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Tasty dishes to check out in Benidorm, Spain

Tasty dishes to check out in Benidorm, Spain

by George Black
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Table of contents

  • 1. Mixed grill is a strong start
  • 2. Ribs are perfect for a tourist
  • 3. Menudo is a refreshment
  • 4. Entrecote is a French influence
  • 5. Taters are hefty
  • 6. Lasagna is just too much
  • 7. Paella is very local
  • 8. Cocido is traditional
  • 9. Croquettes are fast
  • 10. Tapas are super light
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A popular Spanish tourist destination since the 1920s, Benidorm is known for its hotel industry, beaches, and skyscrapers and receives as many tourists from abroad as from Spain. The town's history dates back to pre-Christian times, so the feeling of old Europe is guaranteed here, and modern amenities and infrastructural comfort only add to the overall feeling. The town is divided into five parts with interesting differences, and each has lots of places to eat at and explore the local gastronomical scene.

1. Mixed grill is a strong start
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GUSTO Benidorm
#457 of 1588 pubs & bars in Benidorm, Spain
C/ de Sant Pere, 1, Benidorm, Valencian Community, Spain
Open until 11PM
Mixed grill
Mixed grill

Mixed grill is a traditional dish of many countries. It's a plate filled with grilled beef, pork, chicken, sausage, chorizo, cheese, plantains, cassava, tomatoes and potatoes, among other ingredients.

Let's not try and find something smaller and lighter to start the list and the food exploration, Spain is a "hot" country – its climate and cuisine are associated with something warm, fried, and grilled. Therefore, we should get over with the rather simplified image and eat some of the Spanish mixed grill. Components of the grill may include pieces of beef, pork, chicken, fish/shark, sausage, kidney, or liver, among others. Locally, the meat from the grill is served in a variety of forms, including on sticks.

For a good grilled piece of meat, try GUSTO Benidorm.

2. Ribs are perfect for a tourist
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Sizzler Steak House
#78 of 1804 restaurants in Benidorm, Spain
Av. Dr. Severo Ochoa, 38, Benidorm, Valencian Community, Spain
Open until 12AM
Ribs
Ribs

Ribs are served as a rack of beef, veal or pork, which diners customarily tear apart by hand, then eat the meat from the bone.

Continuing with the hefty meat dishes, it's time to get to something perfect in its simplicity. Spanish chefs do wonders when preparing ribs. Spanish barbecued ribs are an interesting gem hidden among the more globally popular recipes. The important thing is to marinate for at least three hours and then grill for one hour. The ribs can be served as tapas or as a main dish along with vegetables, French fries or rice, and a few sauces for dipping. The best drink to accompany them is red wine.

So, if you want to be wined and dined properly, go to a place like Sizzler House.

3. Menudo is a refreshment
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Amigos Bistro by Nas & Dino
#15 of 1804 restaurants in Benidorm, Spain
Av. de la Armada Española, 19, Benidorm, Valencian Community, Spain
Closed until 7PM
Menudo
Menudo

Menudo is a spicy tomato-based Mexican soup made with pork meat, vegetables, garbanzo beans and green. It is served with chopped onion, celery and a dash of oregano.

Soups are usually used as the first course, but this one can stand on its own. Spanish chefs adapted the Mexican recipe for the cow stomach soup Menudo and perfected it back on the continent the original colonists came from. Menudo has been common in food stores and restaurants in cosmopolitan areas, acquiring a reputation as a "hangover food". Its ingredients include tripe in broth with a red chilli pepper base, which naturally has a sobering effect.

Amigos bistro is a safe choice for soups.

4. Entrecote is a French influence
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Restaurante La Rana
#9 of 1804 restaurants in Benidorm, Spain
Costera del Barco, 7, Benidorm, Valencian Community, Spain
Closed until 8PM
Entrecote
Entrecote

The name of the dish means "between the ribs" in French. Entrecote is made with tender meat from the rib area. The meat is fried or grilled with spices. It is served hot with vegetable siding. The dish is so juicy and tender.

Since Benidorm is a tourist town, foreign elements of the local food scene are pretty much what you'd expect. Local chefs integrate the best dishes from countries across the ocean, like Menudo, or from different parts of Europe, such as the entrecotes. A good entrecote is cut from the back of the animal adjacent to the vertebrae and above the rib cage, and only the youngest most tender meats are used, which makes the dish rather expensive and complicated to make, but the taste and the spices will make up for the difficulty.

La Rana has some of the best steaks in town.

5. Taters are hefty
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Tepuy Burger
#443 of 1804 restaurants in Benidorm, Spain
C. Gerona, 16, Benidorm, Valencian Community, Spain
Open until 11:30PM
Taters
Taters

This is another variation of fried potatoes and it is served with a variety of flavors such as pepper or bacon. They can be fried in a pan or deep-fried.

This list is shaping up to be the most calorie-heavy of all the recent ones. However, in a place like Benidorm burning calories is as easy as gaining them. That's why it's safe to eat grated potatoes formed into small cylinders and deep-fried, often served as a side dish. These are called taters, or tater tots, and came from America in the middle of the 20th century. In Spain, this kind of food fits perfectly with the local love for meat and various additives, making imported recipes unique.

