Paella in barcelona spain: La Mar Salada | Restaurants in La Barceloneta, Barcelona

16 Restaurants for Authentic Paella in Barcelona (New 2023)

The best paella in Barcelona has come a long way. What was once simply a rice dish made by servants with the leftovers from royal banquets is now Spain’s most famous culinary export.

But don’t pick up that fork just yet! There’s a lot of pricey pre-made paella fleecing tourists daily.

Come along, and let me find you some good paella in Barcelona – whether you’re a first-time feaster or somebody looking for the gourmet paella of your life.

The Best Paella Restaurants in Barcelona

Bodega Joan – Best Authentic Paella in Barcelona

Area: Eixample  |  Carrer Rosselló 164  |  Metro: Diagonal (green line, blue line)

This affordable paella restaurant covers all the bases. Take one bite of their made-to-order mixed paella (a type of ‘surf and turf’), and you’ll know it’s their specialty dish.

There are also meat, seafood, and vegetarian options.

It’s got the friendliest waiters in the city and is ideal for a bustling local atmosphere. If you want to eat, drink, and be merry as they do in Spain, this is my suggestion.

Here’s what a reader had to say:

As you may have gathered, I’ve worked out a deal with Bodega Joan to offer readers an exclusive 25% discount on a paella-tasting menu for €30 pp, including three classic Spanish tapas plus wine and coffee.

Most good paella-tasting menus start at €35 per person and push €50, so if you’re looking for a cheap paella in Barcelona that doesn’t skimp on the quality you may want to click the banner below.

The Paella Club – Best Barcelona Paella Cooking Class

Area: Raval  |  Carrer del Dr. Dou 5  |  Metro: Liceu (green line)  |  Booking

Why not eat the best paella in Barcelona that you made actually yourself under the guidance of a top chef?

The slick decor, fancy aprons, and Masterchef-like workstations for cooking paella may look like a TV competition, but I assure you this experience is all about learning how to cook a gourmet version of Spain’s iconic dish – without pretense.

Did I mention it’s 5 courses and bottomless wine, with one of the desserts being a frozen gin and tonic?

For more info on the workshop that’s got a 5-star rating on Tripadvisor, check out my Paella Club page.

Xiringuito Escribà – Best Meat Paella

Area: Barceloneta  |  Avenida del Litoral 42  |  Metro: Llacuna (yellow line)  |  Website

Some of the best paella in Barcelona with a sea view to match.

It’s right on one of Barcelona’s best beaches, so you won’t have to walk far after a day in the sun. Seafood lovers will marvel at its delicious paella negra (the best squid ink paella in Barcelona) but be careful!

They kick out generous portions, so make sure you have room for dessert.

Reservations are a must, or you’ll be waiting at least 30 minutes.

Ideal for a post-beach meal or romantic night out.

Restaurant Envalira – Best Chicken Paella in Barcelona

Area: Gracia  |  Plaça del Sol, 13  |  Metro: Fontana (green line)  |  Website

This charming hole-in-the-wall, family-style restaurant has been serving authentic paella in Barcelona since 1972.

I love the location of Envalira in the emblematic Plaça del Sol because it gives you the chance to really soak up the Catalan community vibes of the chain-free Gracia neighbourhood.

In fact, if you’re looking for traditional Catalan dishes, then the arrós a la Milanesa, a type of paella-risotto hybrid with chicken broth, parmesan cheese, and saffron this, is a delicious rice dish.

Have a drink at Sol Soler before or after, it’s one of the best bars in Barcelona for a casual vermut with friends.

Cheriff – Best Local Paella in Barcelona

Area: Barceloneta  |  Carrer de Ginebra 15  |  Metro: Barceloneta (yellow line)  |  Website

When I was new to Barcelona, I had friends visiting, so in a panic, I polled my English students on the best paella restaurant in Barcelona. One of them, a cop from Valencia (the home of paella), swore on this place.

The lobster paella and fresh seafood tapas really delivered here. I imagine this is due to its seaside location and longtime connections with the fishermen in this area. Go here for the fish paellas.

Tasting menus at Cheriff start from €45 per person, which puts it mid-range price-wise.

7 Portes – Most Romantic Paella Restaurant in Barcelona

Area: Barceloneta  |  Passeig Isabel II 14  |  Metro: Barceloneta (yellow line)  |  Website

Here it’s all about old-world charm. They’ve been making paella here so long, we can’t help but crown them the best authentic paella in Barcelona, even if rejecting new-age techniques means they aren’t the tastiest.

