Spain gets a ton of love in the food-world, but there’s plenty of room on the Iberian peninsula for two culinary superpowers. Portugal is one of the world’s most exciting destination, whether you’re
eating your way through Lisbon’s rapidly growing food scene or hopping through the Azores archipelago for pastries.
There are some similarities between Portuguese cuisine and that of it’s Spanish neighbors: both rely on the bounty of fresh seafood available through their geography and both make use of wonderfully aromatic spices like saffron. But Portugal has plenty of its own unique flavor, with iconic dishes like the national dish of bacalhau, dried and
salted cod, and a slew of soul-warming stews and braises worth getting to know.
From classic bacalhau to crab curry, here are our very best Portuguese recipes to try today.
The menu at the tiny, brightly colored Jesus é Goês restaurant is filled with Goan dishes that pop with traditional Indian spices and ingredients. Many take advantage of Lisbon’s fresh seafood—shrimp and fish in curries and biryanis—and produce. Here, in one of chef Jesus Lee Fernandes’ most popular starters, pillowy, onion-flecked chickpea fritters are served with a pungent chutney made from a blend of common Indian ingredients: cilantro, tamarind, chile, turmeric, and freshly grated coconut.
Get the recipe for Chickpea Fritters with Coconut Chutney »
Eggs are cracked and poached directly into this smoky sausage and tomato soup from Portugal.
Get the recipe for Portuguese Tomato Soup with Poached Eggs (Sopa de Tomate) »
This dish from Taberna da Rua das Flores highlights chef André Magalhães’ willingness to take quintessential Portuguese dishes—in this case, a rich stew of black beans and meat, often including chorizo—and use them as a springboard for his own creations. Here, he adds pieces of squid (
lulas) for a fresh take on the original. Get the recipe for Portuguese Squid, Bean, and Sausage Stew (Feijoada de Lulas) »
This classic Portuguese dish of bass and clams cooked in a fragrant broth and finished with a rich glug of cream is adapted from
Cimas in Estoril, which has been serving fresh fish to clientele since the ’50s, when the establishment was owned by a Scottish spy. Get the recipe for Braised Bass and Clams in White Wine and Cream »
The olive oily layers of thinly sliced potatoes, hardboiled eggs, and homemade salt cod in this Portuguese “casserole” are just as good for breakfast as dinner.
Get the recipe for Portuguese Salted Cod, Egg, and Potato Baked Casserole »
For this dish, pork and fresh clams are braised in an aromatic mixture of wine, tomato, and red pepper paste.
Get the recipe for Braised Pork and Clams »
Mozambique was colonized by Portugal for almost five centuries. At Cantinho do Aziz, Khalid Aziz draws crowds with Mozambican dishes that honor his family’s heritage, like this take on a traditional crab curry. The first step for this dish calls for making coconut milk from unsweetened coconut, which has a cleaner flavor and lighter texture than the canned variety. If you’d like, save the rehydrated coconut to flavor the accompanying white rice. Otherwise, feel free to discard it.
Get the recipe for Mozambican Coconut Crab Curry »
Alentejo’s traditional salt cod, chickpeas, and hard-boiled eggs are combined into an elegant
petisco, the Portuguese version of tapas. Get the recipe for Salt Cod, Chickpea, and Egg Salad »
This riff on the traditional Portuguese soup,
Caldo verde, replaces the more common kale with savoy cabbage and spices things up with chile flakes. Get the recipe for Spicy Cabbage and Chorizo Soup »