Can You Eat Tilapia Raw?

Tilapia is one of the more popular kinds of fish to eat because it’s very tasty, easy to cook, and costs much less than many other types of fish. Some fish can be eaten raw and others should always be cooked, so you might be wondering if you can eat tilapia raw.

Can You Eat Tilapia Raw?

Tilapia that you can eat raw
Raw tilapia that’s been filleted.

You can eat tilapia raw, provided you buy the fish from a reputable store and you handle it correctly while preparing it.

Raw Versus Cooked Fish

There are fish that can be eaten raw and others that can’t. Some fish are very unhealthy for you and shouldn’t be eaten at all, such as tilefish, shark, and king mackerel. Other fish that can be safely eaten raw—at least in moderate amounts—include catfish, salmon, some types of tuna, bass, flounder, halibut, and sturgeon.

If you’re wondering what raw tilapia tastes like, it has a slightly sweet taste that is very mild. It is even used as a substitute for red snapper in certain sushi dishes.

Some people ‘cook’ fish such as tilapia with some lime juice to make people believe that this eliminates any risks of eating raw fish, but the truth is that this is unnecessary with tilapia.

Undercooked and even raw tilapia and shrimp are said to be perfectly safe to eat, but there’s more to the story. The truth is that tilapia are often kept in fish cages that get very cramped, which makes them much more susceptible to various illnesses. In addition to this concern, tilapia are given pesticides so they do not get sea lice, and antibiotics to keep them healthy. These things can be very unhealthy for humans to consume.

You should always check with your doctor if you are not sure about the health effects of eating raw fish.

Grilled tilapia served after cook researched if you can eat tilapia raw
Grilled tilapia tastes great with some peppers!

If you buy fish that’s on ice in the supermarket, it usually signifies that the fish is fresh. If you want to be extra careful, choose fish that is labelled as sushi grade, which basically means it has been frozen before being sold raw. When you buy this type of fish, including raw tilapia, it means it is safe to eat.

On the other hand, if you get your tilapia home and you decide you want to cook it instead, there are many ways to do this. Tilapia can be broiled, baked, seared, and fried. You can find tons of recipes for this unique fish online. Whether eaten raw or cooked, tilapia is one type of fish that is easy to get hooked on.