What Is Seafood Soup Called?

Assorted seafood soup varieties simmering in a kitchen where the scent of the ocean meets aromatic herbs

Cioppino, bourride, brodetto, cacciucco, zarzuela, gumbo—these are more than mere names. They embody a rich tradition of preparing various types of fish or shellfish, united in a single pot with a mélange of vegetables and aromatic herbs to create sumptuous soups and stews.

When the salty sea breeze mingles with the aroma of simmering broth, you know something spectacular is stewing in the kitchen. 

If you’re a homeowner who cherishes the cheer of a well-fed family or the charm of a dinner party lit by the warmth of shared stories, you’ll want to dive deep into the world of seafood soups

What is another name for seafood soup?

The diversity of seafood soups is mirrored in the variety of their monikers. Whether it’s the Italian ‘Brodetto,’ the Spanish ‘Zarzuela,’ or the Turkish ‘Balık Çorbası,’ each name carries the echo of waves and the tales of fishermen.

  • Sopa de Mariscos (Spanish)
  • Cacciucco (Italian)
  • Caldo de Peixe (Portuguese)

What kind of seafood soups are there?

Seafood soups come in a kaleidoscope of flavors and textures. From thin broths that pay homage to the pure taste of the sea to thick stews that hug your insides with their richness, there’s a seafood soup for every palate and occasion. Here’s a quick snapshot:

  • Clear Soups: Lighter on the belly but full of zest.
  • Stewed Varieties: Thick and substantial, often served as a meal’s centerpiece.
  • Cream-Based: The luxe option for those special evenings.

Cross the Atlantic to the shores of Marseille, where Bouillabaisse rules as the queen of seafood soups. Aromatic with herbs and simmered with an array of fish, this Provençal masterpiece turns the simple act of dining into a majestic experience.

Moreover, here are other noteworthy seafood broths

  • Chowder: Head north to New England, where Chowder’s hearty spoonfuls of clams and potatoes offer comfort like a woolen blanket on a foggy morning.
  • Bisque: For a touch of elegance, the smooth, creamy bisque raises the bar. Whether it’s lobster or crab, each spoonful is a velvety caress of seafood sophistication.
  • Gumbo: Down in Louisiana, Gumbo welcomes you with open arms, rich with okra, seafood, and a spirit of Creole or Cajun spice.

What does cioppino mean?

Cioppino is a San Franciscan Sensation Imagine the docks of San Francisco in the late 1800s, where Italian-American fishermen concocted a stew to warm their souls. They called it Cioppino, a robust seafood stew known for its tomato-fennel broth brimming with clams, mussels, white fish, and shrimp—the epitome of oceanic indulgence. 

“What does cioppino mean?” you ask. Deriving from the Genoese dialect ‘ciuppin,’ the term reflects the act of ‘chopping’ or bringing together various catches of the day into one delicious ensemble.

What is the name of the smooth creamy seafood soup?

When whispers of ‘Bisque’ reach your ears, know that you’re about to encounter seafood soup royalty. This French creation is a silken blend of shellfish and cream, often brightened by a hint of sherry. Delve into a bowl, and you’ll understand why bisque is a synonym for indulgence.

Suggested pairing

To elevate your seafood soup experience, consider these pairings:

  • Crusty Bread: To soak up the flavorful broth.
  • Chilled White Wine: A crisp complement to the soup’s richness.
  • Simple Salad: A fresh counterbalance to the soup’s depth of flavor.


As we reel in our seafood soup saga, remember that “What Is Seafood Soup Called?” is more than just a question. It’s an invitation to a world where every spoonful tells a story, every ingredient has a heritage, and every meal becomes a memory.

So next time you’re simmering a pot of the ocean’s bounty, consider the history, the variety, and the delight that comes with each name—cioppino, bisque, chowder, or whichever you choose to call it. In the end, the joy is not just in the naming but in the gathering around the table to share in its splendor.