Explore this fantastic collection of 22 delicious and unique calamari recipes. If you’re a fan of these tender and tasty sea creatures, this list is for you! From mouth-watering calamari salads and flavorful stir-fries, to delightful calamari pasta and fun kebabs, I’ve gathered 22 must-try recipes that will turn your kitchen into a seafood paradise.
Perfect for any occasion, these dishes are easy to prepare and packed with flavors that kids and adults alike will love. Dive in and discover your new favorite calamari dish today!
1. Classic Fried Calamari
A Delicious Classic
There’s nothing quite like the crunch and flavor of classic fried calamari. This dish, a favorite in many cultures, features tender squid rings that have been lightly breaded and deep-fried until golden and crispy. Paired with a tangy marinara sauce, it’s a treat you don’t want to miss.
Great for Sharing
Serve fried calamari as an appetizer at your next gathering. Its satisfying crunch and distinctive flavor will have your guests coming back for more.
Customize to Your Liking
Feel free to add your own twist to this classic recipe by experimenting with different dipping sauces or adding your preferred seasonings to the breading.
2. Calamari Pasta with Tomato Sauce
An Italian Delight
This calamari pasta with tomato sauce recipe combines tender squid rings with a vibrant and flavorful tomato sauce, served over perfectly cooked pasta. It’s a hearty, comforting dish that encapsulates the flavors of the Mediterranean.
Perfect for Any Night
Whether you’re having a quiet night in or hosting a dinner party, this calamari pasta dish is a versatile choice that’s sure to satisfy.
Add Your Own Touch
Feel free to modify this recipe to suit your tastes. Add chili flakes for a kick, or throw in some fresh herbs for added depth of flavor.
3. Calamari Stew
A Comforting, Hearty Stew
This calamari stew recipe offers a comforting blend of tender calamari, vegetables, and aromatic spices. The squid is slow-cooked until it’s melt-in-your-mouth tender, resulting in a rich and hearty stew.
Ideal for Cold Nights
On a cold, blustery evening, there’s nothing better than a bowl of this warming calamari stew. Serve it with crusty bread for a satisfying meal.
Customize Your Stew
Feel free to adjust the recipe to fit your preferences. Add different vegetables, swap the spices, or experiment with varying levels of heat.
4. Grilled Calamari Salad
A Refreshing Summer Meal
Grilled calamari salad is a light and flavorful dish that’s perfect for hot summer days. It features tender, smoky calamari served atop a bed of fresh greens and dressed with a zesty vinaigrette.
Perfect for Al Fresco Dining
Enjoy this salad outdoors for a refreshing lunch or dinner. The contrast of the warm calamari and the crisp, cool salad is a delightful experience.
Add Your Favorites
Personalize your salad by adding your favorite veggies, or perhaps some cheese or olives. This versatile recipe is easy to adapt to your tastes.
5. Calamari Fra Diavolo
Spicy Seafood Pasta
Calamari Fra Diavolo offers a spicy twist on traditional seafood pasta. Tender calamari is simmered in a robust and fiery tomato sauce and served over al dente pasta.
Impress Your Guests
This vibrant dish is perfect for dinner parties or romantic evenings at home. Its fiery flavors will surely impress your guests.
Modify to Suit Your Taste
Feel free to adjust the spice level to suit your personal preference or substitute the pasta for a gluten-free or whole grain alternative.
6. Calamari and White Bean Salad
A Fresh, Nutrient-Packed Salad
This calamari and white bean salad is a light, nutritious dish that combines tender calamari with creamy white beans and crisp veggies, all tossed in a tangy vinaigrette.
Ideal for a Light Lunch
Enjoy this salad for a light yet satisfying lunch. It’s packed with protein and fiber to keep you full and energized throughout the day.
Customize Your Salad
Feel free to swap out the white beans for chickpeas or add extra veggies for more crunch and color.
7. Calamari Pizza
An Unexpected Topping
Calamari pizza offers a unique spin on a classic dish. This recipe features a crisp pizza crust topped with a creamy sauce, tender calamari, and a blend of cheeses.
Read also: 29 Scallop Side Dishes
Perfect for Pizza Night
Change up your usual pizza night with this delicious and unusual recipe. It’s a fun way to introduce seafood into your pizza topping rotation.
Make It Your Own
Customize this pizza with your favorite toppings. Add additional seafood, different cheeses, or a variety of veggies.
