Travel · Vegetarian Recipes

Patatas Bravas

An easy recipe for patatas bravas. This traditional Spanish tapa consists of crispy cubes of potato with spicy tomato sauce. You will love the simplicity of this dish! 

For my last recipe of the year, I thought I would share a savoury recipe I make all the time. Patatas bravas always makes an appearance whenever we’re serving tapas for dinner. This recipe would make a fantastic party food for New Years Eve which is in just a couple of days time.

My family are massive fans of Spanish food and it’s one of my favourite cuisines to both cook and eat. A few of my most loved Spanish dishes have been inspired by past holidays and trips to Spain. The taste testers really love all kinds of Spanish recipes. Anything from paella, to churros to delicious and easy to make tapas just like the one I’m sharing with you today.

If you’ve never made or eaten these, patatas bravas are simply chunks of roasted potato (although traditionally they’re fried) served with a rich and slightly spicy tomato sauce. It’s mandatory (in my opinion) to serve the dish with an aioli dipping sauce which is a basic garlic mayonnaise and the most popular accompaniment to patatas bravas. This recipe has amazing flavour and certainly transforms the humble potato into a delicious and cost effective meal the whole family will enjoy.

You will start by preparing a simple spicy tomato sauce, in Spain it’s known as “salsa brava”. This sauce is based on my marinara sauce, but I’ve swapped the Italian herbs for smoked paprika and pinch of both cayenne and chilli to add some authentic Spanish flavour.

Once the sauce is simmering away, it’s time to prepare the potatoes for roasting. Peel and cut the potatoes into roughly 1-2 cm chunks – you want the potatoes to be irregular shapes as this helps the sauce “cling” onto the potatoes. Toss the chunks of potato in olive oil and then roast until golden and crispy! I prefer this method to frying because it’s better for you and you don’t need any specialist equipment.

(Serves 4)


Spicy Tomato Sauce:

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 small white onion, diced

2 cloves of garlic, minced

2 teaspoons smoked paprika (pimentón)

Pinch of ground cayenne or chilli flakes (add more or less to taste)

1 tablespoon tomato purée

1 x 400g can (14 ounces) chopped tomatoes

Small pinch of sugar


900g waxy potatoes (such as King Edward, Maris Piper or Yukon Gold)

2 tablespoons olive oil

Salt and black pepper


  1. To make the sauce: Heat the oil, gently sauté the onion and garlic on a medium heat for 5 minutes until soft. Now add the paprika, cayenne and chilli and continue to cook for a further minute until fragrant.
  2. Add the purée along with the chopped tomatoes, the sugar and a splash of water. Season with salt and pepper. Allow the sauce to boil then simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. To prepare the potatoes: Preheat oven to 200°C / 180°C Fan / 400°F / Gas Mark 6. Peel and cut the potatoes into 1-2 cm cubes. Pat the potato cubes with kitchen paper towel to absorb any moisture. Then toss in a bowl with olive oil and salt and pepper. Spread out evenly onto 1-2 large baking trays. Roast for 30-40 minutes or until soft and golden and crisp on the outside.
  4. To serve: Scatter the crispy baked potatoes into a tapas bowl/dish. Spoon over the warm sauce. Garnish with chopped parsley, if desired and serve immediately.

Recipe Notes:

  • The tomato sauce can be made in advance. Store in an airtight container and keep in the fridge for up to one week.
  • You can blend the tomato sauce if you prefer a smoother texture.
  • The dish is best served warm, but it’s also delicious cold the next day.
  • Recipe is vegetarian, omit the aioli to make it suitable for vegans.
  • Adjust the level of spice to your taste, add more or less to your preference.
  • This recipe can easily be doubled to cater for more people.

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75 thoughts on “Patatas Bravas

  1. I can’t say that I’ve ever made patatas bravas, but we love roasted potatoes and that spicy red sauce sounds delicious. Happy New Year’s Eve, Jess!

  2. Oh my gosh, these potatoes look SO good, Jess! I can’t get enough of Mexican food these days so these are right up my alley!

  3. Oh potatoes in spicy sauce for the win! I do not cook Spanish food often enough, which is shame, because it’s awesome.I bet that sauce would taste good on so many other things as well.

    1. Thanks Annie! 🙂 I’m hoping to share many more of my Spanish recipes on the blog. It’s one of my favourite cuisines and there are so many delicious dishes!
      The tomato sauce is delicious served with bread and my mum even likes to stir it into couscous or pasta.

      Hope you get to give the recipe a try soon!

  4. Saffron mayonnaise on top sounds heavenly! I love love LOVE Spanish food, but I have only enjoyed it a couple of times- I’ve had patatas bravas at a tapas place close by, and it was to die for!

  5. This post brings me right back to all my trips to Spain – a dinner of tapas was never complete without an order of patatas bravas 🙂 they’re so amazing! I’m definitely going to have to try making them myself.

  6. I love eating tapas in restaurants! I never attempted to make them at home, but this dish sounds easy enough for me to try to make my first homemade tapas 🙂 Looks so good, the potatoes are perfectly browned!

  7. Oh my goodness! Doesn’t this look good?! I love, love, love potatoes, and these look fantastic! Just reading the ingredients in that spicy tomato sauce is making my mouth water. Thanks for the tip to cut the potatoes into irregular shaped pieces to help the sauce to stick. I never would have thought of that. Pinning this for sure!

  8. Thank you for sharing this recipe! These patatas bravas look nothing short of amazing! I would love to learn to make more Spanish food…this is a wonderful place to start. (I am going to be thinking about crisp potatoes all day now! : )

    1. Hi Monica! Thank you for your lovely comment. I’m planning to share more of my Spanish recipes on the blog over the next year, so I hope you will be inspired to try some of those future recipes! These patatas bravas are one of favourite foods to make. 🙂

  9. We always order this when we eat tapas – along with croquettes and meatballs. It’s like the tapas holy trinity!!! Your recipe looks so easy – excellent! Happy New Year to you.

  10. I’m always in search of new ways to prepare potatoes—my hubby and sons could eat them every day! These look wonderful with the spicy tomato sauce. Happy New Year, Jess!!!

  11. I haven’t had patatas bravas for ages and I love this dish! Thanks for the reminder and we’ll be having these soon.

    Happy New Year!

  12. I’ve never heard of this before, but I really want to try it. It looks great, and I’m obsessed with potato dishes!

  13. Yummmm!!! Patatas bravas are my absolute favourite way to serve potatoes! This recipe looks so delicious Jess!

  14. I loved patatas bravas when I visited Granada last year. I am excited to find a recipe! Can I ask whether tomato puree is tomato paste and whether chopped tomatoes is the same as crushed? Thanks!

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