Barcelona’s Catalan Cuisine

We all know the age-old saying: ‘When in Rome, do as the Romans do’. But we recommend living by ‘When in Barcelona, eat how the Catalans eat’, because they really know how to eat. Of course, there’s a lot to be excited about if you’re planning a holiday to this outstanding, Spanish city. But there really is nothing like the traditional cuisine. Take a look through our guide of what you definitely don’t want to miss out on.



Ok so many foodies may know that tapas doesn’t actually originate in Barcelona. But the Catalans have made tapas their own tradition, especially with pintxos, which are a small snack not unlike canapés. Tapas is available in many of the restaurants in the area. Some of the top restaurants serve the slices of baguette with a wide variety of toppings. Toppings you might want to try are prawns, boiled eggs, cod and even black pudding. There’s plenty to pick from. The local white wine, txacoli, is highly recommended for washing it all down.

Pa amb Tomaquet

There is a bit of a difference to the standard bread and butter in Barcelona. Instead, the Catalans prefer to toast their bread and rub tomatoes, olive oil, garlic and salt. This represents the colours of the Catalan flag and it is absolutely delicious. You’re bound to want to start making it at home instead of just bread and butter and why not? It’s easy.


You’d be forgiven for thinking this is related to cocoa or chocolate, but coca is the Catalan version of pizza. Coca is traditionally square or rectangular so it’s slightly different to the pizza we are familiar with back home. There are all sorts of toppings available including tomatoes, cheese, onions, peppers, sardines and artichokes. Quite a common food at festivals throughout the year, coca also comes in sweeter versions ideal for dessert.


The chances are you’ve had versions of a Crema Catalana before but we strongly recommend trying an authentic one in Barcelona, its place of origin. It offers an amazing Spanish twist on a traditional crème brulee. Another very popular dessert you must try is mel i mato, which is a beautiful, sweet concoction of honey and fresh cream cheese. You should also try what is locally known as music. Music is basically dried fruit and nuts that tend to be mixed with either ice cream or cream cheese. It is most commonly served with a very sweet dessert wine called Muscatel, which is worth remembering.

With all the excitement of planning your Spanish holiday, it is important you don’t forget the essentials. Make sure you are fully prepared and apply for EHIC well in advance of your holiday. No one likes to think about falling ill or having an accident when they are out enjoying a well-deserved holiday, but unfortunately these things can happen anywhere. Without cover, you could be confronted with large, upfront medical fees if you require any treatment. It is always best to be prepared and not take the risk.


See more getting the EHIC on the Online EU Health card Application website.