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Can You Eat Bass?

fisherman holding a largemouth bass

Bass fishing is one of the most popular outdoor activities, combining the enjoyment of the sport, scenery, and the thrill of the catch. Whether you’re camping for the weekend or spending the day at a lake, you may consider preparing your own feast with your bass. Can you eat bass, and how is it best prepared? You’ll be surprised to learn how easy and tasty this fish can be.

 

Is Bass Edible?

While bass is not the first choice of fish, most people consider it a good option, depending on where it’s caught, when preparing a meal. For example, if your catch is from a stagnant river or body of water with contamination concerns, it’s best to avoid bass, as the taste will be muddy and undesirable. Bass caught in fresh, clean water is recommended.

 

pan seared bass fillet

 

What Is the Taste and Texture of Bass?

Largemouth bass has a white and firm texture that some consider “fishy” to taste. Depending on individual preference, some people are either put off or enjoy the unique flavor. Due to its strong scent and taste, bass is best not to cook indoors and is best for a barbeque or outdoor cooking. If you plan on trying a taste of your next catch, consider bringing some olive oil or butter and seasoning to use for flavoring.

 

Is Bass Healthy and Safe to Eat?

Like many types of fish, bass is a good source of protein and omega 3s. Bass also contains vitamin B12, phosphorus, and manganese. It’s rich in minerals and contains one of the highest amounts of selenium compared to other types of fish and foods in general. If you plan to include bass as a part of your next meal, choose freshwater or sea bass, as these varieties are the best for both taste and nutrient quality.

 

largemouth bass in a pond

 

What Is the Best Type of Bass to Enjoy?

If you’re considering catching fresh bass, Largemouth bass is one of the best options. This variety of bass is mild in flavor and easy to enjoy with a wide variety of foods. Most people prefer mild-flavored fish because it is easier to cook and the taste doesn’t overpower the meal. Smallmouth bass is also a great option. As long as the water source is clean, there is no risk of enjoying this fish.

 

Can Bass be Eaten Raw?

Bass is one of the safe options for sushi and other dishes where fish is enjoyed raw. For best results and to avoid contamination, try sea bass at your local sushi restaurant or market where it is professionally prepared. This experience will give you the option of various spices and other fish to pair with your serving. Unless you know the specific guidelines for safe food preparation, avoid consuming bass raw after being caught. 

 

How Often Can I Eat Bass?

Provided that you catch your bass from a clean and reputable source of water, you can easily enjoy a serving of bass more than once a week without worry. While clean sources of bass are relatively safe, it’s important to consider the possibility of mercury levels, which can fluctuate depending on the region and reported levels of mercury and other metals. 

 

On your next fishing trip, there will likely be more than one type of fish available to catch and enjoy for your next meal. Bass is definitely a great option, though usually not the first choice for most people. If you decide to fry or barbeque your bass, make sure you’re prepared for some strong flavors. Bass is a good fish to catch and try at least once, even if just for the experience.

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