of seafood in a creamy broth full of Italian flavors. I learned how to make this soup while traveling to northern Italy during a cooking class. When I got home, I made it for my family, and everyone was OBSESSED!
Table of Contents
Why this recipe works
- A quick and easy one-pot dinner. Just toss all of the ingredients in a pot, let them simmer, and in about 30 minutes, you have an irresistibly creamy soup!
- Well-balanced. This recipe strikes the perfect balance of indulgent comfort food and a hearty yet light and healthy dish.
- Perfect texture and flavor. This soup isn’t as thick as a chowder, allowing the seafood to shine. It’s got a subtle tomato flavor with plenty of delicious fish and shrimp.
- Restaurant style. As mentioned earlier, a chef in Italy taught me this recipe and is head chef at one of Milan’s top restaurants!
This Italian seafood soup really doesn’t need much to put together. Here is everything you will need:
- Olive oil. To cook the aromatics and vegetables. I prefer using extra-virgin olive oil because it has that fabulous depth of flavor.
- Shallots and garlic. Some finely chopped onion and a few cloves of garlic are used to infuse the soup base with aromatic, savory depth.
- Carrots and celery. These classic soup veggies sneak more nutrition and texture into every bowl.
- Fish broth. The first half of the soup base. It’s fishy and salty, giving this seafood soup its signature oceanic flavor without being too overpowering. Swap it out for vegetable broth or chicken broth if you only have those on hand.
- Canned diced tomatoes. The other half of the soup base. If you can find Italian flavored ones, go for those. I mean, this is an Italian-inspired dish!
- Dry herbs and seasonings. I like to season the soup with smoked paprika, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper. This blend gives every spoonful a smoky, Italian-inspired dimension.
- Coconut cream. Because it wouldn’t be a creamy seafood soup recipe without the coconut cream! Full-fat canned coconut milk works well, too.
- Mixed seafood. Pick up a bag of frozen assorted seafood. You should find shrimp, mussels, clams, squid, scallops, and snapper in it. You can, of course, use your favorite fresh seafood.
How to make seafood soup
Saute the aromatics: Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat, then add the shallots and garlic. Cook until they’re fragrant.
Cook the vegetables: Add the carrots and celery to the pot and cook until softened.
Let it simmer: Pour the fish broth, diced tomatoes, and seasonings into the pot. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat, and pour in the coconut cream. Let it simmer until the soup thickens.
Add the seafood: Add the seafood mix and simmer until it’s fully cooked.
Recipe tips and variations
Mix and match the seafood– Use any mix of seafood you like or just one kind, including shrimp, crab, clams, mussels, halibut, or firm white fish. Whichever you choose, ensure it’s the freshest seafood you can find.
Try homemade stock– I sometimes do this when I have made a seafood boil or my linguine with clams: I save the shells and trimmings for homemade seafood stock. It takes the flavors in this soup to new heights!
Add the seafood at the end– Seafood is different from other protein sources because it cooks SUPER fast. As with any seafood stews, soups, or chowder, It’s always best to add it to the soup towards the end of cooking so it doesn’t overcook and become chewy.
Use white wine– To intensify the seafood flavor, I sometimes swap out half the broth for dry white wine. Don’t fret, though- it won’t make the soup taste like wine at all!
Add fresh herbs– Simmer a bouquet of fresh basil, fennel, a bay leaf, oregano, and/or parsley in the soup. Also, a dash of red pepper flakes will make this dish pleasantly spicy,
Finish with citrus– Finish your creamy seafood soup with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice or lime juice. The acidity cuts through the richness, giving the soup that perfect final touch.
To store: Let it cool to room temperature, then refrigerate the soup in an airtight container for 3 to 4 days.
To freeze: Ladle the leftovers into freezer-safe containers and freeze for 2 to 3 months. Let the soup thaw in the fridge overnight before reheating.
To reheat: Reheat it in a pot over medium-low heat or zap it in the microwave in 30-second increments until heated through.
More comforting soups to try
- Pumpkin curry soup
- 4 Ingredient Potato Soup
- Mexican Soup
- Albondigas Soup
- Tuscan White Bean Soup
- Hot and Sour Soup
- Cauliflower soup
Frequently asked questions
Feel free to swap the coconut cream for heavy cream, half-and-half, or Greek yogurt instead. Just remember to stir the dairy into the soup at the end of cooking to prevent it from curdling.
This creamy seafood soup pairs wonderfully with a green salad and cooked veggies on the side, like roasted potatoes and carrots or some sauteed asparagus. And don’t forget the hunks of crusty bread or some quick air fryer garlic bread! They’ll help you soak up every last drop of the flavorful broth.
Seafood Soup Recipe
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 2 small shallots finely chopped
- 2 large carrots chopped
- 2 stalks celery chopped
- 3 cups fish broth can use chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 1/2 cups canned diced tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1 cup coconut cream canned
- 1 cup mixed seafood * See notes
- To a large Dutch oven or soup pot, add the olive oil, and once hot, sauté shallots and garlic until fragrant.
- Add carrots and celery and cook for another 5 minutes, until the vegetables soften.
- Add the fish broth, diced tomatoes, smoked paprika, salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning, and bring to a boil. Add the coconut cream, reduce the heat to low, and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes or until the soup has thickened.
- Add the seafood mix and cook, uncovered, until fully cooked.
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