Mackerel is a protein-rich fish that also supplies B-vitamins, omega 3s and various other healthy nutrients. The essential fatty acids in this fish improve skin health, increase endurance, and help with heart health. Hence, this oily fish can be a valuable addition to your diet. Smaller mackerel varieties like Atlantic mackerel usually contain less mercury and other heavy metals than other large fish. Small fish are also less likely to contribute to overfishing concerns in the long term.
Good quality canned mackerel tastes delicious and stays good for months. Even when you can get fresh mackerel, tinned versions may be better in terms of convenience and cost.
Nonetheless, not all canned mackerel is created equal! Factors like sustainability, packaging quality, type of fish, nutritional content, taste, and ingredients can make a big difference.
By considering various factors, we have compiled the following list of the best canned mackerel in the market. Read on to find out why we recommend each of these varieties.
5. Crown Prince Mackerel in Water
Crown Prince offers whole-bodied, juicy mackerel in brine. This mackerel is wild-caught, and the fish are canned whole, with just the head and tail removed. The fish is Paleo-certified and delivers a stunning 4955 mg of Omega-3 fatty acids per serving.
Coming to the flavor, the fish retains most of its original flavor since it is preserved in brine. Not only does this factor make it a healthier choice, but also a tastier one. Since the fish are preserved whole, look out for the bones. It contains sodium from the salt solution. Nonetheless, it is not too high at just 8%. The brand is generally known to follow sustainable fishing practices for their small fish and is hence a superior choice.
4. MW Polar Mackerel in Brine
Polar jack mackerel are wild-caught, off the shores of South-East Asia and Germany. Although the fish is muddy-looking and darker than other varieties, jack mackerel has a delicious and rich fishy flavor. It may not look too great but is very tasty. We like the fact that the can contains just fish, salt, and water. The minimal list of ingredients helps to retain the original flavor of the fish.
The cans contain whole fish with the bones left in. It suggests that the fish has undergone minimal processing and hence is a healthy choice. However, it contains a comparatively large amount of liquid. Nevertheless, the fish can still seem dry. The packaging is not impressive and is highly prone to dents.
3. Season Fillets of Mackerel in Olive Oil
If you are trying to avoid mercury, Season fillets of mackerel is a good choice. This brand uses Atlantic mackerel which is low in mercury. The fish are wild-caught. The packaging is BPA-free. Another good thing about this mackerel is that it does not have any skin or bones. The fillets are chunky and flavorful. They are packed into heart-healthy olive oil instead of brine. The olive oil keeps the meat glossy and moist, without affecting the original flavor. The fish tastes fresh and smells good.
The only downside is that the foil top of the can break easily. It can make transportation and storage a pain. Nonetheless, it is a versatile ingredient to stock up on. You can eat Season fillets directly from the can. You can also make a healthy salad or soup with it by tossing in a few vegetables. One of the best ways to enjoy this fish is after grilling it. Try it!
2. Chicken of the Sea Mackerel Fillet in Soybean Oil
The biggest difference of the Chicken of the sea mackerel fillet is in its packaging. The can is flattened like an envelope. So, it has less liquid than in circular cans. However, the lack of liquid does not affect the texture of the fish. It is tender, moist, and succulent. The mackerel tastes delicious and is low in sodium. Each serving is of decent size. You will hardly find any bones in it. The soybean oil keeps the fish moist and fresh. However, it forms a sticky coating and adds an oily flavor to the fish.
One thing that the brand should probably work on is making the pouches easier to open. It is nearly impossible to pull the flap off. If you use brute force, you may end up spilling the oil everywhere. The best way to open the can is by using a pair of scissors. Another concern is about how sustainable the brand is. Chicken of the sea is owned by the Thai Union Group. This company has been under the radar for a long time because of its controversial and largely unethical fishing practices.
1. King Oscar Royal Fillets Mackerel with Jalapeno Peppers
If you are looking for gourmet quality mackerels that can become the highlight of any meal, choose King Oscar mackerel with jalapeno. It is light, tender, delicious, and aromatic. This variety uses the famous North Atlantic mackerel which is renowned for its immense health benefits. The fillets taste fresh.
The mackerel are packed in olive oil which you can easily drain out. The addition of jalapeno pepper creates an outburst of exciting flavor. The heat from the pepper makes it a satisfying, even addictive dish. You can have it as a snack or in a salad and it will be delicious. The packaging is another impressive factor. The cans are BPA-safe. They have easy-pull tabs that make it easy to open and enjoy.
Frequently asked questions:
Can mackerel cans go bad if they’re left in a hot environment?
What is the difference between a king mackerel and an Atlantic mackerel?
Are the mackerel canned without their bones?
To wrap it up….
High-quality canned mackerel can transform any ordinary meal or snack into a gourmet experience. Apart from the taste factor, the health aspect of this fish also makes it irresistible. Whether you prefer it as a side for rice, in sandwiches, or soups, it is a delicious ingredient to add to your diet. We hope this round-up of the best-tasting mackerel brands makes your search easier. Don’t forget to drop us a comment and let us know which of these you like best and why!