Weeknight Seafood Paella

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This easy seafood paella, made with shrimp, clams and chorizo is a delicious one-pot weeknight dish! Under 30 minutes too cook!

This easy seafood paella, made with shrimp, clams and chorizo is a delicious one-pot dish!
Seafood Paella

This clam and shrimp paella with chorizo is seasoned with saffron for that authentic paella flavor. Paella, a popular dish in Spain, is a favorite in my house. It’s a one-pot meal made of rice, seafood, chorizo, and veggies. Another delicious Spanish rice dish that I love if you don’t like seafood is my mom’s Arroz Con Pollo.

Clam and Shrimp paella

What is in a traditional paella?

Paella originated in Valencia, Spain and is popular throughout the country. Paella is a Spanish rice dish, generally seasoned with saffron and paprika, cooked in a large frying pan. Paella can include a variety of proteins, including chorizo, sausage, chicken, mussels, clams, or shrimp.

In Spain, paella is cooked in a special skillet called a paellera, but you don’t need a fancy paella pan to make this dish. A large skillet with a fitted lid will work perfectly.

The must-have paella ingredients are saffron and rice. Saffron is a red spice, which gives the paella its yellow color. Saffron can be expensive, but you don’t need much for this seafood paella recipe.

The best rice for paella is short-grain rice, like Arborio. You can also use medium-grain rice if that is what you have. I would not recommend long-grain rice.

There are many variations of traditional paella, so feel free to use what you have on hand. You can easily substitute the clams with mussels – just be sure to thoroughly scrub the mussels first. You can also add some chicken and use less seafood.

What to Serve with Paella

I like to serve this shrimp paella with a light salad and a glass of Spanish red wine. Gazpacho, a classic Spanish soup served cold, would also be great with paella.

Variations:

  • If you can’t find clams, use mussels or double the amount of shrimp.
  • If you want to add chicken, use less seafood and add a half-pound of diced chicken breast or thigh when you add the broth.
  • If you don’t have fresh bell pepper, jarred roasted peppers will work too.

paellaThis easy seafood paella, made with shrimp, clams and chorizo is a delicious one-pot dish!This easy seafood paella, made with shrimp, clams and chorizo is a delicious one-pot dish!This easy seafood paella, made with shrimp, clams and chorizo is a delicious one-pot dish!This easy seafood paella, made with shrimp, clams and chorizo is a delicious one-pot dish!

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This easy seafood paella, made with shrimp, clams and chorizo is a delicious one-pot dish!
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4.91 from 32 votes
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Weeknight Seafood Paella

263 Cals 24 Protein 26 Carbs 6.5 Fats
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 25 mins
Total Time: 45 mins
Yield: 4 servings
COURSE: Dinner
CUISINE: Spanish
This easy seafood paella, made with shrimp, clams and chorizo is a delicious one-pot weeknight dish!

Ingredients

  • 16 cherrystone clams
  • 16 extra jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 small cooked chorizo link, sliced thin (1.75 oz) I use Goya
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced thin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 1/4 cups short/medium grain rice
  • 1/3 cup finely diced tomatoes
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon saffron threads
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, sliced thin strips
  • 1/4 cup frozen peas
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely chopped parsley, for garnish

Instructions

  • Clean the clams and soak in cold water for 20 minutes.
  • Transfer the shrimp to a bowl and season with 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice and Old Bay.
  • Heat a large, deep nonstick skillet over medium heat.
  • Add 1 teaspoon of oil and sauté the chorizo, onions, garlic and paprika until soft, about 3 minutes.
  • Push aside, add the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in the center and add the rice, stirring to coat with the oil. Sauté 3 minutes.
  • Add the diced tomatoes, broth, salt, saffron threads (crumbled between fingers) and bay leaf.
  • Mix and bring to a boil, stirring once, place the bell pepper over the rice, reduce heat to low and cover tightly, cook 15 minutes. Uncover, add the clams, shrimp and peas.
  • Cover tightly again and cook on low heat until the clams open up and the shrimp are cooked through, about 10 to 12 minutes.
  • Uncover the skillet, raise the heat to medium-high and cook to toast the bottom of the rice, you should hear it sizzling, about 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Discard the bay leaf and garnish with parsley.

Nutrition

Serving: 3/4 cup rice with 4 clams, 4 shrimp, Calories: 263kcal, Carbohydrates: 26g, Protein: 24g, Fat: 6.5g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 100.5mg, Sodium: 1435mg, Fiber: 1.5g, Sugar: 2.5g
WW Points Plus: 7
Keywords: paella, pantry rice dish, seafood paella, shrimp and clam paella

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73 comments

  1. So it might seem strange to click on this recipe when I have a husband and kids who don’t like seafood, but I was wondering how the recipe would change if I ONLY used chicken? Also, do you have a recipe for vegetable paella? Love your website. Thank you for all your amazing recipes.

  2. Great recipe!  I didn’t have saffron or a bay leaf but it still turned out fabulous.  My whole family enjoyed it.

  3. I just tried this recipe and it’s an instant favorite! 

    Since saffron is so damn expensive, I went the cheap route with surprisingly good results! I just used Sazón Goya with Azafrán (saffron) $2 for 8 packets (I used one packet) and the rice was as good and yellow as it’ll ever be! 

  4. I just tried this recipe and it’s an instant favorite! 

    Since saffron is so damn expensive, I went the cheap route with surprisingly good results! I just used Sazón Goya with Azafrán (saffron) $2 for 8 packets (I used knelt one packet) and the rice was as good and yellow as it’ll ever be! 

  5. This paella is amazing!  Made it on the grill super simple and tasty!

  6. We fell in love with paella when we travelled to Puerto Rico for the first time 14 years ago for our honeymoon. Every time we returned to San Juan after that we also made sure we went out for a paella dinner one night.

    This was my first attempt at making my own paella and it was delicious! The flavors of this paella took us right back fourteen years to that small intimate restaurant in old San Juan! I was unable to get clams so I use chorizo, black tiger shrimp and boneless skinless chicken thighs. It was very easy to make–most of the time was spent prepping all the ingredients–and was so yummy! Will be making this every time we are missing our regular trips to Puerto Rico!

  7. I made this earlier this week with shrimp and chorizo, no clams. Oh my goodness it was delicious! My husband declared it a keeper! Will make this again and again.

  8. I am making this for Noche Buena. What type of pan is it that you use for this dish?

  9. Perfect size for my family of four! So flavorful as well.

  10. Another amazing recipe, I followed it spot on and it tastes so delicious!

  11. the sweet pimenton went well! I wasn’t sure about the cherrystone clams — those were absolutely huge. not sure my local grocer gave us the right thing (or that they were still fresh in OH in october) — we wound up throwing most of those out. good taste and smell with the other stuff though!