Raw oyster carb counts are extremely low, with less than 1 gram of carbs per single Pacific or eastern oyster. Oyster nutrition info varies depending on how the mollusks are prepared: A breaded or deep-fried oyster will provide more calories than a raw or steamed oyster.
Oyster Nutrition Facts
Oyster nutrition facts vary depending on the type of oyster you are eating and how it is prepared. Different types of oysters come in different sizes, and they have differing flavor profiles. Any sauces eaten alongside the oysters will obviously provide calories, too.
A serving of six medium-sized Eastern oysters, prepared raw, provides 50 calories, over 4 grams of protein, over 1 gram of fat and over 4 grams of carbs. When cooked, the nutrition facts change just slightly, providing 47 calories and a similar 4 grams of protein, over 4 grams of carbs and over 1 gram fat.
Oyster calorie counts are higher when oysters are breaded and/or fried. For example, the calories in oysters that are coated and fried comes in around 50 calories for only one Pacific oyster and 15 calories for one eastern oyster, which are much smaller in size. When ordering a half dozen at a time, this could add up to 300 calories for fried Pacific Oysters.
Raw oyster carb counts are very low, but the number of carbs provided increases when the oysters are breaded or deep-fried: just over 3 grams for one Pacific oyster and almost 1 gram for one eastern oyster.
Read more: Are Oysters Good for You?
Raw Oyster Risks
The low number of calories in oysters make them a popular option, alongside other shellfish like clams. However, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns that eating raw oysters can potentially be dangerous. That's because they can be contaminated with Vibrio vulnificus, a type of bacteria that can cause illness in humans.
The FDA says that popular myths about raw oysters are not true — namely, that eating them with hot sauce or alcohol will not kill the bacteria, and it's impossible to tell whether or not an oyster is infected just by looking at it or smelling it.
Read more: The 9 Safest Seafood Options
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, people with liver disease or a compromised immune system may be at a higher risk of getting sick from this type of bacteria — but it can happen to anyone. Vibrio vulnificus can cause two types of illness: wound infections or an infection in the bloodstream called primary septicemia.
Symptoms of getting sick from raw oysters or other shellfish usually occur within 24 to 48 hours of consumption and include fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, skin lesions, shock and stomach pain. If you experience any of these symptoms after eating raw shellfish, you should seek medical attention right away.
- Food and Drug Administration: "Raw Oyster Myths"
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: "Vibrio vulnificus"
- Florida Atlantic University: "The Risk of Eating Raw Molluscan Shellfish"
- USDA: "Oysters, Coated, Fried"
- University of Rhode Island: "Seafood Safety: What Consumers Need to Know"
- USDA: "Nutrition Facts for Raw Eastern Oysters"
- USDA: "Nutrition Facts for Cooked Eastern Oysters (Farmed)"