Traditional Spanish Omelette (Potato Tortilla)

June 21, 2016 (Last Updated: January 5, 2017)

Traditional Spanish Omelette, called Tortilla in Spain (don’t confuse with Mexican tortillas), requires only 4 simple ingredients to make and is a total winner. Eggs, potatoes, and onions are the main stars of this dish and combined together they result in something crazy delicious!

The famous Spanish Omelette (Tortilla) requires only few simple ingredients (eggs, potatoes, onion) and is so delicious!

Don’t let the name confuse you. We won’t be making tortillas out of potatoes today. This Potato Tortilla has nothing to do with a thin flatbread popular in Mexico. In fact, tortilla de patatas is a name for the traditional Spanish Omelette made with potatoes and onions (sometimes without them). This egg dish is so beloved in this sunny European country that it’s sometimes called tortilla española, the national Spanish omelette. If you will ever visit Spain, no matter which region, be sure that every bar will have it on their menu. You can even stumble upon some sort of competition for the best tortilla! Such a popularity comes without a surprise considering how much Spaniards love eggs. Nowadays the Spanish Tortilla is well known outside of Spain too.

The famous Spanish Omelette (Tortilla) requires only few simple ingredients (eggs, potatoes, onion) and is so delicious!

Traditionally, Spanish Omelette requires only few simple ingredients: eggs, potatoes, onion, olive oil, and salt. That’s it! Some prefer their tortilla without onions, but in my humble opinion they only make this dish better. Today there are zillions of variations with chorizo, mushrooms, ham, bell peppers, to name a few. I am sure that they all are super tasty but in this blog I prefer to stick with authentic versions. I plan, however, to create a special category for the modificated national dishes, because sometimes those new twists can breathe a new life into them!

The famous Spanish Omelette (Tortilla) requires only few simple ingredients (eggs, potatoes, onion) and is so delicious!

Like with all classic dishes, every family has their own way of making Spanish omelette. Some love it moist, some prefer it dry. Some slice potatoes, some dice them. Some cook onions and potatoes together, some love to caramelize onions by cooking them first and adding potatoes after. Some serve the tortilla warm, some cold. It’s only few ingredients and yet so many ways to make this deliciousness!

There is a thing, though, that every Spaniard agrees with. The omelette should be cooked on one side and then flipped over onto the other side. Easy? Not too easy. It’s actually the trickiest part of making tortilla de patatas. You can’t just flip it with a spatula. Uh uh. This way the uncooked part would spill out.The omelette should be flipped onto the plate or a lid and slid back into the pan.You just have to take a lid slightly bigger than a skillet and it’ll work! The thing to keep in mind is a weight of the pan. I made my omelette with a cast iron pan and I had some problems turning it upside down! Well, you live, you learn.

The famous Spanish Omelette (Tortilla) requires only few simple ingredients (eggs, potatoes, onion) and is so delicious!

I can say, without a slightest doubt, that I will repeat this Spanish omelette recipe many times in the future. This is the second Spanish recipe I am telling this about (the first one was this scrumptious Garlic Chicken). It’s a perfect weekend breakfast or a weekday brunch. The ingredients are super simple but the end result is amazing. Sometimes you don’t need a bunch of fancy ingredients to make a fantastic dish. To all my readers, I highly recommend you to try this potato-egg goodness. You don’t even have the excuse not to make it, because everyone has eggs, potatoes and onions at home! Believe me, the very first bite will tell you I was right. The famous Spanish Omelette (Tortilla) requires only few simple ingredients (eggs, potatoes, onion) and is so delicious!

The famous Spanish Omelette (Tortilla) requires only few simple ingredients (eggs, potatoes, onion) and is so delicious!

Traditional Spanish Omelette (Potato Tortilla)

This Spanish potato omelette requires only a few simple ingredients to make and is to die for. It's guaranteed to become your favorite!
5 from 10 votes
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 572kcal
Author: CookingTheGlobe


  • 1 lb (450g) potatoes , peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 1/4 cups + 2 tablespoons olive oil , for frying
  • 1 medium onion , thinly sliced
  • salt and pepper , to taste
  • 6 eggs


  • Dry the potato slices on paper towels. Heat the oil in a non-stick skillet. I used 9-inch (23cm) skillet, because I didn't have a smaller one, but you can use 8-inch (20cm) or even 7-inch (18cm) skillet if available. Add the potato slices and onion, and cook covered, over low heat, stirring occasionally, for 20-30 minutes. Potatoes should be tender when you prick them with a fork. Remove the potatoes and onion from skillet, draining them in a colander. Put on paper towels. Discard the oil.
  • In a bowl, beat the eggs. Add the potatoes and onion, and combine. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in the same skillet. Add the egg, potato and onion mixture and cook for 3-4 minutes, on a low heat. Shake the pan occasionally to avoid sticking. Place a slightly bigger lid or a plate on top of the skillet and invert it quickly, flipping the omelette on to the lid.
  • Heat another tablespoon olive oil in the same skillet and slide the omelette back in. Cook for 2-3 minutes more over low heat. Enjoy!


