Mediterranean Diet 101

Canned Sardine Recipes

Canned sardines are one of the best canned foods that exists. Sardines can be canned in ordinary vegetable oil, olive oil, tomato juice, salt water etc. As food, canned sardines are eaten whole, with the bones (softened by canning process) - very rich in protein, omega-3, vitamin D, calcium, phosphorous and other macro and micronutrients. Sardines are very low in the sea food chain, so they are very low in mercury, cadmium and other contaminants often found in larger predatory species like tuna, marlins etc.

Canned Sardines with Tomatoes and Green Onions

Great thing about canned fish, canned sardines included, is that they can be eaten without any preparation, strait from the can. Sardines canned in olive oil have great taste, but olive oil, as any other oil, is very caloric - and the goal is to have as balanced meals as possible.

canned sardine recipes

For this meal, we are going to use sardines canned in olive oil.

Open the can and put the sardines into the strainer.

canned sardine recipes

Flush olive oil from the sardines using plenty of lemon juice. This will also add some lemon aroma to the sardines and make them taste much better.

canned sardine recipes

While sardines are in the strainer, wash a medium sized tomato and clean one green onion.

Slice tomato as desired, add some salt and just a little bit of pepper. Put tomatoes on the plate and add sardines and green onion.

Serve with a slice of whole grain bread.

Note: It is also possible to add some extra virgin olive oil over the tomatoes - don't do it. It will add calories significantly and sardines are still 'full' of olive oil. If you want to play with the taste, add some vinegar to tomatoes and some parsley, celery and garlic to canned sardines.

Nutritional content of canned sardines:

Food Amount Protein Carbs Fats Fibers
Tomato 100g 1g 5g 0g 1g
Green Onions 50g 0g 4g 0g 1g
Canned Sardines 80g 15g 0g 10g 0g
Whole Grain Bread 100g 8g 35g 4g 10g
Total: 24g 44g 14g 12g
Calories: 96 kcal 176 kcal 126 kcal -

This meal has around 400 kcal. Fiber content is very good - between one third and one half of recommended daily values. Fats are relatively high, compared to protein, but this is mostly fish fats and olive oil. If you want to decrease fat content, use sardines canned in water or tomato sauce.

Anyway, whole grain bread with tomato and green onion, makes this meal very fulfilling and will keep you satiated for hours - this is great meal for quick breakfast or daily snack. If you are going to have it for dinner, add some low fat or cottage cheese (1-2 tablespoons). This will increase protein content with slow digesting casein protein.

Canned sardines are available year long and can be eaten right away from the can, without much of preparation. They are low in mercury and other pollutants and they taste good - fresh are, of course, better.

They can be found in local stores or even ordered from online shops.

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