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Chinese Szechwan Spicy Fish Soup - hot bean sauce, dried chilies, Szechwan peppercorns and ginger are the key ingredients in this flavorful soup

Chinese Szechuan Spicy Fish Soup

Servings 4
Author Jeanette


  • 1 pound white firm flesh fish fillet

Fish Marinade

  • 1 egg white
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons rice wine
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch


  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 1 tablespoon Szechuan hot bean sauce
  • One 1" piece of ginger peeled and sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic sliced
  • 1 scallion cut into 1/2" pieces
  • 1 tablespoon Szechuan peppercorns
  • 1/4 cup Szechuan dried red chili peppers
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 2 cups fish or chicken stock
  • 2 celery stalks sliced
  • 1 cup napa cabbage cut up


  1. Cut fish into 2" pieces. Mix Fish Marinade ingredients and toss well with fish fillet. Set aside to marinade for 20 minutes.
  2. Heat oil in a large pot. Add hot bean sauce and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add ginger, garlic, half of scallions, Szechuan peppercorns, and dried chili peppers. Cook until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes, being careful not to burn the peppercorns or chili peppers. Add rice wine and soy sauce and stir another minute. Add stock and bring to a boil.
  3. Place celery and napa cabbage in a clay casserole. Lay marinated fish on top.
  4. Pour soup on top of fish. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes until fish is cooked through.
  5. Serve over steamed brown rice.

Recipe Notes

This is spicy! Reduce the amount of hot chili peppers and Szechwan peppercorns if you like, but for the full effect, I highly recommend using as much as the recipe states.
I have also made this using fish on the bone, which is usually cheaper than fish filet. If you don't mind working through the bones, this is definitely a budget-friendly option; otherwise, I suggest using fish filet.