In the summer of 2022, tinned fish was deemed the unofficial “hot girl” food. Canned fish, eloquently rebranded as “tinned” fish, has been gaining popularity in recent years. The culinary staple began popping up on New York City restaurant menus as recently as 2018, and since then, new and hip brands have taken the market by storm. The product flourished during the pandemic as people rushed to fill their pantries with shelf-stable foods.
Tinned fish might seem like a strange trend, but we can see the appeal. Canned seafood can be a protein-packed snack, a relaxed appetizer, or the centerpiece in a cheese or charcuterie board. Diners can add it to pastas and salads, quiches and soups, or they can eat them with salty fingers right out of the tin. It’s shelf stable and high in skin-supporting omega-3 fatty acids. As far as food trends go, this one has a lot to offer.
What Tinned Fish is Currently Trendy?
The canned seafood trend isn’t exclusionary. Enthusiasts are increasingly snacking on tinned salmon, smoked salmon, tinned tuna, canned trout, and sardines. You can find canned calamari, mackerel, scallops, clams, and seafood pâté, as well as octopus, squid, and other offerings. Basically, if it comes from the ocean, you can put it in a shelf-stable can.
While the trend may have started with your run-of-the-mill bodega canned fish, artisanal brands have popped up to capture the growing interest – and budgets. Now, canned fish enthusiasts can choose between specialty providers, each with a different aesthetic. Popular options include:
- Donostia Foods
- Mercado Little Spain
- Drifters Fish
- Patagonia Provisions
- Russ & Daughters
- José Gourmet
What is the “Tinned Fish Date Night” Trend?
While the tinned fish trend has been around for a couple of years, a new craze has popped up in recent months. Enter: Tinned Fish Date Night.
This trend, which originated on TikTok, is essentially a canned fish snack board. TikTok and other social media creators artfully arrange tinned seafood on a charcuterie board and have a slow, relaxing evening with a friend or partner. The snack can be as luxurious or as budget friendly as needed. Add bread, crackers, pickles, olives, and/or cheese, and enjoy with a glass of wine.
Try Tinned Fish for Yourself
Canned fish is pretty easy to come by. You can find affordable options at your local grocery store. More expensive and artisanal products are available at specialty stores and markets. Online seafood purveyors also offer a variety of canned fish options. These items are shelf stable, which means they’re very easy to keep in stock. If you’ve found a salmon, lobster, or crab provider that you like, odds are that they have a canned seafood option to add on to your next order. For example, Fulton Fish Market offers everything from Basque-style anchovies and Olasagasti Yellowfin ventresca to pickled muscles and cooked squids. If you’re interested in trying this trend for yourself, there’s a very low barrier to entry.
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