Picasso was a regular at this classic Barcelona paella restaurant that opened in 1836. Named after the spacious restaurant’s seven entrance doors, it’s not only home to some of the best paella in Barcelona, but the piano players create a Casablanca-like vibe to add an impeccable touch of class to the meal.

Ideal for couples visiting Barcelona or business trips on the company card, it’s a tad pricey.

Hotel Restaurant La Ciudadela – Best Paella Restaurant for Wine Lovers

Area: Eixample  |  Passeig Lluis Companys 2  |  Metro: Arc de Triomf (red line)  |  Website

This new entry on the list made it not just for the quality of the paella but for the different rice specialties available for people who don’t like fresh fish (wait, who doesn’t?).

The duck paella really hits it out of the park here. You’ll also love the appetizers like their melt-in-your-mouth bellota ham. There’s also some amazing shrimp carpaccio if you just have to have seafood.

The two medium-sized dining rooms have a family atmosphere ideal for groups.

The Catalan wine list is also one of the best in the city if you want to sample local vineyards.

Diània – Best Paella in Gracia

Area: Gracia  | Carrer de Mozart, 20 |  Metro: Diagonal (green line, blue line)  | Website

If you’re looking for some truly authentic Valencian paella, I’ve got just the spot for you! Tucked away on a narrow street in the bohemian Gràcia district, you’ll find a small and unassuming taverna that’s a real hidden gem.

This place is run by twin brothers from Valencia’s Safor province, who take pride in sourcing most of their ingredients from local farms and small producers. And let me tell you, their paella is out of this world!

They may only offer a handful of rice dishes, but trust me, they do them exceedingly well.

The classic Valencian meat-based paella with chicken, rabbit, and fresh artichokes is a must-try, and at €17.50 per person (about £15), it’s a steal! But the real star of the show is the cuttlefish-and-prawn arroz del senyoret.

It’s exceedingly rare to find both authenticity and value, particularly in one of the city’s most affluent districts. So don’t miss out!

Restaurant Martínez – Best View of any Barcelona Paella Restaurant

Area: Montjuic  |  Ctra. de Miramar, 38  |  Metro: Espanya (multiple)  |  Website

This Barcelona paella restaurant is the only one that gives you a dreamy panoramic view of the city, Tibidabo Mountain, and the Mediterranean sea.

Perched on top of Montjuic, which is a tourist attraction in its own right and home to the famous Poble Espanyol, this luxurious ‘mountain bar’ would make the ultimate honeymoon or special occasion paella.

Their authentic paella menu features dishes with produce from Boqueria Market – the standout here is the traditional Valencian paella made with rabbit and chicken.

Tasting menus start at €55 per person.

L’Arrossería Xàtiva – Best Gluten Free Paella Restaurant

Area: Gracia  |  Torrent d’en Vidalet 26  |  Metro: Fontana (green line)  |  Website

Finally, a Barcelona paella restaurant outside the tourist nonsense.

This family-run gem is something to behold – they recommend the house’s special paella de mar y montaña (surf and turf paella). It’s a menu apt for celiacs – all the fried food is battered in gluten-free chickpea flour.

The entire menu is allergy sensitive, so whether you’re celiac, lactose intolerant, or looking for Barcelona’s best vegetarian restaurants, you know you’re playing it safe.

The best paella in Barcelona for a night out in the picturesque Gracia district or a low-key family dinner.

Los Pergaminos – Best Paella in the Gothic Quarter

Area: Gothic Quarter  |  Carrer Ample, 19  |  Metro: Drassanes (green line)  |  Website

If you’re touring around hard in the busy Gothic Quarter and need to know where to eat paella in Barcelona, that is not a tourist trap this is it.

If a small menu, no-nonsense place that carts out modernized versions of tapas in a classic setting sounds good, this is the Barcelona paella restaurant for you.

If we had one complaint, it’s that it’s only a paella of the day selected by the chef, so you won’t have much choice – but expect some unique paella dishes like foie gras with pork ribs and tart apple.

Restaurant CruiX – Best Paella Set Menu in Barcelona

Area: Eixample  |  C/ d’Entença, 57  |  Metro: Rocafort (red line)  |  Website

If you’re looking for a casual vibe that’s not afraid to unload some gourmet, signature tapas in addition to their rice dishes, you’re in for a treat – this is arguably the best paella in Eixample, which says a lot.

Restaurant CruiX is just a couple minutes away from Plaça Espanya and the Magic Fountain, making it a great post-event paella.

What stands out here are the €35 set menus that include their arròs de gambes a l’allet, a paella with garlic prawns.

The chef here has trained at some of the best restaurants in Barcelona, including Michelin-starred ABAC.

