Spanish Noodles Recipe: Black Noodles (Fideos Negros)

A delicious Spanish noodles recipe for fideos negros, or black noodles infused with squid ink.
Meng He on Flickr CC
  • Total: 40 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 25 mins
  • Servings: 4 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
722 Calories
22g Fat
101g Carbs
34g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 722
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 22g 28%
Saturated Fat 3g 17%
Cholesterol 300mg 100%
Sodium 560mg 24%
Total Carbohydrate 101g 37%
Dietary Fiber 4g 16%
Protein 34g
Calcium 92mg 7%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Spanish paella recipes may get all the fame, but Spanish noodles recipes are equally popular in most Spanish seaside towns. Black noodles, called fideos negros in Spanish, are a popular coastal meal on Spain's eastern coast, usually simmered in fish stock and served with squid and monkfish. 

This Spanish noodles recipe is said to come from the Mediterranean region of Valencia, although it is also very popular throughout Catalonia. What gives the black noodles their peculiar color? Pure squid ink that is added during cooking turns the pasta dark black.

Here squid rings, fish, onions, and peppers are sautéed and then simmered with the noodles and squid ink, creating an impressive main course. It's easy to prepare in less than 45 minutes and pairs perfectly with a crisp Spanish white wine.

Cultural tip: In Spain, rice and noodle dishes are always served for lunch, and never at dinner time. They are considered heavy meals that are better suited to mid-day! 


Steps to Make It

This Spanish black noodles recipe makes around four servings but can be easily doubled to serve more.

Note: If purchasing small whole squid to clean at home, purchase 1 1/2 pounds to equal one pound cleaned, including tentacles. See a tutorial for cleaning squid. Don't forget to save the ink sacks. 

  1. After cleaning the squid, cut into rings and cut the tentacles in half. Cut the fish into 1-inch pieces.

  2. Peel and chop the onions. De-seed and chop the peppers. Roughly chop the tomatoes, then puree them using a stick blender.

  3. Pour a few tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil into heavy-bottom frying pan and heat over a medium-high flame. Sauté the onion and pepper for five minutes, and then add the fish and tomato, stirring often for approximately five minutes.

  4. Break the pasta lengths into thirds to create short noodles. Add to the frying pan and stir constantly so that the pasta does not stick and burn. Add the squid ink from the packets and stir while slowly pouring in the fish stock.

  5. Add the saffron threads and continue to stir. Salt to taste.

  6. Simmer until the noodles are al dente – about 15 minutes.