Simple Patatas Bravas

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Drizzling sauce onto gluten-free vegan Patatas Bravas

You probably you have that one obnoxious friend who has traveled the world and can’t shut up about it. Well, I fear I’m becoming that person, sharing all of these travel-inspired recipes lately. But that’s certainly not what I’m trying to do! I just can’t help but share the amazing and awesome food I experienced while away from the U.S.

There’s a lot of great food out there and I simply think you should know! One such dish being PATATAS BRAVAS. Oh, lordy. I would go BACK to Spain just to have patatas bravas. True story.

Cutting board filled with an assortment of chopped and whole red skin potatoes

Origins of Patatas Bravas

Patatas bravas are a classic Spanish dish that was created sometime after 1542 when the Spanish conquered the Inca empire and tubers became a more common food in Europe.

The dish originates from Madrid where it became widely known as fried potatoes in a served with a spicy tomato sauce. Other classic versions are served with aioli. Learn more about the history of patatas bravas here. And for a more traditional take on patatas bravas from a Spaniard, check out this recipe from Spain on a Fork!

Chopped potatoes on a baking sheet for making our Patatas Bravas recipe

It all starts with crispy quartered potatoes. Some versions are fried, I was not about to go there (#terrifiedofgrease). Plus, baked taste just as good if not better than fried. And you can have twice as many since they have half the calories – it’s science.

Freshly roasted potatoes for making our Patatas Bravas recipe
Making Spicy Patatas Bravas sauce in a skillet

The thing that makes this dish special is the tomato sauce. Although there many versions out there, some even, including a garlic aioli as a second sauce, I wanted to keep things simple. The sauce itself comes together in about 20 minutes including prep time and requires super basic ingredients:

Tomato paste or canned tomatoes
Garlic cloves + powder
Hot sauce
& Onion

It’s very similar to the sauce for the simple baked eggs, only more vinegary, spicier, and less chunky. Perfect for pouring atop crispy baked potatoes. #YUM

Blender filled with homemade Patatas Bravas Tomato Sauce
Drizzling sauce onto Patatas Bravas in a cast-iron skillet

If you want to keep this dish vegan, stop here. But if you’re up for another layer of flavor, bring on the Parmesan! I highly recommend it, as it’s a simple alternative to making aioli, which requires 5 more ingredients.

Grating parmesan cheese over Patatas Bravas for a delicious breakfast

Last but not least, HERBS! I went with cilantro, but parsley is perhaps more traditional. Besides adding more color, it adds freshness and an earthy flavor that I love.

Sprinkling fresh parsley onto a cast-iron skillet filled with Patatas Bravas with Spicy Tomato Sauce
Skillet of Spicy Patatas Bravas for a gluten-free vegan breakfast

And there you have it. SIMPLE Patatas Bravas with a kick. This dish is:

One word – POTATOES
Perfect for a crowd (tapas anyone?)
& Super satisfying

Skillet of Spicy Patatas Bravas with small bowls of extra sauce and parsley

Make this a complete meal by adding a runny egg on top (seriously amazing). Otherwise, serve as a traditional Spanish appetizer or “tapas.” We ate these EVERYWHERE when we were in Spain. So good! They’re probably my favorite appetizer of ALL TIME. Sorry chips & salsa, you were good for a little while but…you’ve been replaced.


Skillet of homemade Easy Patatas Bravas
Holding up a bite of the Best Patatas Bravas

Simple Patatas Bravas

Classic patatas bravas, only healthier! Baked crispy potato wedges topped with a spicy tomato sauce. Keep vegan by omitting aioli and cheese. Fresh herbs make a bright, earthy finish. 10 ingredients. Perfect for a crowd.
Author Minimalist Baker
Cast-iron skillet piled high with Patatas Bravas topped with Spicy Sauce
4.80 from 10 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4
Course Appetizer, Side
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Spanish-Inspired, Vegan
Freezer Friendly No
Does it keep? 2-3 Days



