A quick and delicious endive recipe with smoked salmon, blue cheese and avocado. These traditional stuffed endives from Spain are a perfect addition to a dinner party or holiday spread.

New Year’s Eve in Spain

The first time I had stuffed endives I was in Madrid at my sister in law’s house. It was my first New Year’s Eve with my husband’s family and we were visiting from Bilbao (Northern Spain) where we had been living for just a few short months. Everyone brought food to contribute to the meal so we decided to bring bottles of special Cantabrian anchovies, slices of various holiday turrones and plates of sweet langostinos. I had no idea what to expect other than a warm evening with family and lots of delicious food.  

Spanish Stuffed Endives 2

New Year’s Eve is a very special celebration throughout Spain where everyone unites with family and enjoys abundant traditional seafood, meat and poultry dishes and many complementary dishes like salads, embutido or cold cuts and special cheeses. Dinner starts at 10:00 PM and ends with the countdown to the new year as we devour grapes before the clock chimes 12 hoping for a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year.

On that first New Year’s I spent in Spain, I sat down at the table and the seafood and the salads caught my eye. My sister in law had made stuffed endives with a smooth blue cheese spread and an anchovy. I loved this traditional endive recipe and have been making stuffed endives ever since. 

It’s All in the Filling

Endives have a bitter flavor that for my taste requires a strong flavor to counter the bitterness. They are crunchy and refreshing and counter some of the heavier offerings at our big family celebrations. Blue cheese is often paired with endives but the combinations are endless. Some other variations include: rice, bean salads, goat cheese, nuts, grapes and honey. My go-to stuffing for this endive recipe is chopped onions, avocado, cherry tomatoes, blue cheese and salmon, dressed with olive oil, salt, pepper and apple cider vinegar. Endives should be washed and left to dry and then filled with the mixture. They look beautiful on a plate and make for a special tapa, salad plate, or simple dinner.

Spanish Stuffed Endives 3

While commonly served on special occasions, I find myself making this endive recipe all the time. We often enjoy them for a casual cena at home when we want something light and don’t feel like cooking. I hope you enjoy this easy recipe and get creative inventing your own fillings.

Spanish Stuffed Endives 2

Spanish Stuffed Endives

Jamie Roblee González
5 from 15 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Spanish
Servings 8
Calories 230 kcal


  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 ripe avocados, cut into small cubes
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered (about 15 cherry tomatoes)
  • 8 ounces smoked salmon, cut into small pieces
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 3-4 endives or sub. ice berg lettuce
  • 6 ounces blue cheese
  • salt and pepper, to taste


  • Mix all ingredients except endives and blue cheese in a bowl.
  • Wash endive and separate into leaves.
  • Fill endive leaves with the filling.
  • Crumble blue cheese onto the filling.
  • Serve immediately.


Calories: 230kcalCarbohydrates: 7gProtein: 11gFat: 18gSaturated Fat: 6gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 22mgSodium: 525mgPotassium: 199mgFiber: 4gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 284IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 123mgIron: 1mg
Keyword endive recipe
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About the Author: Jamie Roblee

One Comment

  1. Luis April 7, 2023 at 2:41 am - Reply

    5 stars
    The endives with blue cheese (in Spain it could be “Cabrales” or “Picón”), as Jamie rightly says, have been eaten in Spain as a starter at special dinners, although only for a few decades. They have also become a popular tapa in bars throughout the country. Usually, a cream is made with blue cheese and spread over the endive leaves. Avocado, in reality, has been introduced into Spanish cuisine in recent years, due to the influence of Hispanic-American immigration and the introduction of its cultivation in the “tropical coast” of Andalusia (province of Granada). Something similar has happened with salmon, with the exception of the Asturian region, where salmon is a common species in its rivers, its use in Spanish cuisine has not been widespread until recent years.

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