To answer this right off the bat, can you eat trout raw? Yes. Yes, you can. However, eating trout raw is one of those “just because you can, doesn’t mean you should” kind of things. Like, if you were on a deserted island and the only options were to starve to death or eat raw trout, then eat the raw trout. I wouldn’t recommend it if you have the choice though. And this is coming from a lover of raw fish, sashimi, and a person who eats their steaks rare!
The biggest reason is, trout is predominately a freshwater fish, even though some breeds are both fresh and saltwater. The issue with eating freshwater fish raw is the bigger risk of consuming parasites. There’s also unwanted substances that have come from human pollution in the water, like mercury and other metals. Do you really want that in your body?
Look at this way. Where the freshwater trout comes from matters. You’re not only consuming the trout, but the aftermath of what it ate, the environment it lived in, and any bug or bacteria it’s carrying.
Do you really want to take that risk?
But not all hope is lost. We’ll take a look at the breeds of trout you CAN eat raw as well in this post!
Freshwater vs Saltwater Fish
Whether the fish is freshwater or saltwater matters in terms of eating it raw. Trout is predominately freshwater. you’ll find them swimming in lakes and rivers. There is type of trout that lives in the ocean, called ocean trout, but you’re more likely to find them in freshwater.
There are many reason why you shouldn’t eat freshwater fish raw.
Freshwater fish are more likely to carry parasites, bacteria and viruses. Since these types of infections can be transmitted through food, you should cook any freshwater fish as opposed to eating it raw.
Saltwater fish is better for eating because the salt kills many microbes that might make you sick. The salt water also preserves the fish, so it does not rot or spoil as quickly.
So when can you eat trout raw?
If it is ocean trout that has been caught and eaten fresh, then eating it raw would be safer. It should also be noted that most types of freshwater fish are considered okay to eat raw if they were frozen beforehand. According to the FDA, eat raw fish is not ideal, but if you are going to eat it raw, freeze the fish before hand to kill the bacteria and parasites. However, in general it is better for people who like to avoid parasites and bacteria problems to cook their fish first before consuming them (whether this means frying them up on a pan with some oil or baking them). The cooking process will kill any harmful organisms which may come from either the surface of the skin or inside its stomachs.
What happens if you eat raw trout?
You could get sick.
If you eat raw trout without cooking, there are some things to think about. Raw fish can contain bacteria that can cause illness in humans who consume it. Some of these illnesses may include food poisoning or a stomach virus with symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea. There is also the possibility for infection from parasites which can lead to intestinal problems such as anisakiasis, trichinosis, and tapeworms.
According to CNN eating raw trout can pose a risk to getting an infection from Vibrio Vulnificus, this is what will cause upset stomach and just being sick in general! Severe illness is rare but it CAN happen.
Additionally, if one has any allergies then they should avoid eating raw seafood altogether because their immune system might not react well after being exposed to allergens found in certain types of fish.
You CAN get sick from eating raw or undercooked trout.
Can you eat trout as sushi?
You can eat trout prepared as sushi. The fish is often prepared by being marinated in a sauce or dressing such as soy and lemon, then cut into small pieces. It can be eaten with rice vinegar and wasabi paste to complement the flavors. This dish can also feature traditional sushi toppings such as chopped green onion, pickled ginger, ikura (salmon roe), nori seaweed strips, tamago egg omelette strip rolls, shiso leaves or salmon skin strips.
However, I should note that in the instances in which trout is prepared as sushi or sashimi, it does take some special preparation. I’d recommend not trying this yourself, but instead go to a train sushi chef.
The fish must be frozen to a temperature of -4 degrees Fahrenheit for at least 48 hours. In the case of sushi, this is accomplished by coating fresh whole trout with ice and rock salt while still alive, then freezing it on an iced bed until solidly frozen through. Most conventional freezers in homes don’t get that cold. The chef also marinates the fish in a citrus bath.
The taste of raw trout will depend on many factors including freshness of the fish so you may need to try it several times before deciding if this type of preparation floats your boat!
Does trout need to be cooked through?
Trout needs to be cooked all the way through before eating. This is because the flesh can be infected with parasites that tend to thrive in uncooked fish. Trout, like most other types of salmonids, has a high fat content which can make it unsafe for consumption if not fully cooked through.
How to cook trout
Cooking trout can be as simple as cooking it in butter or can involve pan-searing, grilling, broiling and sautéing.
To prepare the trout, rinse under cold water to remove any scales. If the trout is whole, undercut and scale it.
If broiling or grilling, brush with butter or oil before cooking for crispier skin . Place on a rack in an aluminum foil-lined pan if desired to avoid sticking .
For sauteing, heat the frying pan until hot enough then add some butter or canola oil (or other oils) and place the fish on top of heated skillet . Add your herbs after about 30 seconds of cooking time has passed so they don’t burn off from being too close to the stovetop. Cook until golden browned and opaque at edges; turn once half way through cook time .
The best way to tell if trout is thoroughly cooked is with a fork. Poke it into the fish, if you can feel a slight resistance when piercing the flesh and are able to remove it with little or no effort then your trout is cooked! It will also be flaky with a white flesh.
Cooking times can vary depending on the thickness of your fish and personal preference, so use what you’ve learned about how long it takes to cook trout as an estimate rather than exact time frame .
Best tasting trout
The best tasting trout are those that are fresh from the water. Some of the most popular trout in North America include rainbow, brown, and golden trout. The size can range anywhere between 12 inches to 30 inches long for a single fish. All three types have similar flavor profiles with subtle variations depending on their origin and environment.
- Rainbow Trout has a mild flavor profile when compared to other species of trout such as brown or golden. It also has a mild “nutty” flavor.
- Brown Trout has a very strong fishy taste.
- Golden Trout tastes a bit bitter compared to other types because it feeds on
Well, there you have it. I hope I have thoroughly answered whether you can eat trout raw or not!
How do you like to make trout?