  • 1 1/2-2 pounds yukon or red skin potatoes (quartered into bite size pieces)
  • 1-2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 healthy pinch sea salt
  • 1 healthy pinch garlic powder


  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 white or yellow onion (diced)
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 pinch cayenne or red pepper flake
  • 1 tsp garlic powder (plus more for potatoes)
  • 1 6-ounce can tomato paste*
  • 2-3 tsp hot sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups water

FOR TOPPING (optional)


  • Soak quartered potatoes in very hot water for 10-15 minutes. In the meantime, preheat oven to 450 degrees F (232 C).
  • Once potatoes are soaked, dry thoroughly and then add to a baking sheet with 1-2 Tbsp olive oil and a generous sprinkling of sea salt and garlic powder. Toss to coat.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through, stirring/tossing once. Test by spearing a potato with a toothpick – it should be easy to pierce and remove.
  • While the potatoes are baking, prepare your spicy tomato sauce. Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add onion and garlic and salt and stir. Cook for 7-8 minutes to slowly “sweat” until the mixture becomes translucent and very fragrant. If it begins brown, turn down the heat to low and stir frequently.
  • Add paprika, garlic powder, cayenne and stir. Then add tomato paste, hot sauce and water and stir. Cook for 10-12 minutes or until simmering and the flavors are well blended. Reduce heat if it begins to bubble too vigorously. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. I added more hot sauce, sea salt and garlic powder.
  • For a smooth sauce (which I prefer), puree in a small blender or food processor until smooth. Otherwise, set aside.
  • Remove potatoes from oven and sprinkle with a bit more salt to taste. Place in a serving dishes and drizzle with tomato sauce (as original recipe is written // adjust number of serving dishes if altering batch size). Optional additional toppings include vegan parmesan cheese, more hot sauce, and fresh herbs.


* You can sub 1 14-oz can crushed tomatoes and omit the water in place of 1 6-oz can tomato paste.
* Lightly adapted from Men’s Health
* Nutrition information is a rough estimate.

Nutrition (1 of 4 servings)

Serving: 1 g Calories: 256 Carbohydrates: 37 g Protein: 5.5 g Fat: 11 g Saturated Fat: 1.6 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 584 mg Fiber: 5 g Sugar: 7.7 g

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  1. sara says

    My sixteen year old made this recipe last night and did a great job. Unfortunately, he ate most of the potatoes before the sauce was ready because he thought the potatoes were just too good! For the sauce, I used Cholula hot sauce, cayenne pepper, and fire-roasted crushed tomatoes. Thanks for a delicious and easy to follow recipe! We will definitely be making this recipe again.

  2. Iwo Sonid says

    NEVER add tomatoes to the salsa for patatas bravas. They have nothing to do therein, as this salsa is NOT a tomato salsa. Only cheep and crowdy tourist spots seve you the patatas with a peppered tomato-I-dont-know-what sauce.

  3. Cindy Tracy says

    I made this – but only had little yellow potatoes, so I halved them. Did not have tomato paste, so I used sugar-free ketchup – my husband and I devoured them – the flavors were amazing!!!

  4. Tom says

    Looks great! Except I’m really not sure why you would want to go and ruin a great dish with cilantro! YUCK!
    “And now we’ll just go and sprinkle some rancid soap right on top to finish it off”.

    I say this not in a mean way of course. As I’m sure you’re well aware, you either love cilantro or absolutely despise it.

    Thanks for the (rest of) the recipe!


    • Ken says

      My wife and I both LOVE cilantro and we incorporate it into most every dish we prepare. But as you said, some people, love it and others can stomach it.

      • Tom says

        It’s actually a genetic thing, embedded in the DNA. Both my wife and I have done 23andMe testing, and one of the traits is whether we like cilantro. According to our DNA, we both are genetically predisposed to hate it! :)

  5. George says

    I made a double batch, tossed it all together and served as a warm patatas-salad. It was a big hit!

