The Best (Non-Fish) Seafood, Ranked

List Rules
No actual fish, please - only non-fish invertebrate animals that live in the ocean. Vote up the best tasting types you have eaten and enjoyed. Also no turtles.

Everyone loves seafood, including people who are allergic to shellfish. But what are the best kinds of seafood? This is a list of all of your favorite crustaceans, cephalopods, and mollusks, ranked by how often you would like to eat them. Each sea creature is listed here for you to vote up if you think it is delicious. Some great things about seafood include that they are mostly protein and that they are mostly water, which means virtually no calories. You can eat 14 lbs. of shrimp and not gain a single human pound. Also, many / most types of sea animals can be eaten grilled, boiled, or even raw, so it comes right to your plate looking like it just accidentally took a detour out of the sea and not disguised like something else. Eat it how it is, or just add a little lemon juice or butter if you want. Just don't forget to remove the head LOL!

What is your favorite type of seafood? What kind of platter do you want at Joe's Crab Shack or Red Lobster or wherever you are taking your crush tonight? Maybe you can order a lobster tail like an aristocrat, or shrimp prepared six different ways like the local comptroller. Does your menu offer a dozen or even a bucket of clams? If so, you might have to decide between those and the mussels with the French fries, just like Napoleon Bonaparte once did. If your favorite seafood is crab, crawfish, or sea urchin, it is your lucky day, because those items are on this list for you to vote up up up as you please.

For the sake of brevity, this list doesn't include actual fish that are just regular fish. You know what that means. It is great if you are like, "My favorite seafood is fish," but this list is only about non-fish. Great; please vote up the animals that you think are the best kinds of seafoods to eat. If you are like "Yuck, I hate all seafood and/or am allergic to it," no need to do anything at all!



  • Crab
    Photo: Wikimedia Commons / CC-BY
    1,437 VOTES

    Ways to Eat It: Steamed crab, lump crab, whole crab, crab legs, crab claws, crab cake, crab bisque, soft-shell crab, deep-fried crab, crab dip, crab soup, crab rangoon, etc.

    Pros: Good hot or cold. Cracking and pulling tiny slivers of meat out of a crab carcass really feels like an accomplishment. 

    Cons: The sale of "lump crabmeat" is a scam. Also, crab bodies are very spiny and can really bloody up your fingers and knuckles if you are not careful.

    Bonus: If you have a favorite kind of crab, an easy way to let the world know is to visit this list of the best crabs to eat.
  • Shrimp
    Photo: Metaweb / CC-BY
    1,432 VOTES

    Ways to Eat Them: Barbecued shrimp, boiled shrimp, broiled shrimp, baked shrimp, sautéed shrimp, shrimp kebabs, shrimp creole, shrimp gumbo, pan-fried shrimp, deep-fried shrimp, stir-fried shrimp, pineapple shrimp, lemon shrimp, coconut shrimp, pepper shrimp, shrimp soup, shrimp stew, shrimp salad, shrimp and potatoes, shrimp burger, shrimp sandwich, shrimp scampi, shrimp cocktail, maybe some others.

    Pros: Highly accessible. Versatile. Easy to eat by the pound. Can also buy frozen. Can also call them "prawns" and then quote District 9 for a while.

    Cons: Sometimes you have to pull off the head or shell yourself, like you have all day. Also, that dark line on the back of a shrimp is full of poop.

  • Lobster
    Photo: flickr / CC0
    1,225 VOTES

    Ways to Eat It: Steamed, boiled, grilled, whole or just-tail, lobster bisque, lobster roll ("Maine" style - chilled with some mayonnaise, or "Connecticut" style - warm with butter and lemon)

    Pros: Fancy! Look at you!

    Cons: Usually stupidly expensive, even though lobsters are the bugs of the sea and literally eat carrion. In fact, U.S. prisons used to serve lobster to inmates because the meat was so cheap and low-quality. (Wow, do you think this is interesting information? Then maybe you would like to read David Foster Wallace's essay about this very topic, Consider the Lobster.)


  • 4
    1,119 VOTES

    Ways to Eat Them: Seared, smoked, other ways.

    Pros: Sometimes it is a bunch of little scallops, and sometimes it is like one big scallop. You can buy packages of very small frozen ones at Trader Joe's.

    Cons: All scallops have dozens of tiny, disgusting eyeballs, and they look like this.
    1,119 votes
  • Clams
    Photo: flickr / CC0
    952 VOTES

    Ways to Eat Them: Steamed, baked, boiled, raw, fried, clam chowder (the red or the white), clambake, in pasta, in soup, in whatever else you want really.

    Pros: They are pretty good in the shells and also out. Why don't you get some for the table?

    Cons: If you don't like to chew gooey things or the taste of the sea, you will not like clams.
  • Mussels
    Photo: Metaweb / CC-BY
    926 VOTES

    Ways to Eat Them: Steamed, boiled, smoked, roasted, barbecued, fried, etc.

    Pros: You can just get the moules frites.

    Cons: Well, none, really, except that there are never enough do you know what I'm saying?
    926 votes