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Spanish Omelette Recipe

Spanish Omelette
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Spanish Omelette

A traditional Spanish Omelette (tortilla) consists solely of eggs, potatoes, onions and some seasoning. The recipe you find on this page adds two more ingredients, tomatoes and peas. The reason for this is that we believe those two additional ingredients add some colour to a rather plain looking traditional recipe.

However, simply subtract the tomatoes and peas from this recipe and you will also end up with a perfect Spanish Omelette.

No-one really knows the exact origins of the Spanish Omelette but the first written refence to it is generally accepted as being in 1817. That reference is as follows "two to three eggs in tortilla for 5 or 6 [people] as our women do know how to make it big and thick with fewer eggs, mixing potatoes, breadcrumbs or whatever"

For us, those two words "breadcrumbs" and "whatever" are indicative the original tortilla recipe was not so exclusive of ingredients as it is now.


Ingredients for Spanish Omelette
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Ingredients for Spanish Omelette

280g / 10oz potatoes (not new potatoes)

5 medium eggs

½ medium onion

1 large tomato - leave this out if you want a more traditional dish

110g / 4oz peas (frozen peas are fine) - leave this out if you want a more traditional dish

3 tablespoons olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

Nutrition information per portion
: 10 minutes
COOKING TIME: 30 minutes
FREEZE: No but lasts overnight in fridge
SERVINGS: 2 servings
EQUIPMENT: 1 frying pan (base about 20cm / 8 inches)


Ingredients for Spanish Omelette
Picture copyright notice
Ingredients for Spanish Omelette

Peel the potato(es), cut in half and slice. Lighly scatter salt over the sliced potatoes and mix them up to ensure all have some salt on them.

Peel the onion, cut in half and finely chop. Save the other half of the onion for use in another meal. Roughly chop the tomato with a sharp knife.


The Spanish Omelette is a very versatile dish because it can be served hot or cold and I guarantee that it is tasty either way.

We added peas and tomatoes in the recipe below, but feel free to add whatever vegetables you have to hand - French beans, peppers, runner beans all go well with this Spanish favourite.

The ingredients below will make a Spanish Omelette big enough for at least two servings.

Note: we used 1 tomato as per the recipe not the two shown in the picture of the ingredients above. Also we included a cupful of frozen peas as per the ingredients list. You should leave out the tomatoes and peas if you want the true authentic and original Spanish Omelette.

A true Spanish Omelette should be around 3cm / 1in deep. So the ingredients specified below should be in a frying pan which is about 20 cm / 8 inches at the base. See the pictures accompanying the recipe below which show a "deep" Spanish Omelette.

Below there is a video which you can click to view. It shows the process used to cook our traditional Spanish Omelette.




Add two (not all three) tablespoons of olive oil to the frying pan. Heat at a medium setting. When hot, add the potatoes. Keep turning and separating them for 5 minutes. If they begin to turn brown, lower the heat.

Then add the chopped onions and mix well. Cover the frying pan, turn the heat to low. Turn the potatoes and onion every couple of minutes. Fry for about 10 minutes until the onions have gone soft.

Sliced potato cooking
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Sliced potato cooking


Break the eggs into a large bowl (large enough to also take the potatoes and onion) and gently whisk them with a fork. Just enough to merge the whites and yolks together. Don't over do this whisking. Add salt and pepper.

When the potatoes and onion are cooked, add them to the bowl of eggs. Add the tomatoes and peas.

Mixing ingredients in a bowl
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Mixing ingredients in a bowl


Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the pan and turn up the heat to medium. Wait one minute for the pan to heat then pour the bowl of eggs and vegetables into the pan. Immediately turn down the heat to the lowest setting.

Leave the omelette to cook for 15 minutes at the lowest heat setting.

Cooking a Spanish Omelette
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Cooking a Spanish Omelette


When there is almost no liquid on the surface of the omelette turn it by putting a plate on top of the frying pan and turning it upside down. Slide the omelette off the plate and back into the pan.

To round the edges, turn the edges of the omelette inwards with a spatula. Let the omelette cook for another 5 minutes.

