This blog post was originally posted on January 26, 2015, and was updated on January 14, 2021.
Not sure which tapas to dive into first? Try these typical foods in Seville to kick start your culinary adventure.
In Spain, life is lived out in the streets. Café terraces fill up with workers enjoying a midmorning coffee and toast, chattering patrons spill out of bars onto the ancient cobblestone roads, and parks and promenades are among locals’ first choice for where to spend a sunny afternoon.
It’s no surprise, then, that eating out in Seville is a cherished local pastime. Home to around 3,000 tapas bars last we checked, it would take years to even scratch the surface of the Andalusian capital’s fascinating food scene.
But there are a few dishes that we hold near and dear to our hearts. These typical foods in Seville are what locals have been devouring happily for decades, or even centuries. Try as many as you can, and you’ll start to understand why we take our food and drink so seriously here in the south of Spain!
The Best Typical Foods in Seville
1 & 2. Secreto ibérico & presa ibérica
Let’s start with the crème de la crème: Iberian pork. While you’ll find a lot of it here in Spain, there are a few standout pork dishes that Seville does especially well.
Secreto ibérico is the most melt-in-your-mouth cut of pork that exists, and one of Spain’s best-kept “secrets” (pardon the pun). It’s a notoriously difficult cut of meat to get, but when cut and cooked correctly, it makes for an unforgettable bite.
It’s rivaled only by the equally delicious presa ibérica, a cut from near the top of the pork shoulder. No matter which option you choose while dining out, you won’t go wrong.
3. Carrillada de cerdo
Pork cheek is one of Seville’s most traditional stewed meats, and that means it’s pretty easy to find in tapas bars around town. Usually cooked in a simple wine reduction, some cooks also add carrots, cloves, and garlic to the mix.
A good carrillada (sometimes also called carrillera) should be tender and full of flavor, and it’s best accompanied by a big glass of red wine.
4. Espinacas con garbanzos
There may not be many veggie-friendly tapas on this list, but the traditional combination of spinach and chickpeas had to make the cut. Espinacas con garbanzos has roots in Seville’s Moorish and Jewish history, and is still popular in today’s tapas bars, where it’s often served with a picatoste (a large homemade crouton).
And now, back to the pork.
We can’t talk about typical foods in Seville without mentioning the serranito, the city’s signature sandwich. Seared pork loin is topped with salty serrano ham, a slice of tomato and a grilled green pepper. Stuff it all into a crusty homemade baguette, and you’ve got yourself a serranito.
Local tip: If you don’t eat pork, don’t worry—many bars also offer a chicken version, too! Just be sure to specify that you still need it sin jamón (without ham).
6. Solomillo al whisky
The origins of Seville’s popular whiskey sauce are a bit confusing. Nobody is quite sure how it originated before it started popping up on bar menus throughout Seville in the 1970s.
But regardless, the sauce has evolved to one of the city’s most famous. Whiskey, garlic, and olive oil combine to create one of the best glazes for grilled pork loin ever invented.
7. Montadito de pringá
If you haven’t noticed, typical foods in Seville tend to come in one of two forms: pork and sandwiches. In the case of the montadito de pringá, you get both.
The star of the show here is glorious pringá—the meaty leftovers of Seville’s delicious puchero stew (more on that later), all mashed up and perfectly combined. The versions vary but generally include chicken, blood sausage, and chorizo.
8. Cazón en adobo
Seville sits just an hour away from the Atlantic Ocean, so it’s no surprise that locals love seafood, too. And there’s no better way to enjoy it than cazón en adobo.
This local favorite consists of sand shark in a Moorish marinade of cumin, oregano, vinegar and lemon. Lightly fried and served to order, cazón en adobo is proof that food doesn’t need to be fancy in order to be memorable.
If you’ve got a sweet tooth, no worries—we’ve got you.
Often likened to a Spanish-style twist on French toast, torrijas are traditionally made with stale bread that is soaked in beaten eggs before being deep fried. It’s all topped off with sugar syrup, honey or sweetened milk.
In Seville, torrijas start popping up in pastry shops mainly around Semana Santa (Holy Week). However, many restaurants realize they make a fantastic dessert all year long—especially topped with ice cream!
Believe it or not, it does get cold come wintertime in southern Spain. And when it does, there’s nothing we love more than puchero.
Puchero is a hearty stew made with chicken, pork, vegetables, chickpeas, noodles, and so many other good things. We like to think of it as a sort of cure-all for any wintertime ailment—whether you’re under the weather, tired, or just need a pick-me-up, you can’t go wrong with puchero!
