What Do Prawns Taste Like? Mystery Uncovered!

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The common misconception is that prawns are simply large shrimp. But the fact of the matter is that prawns and shrimp are in reality two entirely distinct kinds of animals.

In spite of the fact that they share a similar appearance and are frequently substituted for one another in culinary preparations, these two ingredients are not the same.

Because it is one of the most well-liked and commonly eaten types of seafood in the United States, we are familiar with the flavor of shrimp. The question now is, what about prawns?

What Do Prawns Taste Like? 

The flavor of prawns is mild and slightly sweet, and their texture is meaty. They have a flavor profile that is comparable to that of shrimp, but in general, they are less salty and less briny than shrimp. Because of the similarities in their flavors, one is frequently substituted for the other when cooking.

What Are Prawns?

In addition to crabs, shrimp, lobsters, and crayfish, the prawn is a member of the family Decapoda, which also includes lobsters and crayfish. Prawns are small crustaceans that live in water and have ten legs.

In spite of the fact that they are distinct in a number of important respects from shrimp, they are practically indistinguishable in appearance and flavor, which explains why they can stand in for shrimp in the majority of recipes.

Types of Prawns

There are many different types of prawns. We’ll look at some of them below.

1. Tiger Prawns

Tiger prawns can grow to be as long as 33 centimeters (13 inches) and are found primarily in Asia, Africa, and Australia. The black and white stripes on their shells, which transform into a vibrant orange or red color when the clams are cooked, are the inspiration for their common name.

They are actually predators that feed on prawns that are smaller in size and are the ones that are farmed the most.

2. Banana Prawns

The flavor of banana prawns is sweeter than the flavor of other types of prawns, which is how they got their name. Banana prawns also have the shape of bananas. They range in color from translucent to yellow, with spots of reddish-brown, and their legs can be yellow or red, depending on the species.

They are more commonly found in tropical and subtropical waters and are utilized in the preparation of hot dishes, such as curry, as opposed to cold foods.

3. Spot Prawns

Spot prawns are highly sought after due to the sweetness and delicacy of their flavor, and you can identify them by the pair of white spots that are located on their bodies.

Their colors range from a reddish hue to a brownish reddish hue. They are the species of prawn that can be found in North America that are the largest.

4. Kuruma Prawns

Kuruma prawns are a distinct species of prawn, although their exoskeletons are marked with stripes in a manner that is similar to that of tiger prawns.

They have a flavor that is sweet and a consistency that is firm, and they are highly regarded in Japan, which may make them pricey.

They are often used in restaurants to make the dish tempura, which is traditional in Japanese cuisine.

5. Eastern King Prawns

The long spine that acts as a defense mechanism for Eastern king prawns, which are indigenous to Australia, may be found between their eyes.

They are rather large, with lengths that may reach up to one foot in length. Typically, they have a colored tail that stands out against their translucent body. They are juicy and tasty, and the grilling process brings forth their best qualities.

The Difference Between Prawns and Shrimps

When it comes to their anatomy and biology, prawns and shrimp couldn’t be more different from one another. Although they are both crustaceans with 10 legs, they do not resemble one another at all in appearance, lifestyle, or behavior.

In the following paragraphs, we will discuss some of the contrasts between them.

1. Taxonomy and Classification

Both shrimp and prawns are crustaceans known as decapods. Decapods are characterized by having 10 legs and an exoskeleton. On the other hand, prawns are classified under the Dendrobranchiata suborder, whereas shrimp are classified under the Pleocyemata suborder. The Pleocyemata suborder also includes lobsters and crabs.

2. Anatomy and appearance

The body architecture of prawns and shrimp are quite distinct from one another. Each every segment of a prawn’s exoskeleton overlaps the segment that is immediately behind it (the first overlaps just the second, the second just overlaps just the third, etc).

This is not the case with shrimp, though. The first and the third segments of their body are covered by the overlap of the second abdominal segment.