8. Calamari Risotto
A Creamy, Comforting Dish
This calamari risotto is a rich and creamy dish that combines arborio rice with tender calamari and a flavorful broth. The result is a satisfying meal that’s full of depth and flavor.
Ideal for Dinner Parties
This elegant dish is perfect for dinner parties or special occasions. Your guests will be impressed with the homemade risotto.
Add Your Favorite Ingredients
Feel free to add your favorite seafood, herbs, or veggies to this recipe to customize it to your tastes.
9. Thai Calamari Salad
A Zesty Asian-Inspired Salad
This Thai calamari salad features tender calamari tossed with fresh herbs, crisp veggies, and a spicy-sweet dressing. It’s a refreshing and flavorful dish that will transport you to the beaches of Thailand.
Perfect for Hot Days
Enjoy this salad on a hot day for a light and refreshing meal. The flavors are bright and bold, perfect for waking up your taste buds.
Customize Your Salad
Add additional veggies, swap the herbs, or adjust the spice level to suit your tastes.
10. Calamari and Chorizo Paella
A Spanish Delight
This calamari and chorizo paella is a vibrant, flavorful dish that combines tender calamari with smoky chorizo, saffron-infused rice, and a variety of colorful vegetables.
Ideal for Sharing
Paella is perfect for sharing, making it a great dish for family dinners or parties. Your guests will love the combination of flavors and textures.
Customize to Your Liking
Feel free to add additional seafood, swap the chorizo for chicken, or add your favorite vegetables.
11. Calamari with Garlic and Parsley
A Simple yet Flavorful Dish
This calamari with garlic and parsley recipe is a simple yet delicious way to enjoy calamari. The squid is sautéed with fragrant garlic and fresh parsley, creating a dish that’s packed with flavor.
Perfect for Quick Meals
This dish is quick and easy to prepare, making it perfect for weeknight dinners. Serve it with crusty bread and a side salad for a complete meal.
Feel free to add your favorite spices or herbs to this recipe, or pair it with a creamy aioli for dipping.
12. Calamari with Romesco Sauce
A Spanish Classic
This calamari with romesco sauce recipe pairs tender, golden calamari with a robust and flavorful Spanish sauce made from roasted peppers, tomatoes, and almonds.
Great as an Appetizer
Serve this dish as an appetizer at your next gathering. The unique romesco sauce will be a delightful surprise for your guests.
Add Your Personal Touch
Feel free to modify this recipe to suit your preferences. Add some heat to the sauce, or serve the calamari with a different dipping sauce.
13. Calamari Tempura
This calamari tempura recipe offers a unique way to enjoy calamari. The squid is lightly battered and deep-fried until golden and crispy, then served with a dipping sauce.
Perfect for Snacking
Enjoy calamari tempura as a snack or an appetizer. Its light and crispy texture makes it perfect for any occasion.
Customize Your Dipping Sauce
Experiment with different dipping sauces to find your favorite combination. A soy-based sauce or a spicy mayo would pair beautifully with the calamari.
14. Calamari Stir-Fry
A Quick and Easy Meal
This calamari stir-fry is a fast and flavorful dish that’s perfect for weeknight dinners. It features tender calamari and colorful veggies all tossed in a savory sauce.
Perfect for Busy Nights
When you’re short on time, this stir-fry comes together quickly and delivers big on flavor.
Customize Your Stir-Fry
Add your favorite vegetables, switch up the sauce, or serve over your choice of rice or noodles.
15. Squid Ink Spaghetti with Calamari
A Daring Culinary Adventure
This squid ink spaghetti with calamari recipe is a delightful play on colors and flavors. The striking black hue of the squid ink pasta contrasts beautifully with the tender, white calamari, making it a feast for both the eyes and the palate. The garlic, chili flakes, and lemon zest add an aromatic, spicy, and zesty kick to the dish, enhancing the natural taste of the calamari.
Perfect for Dinner Parties
Impress your guests with this exotic and visually stunning dish at your next dinner party. It’s not just a conversation starter, but a delectable treat that will leave your guests in awe.
A Twist on a Classic
Experiment with the seafood elements of the dish by adding shrimp or mussels along with calamari. You can also substitute regular spaghetti if squid ink spaghetti is not readily available.
16. Calamari with Fennel Pollen
A Light and Fresh Option
This calamari with fennel pollen recipe is an interesting mix of flavors. The floral notes of the fennel pollen complement the rich calamari taste, resulting in a bright and flavorful dish. The succulent calamari ties it all together, making this recipe a must-try.