Barraca – Best Paella in Barcelona near the Beach

Area: Barceloneta  |  Paseo Maritim 1  |  Metro: Barceloneta (yellow line)  |  Website

Their slogan is ‘Rice and Sea’ – enough said.

This so-called urban beach restaurant in tourist central at Barceloneta beach is overseen by double Michelin-starred chef Xavier Pellicer. It naturally serves some of the best paella in Barcelona – just make sure you get a seat in the upstairs dining room because the view from there is incredible.

Expect to pay 30-35 euros, which is a great price-quality ratio for the neighbourhood. The organic vegetable paella is a great vegetarian option.

Ideal for beach lovers and people-watching.

🚌 Coming to Barcelona for paella? Make sure you know how to get around Barcelona on public transport first.

La Fonda – Best Cheap Paella in Barcelona

Area: El Gotico  |  Carrer dels Escudellers 10  |  Metro: Liceu (green line)  |  Website

With great prices usually reserved for previously frozen paella, this Barcelona paella restaurant offers ridiculous lunch menu specials that’ll have you full for about a tenner a head.

If you’re visiting Barcelona with kids, they’re also one of the few places with a full kid’s menu.

It’s a stone’s throw from the famous Rambla, but don’t let the touristy appearance fool you – locals chow down here daily. The traditional paella Valenciana (paella with rabbit and chicken) is a favourite.

Ideal for bargain hunters and those ready for a night out in the Gotico.

Can Solé – Biggest Paella Portions in Barcelona

Area: Barceloneta  |  Calle Sant Carles 4  |  Metro: Barceloneta (yellow line)  |  Website

This place has been recommended to me by more than one local – if you don’t trust them, then I can only say that a hundred years of history doesn’t lie! It’s a bit pricey because of the location, but the big portions and Master-chef-like presentation are second to none.

A little place occupying a two-story house that’s a real throwback to a time when Barcelona was more than tourism. The owner came by for a chat which was a personal touch not seen in more touristy options.

Ideal for rice dishes with a bit of real Barcelona and a modern touch.

Restaurant Arume – Best Paella for One Person in Barcelona

Area: El Raval  |  Carrer d’En Botella 13  |  Metro: Universitat (L1/L2)  |  Website

I said at the top that most places serve paella for a minimum of two people: so I’m putting Arume because it’s the best place to eat paella for one in Barcelona.

If you’re dining alone or simply with somebody who doesn’t want a rice dish, this is a great shout. You’ll have a choice between Galician seafood paella or duck paella with padron peppers.

It’s also one of Barcelona’s best tapas restaurants in its own right. Here you’ll find a modern execution of classic Galician dishes with eye-catching presentation.

This isn’t just about the best paella in Barcelona – so grab the crunchy octopus and a blackberry mojito.

7 Tangy Tips for Eating Paella in Barcelona

  • Spaniards eat dinner at around 10:00 pm, so 8:30 is a great time to get in without a reso.
  • Prices on menus are usually per person (minimum two people).
  • Paella is traditionally eaten on Thursday, so restaurants may be more crowded then.
  • The soccarat (‘singed stuff’) toasted rice at the bottom of the pan has the most flavour.
  • Avoid picture menus! Many Barcelona paella restaurants like this serve it previously frozen.
  • You can learn how to cook it yourself at a unique paella workshop with bottomless wine!

Types of Paella to Eat in Barcelona

Keep in mind that most authentic Barcelona paella restaurants will have their paella listed in both Spanish (paella) and Catalan (arròs) – if you’re in a really local place, it may just be Catalan.

Since most English paella menus in Barcelona use the Spanish version, I’ll be using that as well.

  • Paella de marisco: aka paella marinera, this traditional Spanish paella includes roasted red peppers, peas, clams, mussels, and prawns cooked in a seafood broth.
  • Paella Valenciana: the original paella recipe from the city of Valencia includes chicken, rabbit, and green beans and is cooked in chicken broth with saffron and paprika.
  • Paella del señorito: this Barcelona seafood paella is cooked with squid, langostines, and clams.
  • Paella mixta: the ultimate indulgence! A type of surf and turf paella that includes chicken breast, prawns, pork ribs, and clams.
  • Arroz negro: This is almost identical to the paella de marisco, only this one gets cooked with squid ink turning it an imposing black colour. The dish is also traditionally served with aioli (a type of garlic mayonnaise).
  • Fideuà: this traditional Catalan dish utilizes a very short noodle similar to spaghetti (but broken into smaller, 5 cm pieces) that’s cooked the same way as paella. It can be made in any of the traditional paella styles.

Best Paella in Barcelona Spain FAQ

Is paella popular in Barcelona?

