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+ servings

How Make Fish Balls Recipe

This step-by-step recipe with pictures shows you "how to make fish balls." Easy recipe for making bouncy, delicious fish balls at home.

Course Soup
Cuisine Chinese
Keyword Fish Balls
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 199 kcal



  • 1 whole mackerel with bones and head, about 2 1/2 lbs
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground white pepper

Fish Ball Soup:

  • fish bones, discard the fish head, chopped into 3 pieces
  • 1 can chicken broth
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 oz Chinese seaweed, 紫菜
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • white pepper and salt to taste

Fish Ball Soup Topping:

  • garlic oil
  • some shredded lettuce leaves
  • 1 stalk scallion, cut into rings


  1. Method:

Fish Ball:

  1. Clean the fish and rinse with cold water, pat dry with paper towels. Filet the fish along the bones from the tail up towards the head using a very sharp knife. Repeat on the other side.

  2. Get a bowl to put the fish meat. Using a spoon, scrape the fish meat off the skin of the fish filet, from the tail upwards. Scrape until all meat is off the skin. Discard the skin. Use the spoon to scrape off the fish meat off the fish bone, too.

  3. Place all the fish meat on a chopping board, using a Chinese cleaver (preferably) to chop the fish meat, for about 10 minutes.

  4. The fish will become slightly sticky as you chop. Add the salt and pepper and continue chopping for another 10 minutes, the fish meat will become a fish paste.

  5. Wet your hands with some water and and take a tablespoon of the fish paste onto your palm and shape them into fish balls.

Fish Ball Soup:

  1. Get a 5-quart soup pot, put in the chicken broth, water, and fish bones. Bring to boil over high heat, and then let it boil on low to medium heat for about 20 minutes or until the soup is flavorful.

  2. Remove the fish bones, turn to high heat and drop the fish balls into the Soup.

  3. Add the Chinese seaweed, soy sauce, sesame oil, salt and pepper to taste. When the fish balls float to the top, turn off the heat.

  4. Transfer the fish balls soup into serving bowls, add the Toppings and serve immediately.

Recipe Notes

1. To view the step-by-step picture, please click on the gallery on page 1. 2. You can make the garlic oil by stir-frying some minced garlic with heated oil. 3. If you like, serve it with red chilies in soy sauce.

Nutrition Facts
How Make Fish Balls Recipe
Amount Per Serving (4 people)
Calories 199 Calories from Fat 90
% Daily Value*
Fat 10g15%
Saturated Fat 3g19%
Cholesterol 53mg18%
Sodium 1815mg79%
Potassium 526mg15%
Carbohydrates 2g1%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 24g48%
Vitamin A 100IU2%
Vitamin C 8.3mg10%
Calcium 50mg5%
Iron 1.8mg10%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.