Spanish food is known for being fairly straight-forward and simple while delicious and terribly tasty. One of the most characteristic Spanish dishes you can find is tapas, which are very often served in bars as a side dish/appetiser to go with drinks (in some places you even get the tapas for free when you order your drinks).

The word tapa comes from the old tradition of covering (to cover=tapar) your drink with a piece of bread or a slice of ham in order to avoid flies or dust to fall inside. Nowadays they are offered as appetisers that people have before starting lunch (so you can go to a bar to get some tapas and drinks and then go for lunch) or they are eaten as lunch or dinner by ordering several ones to fill you up (as they are usually small dishes).

There are hundreds of different tapas, but depending on where you travel in Spain, you will find some that are more popular than others. As I’m from Murcia, in the south-east of Spain (near Alicante), I’m going to share with you some examples of tapas that are often seen in my province. They are SO EASY and quick to make that you’ll be able to enjoy them wherever you live and surprise your friends by having them over for some typical Spanish tapas at lunch or dinner.

Here are some of the most popular tapas in Murcia:


The Murcian tapas trilogy. Picture from Guia Hedonista

Bicicleta (bicycle): Spanish potato salad (olivier salad) over a ring-shaped breadstick (rosquilla).

Marinera (sailor woman): Spanish potato salad (olivier salad) over a ring-shaped breadstick (rosquilla) with an anchovy on top.

Marinero (sailor man): Spanish potato salad (olivier salad) over a ring-shaped breadstick (rosquilla) with a pickled anchovy on top.

Matrimonio (married couple): same as the previous one, but with both a salt anchovy and a pickled anchovy on top.

Caballito (little horse): battered prawn tails.

Ensalada murciana (Murcia’s salad): sliced tomatoes, sliced hard-boiled egg, tuna, olives and spring onions.

Caballitos from El Imperdible 

Murcia´s salad from El Imperdible 

Pincho de Chistorra. Pinchos are usually a bitesize piece of food held with a toothpick, with or without bread.

Pincho de tortilla (omelette skewer) (v): just a wee slice of Spanish potato omelette held with a toothpick.

Pincho de chistorra (paprika sausage skewer): just a paprika sausage (chistorra) on top of a baguette/rustic bread slice and held with a toothpick. Simple as.

Sobrasada con queso: sobrasada (Spanish spreadable sausage) spread over a bit of toasted/grilled baguette/rustic bread slice and a slice of grilled fresh cheese on top.

Patatas con ajo (potatoes with garlic) (v): boiled/roasted potatoes with a dipper dish of alioli (garlic and olive oil dressing).


Michirones: dried beans served in a very hot dish with sweet paprika, garlic, pancetta, ham bone, pepper, salt and a bay leaf.

Perdices (partridges) (v): roman lettuce hearts cut into halves and dressed with oil, vinegar, salt and black pepper.

Pisto murciano (Murcia’s Ratatouille) (v): fried green peppers, aubergine, tomato and onion all mixed up together.

-Zarangollo (v): courgettes, onions and scrambled eggs fried in olive oil with salt.

Michirones. Picture from Alcorta Vino.

As you can see, while some tapas are very elaborated dishes, most of them are really easy to make. Also, those 14 tapas include meat-free, vegetarian and gluten-free options (and you can always swap your ordinary bread with gluten-free bread instead!). 

You can find some of the ingredients for these delicious and super easy recipes at Las Delicias, brought all the way from Spain (some are even brought from Murcia!). Fancy having a look online and getting ready for your next Spanish Tapas day? Remember we ship everywhere in the UK!

Cristina Lopez

Cristina Lopez

Cristina López was born in Murcia (Spain). She’s got a Bachelor’s degree in Art History and works as a fiction writer.

She first traveled to Scotland in 2013 in order to do some research for her latest novel. After falling in love with the country (and a certain highlander) she moved there in 2014.

Cristina is the author of several Urban Fantasy and Historical Fiction novels published in Spain. As well as writing, she loves travelling, reading and watching movies. She’s currently working on her next book while helping as a shop assistant, communitiy manager and content creator in Las Delicias.

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