We investigated differences between healthy tissue and metastatic tumor from ex vivo human partial liver resections using diffuse optical spectroscopy with a fiber optic probe. We extracted various physiological and morphological parameters from the spectra. During evaluation of the residual between the measurements and a fit model based on diffusion theory, we found that bile is an additional chromophore absorbing in the visible wavelength range that was missing in our model. Consistency of the residual with the absorption spectrum of bile was noticed. An accurate measurement of the absorption coefficient of bile from various human bile samples was performed and implemented into the fit model. Having the absorption coefficient of bile as a priori knowledge in the model showed a clear improvement in terms of reducing the fitting discrepancies. The addition of this chromophore yields significantly different estimates of the amount of blood. Furthermore, the estimated bile volume fraction and reduced scattering amplitude turned out to be two main relevant discriminators between normal and metastatic liver tissues.