Skip to main content

How to Cook Filipino-Style Carp Fish Bola Bola

I am a chef on a luxury world cruise liner. I love to cook and write recipes that are inspired by foods from all over the world.

Filipino-style carp fish bola bola

Filipino-style carp fish bola bola

What Is Bola Bola?

Bola bola, which literally translates to "ball ball," is a Filipino-style of meatballs. In most traditional recipes, bola bola are prepared with minced pork; however, they may also be prepared with other ingredients, such as beef, chicken, vegetable, or seafood. In this recipe, I made bola bola with carp, though you could choose any kind of fish you prefer.

carp fish bola bola ingredients

carp fish bola bola ingredients

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

10 min

25 min

35 min

16 bola bola


  • 1 1/2 cups carp fish, deboned and ground
  • 1/2 egg
  • 1/4 cup onion, minced
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • Cooking oil, for frying


For Preparation:

  • 2 medium bowls
  • 3 small bowls
  • 1 small plate
  • measuring cups
  • measuring spoons
  • chopping board
  • knife
  • fork

For Cooking:

  • frying pan
  • spatula
  • 2 teaspoons


  1. In a bowl, add all of the ingredients (excluding the cooking oil). Mix thoroughly. Set aside.
  2. Heat cooking oil in a frying pan.
  3. Quickly dip two teaspoons in oil (this is done to prevent sticking). Using these spoons, scoop about 1 tablespoon's worth of the fish mixture and form a ball. Immediately drop each ball into the frying pan. Cook thoroughly.
  4. Repeat step 3 until all of the bola bola have been cooked.
  5. Serve with your favorite sauce.
Carp fish bola bola recipe

Carp fish bola bola recipe

Tips and Techniques

  • Adjust the amount of fish mixture based on your desired number of portions. Just make sure to cook the fish thoroughly.
  • Replace carp fish with any kind of fish you prefer.
  • Apply oil on each teaspoon to prevent the fish mixture from sticking to the spoons.
  • Flavor up the dish with any seasonings you prefer.
  • Serve with sweet and spicy fish ball sauce or spicy soy-vinegar dip.

© 2020 Travel Chef