Black Paella With Squid and Shrimp

Black Paella or Paella Negra (called Arroz Negro in Spanish or Arros Negre in Valencian), is a delicious rice dish cooked with cuttlefish and its ink, shrimps, tomatoes, onion, garlic, oil, and salt.
But black?!!! What!!?? This is most people’s expression when they first see the black paella as it’s a color not usually associated with food and at first glance, they can’t guess how fantastic it is. After trying, people totally change their minds.

What is Black Rice Paella?

Black Paella With Squid and Shrimp
Surprising black paella (the lemon is only for decorating)

As you will see, this is a variation of seafood paella, with few ingredients but with all the flavor.

Furthermore, this rice dish comes with 2 extras:

  • Cuttlefish ink (the rice type is not black)
  • Alioli (optional but desirable)

Alioli (all i oli in Valencian) means garlic and oil (preferably olive oil), the two main ingredients of this sauce (and egg optionally). As a result, it can be a complement to many dishes, so it’s easily found along with fish, meat, pasta, rice…

Finally, it is worth to mention that the rice is white (medium-grain paella or bomba rice), you may want to use the same rice you would use on another authentic paella.

Now you will be cooking a paella negra with aioli 🙂

Easy paella negra recipe

Then, here you have an authentic Spanish paella negra recipe, the real way we make it.

🥘 Difficulty: Easy
🥘 Serves: 4
🥘 Nutrition: 380 Kcal

Paella Negra Ingredients

  • 400g paella rice
  • 500g cuttlefish
  • 150g peeled shrimps (optional)
  • 1 onion
  • 1 red pepper
  • 2 tomatoes (or 250g of canned grated tomato)
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • Extra Virgin Olive oil
  • Salt
  • 800g of fish/seafood stock

How to make paella negra?

Time needed: 45 minutes.

Follow the easy steps, and you won’t have problems to make a superb Black Paella With Squid and Shrimp, in my opinion, it is the best paella negra recipe (or one of the best) because it follows the traditional method but easing the process to make it easy to do. Just be careful with the ink and enjoy it.

🥘 Prep time: 20′
🥘 Cooking time: 25′

  1. Peel and chop onion and cloves of garlic

    Wash, chop and remove seeds from peppers; peel, chop and remove seeds from tomatoes.

  2. Clean the cuttlefish

    Save its ink bags

  3. Heat the oil in a pan or a paella

    Medium heating

  4. Add the garlic and onion and sauté

    Very finely chop the garlic and finely the onion

  5. Put in the pepper


  6. Add the cuttlefish

    Chopped to small pieces. Sauté for a little while

  7. Pour the grated tomato


  8. Pour over the rice and stir


  9. Mix the ink with a little bit of stock and pour it to the paella

    Then, pour the rest

  10. Pour the stock (not everything, save a bit)

    Try the stock and add more salt if desired.

  11. Mix the ink with the stock left and pour it.

    Bring the stock to a boil (mid-max heating), stir for the last time. Wait until the liquid is just evaporated (usually around 15 min)

  12. Turn the heat to the minimum

    Cover the paella and wait for 15 min more

  13. Turn off the heating and wait 5 more minutes

    Serve the rice with the alioli aside and enjoy it!
    black paella arroz negro recipe

How to extract the ink from the squid?

Squid ink is used by many chefs to add more flavor to their recipes. If you are lucky enough to find squid ink in a gourmet market, you will have to pay a considerable price for it.

However, you also can extract the ink in your own kitchen, without additional price, it only takes a little patience. In contrast, A few drops added to the food will be enough to add color and flavor, especially to dishes such as rice and pasta.

The ink bag is in the bowels of the squid. It resembles a black vein and is easily removed with the nails. To remove the ink, break the bag and put it in a spoonful of water, wine, vinegar or other cooking liquid.

Furthermore, squid ink does not cause stains, but it’s particularly unpleasant when impregnated under nails. So, I would wear gloves when handling, an apron and protect porous surfaces, such as the cutting board.

Finally, behind the eyes you’ll also find a small amount of squid ink, don’t waste it.

Now, you know all the secrets to making a delicious Black Paella With Squid and Shrimp

If you like seafood, Prawn Paella or Pasta Paella will make you love them! But what about authentic mixed paella, shrimp and chorizo paella or an easy prawn and chicken paella ?

Do you like prawns? Find more amazing paellas with prawns

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