Throughout the years, many people have depended on seafood and various seafood dishes as a source of protein and nutrition. This is especially true for people in east and Southeast Asia.
It’s no wonder that Asian countries, such as Japan, are known for their seafood cuisine. Other places where seafood dishes are popular are island countries and coastal regions. Some include the United Kingdom, Malaysia, Greece, Italy, the United States, Sri Lanka, Peru, France, and Spain.
We can’t fit all of the hundreds of tasty seafood specialties in one article. However, in this blog post, we’ll examine the 10 most popular seafood dishes from around the globe.
Key takeaway: Many countries around the world have seafood dishes in their national cuisine. The most popular seafood specialties are sushi, sashimi, fish and chips, and grilled seafood.
Top 10 Popular Seafood Dishes in the World
1. Sushi (Japan)
When you hear about Japanese cuisine, the first association you may have is sushi. With a variety of options, it is among the most popular seafood specialties worldwide.
Dragon rolls, rainbow rolls, and Philadelphia rolls - are just some of the well-known sushi options which seafood enjoyers cherish. It's traditionally consumed with soy sauce and wasabi.
2. Sashimi (Japan)
There’s a common misconception that sashimi and sushi are the same. That is not true. Sashimi is a delicacy that is often served in seafood platters. The dish consists of thinly sliced seafood.
Unlike sushi, sashimi is not arranged in rolls and is not served with rice. Chefs usually strive to arrange the sashimi seafood dishes in interesting and colorful platters.
Shiso leaves, cucumbers, lemon slices, seaweed, and vegetables are used in the seafood plating process.
3. Fish and Chips (UK)
Brits consider this one of their favorite dishes. It consists of white fish filets which are freshly dipped in an egg and bread crumb batter and served with fried potato slices on the side.
Fish and chips is not a fancy seafood dish like sashimi. It’s usually a takeaway option. It is also one of the easiest cooking seafood at home meals.
In the UK, there are many chippies. These are fish-and-chip shops and small restaurants that offer portions of the meal to take away. Some restaurants also offer 24/7 food delivery services for fish and chips.
They are more common in coastal areas, but you can see them all across the country. That’s how much British people love their favorite seafood dish.
4. Crab Cakes (US)
Crab cakes can be served with a variety of sides like fresh greens, including different types of microgreens, fries, tartar, or Worcester sauce. This seafood specialty consists of shellfish meat, eggs, breadcrumbs, and seasoning. Crab cakes are popular mostly in the US, but also in Canada and the United Kingdom.
5. Paella de Marisco (Spain)
Paella is one of the top Mediterranean seafood dishes. The main ingredients of paella are rice, vegetables, and meat. Keep in mind, that the meat in paella includes seafood meat which may bring up the question, “Is fish considered meat?” Some recipes include chicken as well.
Seafood paella usually includes rice, vegetables, and a combination of squid, shrimp, lobster, and mussels meat. Paelya is the Philippine adaptation of the dish.
6. Grilled Octopus (Greece)
Island nations have a lot of seafood dishes in their cuisine and Greece is no exception. Grilled octopus and grilled squid are among the best options to pick from when at a Greek restaurant.
These seasonal seafood dishes pair well with different sides such as Greek salad, potatoes, leafy greens, or just bread. To help elevate your meal, you may consider different seafood pairing options to go with your seafood specialties.
7. Jambalaya (US)
Originating in Africa, this seafood dish has become the most popular in the United States. Its main ingredients are vegetables, rice, and different types of meat.
Jambalaya is a Louisiana Creole dish and is popular mostly in the southern states. Its name comes from French and literally means “mixup”.
8. Surf and Turf (US)
Meat lovers in the United States consider surf and turf one of their preferred meat and seafood specialties. It consists of a combination of seafood and meat.
What’s interesting about this entrée is that it can be either an expensive menu option or a cheap one. The reason behind this is that surf and turf can be a combination of luxury expensive meats or a combination of common ones. Pricing will also depend on the cost of bulk fish from wholesale seafood vendors.
9. Ceviche (Peru)
Ceviche is the national dish of Peru, but it’s also popular in other South American countries. Its fame travels across the world as well. Ceviche consists of slices of seasoned raw seafood with a side of onions, chili peppers, beans, or tortilla chips.
10. Bouillabaisse (France)
It is no wonder that French gastronomy was added to UNESCO’s cultural heritage list. One of its popular stews is the Bouillabaisse.
The base of this soup is tomatoes and fish (or shellfish). Other ingredients include garlic, onion, potatoes, and spices. Chefs often experiment with mixing different ingredients in Bouillabaisse soup depending on the available fresh fish.
Frequently Asked Questions about Seafood Dishes
If you’ve reached this section of the article, you’re probably hungry and striving for good sushi or surf and turf. Allow us to briefly answer some of the most common questions regarding seafood dishes.
Why Should You Eat Seafood?
Fish and seafood are great sources of protein. Lowering the consumption of beef and pork meat and adding more seafood dishes to your diet will improve your personal carbon footprint.
If you’re a restaurant owner who’s looking for a seafood distribution company, make sure they possess an MSC or ASC certification. If you’re just buying fish at the grocery store, look for the blue or green tick logo of these programs. They are the world’s leading standards on sustainable fishing practices.
How Do You Know if the Seafood Is Fresh?
The easiest way to know if the seafood is fresh is to smell it - fresh seafood should have a mild oceanic smell. If you sensed a strong smell, the product might be spoiled.
Here are some additional ways to recognize fresh seafood:
- Look for certificate logos on the packaging. A blue tick fish logo (MSC) is for wild-caught seafood. The ASC green tick fish logo is for farmed products.
- When buying from the grocery store, the flesh and skin of a fresh fish will bounce back if pressed. If the flesh is mushy or soft, you better look for another seafood product.
- If you’re buying a whole fish, check whether its eyes are bright. Cloudy eyes are a sign the fish is not very fresh.
What Are the Health Benefits of Seafood?
Because fish is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, there are many health benefits of eating seafood. Regular fish consumption lowers the chance of heart disease, helps with brain function, and improves the skin.
Fish rich in vitamin A also improves vision. Seafood dishes are also excellent options for most weight loss diets. The combination of unsaturated fats and low carbohydrates means you will feel full longer and will get a nutritious meal.
What Is the Most Consumed Seafood in the World?
Tuna is the most consumed fish product in the world. However, if we take into account the price of different seafood from wholesale seafood vendors, salmon is the biggest fish commodity in the world.
How is Seafood Shipped?
Seafood shipping is done according to strict standards in order to guarantee that the food is delivered in good condition. Reputable seafood restaurants usually stock fish from all around the globe as their menus consist of various dishes from different cuisines.
When shipping seafood, it’s best to familiarize yourself with the best practices on how to ship frozen food. This will ensure the safety and freshness of your products upon delivery.
Can I Buy Seafood Online?
Yes, selling fish online is becoming an increasingly popular business model. There are multiple seafood wholesalers offering products for restaurants, sushi bars, and other businesses. Modern technology in restaurants can ease many of your business processes.
Want to Start Your Seafood Business?
If you enjoy seafood dishes, there are multiple seafood business ideas you can start working on. The obvious ones are opening a fish restaurant or a fish and chips pavilion. For more information on this idea, look into the cost to open a restaurant and the cost to open a food truck.
Another idea can be establishing a seafood distribution business. In that case, you’ll probably need reliable wholesale distribution and management software like BlueCart. With our modern eCommerce solutions, you can be confident your wholesale business will grow!