Vietnamese Canh Chua Ca Recipe

Vietnamese Canh Chua Ca is a classic Vietnamese soup that is is tangy, sour and spicy, packed with distinct and delicious flavors. This soup is often packed with brightly colored vegetables and is a great way to add a healthy, lighter dish to any meal. If you’re looking for a vegan friendly dish to wow your friends and family, Canh Chua Ca is it!


  • 1 lb fresh catfish fillets, cut into small pieces
  • 2 tablespoons of vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 can of tamarind concentrate
  • 1/4 cup of fish sauce
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons of palm sugar or brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of tomato paste
  • 1-2 tablespoons of dried shrimp paste
  • 1/4 cup of freshly chopped pineapple
  • 1/4 cup of freshly chopped tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup of freshly chopped okra
  • 1/4 cup of freshly chopped bell peppers
  • 2-3 cups of vegetable or chicken broth


  1. Heat the oil in a pot to medium-high heat.
  2. Add the catfish fillets and sear both sides for 3-4 minutes.
  3. Remove the fish and set aside on a plate.
  4. Reduce the heat to medium and add the tamarind concentrate, fish sauce, garlic, sugar, tomato paste, and shrimp paste to the pot. Stir and cook for 1-2 minutes.
  5. Add the pineapple, tomatoes, okra, bell peppers and the seared fish. Stir to combine.
  6. Pour in the broth and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
  7. Adjust the seasonings to taste and serve warm with some steamed rice. Enjoy!