Is Raw Salmon Safe To Eat? Facts Of Raw Salmon

Sharing is caring!

Salmon, like much other seafood, forms mouth delicacy food when cooked. But a question may linger in your mind while at your favorite fish eatery point whether it’s safe to eat raw salmon. To start with, some communities use raw salmon to prepare some traditional dishes. A good example is Japanese sashimi which is designed from thinly sliced raw salmon fish. But the big question is, how safe is raw salmon?

Many health experts advise one not to consume raw salmon. According to some research done on raw salmon, the results showed that they carry parasites and bacteria. Some of these micro-organisms are gotten from the natural environment, while others result from poor handling.

Can You Eat Raw Salmon?

Yes, you can eat raw salmon. Delicacies prepared using raw salmon are sweet and tasty. They carry many health benefits since they carry vital minerals and proteins. Raw salmon is delicious and fishy, but it is entirely safe to consume if properly stored and prepared.

 On the other hand, raw salmon may carry bacteria and parasites, which are unhealthy for human bodies. Therefore, before buying raw salmon from your fishmonger, ask if they were appropriately prepared and stored.

Can you Eat Undercooked Salmon?

If you prepare undercooked salmon, you may still consume them. However, you may get sick if the salmon is wild or sour before preparing for cooking. Therefore, undercooking contaminated salmon increases your chances of food poisoning and getting worms and parasites in your body.

What Salmon Can You Eat Raw?

Flash frozen and farmed reared salmon are the safest fish to consume while raw. But it presents the same risks of getting infected with diseases.

Freezing the salmon kills micro-organisms in the fish and lessens your probability of getting infections.

Farm reared salmon are safe since they have low chances of consuming infected prey, and this is how they get worms in a fast place.

Can You Eat Salmon Raw From The Grocery Store?

Yes, you can eat raw salmon from the grocery. When you read the package label and find it written, safe for raw, sushi, or sashimi, then it’s safe to consume raw. Sushi-grade salmon are processed in a factory for raw consumption. Packed flash-frozen salmon are also safe for consumption.

Another parameter to look at before consuming salmon from the store is whether they are farm-raised or not. Farm-raised salmon are guarded and fed on pellets, so the probability of feeding on prey that may contain harmful micro-organisms is minimal. The results make the salmon safe to eat.

However, it is not recommendable to consume raw salmon, whether frozen or fresh. The reason is that fish is prone to bacteria and parasitesWhile deep-freezing will kill the parasites, it won’t kill any bacteria that may be present.

When you thaw frozen salmon, the bacteria will reactivate again, resulting in food poisoning if the salmon were previously contaminated. Therefore, buying salmon from a recognized store helps to reduce this risk.

How to Prepare Raw Salmon For sushi?

Raw salmon is one of the main ingredients used to make sushi dishes and sashimi. It needs, therefore, to be prepared well before consumption to lower the risks of foodborne illnesses. Would you please follow the outline below while preparing salmon for sushi?

Salmon selection

One should select salmon which is fresh from your fishmonger or market store. It should be displayed well on aluminum trays and wholly submerged in ice.

Farmed salmon is also an excellent option for making sushi.

Setting the work area and tools to use

After arrival from the market, prepare your working area and the tools which you will use. Please follow the procedure below.

  • Clean your working surface and sanitize it.
  • Clean your cutlery tools like knives and then sanitize them.
  • Please wash your hands thoroughly with clean hot water with some soaps and dry them. When you through, wear disposable gloves before handling the salmon

Cutting the salmon

The salmon is first to cut into pieces after being washed clean. Follow the described procedure while cutting the salmon.

  • Place the cutting board on the table and place your salmon.
  • Take the knife and start tearing the fish just below the head towards the tail.
  • Turn the fish upside down and repeat the above procedure.
  • Once you finish cutting the fillets, you will remain with your head, fins, and tails which you can use for other purposes.
  • De-touch the ribs from the fillets using the fillet knife. Use your fingers to check along with the fish for any missed ribs and remove them.
  • After removing the ribs, trim away any fat that may be present using a knife. A large concentration of fats is around the belly.
  • The fillets may contain some bones, which can be removed using a pair of needle-nose pliers and pulled out.