  6. Steps says

    Thanks for sharing the recipe. As part of a (potato) challenge, I have been making potatoes for a weekly dinner with friends since August of last year. I made these as part of “Spanish Food” night. They were very good. I modified the recipe a little bit and found that mixing the potatoes with the tomato sauce and baking them for another 10 minutes really make the potato bites pop. At dinner, the potatoes were gone in a flash!

  7. Terri Vineyard says

    I made these for the first time tonight sans cheese or egg as I am not quite two months vegan. They were amazing. I topped the papas with black beans and then the sauce…it was a freaking mouth explosion. I seriously needed a moment after my first bite to contain myself. So. Damn. Good. I cannot say enough, except maybe thank you.

  8. Linda says

    We tried this tonight. Worked amazingly. Everyone loved it, including our kids. We are addicted to the Patatas Bravas at Jose Andres’ Jaleo with the aoli, but were looking for a lighter, easier version to cook at home. A+.

  9. Enz F says

    Fabulous recipe! I am planning to make my own version of patatas bravas using baby potatoes I bought from our local market. And the sauce! I want it to be really spicy! Thanks for the great tips, I’ve learned a lot from your recipe. :)

  10. Dee says

    The potatoes were wonderful! I’m not so sure I need the sauce, even though it’s not real patatas bravas without sauce. Anyway thank you for sharing such a simple yummy recipe!

  11. Erin says

    Made these last night for my family’s semi-regular potluck potato night, and they were a hit!

    Quick Q though – what is the goal behind the hot water soak instead of just roasting them from raw?

    Thanks for sharing!

  12. leslie @ definitely not martha says

    These look so good! Quick question – what kind of paprika are you using for your tomato sauce? I have typical grocery store paprika, but I also have smoked paprika in sweet and hot varieties – does this call for the more common north American variety or for a smokey kind? :D

  13. Hannah R. says

    Just made these for dinner tonight. I have been all about potatoes lately so these were absolutely perfect served alongside a fried egg and kale!

  14. Tara White says

    I had been eyeing this recipe since it was posted so I could get rid of some potatoes (it’s just my husband and me and a bag of potatoes is always too much!). But it seemed more like a side dish and didn’t really go with anything I’ve been making. But tonight, I was making a swiss chard frittata and this popped into mind. We just finished eating and absolutely loved these potatoes! They were the perfect side for something on the lighter side. I added a tablespoon of sun dried tomato pesto to the sauce. Once again, an amazing recipe! Thanks!

  15. Carolina says

    This look nice… but they have nothing to do with the original recipe for patatas bravas.

    We dont leave the potato skin, the sauce is not made with tomato, the haven´t got chesse and so on.

    As I say this recipe looks good, but is not patatas bravas at all

    When you come to Madrid let me know so I can make you propper patatas bravas


  16. Avanika {Yumsilicious Bakes} says

    I can absolutely never get enough of patatas bravas… they’re my favorite thing to eat when in Spain, literally ate them at every meal! These look amazing, though I do prefer the ones with the garlic aioli mixed in as well.

  17. Winter says

    Hi Dana! This recipe looks amazing and with a sister being THE biggest potato lover, I will definitely be making these soon :D By the way, I just wanted to point out that I think you may have made a typo, when you wrote “Plus, baked taste just as good if not better than baked.” I think you might have meant better than fried?
    Thanks so much for the recipe :D

  18. Shobelyn says

    It never crossed my mind that you became annoying because you often share your travel adventures. I think it is inspiring. Your photos too are really great. I read this quote somewhere. It is long but I will share it anyway. I hope it is not preachy but I just copied it …
    “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

    Thank you, for you and your husband for sharing good stuff.

  19. Abbie @ Needs Salt says

    This dish looks amazing! Definitely something that my sister (a total potato lover) would go crazy for.
    I LOVE these photos and graphics! Awesome job.
    Pinning this!

