How to eat a paella like a true Valencian

You will think that everybody knows how to eat a valencian paella, that it is logical and simple: you make the paella, you take a plate, a spoon and eat. But how many people know how to eat a paella like a Valencian? Well, from Gastraval as experts in paellas and rice dishes, we have decided that it is important that everyone knows how to eat paella Valencian style in an authentic and traditional way. In this publication we explain “The 5 commandments of the good eater” so you can enjoy eating a good paella like a true Valencian.

pareja comiendo paella valenciana en restaurante

The 5 commandments of the good eater


1. Long live the cook! Once the paella is ready, everyone should applaud the cook for a job well done, accompanied also by the shout “viva el cuiner”.

2. No plates! The diners should be distributed around the paella so that everyone can eat perfectly from it. Each one should have a spoon, preferably a wooden one, to sink their teeth into the paella.

3. Each one to their own portion. Each diner must eat of the part closest to them in the paella. It is strictly forbidden to eat on the side of your two neighbors in the paella, each one must manage their own piece, it is not for three and if it is finished “s’acabat”.

4. Without “socarrat” there is no paella. Every good paella prides itself on the “socarrat”, the caramelized layer that is created between the paella and the rest of the rice: just a couple of millimeters to turn a dish into a great dish. A delicacy for many, and a molar breaker for others.

5. Not a single grain of rice. To end the act of eating paella, it has to be completely empty, the diners full and the after-dinner conversation ready because there is a long time of chatting to come.

This is how you can enjoy eating a paella Valencian style, but paella is not just a dish, it is a “sentiment” and that is why the way we eat it is also an act of enjoyment and sharing a moment with our loved ones. But… what is really important is the taste of the paella, possibly so important that it is a topic of conversation throughout the meal. To know how to make a good paella we leave you this link to our post where we explain how to make it.

típica paella valenciana

Tips for your paella to turn out like a real chef’s

When is it an authentic Valencian paella and when isn’t it? The debate is always on the table, for many years we have seen aberrations of paellas, that is paella with chorizo and surimis, paella with corn and sausages, paella with egg… That is not paella! That’s rice with “stuff”. That’s why we are going to give you 4 tips to get it perfect.

· Paella is composed of these ingredients:

Rice, chicken, green beans and butter beans. It is not necessary to get as creative as we have seen in the previous paellas, sometimes the simplest is the best.

· The stir fry ritual is sacred:

First the chicken (and rabbit, if it is Valencian) is browned with oil in the frying pan or paella pan and once they are well seared, the vegetables are added.

· The type of rice and the measures of water are very important:

Add more water than rice because during the cooking process the water will be reduced and a tasty base will be formed.

· The paella pan:

If we want it to be totally traditional, we must use stainless steel paella pans. The enameled steel ones are sometimes used because they are easy to preserve and wash, but they are not the traditional ones.

These are small tips that can save us from ruining a meal with family or friends. Small details do matter.

detalle de paella valenciana

What makes our paella authentic?

Experience, the ingredients and a traditional recipe. At Gastraval we use the best quality, traditional, fresh, Mediterranean ingredients to cook our paella and our wide variety of rice dishes. We keep to traditional recipes and methods and we also have a team of professionals who prepare the best Valencian rice dishes you can taste in the traditional paella pan.

In Gastraval we know how to eat a good paella, but above all how to cook it, you can learn the secrets of the traditional Valencian paella cooking process with us by visiting this link.


Paella at Christmas?

It is a Valencian tradition to share the “paella moment” with our loved ones and even more so at this time of the year. The Christmas season is approaching,...

Scroll to Top