Home » Culture » Quick facts: Spanish Dining

Quick facts: Spanish Dining

A typical Spanish eating schedule tends to be much different than the traditional three meals a day in the United States and is usually an hour or two later than other countries in Europe. It took me a little while to adjust to the late-night dinners, but now I don’t think twice about ordering tapas at 10 p.m.!

The Spanish breakfast is usually very light, with toast or a ham sandwich (often made with cured Iberian ham, tomatoes and drizzled in olive oil- it’s delicious!) and coffee. This is typically eaten between 7-9 a.m., and sometimes a “second breakfast” or snack, with coffee and toast, is eaten around 11 a.m.

Lunch is the main meal of the day. Eaten between 2-3:30 p.m., it consists of a couple larger dishes and a dessert. A short siesta, or nap, after the midday meal is common, particularly during hot summertime months.

Dinner tends to be a lighter meal of soup, fish or fruit around 9-10 p.m. Since dinner is served so late, Spaniards often go “tapas bar hopping” between the time they leave work and eat dinner. This is where small meals with drinks come in handy!

References: Giralda Center, Photo credit: Christopher Chan

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