Paella may well be the national dish in Spain, but there are so many other types of foods to try in Barcelona. After all, Spanish food isn’t just about the ever-popular combination of rice, meat, chorizo and shell-fish.
While there are plenty of other choices available across Spain, Barcelona has some regional delights available too. As such, among our 10 foods to try in Barcelona that aren’t Paella, we take a look at traditional Spanish food along with some local favourites.
Food and drink culture in Spain centres around socialising and experiencing a range of flavours and cooking techniques. By joining a tapas tour in Barcelona, you will sample a wide variety of small plates. All of which will culminate into one fantastic meal.
Although, what sets a city like Barcelona apart from the rest of Spain, is some of the more localised cuisines. Barcelona is a major city within the Catalan region, which really does come with its very own culinary experience.
10 Foods to try in Barcelona Other Than Paella
When visiting Spain, here are a selection of foods to try in Barcelona other than paella. Many of which make the most of the local, fresh ingredients that have made Catalan cuisine so popular. Not only that but when you see something new on the menu, it’s always nice to be prepared with the knowledge of what’s on offer.
Pà amb tomàquet
This is a standard in any local bar, favoured for its simplicity. Slices of fresh bread served with tomatoes, salt and a little olive oil. It may not initially sound like much, but remember Spain is well-known for the best olive oil in the world.
Butifarra amb Mongetes
Another Catalan dish that is as straight forward as its translation. Sausage with beans has never tasted as good until you’ve taken a food tour in Barcelona. With Catalan pork sausages served up with locally grown white beans, other than paella, this is an example of the most authentic Spanish cuisine.
You probably wouldn’t normally associate pork sausages with a sweet dish, but if you’re willing to try something different then order Botiffara Dolca. The best places to pick up one of the more unusual foods to try in Barcelona are where the locals shop. Butchers and food markets are more likely to be selling this one than fine dining restaurants. The rather unique flavour is made with sugar, lemon and cinnamon.
Esqueixada de Bacallà
If you’re looking for local ingredients within your foods to try in Barcelona, then freshly caught fish is always on the menu. In particular, salt cod should be your must-try dish. If you’d like it served in style, Esqueixada de bacallà is a delicate dish combining the cod with olives, roasted peppers, chopped onion and a subtle dressing.
El Suquet de Peix
In keeping with tastes of the Mediterranean, Suquet de Peix defines the flavours of the ocean. While often made using hake, crayfish and mussels, the Catalan favourite can be produced with more expensive ingredients. As such restaurant versions are likely to include king prawns and Monkfish.
In the outer regions of the city, one of the foods to try in Barcelona is Fricandó. While traditionally made with veal, the key to this rich stew is one that embraces the wild mushrooms native to the Catalan region. It’s certainly a strong hearty meal if you happen to be having dinner in Spain during the winter months.
Escudella i Carn D’olla
Another one of those dishes for when you’re on a food tour in Barcelona and in need of something substantial to warm you up. This is a Catalan favourite that takes the influences of Italian pasta and meatballs, however, served in a more refined vegetable broth, rather than a tomato-based sauce.
One especially for the vegetarian and vegan foodies. It’s also another example of how food in Spain can take humble ingredients and make them really stand out. Similar to the likes of ratatouille, this dish is produced with home-grown vegetables such as aubergine, courgette and roasted tomatoes.
When it comes to deserts, joining a food tour in Barcelona will take you to some of the best cafés around. Where you can treat yourself to a traditional pudding with your coffee. During which you are likely to sample a local favourite, Crema Catalana. Similar to Crème Brûlée, it’s one of controversy among French and Spanish foodies as to which came first.
Bunyols de Vent
However, other than Churros, desserts in Spain are few and far between. As such an alternative to the obvious choices when in Barelona are Bunyols de Vent, a traditional Catalan doughnut. While these often associated with a treat during religious celebrations, there’s no reason they shouldn’t be available all year round. Ask your guide the best place to purchase some while on a street food tour in Barcelona.
Food and Drink Experiences in Barcelona
At Tabl. we have a wide range of food tours, cookery classes, wine tasting and other food and drink experiences available in Barcelona. Book online ready to discover real food, by real people.
Alternatively, if you run your own food and drink tour or experience in Barcelona and wish to advertise with us, we would love to hear from you.