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Fried Calamari Recipe (Calamares Fritos)

Lauren Aloise
This Spanish fried calamari recipe is easy and delicious! With just a handful of ingredients and a few simple steps, you'll have restaurant-quality tapas in no time!
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine Spanish, tapas
Servings 4 People
Calories 478.2 kcal


  • 1 pound raw or thawed squid cleaned and cut into rings
  • ▢ juice of 1 lemon or enough milk to cover the squid
  • ▢ 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ▢ ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ▢ ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ▢ 1 pinch salt
  • ▢ ½ cup whole milk
  • ▢ 2 cups good quality olive oil
  • ▢ 1 lemon sliced into wedges for serving


  • Slice the cleaned squid into half-inch rings and place them in a bowl. Pour in the lemon juice or milk and toss to combine, then set aside for 30 minutes to marinate. (I prefer the milk method, but use whatever you have on hand.)
  • Meanwhile, combine the flour, paprika, salt, and black pepper, then dump half of the flour mixture into a second bowl. Pour the half-cup of milk into a third bowl.
  • When the squid has marinated, drain off the liquid and dry the squid with paper towels. Any extra moisture will prevent the squid from getting very crispy later.
  • Place a large skillet over medium-high heat and pour in the olive oil to a depth of about half an inch. Heat the oil to 350-375°F (176-190°C).
  • While the oil is heating, bread the squid one piece at a time. Dunk it in the first bowl of the flour mixure, then in the milk, then in the second bowl of the flour mixture.
  • Fry the breaded squid rings in batches, being careful not to overcrowd the pan, until they are golden brown on both sides, about 2-3 minutes. Use a skimmer to remove the calamari from the hot oil and drain it on paper towels to catch excess grease.
  • Serve the fried calamari hot with lemon wedges and a sprinkle of sea salt, and serve with homemade alioli as a dipping sauce if desired.


This recipe is sponsored by Mediterranean Supermarket 
Keyword mediterranean, spanish food, spanish tapas, tapas