How salmon fillets are prepared to make sushi?

Before preparing the sushi, first, clean your working space again and follow the procedure below.

  • Slice the fillets according to your sushi recipe requirement. For nigari, the slices should be an eighth inch thick.
  • To make sashimi cubes, cut the fillets into an inch of strips length.
  • For sushi rolls, cut long pieces which are thin from the fillets.

What Happens if You Eat Raw Salmon?

Salmon has numerous health benefits when properly cooked. However, raw salmon may carry some bacteria, parasites, and other micro-organisms. These micro-organisms may occur naturally in the fish habitat, while some may result from improper fish handling. Consuming such salmon increases the risk of contracting foodborne illnesses.

Some of the parasites associated with raw salmons include helminths. Helminths are similar to tapeworms or roundworms, and some of the health complications associated with them include;

  • Diarrhea
  • Anemia
  • Loss of body weight

Bacteria present in raw salmon includes;

  • Salmonella
  • Shigella
  • Vibrio bacteria

These bacteria and other environmental contaminants induced to the fish from the natural habitat exposures humans to;

  • High risk of cancer
  • Disorders in the immune, endocrine, and reproductive system.

Proper cooking of salmon at a temperature of 63 degrees Celsius for 6 minutes to kill these micro-organisms.

How to prepare raw salmon?

Salmon is one of the famous and healthiest fish in the world. They have essential proteins and nutrients that build our bodies and reduce coronary infections. The most common ways of preparing raw salmon include;

  • Grilling
  • Broiling
  • Baking


When grilling salmon, a plank of cedar is used to season add flavor. Once your grill heats up, place your plank of cedar which was left submerged in water overnight. Rub the pieces of raw salmon with olive oil, garlic, and salt and put them on the cedar plank on the grill.

Let the salmon cook for 25minutes until it turns opaque.


It takes 10 minutes to broil raw salmon in the oven. You can marinate your raw salmon or rub it with a plank of cedar for seasoning. After margination, cover the salmon with pesto sauce and put it in the oven to broil. Once cooked, please remove it from the oven and sprinkle it with some lemon juice on top before serving it.


The raw salmon is first seasoned or marinated before baking at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 40 minutes in an oven.

Is Raw Salmon Healthy?

Yes, raw salmon is healthy for consumption if it is flash frozen or freshly farmed. However, there are some risks associated with the consumption of raw salmon.

Raw salmon may contain contaminants such as bacteria, parasites, and other pathogens either from the natural surroundings of the salmon or as a result of improper handling.

One of the health benefits of salmon is that they are rich in proteins and omega 3 fatty acids that are essential for a healthy heart and neuro system.

Can You Eat Atlantic Salmon Raw?

Yes, you can eat Atlantic salmon and other filleted salmons raw. However, observe health precautions before consuming natural Atlantic salmon.

To ensure they are free from contaminants, one should purchase flash-frozen Atlantic salmon that are freshly caught and frozen at negative 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Can you eat wild salmon raw?

When wild salmon is still raw or undercooked, you should not consume it. The reason is that they become contaminated with bacteria, parasites, and other micro-organisms. As earlier stated, these micro-organisms may result in food poisoning causing severe illnesses in human bodies. The natural habitat of wild salmon makes them prone to be carriers of these micro-organisms.

However, properly flash-frozen wild salmons that do not smell fishy and have a rigid texture are relatively safe to eat.

Q. Can you eat raw frozen salmon?

Yes, you can eat salmon raw if it has been frozen but remember to take these precautions.

  • Ensure the fishmonger or the marketplace you are buying the fish from does not sell expired salmons.
  • In case you buy frozen salmon, pay attention to the package. If you see some ice crystals, know that the salmon had frozen for an extended time.

Q. Can you eat pink salmon raw?

Pink salmon is edible while still raw or cooked. Pink Salmons are very popular in North America, where they are canned, and their demand is usually very high.


So, is raw salmon safe for consumption? Yes, as long as they are free from contamination and are handled properly, it is safe to eat. But be keen not to end up eating contaminated salmon that could bring foodborne illnesses and cost your health.

Sharing is caring!

Leave a Comment