Spanish Paella

This is such an impressive dish to serve at a dinner party. It’s very filling and looks way more difficult to execute than it is. Some people don’t like seafood so to accommodate these guests just cook the seafood separately and you can add it to the dishes of those who want it afterwards. I used a paellera (a wide, shallow cooking pan used specifically for paella) but you can use a large skillet instead. You can substitute or leave out any of the seafood or use ham instead of sausage. The possibilities are endless. The only thing I would not omit is the saffron – it is essential to get the right colour and flavour. 

Spanish Paella

Spanish Paella

Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
Total time: 1 hour, 45 minutes
Yield: 8-10 servings

Spanish Paella


For the Stock

  • 7 cups chicken broth

  • ½ tsp. saffron

  • 1 onion, quartered

For the Paella

  • 4lbs bone-in, skin on chicken thighs

  • ½ cup olive oil

  • ½lb chorizo sausages

  • 1 onion, finely chopped

  • 4 cloves garlic, minced

  • 4 green onions, chopped

  • 1lb medium shrimp, shelled

  • 4 lobster tails

  • 3 cups short grain rice

  • ¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped plus more for garnish

  • 2 bay leaves

  • ½ cup white wine

  • Juice of ½ a lemon

  • 1 cup frozen peas

  • 16 clams, scrubbed

  • 16 mussels, scrubbed

  • Lots of lemon wedges for garnish


Simmer ingredients “for the stock” covered, for 15 minutes. Remove the onion and discard, set broth aside. In a paellera or a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Pat the chicken thighs dry with a paper towel and season them with salt and pepper. Fry skin side down until golden brown, flip and continue to brown on the other side. The chicken does not have to be fully cooked at this point. Remove to a warm platter. Turn the heat to medium and brown the sausages on all sides. Remove, let rest and then cut into ¼ inch slices. It is also okay if the sausage is not fully cooked at this point. Sauté chopped onions until softened, add garlic and green onion and continue to cook until garlic is fragrant (approximately 1 minute). Stir-fry lobster tails for 3 mins, and move to platter with chicken. Stir in rice and coat well with oil (use additional olive oil if needed). Sprinkle with parsley and add in bay leaves. Reheat reserved broth to boiling and stir into the rice along with wine and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally over medium high heat for 15 minutes. Remove bay leaves.

Preheat oven to 325F. Bury chicken and chorizo in the rice. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes, remove and stir in frozen peas. Top with lobster tails and shrimp. Push clams and mussels into the rice, with the edge that opens facing up. Place in the oven and continue to cook for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let it sit on top of the stove, covered with foil for 10 minutes before serving. To serve, garnish with parsley and lots of lemon wedges.

Spanish Paella