Moroccan Stewed Fish

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Moroccan Stewed Fish, Sacha Served What

A comforting dish of delicious spices and healthy chickpeas. This Moroccan Stewed Fish is exactly what you want to eat.

I originally came up with this recipe for Moroccan Stewed Fish because my brother-in-law asked me to teach him how to make it. I was giving him a few cooking lessons, teaching him how to make various dishes, and he requested to learn how to make this fish! He had eaten it at a restaurant before and loved it, so I came up with this recipe. Needless to say, I fell in love as well.

This Moroccan Stewed Fish is made with some of my all-time favorite flavors. Smoked paprika. Olives. Lemon. Harissa. They meld together and work perfectly. I’m in love, aren’t you? Serve this on its own or over some rice.

I love this meal for so many reasons. It seems like there’s a lot going on, but it’s fairly easy and all made in one pan! It’s also a very healthy recipe that tastes warm and comforting. I love it when you want to be healthy but don’t want to eat something that tastes extremely healthy and boring.

Toasting Spices

This is an important step. It’s also called blooming spices, where you cook them in fat. This process extracts more flavor from the spices, resulting in a better final product. Bloom them in any type of fat – oil, butter, ghee, tallow, you name it! Cook for 30 seconds to one minute, then add in any liquid items.

Ingredient Notes:

  • Slivered Almonds – You can also substitute pine nuts, pistachios, hazelnuts, or pepitas.
  • Smoked Paprika – Here is a link to my favorite brand of Smoked Paprika from Burlap & Barrel. You can really taste the difference and it’ll change the final result of your recipe.
  • Thick White Fish – I’d recommend halibut, cod, mahi mahi, or chilean sea bass. But you can also use salmon if you’d like!
  • Long Hot Green Pepper – Or an Italian Long Hot. If you can’t find one of these, a jalapeno will do!
  • Harissa Paste – You should be able to find harissa paste in most grocery stores. If not, buy it here.
  • Vegetable Stock – You can also substitute water, but vegetable stock has more flavor.
  • Castelvetrano Olives – These are my favorite green olive. But if you cannot find these, any green olive will do.

Moroccan Stewed Fish, Sacha Served What

Moroccan Stewed Fish

A comforting dish of delicious spices and healthy chickpeas. This Moroccan Stewed Fish is exactly what you want to eat.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Moroccan
Servings 2


  • 1 Medium Pan with a lid
  • 2 Small Bowls


  • 3 tablespoons slivered almonds
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 8 oz. fillets thick white fish, such as halibut, cod, mahi mahi, or sea bass, skin removed if any
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • ½ yellow onion diced
  • 1 long hot green pepper cut in half lengthwise, stems, seeds, and white veins discarded, and diced into ½ inch pieces
  • 1 Roma tomato diced
  • 2 cloves garlic thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons harissa paste
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 10 Castelvetrano olives pitted, cut in half lengthwise
  • 1 can chickpeas drained
  • ½ lemon thinly sliced into rounds
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Cilantro leaves to taste, as garnish


  • Heat a medium pan over medium heat. Add almonds and toast, stirring occasionally, for 2-4 minutes, until golden and toasted. Transfer to a small bowl and set aside.
  • In a small bowl, combine the smoked paprika, coriander, turmeric, and a generous amount of freshly ground black pepper.
  • Rub the fish all over with olive oil and sprinkle generously with Kosher salt. Rub a little less than half of the spice mixture on the fish, reserving the remining for the stew.
  • Heat the avocado oil in the same pan used to toast the almonds over medium heat. Add the onions, green peppers, a big pinch of Kosher salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly softened and just starting to brown, 4-6 minutes.
  • If pan is looking dry, add another drizzle of avocado oil. Then add the remaining spices and cook, stirring often, for 30 seconds. Add the diced tomato and garlic and cook, stirring often, until the tomato has softened, 1-2 minutes.
  • Add the harissa paste, vegetable stock, olives, chickpeas, and ½ teaspoon Kosher salt (double the amount of salt if doubling the recipe) and bring to a simmer. Cook for 2 minutes, then add the fish, nestling the pieces into the chickpeas. Top each piece of fish with 2 slices of lemon. Cover and cook for 6-7 minutes, until fish is cooked through.
  • Uncover and remove from heat. Swirl in butter, until melted. Taste and season with Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, if needed. Add a squeeze of lemon juice, if desired. Serve sprinkled with the toasted almonds and fresh cilantro leaves.


Once fish is cooked, dish is best served immediately. 
You can prepare the stew base ahead of time and store covered in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Bring to a simmer, then add the fish and continue the cooking instructions from there. 
Keyword easy, healthy, One pan, Spicy
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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