Impressive and Simple
Despite its complex flavors, this recipe is remarkably simple to make. It’s a great way to introduce your family or guests to the unique taste of fennel pollen.
Customize it Your Way
The recipe is flexible and you can adjust it by adding lime juice or other citric sauce for a more tangy taste. Additionally, consider serving it over a bed of arugula or mixed greens for a complete meal.
17. Grilled Calamari with Olive Oil and Lemon
A Taste of the Mediterranean
This grilled calamari with olive oil and lemon recipe brings the flavors of the Mediterranean to your plate. Grilling the calamari gives it a smoky flavor, which is enhanced by the bright acidity of the lemon and the fruity richness of the olive oil.
Perfect for Summer Grilling
This recipe is a great addition to your summer grilling repertoire. It’s a quick and easy dish that goes well with a crisp white wine and a side of grilled vegetables.
An Easily Adaptable Recipe
Feel free to play around with additional flavors, such as garlic, chili, or herbs like oregano and parsley. You can also add some grilled bell peppers or cherry tomatoes for extra color and flavor.
18. Baked Calamari with Herbs
A Healthier Calamari Option
This baked calamari with herbs recipe is a healthier alternative to the traditional fried version. It’s just as crispy and delicious but uses less oil, making it a lighter option.
Easy and Quick to Make
This recipe is incredibly easy to make and takes less time than you might think. It’s perfect for a quick and impressive dinner.
Customize Your Flavors
You can customize the herb mixture to suit your taste. Try using a mix of parsley, thyme, and rosemary, or add a touch of spice with some cayenne pepper.
19. Calamari with Lemon Aioli
Bring the essence of the ocean into your kitchen with this calamari with lemon aioli recipe. It’s the perfect blend of the crispy, golden calamari rings paired with a tangy lemon aioli that will transport you to a seaside bistro with every bite. This dish is a delightful change of pace from the ordinary and is sure to be a hit at any gathering.
A Shared Treat or Personal Indulgence
Enjoy this dish as a shared appetizer amongst friends or as a personal indulgence when you’re in the mood for something special. The freshness of the calamari combined with the zesty aioli offers a delectable treat that will satisfy your craving for a taste of the sea.
Personalize to Your Preference
Feel free to experiment with different types of aioli or additional spices for the calamari. It’s your culinary journey, so make it as unique and adventurous as you desire. So go ahead, put on your chef’s hat, and start preparing this wonderful calamari with lemon aioli dish!
20. Calamari a la Plancha
A Spanish Classic
Calamari a la Plancha is a simple yet delicious Spanish dish where the calamari is cooked on a griddle, or ‘plancha’, with garlic and parsley.
Read also: 27 Scallop Recipes
Perfect for Tapas
This dish is a perfect addition to a tapas spread, offering a different texture and taste compared to other tapas dishes.
You can add other ingredients such as chili flakes or lemon zest to give the calamari an extra punch of flavor.
21. Korean Calamari Stir-Fry
A Flavorful Asian Dish
This Korean Calamari Stir-Fry is packed with flavors from soy sauce, gochujang (Korean red pepper paste), and sesame oil. The vegetables and calamari are stir-fried to perfection, creating a flavorful and satisfying dish.
Quick and Easy Dinner
This recipe comes together in less than 30 minutes, making it a great choice for a quick and easy dinner.
Feel free to swap out or add any veggies you have on hand. You can also adjust the level of spiciness by adding more or less gochujang.
22. Calamari Po’ Boy Sandwich
A Seafood Take on a Southern Classic
This Calamari Po’ Boy Sandwich is a seafood twist on the classic Southern sandwich. The calamari is crispy and tender, and pairs perfectly with the creamy and tangy remoulade sauce.
Perfect for Lunch
This sandwich is a perfect choice for a hearty and flavorful lunch. It’s a fun and delicious way to enjoy calamari.
Adaptable to Your Taste
Feel free to add other toppings to the sandwich like lettuce, tomato, or pickles, and you can customize the remoulade sauce by adding more or less hot sauce.
I hope you’ve enjoyed exploring these 22 yummy calamari recipes as much as I have. Now you’re ready to impress your family and friends with a menu bursting with seafood delights. Remember, cooking is all about creativity and fun, so feel free to play around with these recipes and make them your own. And most importantly, have a blast cooking and tasting these delectable calamari dishes.