Vegetable Paella is a fun and delicious way to feed a group. This recipe is easy to customize to your tastes!
Paella is a classic Spanish dish that usually contains chicken, rabbit, and snails. Meaning it isn’t usually vegetarian friendly. But luckily, this dish is actually very easy to make vegetarian-friendly and vegan-friendly since it doesn’t have any eggs or dairy. All we need to do is substitute the meat for veggies.
Techniques for perfect Vegetable Paella
- Mise en place! With some recipes, I find it easy enough to slice the veggies while I cook, but this recipe isn’t one of them. There is a fair amount of slicing, and the cooking happens rather fast, so make sure to follow the steps in the recipe and have everything ready to go.
- Get a nice big paella pan or cut the recipe in half. I use an 18-inch paella pan. This spreads the rice fairly thin and helps you get the nice crispy crust on the bottom.
- Think about your heat source. My favorite place to cook paella is on a grill or smoker, as my stovetop burners aren’t very big. If you are using your stovetop, make sure to move the pan around to cook evenly.
- 1 yellow onion
- 1 green bell pepper
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1 Roma tomato
- 1 zucchini
- 1 yellow squash
- 1 jalapeno (optional)
- 4 cloves garlic
- 17.5 ounces bomba rice, this is a little more than 2 cups
- 1 cup peas
- 6 to 8 cups vegetable stock or broth
- 2 pinches saffron, about 1 teaspoon
- 3 teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
- 1 marinated piquillo pepper, sliced
- 1 bunch chives, chopped
- 1 Lemon, sliced into 6 wedges
- Olive oil, about a cup
- Mise en place sliced veggies: slice 3/4ths of the yellow onion, 3/4ths of the green bell pepper, red bell pepper, zucchini, squash, and jalapeno (if using). Put into a bowl and set aside.
- Mise en place Sofrito: Mince together 4 cloves garlic, remaining 1/4 yellow onion, 1 roma tomato, and remaining 1/4 bell pepper. Place into a bowl and set aside.
- Brown the veggies: Heat paella pan over medium-high heat. Add enough olive oil to cover the bottom of the pan, and then add sliced veggies and spread them out. Cook until veggies start to brown but are still crisp. About 3 to 5 minutes. Use a slotted spoon or tongs to remove the veggies from the pan into a bowl and set aside.
- Cook the sofrito: Add more oil to the pan and then add the minced sofrito. Fry until the sofrito starts to brown. About 3 to 5 minutes.
- Add the rice: Add the rice, peas, and paprika to the pan and stir until everything is combined. Cook stirring constantly to fry the rice, for about 3 minutes.
- Stock: Add 6 cups of stock and the saffron and bring to a simmer while scraping the fond (browned stuck on bits) off the pan and into the rice. Help the rice settle into an even layer and then do not stir again.
- Make sure the rice is cooking properly: Depending on your heat source, the size of your pan, and even the brand of your rice, the rice may take a different amount of time, and different amount of stock to cook. Usually it’s about 20 to 30 minutes. When the stock has mostly evaporated, taste the rice to make sure it is almost done. If the liquid is almost gone and the rice is still hard, add more stock. Salt and pepper to taste, depending on your stock you may want a lot or a little salt and pepper.
- Add the veggies back: When the rice is almost done cooking and the liquid is no longer above the rice, arrange the previously browned sliced veggies, the tomatoes, and the piquillo peppers on top of the rice. Cook until the rest of the stock has evaporated and the rice is crispy on the bottom.
- To serve: Garnish with chives and squeeze with lemon.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 583Total Fat: 39gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 31gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 5495mgCarbohydrates: 51gFiber: 5gSugar: 18gProtein: 10g
Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.