The northern red snapper, Lutjanus campechanus, is a fish commonly found in the western Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico. The benefits of red snapper include its omega-3 fatty acid content, as these important dietary fats may play a role in preventing heart disease and managing blood pressure.
One red snapper can weigh up to 20 pounds, and the tasty fish is popular in a variety of recipes. Red snapper nutrition info shows that the fish provides plenty of protein with no carbs or sugars.
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Red Snapper Nutrition Information
According to the USDA, a single 3-ounce serving of snapper, cooked over dry heat, provides 109 calories, over 22 grams of protein and just over 1 gram of fat. The serving also provides 34 milligrams of calcium, 31 milligrams of magnesium, 171 milligrams of phosphorus, 444 milligrams of potassium and 48 milligrams of sodium. Overall it is high in protein and minerals, while being low in total calories and sodium.
In terms of vitamins, the serving provides over 1 milligram of vitamin C, 5 micrograms of folate, almost 3 micrograms of vitamin B12 and 98 international units of vitamin A. The fat content breaks down to 40 milligrams of cholesterol, 0.3 grams of saturated fats, 0.3 grams of monounsaturated fats and 0.5 grams of polyunsaturated fats.
Read more: Top 10 Healthy Fish to Eat
Red snapper's nutrition profile makes it an ideal choice for people looking to consume a lean source of protein. The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health notes that some people are wary of eating fish due to contaminants like mercury and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), but recommends speaking with your physician about any specific concerns.
Red Snapper Calorie Counts
Red snapper calorie counts vary depending on the serving size. For example, a 100-gram serving of snapper would provide 128 calories, and a 170-gram fillet would provide 218 calories. The way you prepare the snapper will also affect the calories; for example, fish prepared with olive oil or butter will provide more calories than steamed fish.
Read more: 7 Fish Recipes That Are Great for Your Heart
One major benefit of red snapper: calorie counts are lower when compared with other fish due to its very low fat content, making it a lean protein choice. For example, a 3-ounce serving of cooked sockeye salmon provides 133 calories and a 3-ounce serving of cooked bluefin tuna provides 156 calories.
Red Snapper Benefits
According to the American Heart Association, fish is a heart-healthy protein option that is typically packed with healthy fats. The association recommends at least two servings of fish per week, listing a serving as 3.5 ounces of cooked fish or 3/4 cup of flaked fish.
Another benefit of red snapper is how versatile it is, due to the white, delicate flesh and fairly mild flavor. There are tons of simple, delicious ways to prepare it. One option is to bake a fish filet and serve it with brown rice and vegetables, another is to serve up fish and vegetable tacos with homemade salsa.
Red snapper can also be prepared en papillote, meaning it's sealed in a parchment pouch and baked in the oven with vegetables. En papillote is a steaming method commonly used in French cooking, which helps prepare moist and flaky fish in a short amount of time.
- USDA: "Fish, Snapper, Mixed Species, Cooked, Dry Heat"
- American Heart Association: "Fish and Omega-3 Fatty Acids"
- USDA: "Fish, Salmon, Sockeye, Cooked, Dry Heat"
- USDA: "Fish, Tuna, Fresh, Bluefin, Cooked, Dry Heat"
- Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health: "Fish: Friend or Foe?"
- Florida Museum of Natural History: "Northern Red Snapper"
- Harvard Health Publishing: "Should You Be Taking an Omega-3 Supplement?"