Lake vs. Ocean Fish: What You Need to Know

freshwater and saltwater fish retail fish market CTAll fish are excellent sources of lean protein and heart healthy omega-3 fatty acids. But there are differences in taste, bone structure and nutrients between freshwater fish and saltwater fish. Freshwater lakes and rivers have unique ecosystems that are distinct from oceans’ ecosystems which is why freshwater fish and saltwater fish have different flavors and qualities.

Knowing the differences between freshwater fish and saltwater fish can help you make the right choice for you at the seafood counter.

Taste Difference Between Freshwater Fish vs Saltwater Fish

The taste difference between freshwater fish and saltwater fish is the most important for many people. Saltwater fish tend to have a fuller flavor but also have a salty, or “briny” taste. If you enjoy fish that have the flavor of the ocean, saltwater fish are the best option for you.

In contrast, freshwater fish do not have a briny flavor and tend to have a milder flavor profile. If you are not a fan of the “fishy” taste of seafood, freshwater fish are the best choice. For example, freshwater perch is popular for homemade fish sticks and fish tacos because of its mild taste.

Difference Between Preparing Freshwater Fish vs Saltwater Fish

The most notable distinction between saltwater fish and freshwater fish when you are preparing them is their bone structure. From the outside, they may look the same but when you open them up to debone them you will notice the difference. Saltwater fish tend to have larger bones and tend to be easier to debone properly. Deboning freshwater fish requires extra time and attention to make sure that you remove all of the smaller bones to avoid a choking hazard.

Nutrients in Freshwater Fish vs Saltwater Fish

healthy seafood in avon ctFreshwater fish and saltwater fish are both healthy options. There are small nutritional differences between them. You’d be surprised to know that sodium content is not actually one of them. Since saltwater fish have a briny flavor, you might think they contain much more sodium, but they do not. Their bodies do not absorb salt from seawater.

The main difference in nutrients is that freshwater fish tend to have higher amounts of calcium, monounsaturated fatty acids and polyunsaturated fatty acids. There are some other small differences between certain species. For example, freshwater bass and salmon contain more folate and vitamin A than saltwater salmon and bass.

Now that you know the three main differences between saltwater fish and freshwater fish, we hope you feel more comfortable choosing between them at your local seafood counter. Whether you prefer the simplicity of deboning a saltwater fish or the subtler flavor of freshwater fish, you can find a wide selection to choose from at City Fish Market. Stop by to pick up fish for dinner tonight!

For new seafood recipes and cooking tips, check out our Pinterest! You can find a wide selection of recipes for seafood appetizers and entrees along with cooking tips and tricks for every type of seafood.

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