Calories: 572kcal
Cuisine: Spanish



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  • Reply Brandy June 24, 2016 at 11:04 pm

    As a potato farmer we are always looking for new ways to cook potatoes up. This sounds delicious and is going on our weekend menu!5 stars

    • Reply Igor June 26, 2016 at 2:48 pm

      This omelette is really worth it, Brandy!

    • Reply George Morin September 7, 2016 at 1:29 pm

      Also try it with potatoes and little pieces of chorizo, amazing.5 stars

      • Reply Igor September 12, 2016 at 8:34 pm

        That’s a great idea, George 🙂

  • Reply Marianne | Basil and Bubbly June 25, 2016 at 11:33 am

    I love Spanish Omelettes, but I’ve never tried to make them at home. Love the tip about flipping with a plate — maybe I can make it without a huge mess after all! Thank you for sharing5 stars

    • Reply Igor June 26, 2016 at 2:52 pm

      Marianne, I am sure you will be good! 🙂

  • Reply David @ CookingChat June 25, 2016 at 11:57 am

    looks like a delicious version of this classic recipe! The variations sounds appealing, too, but sometimes a well-executed basic recipe is best.5 stars

    • Reply Igor June 26, 2016 at 2:53 pm

      Maybe you are right, David. That’s why I did the basic version first 🙂

  • Reply Azlin Bloor June 25, 2016 at 12:04 pm

    I do love me a good Spanish Tortilla and yours looks fabulous!5 stars

    • Reply Igor June 26, 2016 at 2:53 pm

      Thank you, Azlin!

  • Reply Ariana Omipi @ Ari Eats June 25, 2016 at 12:18 pm

    I LOVE eggs and this looks incredible! I have to try this out and cross my fingers it turns out half as good as yours 🙂

    • Reply Igor June 26, 2016 at 2:56 pm

      Ariana, I am sure it will turn out great and even better than mine 🙂

  • Reply Jagruti June 25, 2016 at 1:07 pm

    Lovely and tempting dish !

    • Reply Igor June 26, 2016 at 2:56 pm

      Thank you! 🙂

  • Reply Rebecca June 25, 2016 at 10:05 pm

    Love your stunning photos of the “omelette” in the cast iron pan. Just started following you on IG and can’t wait to discover more of your recipes. (By the way…those churros also look crazy good!)5 stars

    • Reply Igor June 26, 2016 at 2:57 pm

      Thank you Rebecca, I will follow you back! 🙂

  • Reply Cynthia June 26, 2016 at 2:10 am

    What a fun and easy recipe. I bet the potato tortilla is really good with the eggs.5 stars

    • Reply Igor June 26, 2016 at 2:57 pm

      It really is, Cynthia 🙂

  • Reply Bintu | Recipes From A Pantry June 26, 2016 at 8:40 am

    I am with you. Totrillas have got to have onions in them. 🙂5 stars

    • Reply Igor June 26, 2016 at 2:58 pm

      Yay! I knew that I am not the only one 🙂

  • Reply Florentina June 27, 2016 at 5:07 am

    I am all about a good breakfast and this is everything a good breakfast is all about. From the cast iron skillet to the perfectly golden top, you nailed it!5 stars

    • Reply Igor June 27, 2016 at 5:39 am

      Thank you so much, Florentina! 🙂

  • Reply Michelle July 8, 2016 at 2:33 am

    Any particular kind of potato?

    • Reply Igor July 12, 2016 at 8:03 am

      Michelle, I think you can use any potatoes you like. I read somewhere that old and starchy potatoes are better, but I also read that it’s not true and any potatoes are good for the tortilla 🙂

  • Reply Tammi August 1, 2016 at 4:49 pm

    Hi Igor! I’ve found your blog and it is wonderful 🙂 As a good Spanish I love the tortilla de patatas 😀 It is very easy to do! However, I never put pepper. I, personally, don’t know anyone who puts pepper! 🙂 Congratulations for your blog! 🙂5 stars

    • Reply Igor August 5, 2016 at 3:20 pm

      Thank you for the kind words, Tammi! It’s interesting that nobody that you know adds pepper in tortilla 🙂 I looked through some Spanish books I have, some of them add it, some of them not 🙂

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