As a bonus, you can use the leftovers from your puchero to make the pringá mentioned above. It’s win-win!
Lots of people have heard of gazpacho, but if you haven’t tried salmorejo, you’re missing out.
Thicker and creamier than gazpacho, salmorejo also eschews the diverse array of vegetables present in the former and makes the tomato the star of the show. Despite its rich texture, the soup itself is actually completely vegan. It gets its creaminess from a mixture of bread and extra virgin olive oil.
Traditionally, bars in Andalusia serve salmorejo topped with bits of cured ham and hard-boiled egg. It’s as simple as it gets, but nothing hits the spot more on a sweltering Seville summer day!
12. Boiled shrimp
With the sunny Spanish coast just over an hour away, Seville has access to some of the best seafood in Spain. Case in point: fresh white shrimp from Huelva, which, when boiled, make for an absolutely perfect seafood tapa.
Shrimp in Spain are traditionally served shelled, so you’ll have to peel them yourself before eating. But that little bit of effort is well worth it when you bite into the succulent, flavorful shrimp that needs nothing more than a sprinkle of sea salt to truly shine.
13. Ensaladilla rusa
As the name implies, “Russian salad” isn’t Spanish in origin. But you’d be hard-pressed to find a bar in Spain that doesn’t have it.
This classic tapa brings together some veggies, seafood, and mayonnaise into one of the most refreshing things you can eat in Seville. Our favorite versions use homemade mayo and those white Huelvan shrimp we can’t get enough of.
14. Zanahoria aliñadas
Only a place like Andalusia could take the humble carrot and elevate it to such delicious heights.
Zanahorias aliñadas (or “aliñás” in the local dialect) are carrots that are parboiled to al dente perfection and then left to marinate in a Moorish-inspired spice blend and vinegar. The result: the most flavorful carrots you’ll ever try, and a perfectly sevillano way to get your daily fix of veggies.
15. Almejas a la marinera
Though the name might remind you of Italian-American marinara sauce, marinera here simply means “related to the sea.” This traditional way of preparing clams developed on the coasts of Spain and is now especially popular in Andalusia.
Classic Spanish ingredients like dry sherry and smoky paprika come together beautifully to create a mouthwatering sauce for the clams. Some recipes are spicier than others thanks to the addition of fresh pepper, but any variation of this dish you try is sure to be excellent.
16. Lentil soup with chorizo
Spanish lentejas are the ultimate winter comfort food. They’re delicious, easy to make, and warm you up like nothing else on a chilly day. Add in some excellent Spanish chorizo for a bit of heat and some protein, and you’ve got one of the best typical foods in Seville to enjoy all winter long.
17. Chickpeas with seafood
Another delicious addition to Andalusia’s wide repertoire of legume recipes is a simple stew of chickpeas with salt cod and shrimp. The secret here lies in making an excellent quality homemade shrimp or fish stock—it’s easier than it sounds, and really takes the dish to a whole other level!
18. Rice with pork
There’s so much more to Spanish rice than just paella. While Spain’s most well-known dish is best enjoyed on its home turf of Valencia, different rice dishes are popular all throughout the country.
In the area surrounding Seville, one popular option is rice prepared with pork, known in Spanish as arroz con cerdo or arroz del campo (“country-style rice”). It’s traditionally cooked outdoors at country barbecues over an open flame, but no worries if you don’t have any Spanish friends to invite you to one. Many bars and restaurants serve rice at least once a week as a special, so keep an eye out for signs reading something along the lines of Hoy arroz (“Rice today”).
19. Roscos fritos
Andalusian fried donuts coated in sugar? Yes, you read that right—and they’re even better than they sound.
Roscos fritos have long been associated with Holy Week in Seville, but today many families enjoy them during the winter holidays as well. They’re easy to make and especially perfect with a cup of strong coffee for merienda, or the traditional afternoon snack popular throughout Spain.
20. Vino de naranja
Okay, so this one is a drink—but we couldn’t not include it on our list of typical foods in Seville!
Vino de naranja, or orange wine, arrived in Seville in the early 20th century and has been a favorite among locals ever since. The drink is a dark-colored fortified wine that’s made even more delicious with the addition of bitter orange peels during the fermentation process.
Local Tip: Today, you can still visit the family-run bar that popularized orange wine in Seville! La Goleta is a tiny hole-in-the-wall just around the corner from the cathedral that couldn’t be more authentic, and it’s the best place in town to try this emblematic drink.