Turning the edges of the Spanish Omelette
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Turning the edges of the Spanish Omelette


Cut the Spanish Omelette in half and serve on heated plates. If you have some left over, cover it and place it in the fridge. It is equally delicious cold for breakfast or as part of a picnic.

It's great on its own, especially if you have included the tomatoes and peas. It also goes well with a salad and some Spanish wine.

Spanish Omelette cut in half
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Spanish Omelette cut in half

23 RATINGS GIVEN - AVERAGE 4.5 star rating
five star rating
13 November 2010
From: RavenMad
To the purists, lighten up a little. Food is there to be enjoyed. Aye many traditional dishes are wonderful because of their simplicity. However, some of my favourite meals started as one thing and evolved into something else. We'd miss out on some really tasty dishes if folk didn't experiment. ;) Oh and for the record, I like a Spanish omelette in its traditional form but today I added onion, tomato, chestnut mushrooms and spinach and it was bloody delicious. :D
four star rating
17 November 2010
From: Auli
Will make this tonight. I also believe 'less is more' and keep it simple. Perhaps I just scatter some fresh rucola on the top.
five star rating
22 November 2010
From: Anna
I added red chilli and ginger garlic paste. It was awsum. Thank you =)
three star rating
22 November 2010
From: Muvazima
four star rating
16 December 2010
From: Claire
Thanks! great recipe, i don't eat eggs but my other half loved it :)
four star rating
22 February 2011
From: Daniel
Try it with Chorizo. Bacon or sausage with some paprika added will do if you don't have chorizo.
five star rating
17 March 2011
From: Brenda
I only had one chicken egg, so I used that and 3 duck eggs. I also used one whole sliced Spanish onion, which I fried separately from the potatoes. I served it with a mixed salad and crusty bread. The result was really delicious and my very carnivorous husband scoffed it down!!
five star rating
7 April 2011
From: Maz
Lovely recipe and delicious! I made it for my son just home from uni and starving and he ate the lot! Use a shallot rather than a whole onion and then you don't need to discard food. I added in some cooked turkey and it was scrumptious. Thanks.
four star rating
7 May 2011
From: Shaun Baker
Had this for breakfast today and it was so good !!!!!!!
four star rating
12 July 2011
From: Tapeswar Jana
Add blanched and finely chopped spinach for the perfect Spanish Omelette!
Two star rating
19 August 2011
From: Freddie
I have a dedicated 3" pan (to give it height) for making my omelette and choose not to toss and turn it. Instead I alternate between gas hob and grill. This, in my opinion gives a much better and impressive finish. In My household the favourite extra ingredient is sweet chilli sauce.
Not Given
17 October 2011
From: Paul B
Hey has this recipe changed? I'm sure it's missing step 4 - cook til almost no liquid is left then turn and cook the other side? Loving the original recipe :)
Answer: Thanks for pointing that out. The website is undergoing a major change and that step was left out for some reason. It's back in now and the same as the original recipe. Thanks.
5 star rating
13 December 2011
From: Brandino
I liked the bit "cut as thin as you dare"... and, always a good result. Perhaps I might add some rosemary and oregano.
5 star rating
02 March 2012
From: JokerUK
Top Man. We are hosting a Spanish Student who was struggling with English fare. Tried the above recipe last night. Clean plate and complements. Now I'm no cook but will be trying one of your other Spanish recipes before she goes home.
5 star rating
17 April 2012
From: Viny
A light drizzle....2 AM...and a very hungry Boyfriend...Tried this recipe to suppress midnight hunger craving....I added green chillies, coriander also....very good recipe.
5 star rating
17 July 2012
From: Not Given
Really good that's all i can say xx to good for the good thing
5 star rating
11 October 2012
From: Leila
So simple and so scrummy, my lot loved this, thanks.
5 star rating
5 January 2013
From: Ryan
Thanks for your video it worked extremely well!!
5 star rating
20 January 2013
From: Not Given
Tasty, great easy to follow recipe - for me who is not a great cook!

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