Try our classic paella recipe or check out our quick prawn and chorizo paella, chorizo risotto and vegan paella. Accompany this recipe with horchata, a Spanish plant-based drink originating from Valencia.

Where does paella come from?

Paella originated in Valencia, Spain and traditionally would be made over an open fire with chicken or rabbit, green beans, tomato, rice and saffron (surprisingly seafood did not feature). Modern versions make use of different regional produce so duck, pork and seafood will all feature depending on where you are. Chorizo gives a lovely smoky edge but isn’t strictly traditional either.

Do you need a paella pan?

The dish takes its name from the large flat pan which feeds a big crowd and allows the rice and meat to cook evenly and develop the classic ‘socarrat’ crispy crust on the bottom. At home a deep-ish wide frying pan will do a similar job.

Which rice do you use in paella?

Paella uses short grain rice which soaks up the flavoured cooking stock becoming plump but still keeping its shape. Look for Bomba or Calasparra on packaging. Rice sold simply as paella rice is also fine to use – just avoid using long grain or basmati – it doesn’t have the same absorbing properties so you won’t get the right result.

Paella recipe


  • 6 skinless chicken thigh fillets, cut into large chunks
  • olive oil
  • 250g cooking chorizo, sliced
  • 75g cubetti di pancetta
  • 1 large onion, halved and sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 2 red pepper, cut into pieces
  • 150g green beans, cut into pieces
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 500g paella rice
  • 1.25 litres chicken stock
  • a pinch saffron
  • 300g raw shell-on prawns
  • 1kg mussels, cleaned (discard any that don’t close when tapped)
  • chopped to serve flat-leaf parsley
  • lemon wedges to serve


  • STEP 1

    Cook the chicken in a little oil a large, wide frying pan or paella pan until browned all over. Scoop out and add the chorizo and pancetta and cook until crisp at the edges. Add the onion, garlic and pepper and cook until softened, then add back the chicken with the green beans. Stir in the paprika and cook for a minute then add the rice and stir to coat. Pour in the chicken stock, put on a tight lid or cover with foil and cook for 15-20 minutes until rice is just tender.

  • STEP 2

    Sit the prawns and mussels on top and keep cooking for a few more minutes with the lid on until the mussels are open and prawns are cooked through. Stir in the parsley and serve with lemon wedges.

Try these three variations on a classic paella:

Vegan paella

Full of antipasti favourites like peppers, sunblush olives and artichokes, this plant-based paella is packed with punchy flavour and will impress the whole family.

Vegan Paella Recipe

Seafood paella

Paella is a dish we all love from summer holidays, and now you can bring it home thanks to this quick and easy recipe for two. Packed with prawns, red peppers and peas, it's spiced with smoky paprika and will be on the table in less than 30 minutes.

Seafood Paella Recipe

Slow cooker prawn and chorizo paella

Centuries ago, Sardinia was occupied by the Spanish. As a result, the island is famous for its paella, albeit with an Italian twist (orzo or fregola is used instead of rice). This prawn and chorizo version has been created especially for your slow cooker, and is a great reason to dust it off over the summer months.

Sardinian prawn and chorizo paella


Janine Ratcliffe Portrait
Janine RatcliffeFood director

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