Instant Pot Cataplana (Cataplana De Marisco)

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Instant Pot Cataplana known locally as Cataplana De Marisco is a delicious Portuguese seafood dish that cooks perfectly in the Instant Pot Pressure Cooker. Loaded with tomatoes, peppers, piri piri and seafood, it’s a Mediterranean classic.

Instant Pot Cataplana

The Cataplana

In the Instant Pot today we are cooking a cataplana. A cataplana is a food that is very local to us. We live in the beautiful southern region of Portugal called the Algarve and if you mention the word “cataplana” locally, then people will be licking their lips in anticipation for the famed local dish.

The Algarve, in the summer is full to bursting with tourists. In the summer the tourists come to the Algarve for its white sandy beaches, beautiful blue ocean and amazing Portuguese cuisine.

Probably the reason why we love calling Portugal our home. We moved to Portugal in the summer of 2008 and it has been an amazing family adventure. Our two youngest children were born in Portugal and if I could choose just one thing that I love most about Portugal it would be the food.

In many ways the Portuguese food reminds me of the Spanish food. In both countries you will find their own version of tapas, their own take on roasted meats and best of all their own one pot rice dishes.

While Spain is famous for its paella in the paella pan, Portugal is equally as popular for its cataplana in the cataplana pan and both seafood rice dishes taste amazing and if you get the chance to try both, then do!

The cataplana differs from the paella, thanks to its tomato base. It is loaded with tomatoes and a piri piri seasoning. Compared to the paella and its saffron flavour.

With clams being a big part of the cataplana, you can keep it cheap thanks to the low price of fresh or frozen clams.

In both countries it is about celebrating the fruits of the sea and you will find more fresh fish and seafood to try than anywhere else on the Mediterranean.

Instant Pot Cataplana

Instant Pot Cataplana

The Instant Pot Cataplana that I am sharing with you today, is an easier version that is perfect for a dump and go meal with you and your family. Using tinned tomatoes as the base, it can save on cooking time, but we find that tinned tomatoes still have an amazing flavour.

You see, when you cook with tinned tomatoes, they are tinned at their best and have not been through the supermarket and their long-lasting chemicals.

As well as tinned tomatoes we are using a frozen seafood mix. This is perfect for achieving the Cataplana De Marisco flavouring and at the same time by using a frozen seafood mix, it stops the seafood from being cooked too soon, while you wait on the rice.

Cataplana Main Ingredients:

Just like our neighbours across the border in Spain, we adore chorizo and, in the summer,, there are plenty of street markets to sample the BEST.

We love it in August when the biggest food fair comes to town. Then we sit down with a platter of chorizo along with the Portuguese version of black pudding.

Cooking Cataplana In The Instant Pot

We showed you earlier this month, how to make paella in the Instant Pot and without the Paella pan and now today it is the turn of the cataplana and being free of the cataplana pan.

Cataplana is a one pot dish that works well with the Instant Pot because you can sauté first, then mix everything together and cook on manual pressure. It makes it very quick to make and it saves waiting all day for your cataplana to cook.

The Instant Pot we have, that we used to make our cataplana in, is the Instant Pot Duo and you can order it here or read our Instant Pot Review.

Kitchen Gadget Must Haves. Including the air fryer, instant pot and the rest of our top 10 kitchen gadgets.

How To Cook Cataplana In The Instant Pot?

Let me assure you that making a cataplana in the Instant Pot is not complicated. It has a few steps but in my opinion is no more complicated than making Instant Pot Salisbury Steak or Instant Pot Paella.

You start the cooking process with a sauté of your garlic, onion and red pepper. This gives a wonderful aroma to your Instant Pot and makes you think of amazing Portuguese cuisine.

Afterwards you stir in the rest of the ingredients, before placing the lid on the Instant Pot. It now has the opportunity to cook at pressure and for the rice to soak up the beautiful tomato and red pepper stock.

Or I think of making cataplana like this:

  • Sauté
  • Dump
  • Pressure Cooked

Grab some risotto rice, your favourite seafood and let’s have a taste of the Mediterranean with an Instant Pot Cataplana.

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How Long Does It Take To Cook Cataplana In The Instant Pot?

The great thing about making a cataplana is that it doesn’t take long. I always compare it to cooking pasta. A lot of my pasta recipes, such as my Instant Pot Ziti take just 6 minutes to cook and the same applies for making cataplana in the Instant Pot.

Sauté the first ingredients for 3 minutes and finish this off with a 6 minute pressure cook.

It really is as SIMPLE as that!

MORE Instant Pot Rice Recipes

If you want some more delicious rice recipes that you can cook in the Instant Pot, here are some more of my favourites. These Instant Pot rice recipes are easy to make, and you don’t have to worry about dry or burnt rice.

4 Favourite Instant Pot Rice Recipes:

Instant Pot Cataplana

Instant Pot Cataplana

Instant Pot Cataplana known locally as Cataplana De Marisco is a delicious Portuguese seafood dish that cooks perfectly in the Instant Pot Pressure Cooker. Loaded with tomatoes, peppers, piri piri and seafood, it’s a Mediterranean classic.
Prep Time3 mins
Cook Time9 mins
Total Time12 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Instant Pot, Mediterranean
Servings: 6
Calories: 395kcal


Recipe Ingredients:


  • Peel and thinly slice your garlic and onion. Deseed and thinly slice your red pepper. Add them together to the Instant Pot inner pot and pour in your extra virgin olive oil.
  • Sauté for approximately 3 minutes or until your onion is soft.
  • Add in your white wine and your fish stock and allow it to deglaze your Instant Pot cooking pot.
  • Add in the rest of the ingredients, stir and place the lid on your Instant Pot. Set the valve to sealing and cook for 6 minutes on manual pressure.
  • Use quick pressure release (QPR), give it a quick stir and serve.


We used the Manny brand for our Piri Piri. It’s a delicious marinade and you only need a little to flavour a dish. It is essential that you use frozen seafood because otherwise it will overcook, while waiting for the rice to cook.
The mixed seafood bag that we had was a good mix of the Portuguese diet such as clams, prawns, mussels, squid and a little white fish.


Calories: 395kcal | Carbohydrates: 59g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 36mg | Sodium: 100mg | Potassium: 406mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 1250IU | Vitamin C: 38mg | Calcium: 29mg | Iron: 3.9mg
Nutrition InfoPlease Note: Nutrition values are our best estimate based on the software we use at Recipe This and are meant as a guide. If you rely on them for your diet, use your preferred nutrition calculator.
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Instant Pot Cataplana

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I’m Samantha and along with my chef husband Dominic and our three kids, we teach you how to cook smart with kitchen gadgets. You can learn more about us and how we can help you by CLICKING HERE →

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