Anchovies are a common saltwater fish, found in several of the world’s ocean and seas, making it a popular source of food for predatory fish, birds and humans alike. Anchovies travel in large schools close to the surface of the water, and have been recorded in coastal Pacific waters, the Atlantic Ocean, the Black Sea, and the Indian and Mediterranean seas.

Many people confuse the anchovy and the sardine as being the same sort of fish. While it’s true that both are related, both are small and popular in many dishes, and both come packed in a tins or in cans, when looking at anchovies vs sardines, there are several differences. Sardines share some of the same habitat with the anchovy, but are found in fewer inland oceans and seas.

Anchovies Nutrition Facts and Considerations

The anchovy is considered an oily fish, and while oil may immediately raise a red flag for many people when it comes to food, the oil in fish is a healthy type that is needed for proper nutrition. There is a reason, after all, that fish is considered “brain food”; anchovies and other oil-rich fish are high in Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, which are essential to brain function and muscle function.

Anchovies are a wonderful source of low fat protein, and since they can be found at nearly every supermarket or food store for relatively cheap, adding them to your weekly menu can have positive health benefits.

Because the anchovy has a shorter life span than larger types of fish, they also absorb fewer toxins and heavy metals that may be present in the water, making them potentially more safe to eat on a regular basis than salmon, tuna or sea bass.

Anchovy Recipes and Food Uses

In the United States, tomato, onion and anchovies pizza is one of the more common and popular anchovy recipes. However, there are plenty of other ways to enjoy your anchovies, too. Since they have a strong flavor when preserved or cured, they are often used in sauces or as accents in salads, side dishes and as a topping. They are also eaten dried.

As one of the most popular food fishes in the world, finding recipes is easy, and there is a huge variety to choose from. Online food and recipe websites have hundreds of great anchovy recipes to pick from and try.

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