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12.01.2017 / By Sonia Raga / Published in MAINS

veggie paella in a black pan on a wooden table

Valencia veggie paella.


And… oil-free.

May I hear applause, please? Oh yeah…I hear you my McDougall Friends! 🙌🏻 🙂

Two people eating from a paella in a pan

Today I am BEYOND excited to share this recipe with you. And not only because I myself love this dish, but also because when I posted the picture on the McDougall´s Friends Facebook Group I honestly didn´t expect such an amazing response. So as I promise, here is the recipe and all the steps to make a delicious vegetarian and heart-healthy Paella. Oh! And I made a video too showing you how to do it!

Two people eating from a paella in a pan

The recipe is the traditional “Paella de verduras”, just the way my grandma and my dad always made it but we skipped the oil. But let me tell you something… we were a bit skeptical at the beginning. Well, I was sure it was going to taste good, I mean, it´s rice and vegetables, that can never taste bad. But my doubt was whether it would taste like Paella. Because you can make many dishes using rice and vegetables but they certainly don´t taste like Paella. Well…after trying it I decided that from now on I was going to eat Paella every weekend 😀 And yes, I bought a Paella pan and took it with me to Germany. So expect to see many Paellas from now on on my Instragram and Facebook accounts 😀

Two people eating from a paella in a pan

It is important to know that most of the ingredients that we use in the Paella are local and probably you won´t find them where you live. So, when using other varieties of rice, vegetables and beans, I can´t promise that it will taste like a Valencian Paella. Therefore I´m writing down the exact ingredients that we use in Valencia (and I´ll write the Spanish name too) for those who might want to find them.






Yield 2-3 servings


  • 1 cup bomba rice
  • ½ cup uncooked flat green beans (bajoqueta)
  • ½ cup precooked butter beans (garrafón)
  • 1 cup artichoke hearts
  • 3 cups vegetable broth + extra for “frying” the vegetables
  • 2 big tomatoes, grated (without the skin)
  • ¼ teaspoon saffron
  • Salt to taste


  1. Add some vegetable broth to the paella and bring it to a boil.
  2. Add the raw vegetables (flat green beans and artichoke hearts)
  3. Sauté until slightly tender. During this process, add some vegetable broth when needed (to avoid the vegetables from sticking to the pan).
  4. Add the butter bean and sauté for another few minutes.
  5. Add the grated tomato and sauté for a couple more minutes.
  6. Add the vegetable broth and bring it to a boil. (Note: it should reach the screws of the paella handles. In the video you´ll see that we didn´t reach them, so we added a little more later on).
  7. Add the saffron and stir.
  8. Taste and adjust salt (I didn´t add any salt because our broth was already pretty salty)
  9. Add the rice (Check the video to see the traditional way to “guess” (measure) the right amount of rice). Then spread evenly.
  10. At this point you have to lower the heat and let it simmer for 20-25 minutes. All the broth should be absorbed.
  11. Share with your family and/or friends and enjoy!


  • Many people use food coloring to give it a stronger yellow color. I prefer not to use it so I added ¼ teaspoon of turmeric but this is not a traditional ingredient.
  • I didn´t add salt because the veggie broth already had salt in it. If yours doesn´t, add some to taste.

Courses Mains

Cuisine low-fat, gluten-free, nut-free, soy-free

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