Italian Octopus and Potato Salad

Italian Octopus and Potato Salad is an easy recipe, made with few simple ingredients that must be of excellent quality. It is made of tender octopus and potato cubes, fragrant and fresh parsley, extra virgin olive oil and lemon juice.

You can find Octopus and Potato Salad recipe in all Italian seafood and fish restaurants with little differences from region to region; for example in Liguria they add Taggiasca olives and pine nuts, as in many other ligurian recipes like Sea Bass Baked in Foil Ligurian-Style.

In the southern regions they add hot chili peppers or capers, but the basic recipe is the same all over Italy and is the one we are going to show you.

octopus and potato salad

Octopus and Potato Salad is a traditional Italian fish recipe, like Cuttlefish with Peas and Creamed Salt Cod with Potatoes.

Octopus and Potato Salad is excellent to taste in all seasons, as an appetizer or as a tasty main dish.

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Italian Octopus and Potato Salad Recipe

  • Prep Time: 20 Min
  • Cook Time: 1 Hour 
  • Yelds: 4/6


  • About 1Kg (2,2 lb) of Octopus
  • 2/3 potatoes medium size
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • lemon juice
  • chopped parsley
  • 1 garlic clove (optional)
  • a bit of salt
  • a bit of pepper


Have you ever eaten an octopus salad where the octopus was hard, fibrous, with still all the skin and connective tissue? You did not like it, did you? So here is how to cook an octopus in boiling water, making it soft and tasty, how to remove the skin and finally how to prepare an excellent octopus and potato salad Italian style.

How to cook octopus so that it stays tender

So here is the trick: dip the octopus in a large pot with plenty of cold water. Cover the pot with the lid and start the heat. Cook the octopus for 1 hour since the water start to boil. The common mistake is to remove the octopus from the pot immediately after 1 hour cooking. It’s absolutely necessary to let the octopus in its own water until it’s cooled to keep the octopus soft and tender.

octopus with potatoes

Now let’s start the step by step octopus and potato salad recipe.

Dip the octopus in cold water (1), make it  boil and cook slowly for about 1 hour (2). Mainwhile in another pot, cook the potatoes in boiling water for the necessary time, depending on their size and their quality (3).

octopus with potatoes coll456

After the octopus is cooled in its own water (4), remove the  skin with your hands. It is not necessary to completely remove the skin but only the skin of the head and the excess skin between the tentacles (5-6). Leaving a bit of skin makes the octopus tastier and more colorful.

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Place the octopus in a serving bowl and cut it into small pieces (7). Add the boiled potatoes cut into cubes and the lemon juice (8). Stirring, finally add salt and pepper to taste and plenty of extra virgin olive oil (9).

octopus with potatoes last collage

If you like you can also add 1/2 cloves of garlic which must be removed before serving. Mix the octopus with potatoes very well and before serving, sprinkle it with freshly chopped parsley (10-11).

octopus and potato salad

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