  20. Katy says

    I’ve never tried this dish but I love roasted potatoes so this would be right up my alley. Keep up the travel inspired recipes Dana, it’s unique and always interesting to hear about your travels! :)

  21. Helen @ Scrummy Lane says

    The Spanish are so great at this kind of simple but tasty food. I studied in Spain for a semester and there was a little bar at the end of my road where you could actually order your free tapas … patatas bravas was one of my favourites!

  22. Jordan Lynn // Life Between Lattes says

    Patatas braves are my favorite tapa! I have so many memories of sharing these with friends after a night of too much drinking! Although I must eat these with a side of aioli.

  23. Kathryn says

    I can never resist ordering a massive plate of patatas braves when we have tapas and then devouring the whole thing myself. This looks dangerous.

  24. Amanda @ Once Upon a Recipe says

    Bring on the patatas bravas (+ parmesan and herbs, por favor)!
    PS. I totally love that you’ve been sharing all of these travel-inspired recipes from places that I haven’t travelled myself (aka. everywhere).

  25. Marie // La Tasse Fumante says

    I discovered these when my brother used to live in Spain and fell in love with them instantly ! They are my favorite tapas of all times… I usually go with both the tomato sauce and the aïoli and it is sooo good. Yours look great and you’ve made me crave patatas bravas now… Need to go buy some potatoes… Quick !

  26. Paul says

    Hi, Greeting from Granada, Spain. A little tip you may find useful, here in Spain the potatoes are usually peeled, cut, then boiled in salted water for 5 minutes only, drain, place a lid on the pan and shake well, this will rough-up the surface of the potato and it will help absorb much more flavour.

  27. Chandra@The Plaid and Paisley Kitchen says

    I am in love with your photography! Now I have to go get some potatoes to make this. Looks delish!

  28. Kate says

    That backdrop looks familiar! :) I love patatas bravas. I’m a fan of all potatoes with tomato sauce, really. See you tomorrow!

  29. Nora (Buttercream Fanatic) says

    I love my friends who talk about nothing but travel (and I am one of them), especially when the talk turns to food! So, bring on the travel-inspired recipes. I’ll never get sick of them. Also, anything with roasted potatoes is just fine in my book.

  30. Caitlin says

    this is so fun and something i’ve never thought of or experienced, but it totally makes sense! potatoes in fancy ketchup sauce ;)

  31. Jessica (bakecetera) says

    whoop! i was just wondering what to do with my big old stockpile of potatoes… problem solved. these look awesome! keep the traveled-inspired recipes coming!

  32. Dixya @ Food, Pleasure, and Healthd says

    i love travel inspires stories..since i dont plan on going anywhere its nice to see delicious food like this one. Being a potato lover, I could see myself inhaling this pretty quick.

  33. annie @ chase that i love says

    Oh yum! I love a comforting bowl of potatoes….even better if they’re slathered in something spicy.

    • Mike says

      You mighy try a simple white sauce with salt and pepper to taste ,pepper being key (white or black pepper to your preference) while roasting cubed potatos when potatos are done and plated you liberally spoon the white gravy over the potatos and put a dash of hot sauce down the middle( i like the red hot original from franks or tobasco )you can add hot sauce as you like the combination of the smooth creamy white sauce and the hot sauce are meant for each other, you can leave a bottle of hot sauce on the table if your unsure how much kick your guest want and just put minimal hot sauce on
      I had this in zarragoza spain its street food or take out it had a parsley garnish you can add your own touches to make it yours you can make up white sauce and keep ready or just make when you wait for potatos to cook enjoy
      White sauce
      2 table spoons of butter to pan melt and add equal flour stir till mixed well then let it come up to a bubble and add milk and seasonings to the pan about a cup and a half of milk let it cook over med heat while whisking till it gets to consistancy you would like if you get it too thick just add a little milk

  34. Tieghan says

    Seriously, these look awesome! So jealous of the different foods you have been able to try, but happy you are sharing about them!!

    Love all the action shots!

  35. Abby @ The Frosted Vegan says

    Bravo on the bravas, these look perfect! I’ll take them for breakfast, lunch and dinner, pleaseandthankyou!