19 types of tapas you should eat in Spain

Gambas al AjilloShutterstock/VisionsiGambas al ajillo are fresh prawns doused in olive oil, chilli, and garlic.

Small in size but full of flavour, tapas offer diners the chance to explore a variety of flavours without feeling stuffed.

There’s a huge variety of savoury, sweet, and spicy tapas to taste across Spain.

From succulent prawns cooked in garlic and chilli peppers to a refreshing serving of gazpacho, here are 19 mouthwatering tapas to try on your next trip to Spain.

Gambas al ajillo are fresh prawns that are cooked in sizzling olive oil with garlic and chilli peppers, packing a flavorful punch.


Pimientos de Padrón are small peppers that come from Galicia, in the northern part of Spain. They're fried in oil and salted, and every so often a few of them will have an extremely spicy flavour.


Gildas are a simple assembly of anchovy, olives, and chilli peppers.

Shutterstock/ jokihaka

Gambas a la plancha are whole, unpeeled shrimps that are salted and cooked on a flat iron grill. The heads are left on for extra flavour.

Wikimedia Commons

Papas arrugadas are very small potatoes that are boiled in salt water, drained, and slightly roasted before being served with mojo, a sauce consisting of garlic, paprika, red pepper, olive oil, and sometimes cumin.

Wikimedia Commons

Chipirones are small squids that are usually fried or grilled whole to offer a healthy and delicious snack.


Queso con membrillo is a sweet and savoury tapa made using manchego cheese layered with a paste of quince, vanilla, lemon, and sugar.

Wikimedia Commons

Pulpo a la gallega consists of octopus cooked in boiling water, seasoned in paprika, and served hot in olive oil.


Tortilla de patatas, or tortilla española, is an omelette made with potatoes bound with egg and is usually flavored with onions. As tapas, they are commonly served in small wedges.

Wikimedia Commons

Solomillo al whisky is popular in Seville and typically consists of pork medallions marinated in whiskey or brandy and fried in olive oil.

Wikimedia Commons

Calamares a la romana are battered and fried squid rings.

Wikimedia Commons

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.