Contrary to popular belief, paella is not a dish that Spaniards consume constantly. That said, for family Sunday lunches or special occasions, paella is quite popular in Barcelona.

How much does paella cost in Barcelona?

The cheapest paella in Barcelona will cost around €25 per person. You can find cheaper paellas for around €10-€15 per person, but these are tourist traps that are simply heating up frozen portions.

What’s the best paella in the Barcelona Gothic Quarter?

There is an abundance of tourist trap paella restaurants in Barcelona, and most of them are in the Gothic Quarter. Avoid it, but if you have to, then Los Pergaminos is one place you’re guaranteed a quality homemade paella.

What is the best paella de marisco in Barcelona?

The best paella de marisco in Barcelona is at Xiringuito Escriba.

What’s the best paella mixta in Barcelona?

The best paella mixta in Barcelona can be found at Bodega Joan.

Where can I eat the best vegetarian paella in Barcelona?

Due to its market fresh vegetables and modern culinary approach, I would say the best vegetarian paella in Barcelona can be found at Barraca.

What’s the best cheap paella in Barcelona?

If you’re looking for just single rice dishes, then Los Pergaminos offers the best value paella in Barcelona. That said, if you want an affordable paella-tasting menu for the full experience, Bodega Joan is the place to be.

Where do locals eat paella in Barcelona?

Locals usually avoid the tourist areas of the Old City and go to paella restaurants in Gracia, Eixample, and Barceloneta. The top paella restaurants in these areas would be Xiringuito Escriba, Bodega Joan, and Restaurant Envalira.

Still Looking for a Paella Restaurant Barcelona?

You now know where to get the best paella in Barcelona, but maybe something isn’t quite clear. If you need help with these rice dishes or any of the best things to do in Barcelona, then get at me in the comments below with any questions.

If you’re still wondering where to get the best paella in Barcelona, drop me a line here or join my group I’m Off to Barcelona – here, you can ask any questions, air out grievances, and chat with thousands of Barcelona travellers.

Enjoy your Barcelona paella! 🥘

Where to Eat Paella in Barcelona – Devour Tours

This blog post was originally posted on May 12, 2014, and was updated on August 19, 2022.

It’s not hard to find paella in Barcelona. But the authentic stuff? You’ll have to do a bit of homework! Check out our recommendations for where to eat paella Barcelona and enjoy this dish like a local.  

While paella originally comes from Valencia, the region just south of Barcelona, the Catalans have cooked up many delicious versions of the dish. Unfortunately, many tourist traps try to lure you in with the promise of a taste of the good stuff. To be sure you sample the best of the best, check out our guide on where to eat paella in Barcelona.

Top Tip: Join us for an authentic seafood paella on our delicious food tour in Barcelona’s historic center!

El Xiringuito Escriba

One of the most special things about Barcelona is that it allows you to enjoy paella right by the sea. This beautiful restaurant located on the beachfront in Poble Nou claims to serve the best paella in the city. Their menu is crammed full of delicious varieties, all based on seasonal and local produce. Pair any of the tasty paellas on offer with their homemade sangria de cava and you’re in for a treat.

If you’re looking for where to eat paella in Barcelona, look no further than this great spot. Paella typically takes about 30-40 minutes to arrive after ordering. To keep the hunger at bay, they have a terrific selection of tasty starters to choose from. Not to mention their house special patatas bravas, which are served with a unique hazelnut sauce and are definitely one not to miss.

Freshly cooked paella has to be one of our favorite Spanish dishes.


With beautiful wooden furniture, amazing Mediterranean tapas and delicious paellas, the beautiful beach views at Barraca are just an added plus here! This restaurant is run by the group Tribu Woki, which is managed by Chef Pellicer. You won’t want to miss out on their delicious beach-side paellas.

Address: Passeig Marítim Barceloneta, 1

Wonderful food and views at Barraca. Photo credit: Barraca.

Restaurante Salamanca

Salamanca is located in La Barceloneta, the famous beachy neighborhood, and serves up some of the best paella and rice in the city. Here you can choose from a few different kinds of paella, as well as the Catalan version called fideuá. Fideuá differs from paella in that the base is made of tiny, thin noodles instead of the traditional bomba rice. For a taste of Catalan culture, venture out and try this special version of paella!

Insider’s Tip: Looking to go all out? Try Salamanca’s house special paella served with lobster!

Can Majó

Another gem in the Barceloneta neighborhood, Can Majó opens up their beautiful terrace for guests to enjoy their fantastic paella in the sunshine or warm evening breeze. Here you can sample all sorts of different seafood mixes as well as the fideuà. If you are a vegetarian, this family-run spot will whip you up some vegetarian paella without a problem. When looking for where to eat paella in Barcelona, if beach, sun and great service are important to you, you can’t go wrong here.

