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5 Types of Pacific Salmon Every Seafood Snob Should Know

Summertime means salmon time, and lucky for you, we know our seafood here at McGonigle’s Market. Today, we’re showing you 5 types of pacific salmon and everything the pros believe you should know about each.

McGonigle’s always stocks the freshest selection of seafood. See what we’ve got in the counter today!


Breaking Down the Basics

Different types of salmon and their flavors are valued by fat content. The fat content of the fish corresponds with the richness you taste in different kinds of salmon, and also affects the overall flavor. Because of this, there are five main types of pacific salmon, but each has a flavor profile much different from the rest. Continue reading to find out more.

Looking for a side to go with your salmon? Try one of these five fresh summertime veggies on the grill tonight!


1. King Salmon (Chinook)


King salmon, also known as chinook salmon, is one of the more prized by fishermen and is the largest of the salmon species weighing in at up to 126 pounds! Known for its black spots on its tail and upper half of its body.

Of all the different species, king salmon is by far the lushest. This tasty fish has the highest fat content making of the bunch, which is why it’s known for having the freshest flavor. This is usually the most expensive type of salmon, but its silky, melt-in-your-mouth texture is worth the price tag.


2. Sockeye Salmon (Red)


Sockeye salmon spawn almost exclusively in river systems connected to lakes, but they are still highly abundant. Known for its beautifully bright color, this species is also referred to as red salmon. This is also the top choice for types of salmon to serve raw.

Sockeye salmon is lower in fat content than king salmon, but still high overall. This species of salmon rivals king salmon as one of the top favorites amongst salmon lovers because of its buttery texture and intense flavor.


3. Coho Salmon (Silver)


Coho, or silver, salmon are known for their fighting nature, and because of this are highly sought after by game fishermen. These fish grow large, weighing in at up to 30 pounds, and because they are hard to hook and highly sought after, their abundance is low.

This particular species has a firm texture and a rich flavor that is complemented by simple preparations such as poaching. Third highest in fat content makes this salmon a yummy choice for salmon lovers who want to spend less money.


4. Pink Salmon (Humpback)


While pink salmon, also known as humpies, is the smallest of the pack, what it lacks in size it makes up for in abundance. This little fish spans waters from Alaska to Oregon in the tens of millions.

Pink salmon has the lowest fat content and flavor, but if caught early enough in the season it can be tastier. This particular species is often used for canning. However, the subtly sweet and delicate skin of this fish can best be brought out by roasting or pan-frying.


5. Chum Salmon (Keta)


Similar to pink salmon, chum salmon is lower in fat content and fished in high numbers. However, its roe (fish eggs), is the most valued of the five varieties because of its size and flavor. Also known as keta salmon or dog salmon, its drier flesh is well suited for smoking or curing.

Although it is leaner and milder in taste than the other species, many enjoy this fish for a variety of recipes if they need a lighter tasting fish to accompany another, more powerful dish.


Stop by McGonigle’s Market or give us a call at (816) 444-4720 to find out what fresh salmon we have in stock. And for more fresh, local ingredients, sign up for our weekly newsletter for exclusive features and deals!

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