We Tried Over 20 Cans of Tinned Fish, Here Are Our Favorites

This tasting put the time-old saying, “there’s plenty of fish in the sea” to the test.

Various tinned seafoods
Various tinned seafoods. Photo:

Ilia Nesolenyi / Getty Images

If you've seen those beautifully designed tins of seafood at tapas bars and wanted to bring those flavors home, you aren't alone. There's a lot to learn about tinned seafood, but it's even more fun to taste your way through a few options. 

There are a lot of companies offering quality tinned seafood and conservas, and many are prioritizing wild-caught fishing methods and sustainable processing practices. Working with local fisheries and canneries to capture the best of the ocean in a beautifully packaged tin, these companies are striving for a more sustainable and savory future.

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The Food & Wine editors tasted more than 20 cans (one of our editors asked “am I identifying as tinned fish person now?”) Here are 11 of our favorites, based on flavor, sustainability, and variety in no particular order:

Patagonia Provisions 

Also featured as a F&W 2022 game changer, Patagonia Provisions, the outdoor clothing company fighting climate change, also offers deliciously preserved seafood.

Their savory sofrito mussels, sourced in coastal Spain, and roasted garlic mackerel and lemon caper mackerel, sourced in the Atlantic, are two of the flavor-forward tins they produce. We found their smoked mussels packed with olive oil and mussel broth to be meaty, salty, and delicious. 


With an abundance of creative flavors like jalapeño-infused mackerel and Mediterranean sardines, Ocean's tinned fish was at the top of our list. We tasted their mackerel fillet in korma curry sauce that featured skinless and boneless fillets in a spiced curry sauce – the perfect can to turn a bowl of rice into a meal. 

Minnow World

Founded by the team behind the New York City restaurants Hart's, Cervo's, and The Fly, Minnow is an innovative seafood company that works with canneries all over the world sourcing seafood preserved in tins. One of our editors says she still dreams about their tinned salmon, which is cut into pieces and seasoned only with salt, allowing for maximum umami-rich flavor. They also offer trout, cod liver, mussels, and sardines. 

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Taylor Shellfish Farms

Taylor Shellfish Farms offers smoked shellfish, such as habanero and lemon pepper smoked shellfish, as well as albacore tuna, and octopus. We tried — and loved —their original-flavor smoked oysters, which were tender and salty with a smooth bit. 


This company, founded and directed by women, boasts bright and catchy packaging that is an indicator of the mesmerizing flavors inside. They offer three types of fish as mainstays: smoked rainbow trout, smoked Atlantic salmon, and wild-caught smoked albacore tuna. We especially loved the exciting limited edition flavors like smoked salmon with Fly by Jing Sichuan Chili crisp, which has incredible heat. Another favorite was the  Rainbow Trout Jerky Gems, which have smoked jerky flavor and  are a dream on toast.

Donostia Foods

These authentic Spanish conservas, give your Spanish tapas a bit of luxury in a beautifully conserved tin. Our team especially enjoyed their octopus in olive oil, which was tender and allowed the salty taste of the ocean shine through. We also enjoyed their white tuna belly fillets, which are melt-in-your-mouth tender.

Tiny Fish Co. 

Chef Sara Hauman, the owner of Tinyfish Co. and a two-time James Beard Rising Star semi-finalist, showcases underutilized fish from Pacific Northwest waters with restaurant quality flavors in vibrant and adorable packaging. The rockfish in sweet soy sauce has  a rich, salty-sweet molasses flavor. We also thoroughly enjoyed the smoked mussels in a salty paprika-forward escabeche sauce. 

JOSE Gourmet

Aside from the breathtaking packaging – truly, every tin looks like a work of art — Jose Gourmet's canned seafood has character. We tried their sardines with lemon and olive, which were bright, citrus-forward and thoroughly delightful. 

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Ramón Peña

With products derived from the Galician estuaries, one of the richest fishing areas in Spain and the Cantabrian Sea, it's no surprise Ramón Peña made the list. We especially enjoyed the cockles in brine, which would be the perfect accompaniment to pasta with their salty-sweet flavor and tender texture. We also liked the octopus in olive oil; it was full of salty, fresh ocean goodness. 

Salmon Sisters

Not a surprise given the name, but the smoky, juicy, and salty flavor of the smoked Alaskan salmon was a favorite option from  Salmon Sisters. The company specializes in fish caught off Alaska and is run by actual sisters Claire Neaton and Emma Teal Laukitis, who catch the fish along with an all-women squad. 

Siesta Co. 

Siesta Co. sources mackerel, white tuna, and sardines from fisheries in Galicia, Spain. We tried their mussels in pickled oil, which was a delightful surprise, bursting with vinegar-salty goodness. 

Clearly, there’s a lot of great stuff going on in the world of tinned seafood. We also really enjoyed the offerings from Matiz España, Wildfish Cannery, Wild Planet, and Scout.

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