Bacalao a la Vizcaina (Basque-Style Codfish Stew)


Bacalao (salted, dried codfish) stars in this Spanish-style fish stew from the Basque region of Spain. This traditional dish is popular in all Spanish-speaking countries; in fact, each country's version is slightly different. In Mexico, it's usually made for Christmas, New Year's Eve, and Lent. In Puerto Rico, it's enjoyed during Lent but also year-round. This is one of the Puerto Rican versions.

Prep Time:
30 mins
Cook Time:
35 mins
Additional Time:
8 hrs
Total Time:
9 hrs 5 mins


  • 1 pound salted cod fish

  • 4 medium potatoes, sliced thick

  • 2 medium onions, sliced

  • 4 large hard-boiled eggs, sliced

  • 2 teaspoons capers

  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced

  • ¼ cup pitted green olives

  • 1 (4 ounce) jar roasted red bell peppers, drained

  • ½ cup golden raisins

  • 1 large bay leaf

  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce

  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 cup water

  • ¼ cup white wine


  1. Soak salted codfish in about 2 quarts of water, changing the water three times over the course of 8 hours. Drain, then cut codfish into bite-sized pieces.

  2. Layer 1/2 of each ingredient in a pot in the following order: potatoes, codfish, onions, hard-boiled eggs, capers, garlic, olives, roasted red peppers, and raisins. Place bay leaf on raisins, then pour 1/2 of the tomato sauce and 1/2 of the olive oil over top. Repeat layers in the same order, skipping bay leaf. Pour water and white wine over top; do not stir.

  3. Cover and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 30 minutes.

    bowl of cod and tomato stew


In Puerto Rico, this stew is normally served with a side of white rice and boiled root vegetables like yucca, yautía, ñame, or boiled green bananas. After plating, drizzle extra-virgin olive oil over everything and add a slice of avocado on the side. Another option is to serve with a side of funche (Puerto Rican polenta).

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

475 Calories
19g Fat
32g Carbs
42g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Calories 475
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 19g 24%
Saturated Fat 3g 16%
Cholesterol 192mg 64%
Sodium 4353mg 189%
Total Carbohydrate 32g 11%
Dietary Fiber 4g 14%
Total Sugars 9g
Protein 42g
Vitamin C 36mg 178%
Calcium 139mg 11%
Iron 3mg 18%
Potassium 1521mg 32%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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