The Benefits of Tinned Fish

Do you love seafood? If your eating habits are on par with the average American, you’ll probably eat around 16 pounds of seafood this year. Believe it or not, only about a quarter (3.6 pounds) is likely to be tinned seafood.

Contrary to popular belief, tinned fish is one of the most convenient, nutritious, and cost-effective seafood options on the market. Do you cringe at the thought of eating tinned sardines, oysters, tuna, or other fish? Read on to find out why you’re missing out. 

Seafood: A Healthy Protein

On average, an American will consume 222 pounds of meat each year. That includes poultry, fish, beef, pork, and other animal products. Yet only 16 pounds of that is seafood! 

It’s incredible when you consider how many health benefits seafood offers. Omega-3 fatty acids can promote brain, eye, and even skin health. Essential nutrients like iron, potassium, zinc, magnesium, and iodine are also found in fish.

Why aren’t more people taking advantage of this healthy protein choice? Preparation can be daunting for those who don’t love to cook. Some may worry about the safety of seafood products. And many more are unclear about portion sizes, which can lead to confusion at the checkout when estimating the cost per serving. 

Thankfully, there’s an option for those who are apprehensive: tinned seafood.

TINNED Seafood is Convenient

Tinned seafood takes the guesswork out of buying fish. When you buy fresh or frozen seafood, your purchase comes with questions. How do you store it? How long will it last? When should you thaw it, and how should you prepare it? How much fish will you need to feed your family?

Tinned tuna, mussels, oysters, clams and sardines come in more convenient packaging. Usually, each tin contains a single serving. Your nutritional label tells you all you need to know: low calorie, high protein seafood makes a healthy, convenient addition to anything from salads and rice bowls to dips and soups. 

Tinned Seafood is Inexpensive

The market price of fresh seafood depends on a number of factors. For instance, the closer you are to shore, the more affordable it tends to be. The time of year can also make the price rise or fall. When you’re browsing the seafood counter, this can be confusing. It can also be tricky to estimate the price per pound when you’re looking at supermarket displays of giant filets and whole fish. 

Enter tinned seafood, an inexpensive alternative to its fresh counterpart. One tin of salmon will typically cost just a few dollars, and the price per serving rarely varies from season to season. It’s more affordable, more approachable, and less intimidating than fresh seafood. 

A Longer Shelf Life

When you buy your seafood fresh or frozen, you’ll need to prepare and eat it within a very short period of time– sometimes even within a day. Tinned seafood, on the other hand, can last between three and five years!

When packaged properly, a can of tuna, salmon, or shellfish can last up to five years on your shelf. You’re free to change your mind about tonight’s supper, and you’ll have a handy option ready for quick meals, on-the-go snacks, emergency kits, earthquake kits, camping packs, hiking, picnics, or even power outages!

TInned Seafood is Fresh

The science is in: tinned fish is just as packed with protein and essential nutrients as fresh and frozen. Surprised? It’s all in the process. When packaged properly, tinned seafood holds onto omega-3 fatty acids--it might even contain more of these heart-healthy fats. 

When shopping for your tinned seafood, take your time and browse around. It’s not always a good idea to pick the “cheapest” brands in the store. The quality of the meat may be less than ideal, and the can may be filled with more oil or water than fish!

Instead, look for tinned products that meet these criteria:

• Free from soy “fillers”

• Not packed with canola or other less healthy oils

• Wild-caught or sustainably harvested

• Bone-in, if possible (for added calcium)

Consider avoiding tinned seafood that’s packed in tomato sauce or hot sauce. The calorie and sodium levels may be higher than necessary, and you can always add flavor yourself to fish packed in oil or water. 

tinned Seafood Tastes Great!

Many people are turned off to the idea of tinned seafood because of negative experiences. A cheap can of store-brand tuna or a not-so-fresh tin of oysters can easily taint your view of the entire scope of seafood available on store shelves. 

It’s time to try again. This isn’t your mother or father’s tinned fish. When prepared, processed and packaged properly, tinned seafood tastes phenomenal! Water-packed fish is great for cold salads and sandwiches, while the oil-packed varieties taste wonderful in hot dishes like pasta and stews. 

If you’re still intimidated by tinned fish, check out our recipe section and do some research online. There are tons of nutrient-dense recipes available that add freshness and zest to the party. Tinned seafood isn’t just sardines and tuna fish salad. There are literally thousands of recipes you can try.

Affordable, Delicious, and Convenient

Many Americans love seafood, but shopping for fresh seafood can be inconvenient and confusing. Tinned seafood takes the guesswork out of your diet. From salmon and tuna to calamari and oysters, the variety of tinned seafood you’ll find at your local grocer is only growing.