A delicious mixed paella, with seafood, meat, and veggies.  

Marina Bay

Marina Bay is one of the Moncho’s restaurant group’s many Barcelona gems. Located right on the beach with sweeping views of Barceloneta and the Olympic Park, it’s the perfect place to go with a group of friends for a relaxing seaside meal. The rice here is made extra-special thanks to the exquisitely fresh seafood, and everything tastes even better when washed down with a wine from their excellent selection. Ask your server for a great Catalan bottle to go with your perfect Barcelona paella.


If you’re looking to try some traditional Valencian paella, Barcelona’s got something for you too! Head to the less-touristy neighborhood of Poble Sec where you’ll get to see how the locals really live and ask for a table at Elche. This place has been around for over 50 years and offers the most authentic paella Valenciana you’ll find north of Valencia itself.

Paella in Barcelona tends to favor seafood as its featured ingredient, at Elche, they’re traditionalists and include all sorts of regional versions on their menu.  

Refrain from drooling: arroz negro at Elche. Photo courtesy of Elche.

7 Portes

The people behind 7 Portes are passionate about food and bring you 6 different types of paella to choose from. Another Barceloneta spot, you can head over after a luxurious day at the beach for even more indulgence. They also offer a traditional but lesser known black rice dish, similar to paella but cooked with squid ink. Be sure to make a reservation and dress the part, this place is all about fine-dining. If you’re wondering where to eat paella in Barcelona, wonder no more, this place is definitely one not to miss!


Looking for one of the best places to eat paella in Barcelona, and a good bang for your buck? Then Maians (Carrer de Sant Carles, 28) is an excellent choice. This salty dog spot serves up a great many locals in the old fishermen’s district of Barceloneta, and paellas and fideuas go for only 10-12 euros a person.

Soulful and incredibly authentic Maians – a perfect spot for a great value paella. Photo Credit: PlateSelector.

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Paella in Barcelona – Happyinspain Guide

There are a lot of restaurants in Barcelona that say “paella + sangria” right at the entrance. You shouldn’t go to these establishments. Especially if it is in the center of the city, for example, on the Ramblas, where barkers often stand at the entrance and almost forcefully try to drag passers-by inside. Under the guise of an incomparable Spanish dish in such establishments, you will be served paella from a package, which usually costs a few euros in the supermarket and must be thawed before cooking. And the prices here are usually much higher than in places where they cook real delicious paella. So where is the best paella in Barcelona?

First, let’s talk about this dish.

The birthplace of paella is the city of Valencia, in other areas of Spain the original paella recipe is copied, more or less successfully. Initially, the word “paella” means a special round frying pan on which this dish is prepared. There are three types of traditional paella: Valencian paella proper “paella valenciana”, seafood paella “paella de marisco” and mixed paella “paella mixta”. All other types are already considered variations, improvisations and fantasies on the theme of a popular dish.

Valencian paella is made with white round grain rice, green vegetables, meat, green beans and seasonings. Seafood paella, as the name implies, replaces meat with fish and seafood, but it has another difference – it usually does not contain beans and green vegetables. Mixed paella usually consists of meat, seafood, vegetables and beans in a variety of proportions and combinations. And almost all types of paella are seasoned with saffron, salt, pepper, and the dish is cooked only in olive oil.

The tradition of cooking rice with meat, seafood and vegetables, as well as the tradition of using saffron, dates back to the Mauritanian period in Spain.

Despite its Arabic roots, paella is fundamentally different from oriental pilaf in that rice for it is never fried in oil, and the preparation of the dish begins with the fact that meat is fried in oil. Then green vegetables are added to the meat, which are stewed until soft, then garlic, chopped tomatoes and beans, then paprika, then water, saffron, snails and rosemary; the whole mixture is brought to a boil, put the rice and cook until tender, season with fresh rosemary and serve.

Some amazing recipes from Cuinera-Catalana:

Black Rice

Vegetable Paella


Paella in Barcelona on the map

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The Can Sabata restaurant is located on the Costa Brava in the town of Lloret de Mar and specializes in rice dishes. Here is a chic paella, which is prepared in an open kitchen right in front of you. It rarely happens in a restaurant that everything is perfect – the prices, the taste of the dishes, the size of the portions, the courtesy and promptness of the staff. Can Sabata is a restaurant that you want to visit again and again.

The most famous Spanish dish is, of course, paella. Originally from Valencia, this dish requires the preparation of impressive…