Tepuy Burger has surprisingly good taters.

6. Lasagna is just too much
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Ristorante Pizzeria L'Originale Benidorm
#16 of 1804 restaurants in Benidorm, Spain
C/de la Palma, 36, Benidorm, Valencian Community, Spain
Closed until 8:15PM
Lasagna
Lasagna

This traditional Italian dish comes from Bologna and it seems the oldest type of pasta. Lasagna is stacked layers of wide and flat pasta and a variety of other ingredients, including sauce, vegetables, cheese, meat, etc. The word 'lasagna' refers to a pot where this dish was cooked.

All right, this list is reaching ironically fatty levels in terms of the foods it describes. But lasagna is another tourist attraction in local restaurants. Maybe because of the popularity of the resort among Italians, maybe due to the overall influence of Italian cuisine. Nevertheless, the classic dish comprises stacked layers of lasagne alternating with fillings such as ragù, vegetables, cheeses, and many other ingredients combined in accordance with the skill and imagination of the chef. It is a go-to- Italian dish in Benidorm.

L'originale has great lasagna with some Spanish flavour.

7. Paella is very local
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Restaurante J.Manu
#63 of 1804 restaurants in Benidorm, Spain
C/de la Palma, 15, Benidorm, Valencian Community, Spain
Closed until 7:30PM
Paella
Paella

Paella is a national dish of Spanish cuisine, its homeland is the city of Valencia. In Spain, there are about three hundred varieties of paella. In each Spanish province, paella is cooked in its own way: with meat, fish, seafood. There is also a vegetarian paella. But the main ingredients remain unchanged: it is saffron-flavored rice, tomatoes, and olive oil.

We've talked about tourist food mostly, but now it's time to mention something that's actually Spanish. Paella is actually from the region of Valencia, meaning that Benidorm and its restaurants are no strangers to exquisitely cooked variations of the dish. The dish takes its name from the wide, shallow traditional pan used to prepare the dish on an open fire. Paella Valenciana is believed to be the original recipe and consists of round grain rice, bajoqueta and green beans, peas, rabbit, chicken, sometimes duck and butter beans cooked in olive oil and chicken broth.

J Manu will take care of your Valencian cuisine interests.

8. Cocido is traditional
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Mesón el Segoviano de Benidorm
#263 of 1804 restaurants in Benidorm, Spain
C. Ibiza, 10, Benidorm, Valencian Community, Spain
Open until 1AM
Cocido
Cocido

Cocido is a thick bean soup or chickpeas with vegetables, meat and smoked meat. In fact, there are two dishes in one — a soup and a main course. It is prepared, as a rule, in a special pot.

Another essential Spanish offering on our list would be the traditional stew eaten as a main dish in several regions of the country. Cocido is made from pork, beef, chicken, mutton, embutidos and vegetables like cabbage, turnips, parsnips, potatoes, carrots and chickpeas. The basic method of preparation involves slow cooking over low heat. Besides classic variations, there are literally dozens of regional recipes in multiple countries on both sides of the Atlantic.

9. Croquettes are fast
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Dehesa de D. Saturnino
#586 of 1804 restaurants in Benidorm, Spain
Carrer del Moli, 7, Benidorm, Valencian Community, Spain
Closed
Croquettes
Croquettes

Croquettes, especially stuffed with jamon, are often served at tapas bars. The dough is mainly made with stuffing (jamon, ham, seafood) and with the béchamel sauce.

The dishes on this list are getting lighter as we go along, and near the end, we're encountering something that is typically used as a side dish in Benidorm restaurants. Croquettes are actually sold as fast food in some places, and the breaded and deep-fried dumplings with a filling are perfect for that role. The binder for the dough is typically a thick béchamel or brown sauce, mashed potatoes, and wheat bread. Fillings usually comprise finely chopped meat, seafood, cheese, rice, pasta, mushrooms, and various vegetables, etc.

Decent croquettes can be found at Dehesa de Don Saturnino.

10. Tapas are super light
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Restaurante La Cava Aragonesa
#95 of 1804 restaurants in Benidorm, Spain
Pl. de la Constitució, 2, Benidorm, Valencian Community, Spain
Open until 12AM
Tapas
Tapas

Tapas refers to any snack served at the bar for beer or wine. It can be nuts, chips or olives, or independent dishes like seafood, sandwiches, different cold and hot appetizers. Often, small "tapas" are included in the cost of the drink. A popular entertainment of the Spaniards is to move from the bar to the bar, drinking wine or beer and eat tapas.

Now we're at a point where it's wise to recommend either a finisher or an appetizer in a fit of dualistic irony. Luckily, Spanish tapas can serve as both. This light snack is ubiquitous in its simplicity, it is basically thin slices of bread with a combination of ingredients suitable to be served as a side dish of a component for a drink, which was the original purpose. Tapas have evolved through Spanish history by incorporating new ingredients and influences. Like tomatoes, sweet and chili peppers, corn, and potatoes.

At La Cava Aragonesa, they serve great tapas.

Despite its renewed and updated status as a town for tourists, Benidorm still remains the old and distinguished Spanish town with a long history and culinary traditions not shaken by globalization. It's really fun to visit, so enjoy yourselves.

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