A Kid-Friendly Spanish Paella Recipe

I try to get my kids to eat as much non-British food as possible. They both adore curries (especially poppadoms for breakfast the day after a takeaway… #supermum), we recently had a proper American feast of pulled pork and cornbread and traditional carbonara is one of their favorites. Ditto American maple pancakes for breakfast!

Because cooking is such a love of mine I really enjoy teaching them the origins of where our food comes from and talk about how this differs from country to country – sometimes we get the atlas out and it turns into a lovely geography lesson.

Spanish Paella Recipe

One of our favourite cuisines to delve into is Spanish. I’ve been to both Madrid and Barcelona and just love the Spanish tapas style of eating; lots of nibbly bits of cheese, meats and fried stuff with copious amounts of Estrella, natch. HEAVEN. The children have an Auntie living in Madrid and with a new cousin en España I see it as my parenting duty to eat loads of chorizo ;) Which is where this here Spanish paella originated!

Kid-friendly Paella Recipe

This weekend we had a lovely quiet time at home – seeing friends, shopping and getting chores done – so our Spanish evening was going to be a little low-key. Less Estrella, more story time. Olé! And so I put my thinking cap on and brainstormed what Spanish-style feast I could whip up for my two that would be a) quick b) easy and most importantly c) very very tasty.


OK, so I did spend a while dreaming up my ideal Spanish feast. True story: on my 25th birthday I had 8 people over for dinner and spend two whole days cooking 8 tapas dishes for us all. It was basically heaven and FYI, heaven looks a bit like this:
– Sweet potato with chorizo
– Patatas bravas
– Catalan bread with Pata Negra
– Courgette flowers stuffed with goats cheese
…all washed down with a lovely Tempranillo.

But as I only have two little mouths to feed I thought I may as well be more conservative in my approach.

Spanish Paella

Now I love LOVE Spanish Paella but I was worried how my two might take it. My preference is to cook it with bells and whistles – squid and mussels – but I toned it down a bit for these two and just added chicken and cod. It was still very much delicious and Elfie described it as “the most splendid food I have ever eaten”. Nice. Hux ate half of his portion and if you know Hux’s eating habits this is basically the highest praise you can expect.

Spanish Paella Recipe

Oh, and in case you were wondering I carted my Spanish Paella outside with a large glass of white to enjoy in the garden once the kiddos were asleep. Perfection. Just as blissful as Barcelona’s Gothic quarter, honest…

5 from 6 votes

Spanish Paella

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4 people


  • 150 g Chorizo
  • 150 g Chicken breast diced
  • 150 g Cod
  • 1 pepper I used half yellow, half orange, but I think green is traditional
  • 150 g Paella rice
  • Pinch smoked paprika
  • Pinch turmeric
  • Half a glass of white wine
  • 1.5 pins or so of chicken stock


  1. Start by browning off your chorizo over a medium heat so all the lovely fat renders off. Add the pepper at this time and stir well. You could also add an onion but if you'd like to omit it (like I did) you can.

  2. Add the chicken and cod. Cook until the chicken is golden brown.

  3. Throw in the paella rice and stir well until coated with the fat from the chorizo. Add the white wine and turn up the heat so it bubbles for a couple of minutes.

  4. Add the pinch of paprika and turmeric and enough stock to cover the rice... turn the heat back down.

  5. Simmer for approx 10 minutes until the liquid has gone. Add more bit by bit until the rice is fluffy and cooked all the way through. I also added a handful of frozen peas at the end of the cooking process... every little helps, eh?

  6. Season to taste.


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  1. Jenny wrote:

    5 stars
    What a great recipe. I will have to try this out on my kids. Love the kiddos photos too. Definitely happy faces!!! Way to go Momma!!! :)

    Posted 7.15.14 Reply
  2. Jennifer wrote:

    I’ve never tried paella, but this looks delicious! Thanks for sharing.

    Posted 7.15.14 Reply
  3. Confession time… I have never tried Paella! I’m sat looking (and drooling) at your photos and must try to make and taste test your Paella ASAP

    Posted 7.15.14 Reply
  4. I adore paella but have never tried making it myself, this looks like the perfect recipe to try out. Yum! x

    Posted 7.15.14 Reply
  5. Pinkoddy wrote:

    5 stars
    Thank you, off to pin – shall give this a try with the kids.

    Posted 7.15.14 Reply
  6. Katy Hill wrote:

    LOVE the look of this. I’m with you – we have dishes from all over the world and I’m totes gonna try this one with my two! xx

    Posted 7.15.14 Reply
  7. Penny Carr wrote:

    That looks delicious. I’m working on getting my daughter to try more “foreign” food with limited success. Getting my son to eat anything is still a challenge though, but one that I’m determined to win one day.

    Posted 7.15.14 Reply
  8. Aly wrote:

    We love rice dishes especially those with lots of flavour and ingredients in.There are so many versions of Paella it’s nice to change the recipe around each time we make it.The kids love chorizo and chicken but I don’t think they’d be very keen on the cod though.

    Posted 7.15.14 Reply
  9. Ooh that sounds lovely. I love Tapas and a lot of Spanish food, but I am not a huge fan of Paella so I think that might work for me too.

    Posted 7.16.14 Reply
  10. Manneskjur wrote:

    5 stars
    I’ve not had Paella for aaaaages – something I need to add to next weeks shopping list then! Can’t beat a good bit of spicy sausage *ahem*

    Posted 7.16.14 Reply
  11. Carolin wrote:

    I’m a big kid, I can have some too, right? This looks great and I’m very tempted to try this – without the fish though.

    Posted 7.16.14 Reply
  12. Mari wrote:

    I love paella, husband hates all things rice result is we rarely eat rice in the house when he is home … however … when he’s not in for dinner risotto is our fave, I’ll definitely try this though, sounds delish

    Posted 7.16.14 Reply
  13. Sophie Drewitt wrote:

    5 stars
    Just made this for my daughter and she loves it! As do I! Fab recipe. Thank you :)

    Posted 7.22.14 Reply
    • alice wrote:

      That’s great to hear Sophie! :)

      Posted 7.23.14 Reply
  14. La wrote:

    Hi Alice!
    My goodness.. I loved this post. Your photography is incredible and you & your little family are just the sweetest ever. I too did the lidl post and absolutely loved reading your work, you are so talented – I am so excited to follow your blog from now on.

    Lara x

    Posted 7.24.14 Reply
  15. Frances wrote:

    5 stars
    My objective was no-fail, kid-friendliness so I used only sausage (bratwurst) as the meat. Boil links seven minutes, drain, then fry in butter five minutes each side. Healthy, right? Paella ended up being a little fattier due to sausage and butter but it was SOOOO good. Excellent recipe, thank you!

    Posted 11.12.21 Reply
  16. Shab wrote:

    5 stars
    My kids loved this, especially my fussy eater! Could not believe it, will be making this again. Super yum! Thanks so much for sharing.

    Posted 6.13.23 Reply