When you need a warm, delicious homemade dinner that brings friends and family together, surprise everyone with a pan of Paella. Full of color, flavor, and a variety of seafood, this tasty Seafood Paella recipe is surprisingly easy to make (it’s mostly hands-off), and it feeds a crowd.
What is Paella?
Paella is a rice dish, native to Valencia, a region in the eastern part of Spain. The word paella is also a Valencian term for the type of large pan that the dish is prepared in — although any large, heavy frying pan works well.
Of course, we’re partial to seafood, but the beauty of paella is that there are so many variations. It can feature meats, chicken, seafood, vegetables, or a mix of everything. However, there is a one-star ingredient in all Spanish paella recipes, and that’s saffron. It’s the spice that gives the rice in this dish its characteristic golden-yellow color, and it adds a subtle but complex flavor.
This Seafood Paella recipe is a perfect one-pan meal that’s sure to please all the seafood lovers in your house. Try it for dinner or your next group gathering.
Servings: 5 Prep Time: 20 min Cook Time: 40 min
- 3 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 1 bell pepper, diced (red, yellow, green, or orange)
- 2 large Roma tomatoes, finely chopped
- Bay leaf
- 1 pinch of saffron threads or 1 tsp saffron powder
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- Salt and pepper (to taste)
- ¼ cup white wine
- ¼ cup flat leaf parsley, chopped (save a pinch to sprinkle over rice when its done)
- 2 cups Spanish rice (Calaspara rice or Arroz Redondo)
- 5 cups fish stock or chicken broth
- ½ cup frozen peas
- 1 pound jumbo shrimp or prawns, peeled with tail on
- 1 pound mussels, cleaned with beards off
- 8 oz calamari rings
- Lemons, for garnish
- Add olive oil to a skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, bell peppers and garlic and cook until onion is translucent. Add chopped tomato, bay leaf, paprika, saffron, salt and pepper. Stir and cook for 5 minutes. Add white wine and cook for 10 minutes. Taste and add salt if needed.
- Add 2 tablespoons chopped parsley and rice to the pot. Cook for 1 minute.
- Pour the broth slowly all around the pan and jiggle the pan to get the rice into an even layer. (Do not stir the mixture going forward!).
- Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low. Give the pan a gentle shake back and forth just once or twice during cooking.
- Cook for about 15-18 minutes (uncovered), then nestle the shrimp, mussels and calamari into the mixture, sprinkle peas on top and continue to cook (without stirring) for about 5 more minutes. Watch for most of the liquid to be absorbed and the rice at the top to be nearly tender. (If for some reason your rice is still not cooked, add ¼ cup more water or broth and continue cooking.)
- Remove pan from heat and cover pan with a lid or tinfoil. Place a kitchen towel over the lid and allow to rest for 10 minutes.
- Garnish with fresh parsley and lemon slices. Serve.