Atlantic Mackerel Is The Most Underrated Tinned Fish

At one point, tinned fish was thought of as nothing more than a cheap source of protein when you didn't have the time or energy to cook up an entire meal. However, canned fish has been having a bit of a resurgence in recent years, as more and more people discover the varieties of canned fish they wish they found earlier. Tinned fish can be easily incorporated into tons of recipes and is less expensive than fresh fish. Those qualities make it a healthy and accessible option for people who don't typically indulge in seafood due to geographic or financial restraints. There are many different varieties of tinned fish, including sardines, anchovies, mussels, and crab. All can be delicious, but the most underrated option has to be Atlantic mackerel.


Atlantic mackerel is harvested off the east coast of the United States. It is a fatty, flavorful fish. Because of its high fat content, mackerel has garnered the reputation of quickly turning overly fishy but that's really only an issue with mackerel that has started to turn. Considering that canned fish can last up to five years in storage, that's not a problem you'll have to worry about with tinned mackerel. Instead, you'll be able to simply enjoy the rich taste of this affordable fish.

Atlantic mackerel is affordable, accessible, and healthy

There is an abundance of this silvery striped fish, which means it's readily available and more sustainable to harvest compared to rare seafood options. Because of this, canned Atlantic mackerel also tends to be less expensive than other types of canned fish. Prices will vary depending on where you shop and what best canned fish brands you choose. At Walmart, you can find canned mackerel for only $2.60 a pound, far cheaper than available tinned salmon, tuna, or crabmeat.


Tinned Atlantic mackerel is also a nutritional powerhouse. According to NutritionValue.Org, one cup of mackerel has zero carbs and a whopping 44 grams of protein. It also has high levels of vitamin D, calcium, and iron. Like many types of fish, mackerel is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids. One study published in the Journal of Gerontology even found that eating dark fish like mackerel may reduce one's risk of experiencing cognitive decline. The one thing you have to look out for with canned mackerel is its salt content. A one-cup serving has 31% of the daily recommended sodium intake.

How to eat tinned Atlantic mackerel

Atlantic mackerel has a very mild flavor. That means it's easy to incorporate it into various recipes. Canned mackerel can be used just like canned tuna so it's easy to fold it into a dish like pasta or salad. You could also mix it with mayo, mustard, chopped pickles, and garlic powder to make mackerel salad perfect for spreading over toasted bread with melted cheese. Tinned skinless and boneless mackerel filets are a great addition to charcuterie boards as their decadent taste goes well with seasoned crackers. Mackerel can also be incorporated into breakfast foods. It's delicious mixed with cream cheese and smeared on a toasted bagel. You can also eat mackerel straight out of the can, drizzled with a vinaigrette and a bit of lemon juice.


Whether you mix it into a rice bowl, accompanied with tomatoes and basil to make mackerel bruschetta, or eat it directly out of the tin, canned Atlantic mackerel is a great option to upgrade your pantry staples. Affordable, long-lasting, and versatile, there's a lot to appreciate about this underrated tinned fish.