This cozy and smokey cioppino is brimming with tomatoes, mussels, clams, shrimp, and smoked kipper snacks.

This recipe is sponsored by King Oscar | Thanks for supporting the brands I love and trust.

Close up of bowl of cioppino.

Large pot of cioppino being stirred.

Bowl of fresh clams.

Package of King Oscar Kipper Snacks next to other ingredients.

These crisp fall weekends have me craving anything I can dunk a lump of fresh bread into. And though I love a rich beefy stew with red wine, the seafood lover in me has been pining for cioppino. If you’re pescatarian, this stew is a total dream.

Cioppino is an Italian-American fish stew originating in San Francisco, which surprised me. Crowded with tomatoes, wine, seafood stock, and a variety of freshly-caught seafood, I imagined this recipe rising from the Mediterranean coast. (And being devoured al fresco with a crisp glass of white and one heck of a view.) But nope! It’s native to our very own West coast. But even if you aren’t living on the coast, you can can make this beauty at home with seafood your fishmonger has kickin’ around. Most recipes include mussels, clams, shrimp, and a chopped fillet of fish. But you’ll also find variations with crab, scallops, and squid. I love them all!

Smokey Cioppino with King Oscar’s Kipper Snacks.

In this recipe, I’ve swapped the usual fish fillet for King Oscar’s Kipper Snacks. (You might recognize them from my clam chowder recipe). These fillets of wild-caught herring offer up a nice smokey flavor, making this dish particularly fitting for the chillier months. I also used mussels, shrimp, and mahogany clams. You can use any clams—like manila or littleneck—but my fishmonger had some big, juicy mahogany clams on hand and I just couldn’t say no :)

If you’ve never worked with fresh mussels or clams before, please note that any shells that remain unopened after being cooked are dead and need to be discarded. Eating dead mussels or clams is a recipe for gastrointestinal hell.

Hands holding bowl of cioppino.

If you try this recipe or create your own variation, let me know in the comments! I love connecting with you. Then snap a photo and tag me on the Insta @killing__thyme to be featured in our newsletter.

Hands holding bowl of cioppino.

Get the Recipe:

Smokey Cioppino

This cozy and smokey cioppino is brimming with tomatoes, mussels, clams, shrimp, and smoked kipper snacks.
5 from 6 votes

Ingredients

  • 3 TBSP olive oil, Or, use the oil from the can of kipper snacks.
  • 1 large fennel bulb, thinly shaved (preferably with a mandolin)
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 large shallot, thinly sliced (preferably with a mandolin)
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 4 large garlic cloves, smashed and sliced
  • 1 3.25 oz tin of King Oscar Kipper Snacks, drained and chopped
  • 1 tsp crushed chili flakes
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 28 oz can of diced tomatoes, with juice
  • 1.5 cups dry white wine (I used Pinot Grigio; serve the rest with dinner!)
  • 5 cups seafood stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 lb fresh smaller clams (littleneck or manila) or 2 lbs large clams (mahogany); washed and scrubbed
  • 1 lb fresh mussels, washed, scrubbed, and debearded
  • 1 lb fresh shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • Juice of 1 small lemon
  • Chopped fennel fronds, for garnish

Equipment

  • Large stock pot or Dutch oven

Instructions 

  • Heat the oil in a large stock pot over medium heat. Add the onion, shallots, fennel, and salt. Sauté until the onions are fragrant and sweating, about 10 minutes.
  • Stir in the garlic, chopped kipper snacks, and chili flakes, and sauté for 2 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste, coating the ingredients. Then add the tomatoes (including the juice), white wine, seafood stock, and bay leaf. Cover and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, still covered, for about 30 minutes.
  • Add the clams and mussels to the soup. Cover and simmer until the clams and mussels begin to open, about 5 minutes. Add the shrimp. Simmer on low, stirring gently, until the shrimp are just cooked through and the clams and mussels are completely open, about 5 minutes. (Discard any clams and mussels that do not open). Taste and season the soup with more salt and red pepper flakes to taste, if necessary.
  • Scoop into bowls, sprinkle chopped fennel fronds on top, and serve with fresh bread.