I spent four months studying abroad in Sevilla and indulging in their unique culture. One of their most unique elements is their cuisine. Keep reading to learn about 10 food items I found in a local supermarket that you will probably never find in a market near you. 

Unrefrigerated Milk

beer, coffee, tea
Max Herrera

My first morning in my Sevilla homestay, I came downstairs to a breakfast of cereal with unrefrigerated, lukewarm milk. I originally thought it was just my host family doing things a bit differently, however, keeping unopened milk in the pantry is the norm in Spain.


Max Herrera

The ultimate Spanish accompaniment. These crunchy bread sticks come in all shapes and sizes and never possess a seasoning. A true pico consists of just flour, water, salt, leavening, and olive oil. These are served with virtually every meal in Spanish restaurants and make for the perfect weekend travel snack.


Max Herrera

Directly translated to ham, this dry-cured Spanish classic is more comparable to prosciutto than the ham Americans think of. Spaniards cure the entire leg of the pig with the hoof attached, meaning you can find the salty, hanging meat all across the country. When it comes time to serve, they will literally just shave off slices from the leg with a long, sharp knife.

Jamón-Flavored Chips

milk, chocolate, sweet, candy
Max Herrera

Spain cannot get enough of their renowned jamón. It’s kind of like the U.S. love for bacon. Believe it or not, the flavor is rather accurate. Perhaps unsurprisingly, these smoky, salty chips are amongst the top sellers in potato chip sales in Spain and are omnipresent in markets.

Tinto de Verano

juice, ice, liquor, beer, alcohol, soda
Max Herrera

Tinto de Verano, or “Summer Red Wine,” is a bubbly blend of red wine, Sprite, and lemon. Think sangria minus the fruit. This refreshing drink is especially popular amongst locals in southern Spain, where temperatures are consistently in the triple digits during summer.


Max Herrera

Rabbit in English, conejo is a popular protein option throughout Spain. Though some American markets do carry this lean, tender meat, it’s almost always found with the head attached in Spain.

McDonald’s Ketchup

Max Herrera

Granted, I have not been to every market in the States, however, I have never seen McDonald’s ketchup sold on a shelf. Interestingly, Burger King was far more popular in Sevilla with the locals.


beef, pork, meat, fish
Max Herrera

Translated to suckling pig, cochinillo is an entire piglet. They are popular in southern Spain where they are roasted whole until the skin becomes very crispy. Though certainly not found in the U.S., the Spanish love the rich, tender meat of this unique treat.


pancake, pastry, cake, sweet
Max Herrera

Pump the breaks, it’s not the kind of tortilla you’re thinking of. In Spain, tortilla refers to a frittata-esque dish that is usually served cold. It can be filled with a host of ingredients, however, a classic tortilla española contains only eggs, potatoes, onions, and olive oil. Though one of Spain’s most famous items, I have yet to find an American grocer that carries the dish.


seafood, lobster, crab, cake
Max Herrera

Pulpo, or “octopus,” is the star of one of Spain’s most popular tapas: pulpo a la gallega. In other words, poached octopus over boiled potatoes and dusted with paprika. When cooked correctly, the octopus can taste like incredibly tender lobster. Although it can be found in select American grocery stores, fresh and precooked octopus can be found in practically every Spanish supermarket.