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Canned Fish

Cheap animal protein, excellent nutrition.

Canned fish is a good way to eat well for little money.  I buy cans of mackerel for $1 for 15 ounces and use the can for 4 servings.   For between 25 cents and 60 cents per serving, you get powerful nutrition.


Canned fish provides excellent protein, omega 3 fatty acids, vitamin D, B12,  Calcium (you can eat the bones, YES, eat the bones.  Eat the liquid in the can, too.)

Cans of wild-caught salmon cost $2.19 for  14.75 ounces -  the can says it’s 7 servings, but I use it for 4 servings.  One fourth of a can of salmon provides 20 grams of protein, 1 and a half times the USDA daily value of vitamin D, 73% DV for Vitamin B12, a fifth of a day’s supply of calcium, in addition to other important nutrients. Wild-caught Alaska salmon is also a “Best Choice” for sustainable seafood, according to the Seafood Watch program of the Monterey Bay Aquarium – Here’s a recipe for Chickpea and salmon salad

Lately, the hip crowd seems to be discovering  “The Amazing Health Benefits of Sardines.” Even Oprah calls them a “superfood,” and they’re another  “best choice” for sustainability. Sardines are 60 cents for 4.2 ounce can.  The label says it’s 2 servings, but I eat a whole can. One can of sardines provides 23 grams of protein, 63% Daily Value (DV) of Vitamin D, 137% DV Vitamin B 12, and 35% DV Calcium.  Epicurius.com has quite a lot of highly-rated recipes for canned sardines.

Whole oysters normally are about $1.75 per 8 ounce can.  One ounce of canned oysters has more than a day’s supply of zinc, and 73% daily value of B 12. I eat just a few of these a day, for the zinc and B12, so one can is enough for a week. Oysters are Nature’s best source of zinc.

A fourth of a can of jack mackerel has 23 grams of protein, 24 % daily value of Calium, 63% of a day’s supply of vitamin D, and more than 100 percent of the daily value of Vitamin B 12.  It’s delicious!  Here are some recipes at Dude, Where’s the Stove.

Half a can of light tuna packed in water provides 21 grams of protein, 41% DV for B 12, and good amounts of selenium, phosphorus, and niacin.

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