Although it may not seem significant at first, the ability of shrimp to bend their bodies in this manner is what sets them apart from prawns in that regard.

Because of this, prawns often have a body shape that is more straight, while shrimp tend to have a body structure that is more bent and curled.

In addition, their claws and gills are not the same.

In contrast to prawns, which have branching gills, shrimp’s gills are stacked and plate-like. The legs of a shrimp are noticeably shorter than the legs of a prawn, and only two pairs of shrimp legs have claws on them, while prawns have claws on all three pairs of their legs.

3. Size

Although there are some varieties of shrimp that can grow to be larger than prawns, prawns are typically much larger than shrimp. Shrimp, on the other hand, have a tendency to be on the smaller side.

4. Reproduction and Gestation

The bodies of prawns contain fertilized eggs, which are then expelled into the surrounding water. On the other hand, shrimp are the only crustaceans known to carry and brood their eggs under their bodies.

5. Habitat

The vast majority of prawns are found in freshwater, whereas the vast majority of shrimp prefer saltwater. Prawns are typically thought of as freshwater animals, despite the fact that both types can be found in both environments.

Do Prawns and Shrimp Taste Different?

In spite of the fact that prawns and shrimp are very different from one another from a scientific point of view, there is not much of a distinction between the two in terms of flavor.

Because the majority of prawns are found in fresh waters rather than saltwater, they do not have the same salty and briny flavor as their counterparts that live in saltwater. This gives prawns a slightly sweeter flavor than shrimp does.

However, this could be different depending on the location from which you obtain your prawns and shrimps because the food that they consume naturally has an effect on the flavor of the shrimp and prawns.

In addition, prawns are typically larger and more resilient than shrimp. As a result, they are also typically meatier and more robust, and they do well when subjected to more intense cooking methods such as grilling.

However, other than that, there isn’t really all that much of a difference between them, which is why you can successfully use one in place of the other in recipes without sacrificing the end result.

Can You Eat Raw Prawns?

As is the case with shrimp, consuming raw prawns is not recommended because of the risk that they may harbor bacteria and other pathogens that can lead to food-borne illnesses.

There is a possibility that you will experience a variety of symptoms, including nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, fever, stomach pain, and muscle aches. Some of these symptoms may even require hospitalization.

People who are generally healthy might be able to get away with just being sick for a few days, but those who are immunocompromised or who have other health problems might find that such an episode poses a serious risk to their lives.

Because there are so many ways in which prawns can be prepared that are both tasty and speedy, it is probably not worth the trouble to put yourself in danger of acquiring an illness that is caused by consuming contaminated food.

Prawn Recipe Ideas

It is possible to prepare prawns in a number of different ways, and they hold up well to all of these preparation styles. You can bake them, grill them, or even fry them, and you can put them in salads and stir-fries.

They can become tough and rubbery if overcooked, so we need to be careful not to cook them for too long. They cook fairly quickly. One thing we need to watch out for is cooking them for too long.

To get the most out of your prawns, make sure to only cook them for the appropriate amount of time so that they retain their pliancy and moisture. This will allow you to get the most bang for your buck.

For a speedy meal that never fails to satisfy, my go-to preparation for prawns is a straightforward saute in some butter and garlic, followed by the addition of some chopped parsley.

Sometimes I would also make a lemon butter sauce to go along with it, and other times I would marinate the prawns in lemon-lime soda first before sautéing them in order to give them a sweeter taste. Both of these methods were utilized in order to achieve the same end result.

I’ve also read that some people simmer them in lemon-lime soda and chili, which results in a dish that is simultaneously sweet and spicy and satisfies the craving for something hearty.

There are a wide variety of additional preparation methods for prawns.

This article provides you with some mouthwatering ideas.

Conclusion to What Do Prawns Taste Like?

The flavor of prawns is moderate and somewhat sweet, and their texture is meaty. Even though they are technically different animals, they have a flavor that is comparable to that of shrimp.

It is common practice to use the terms “prawn” and “shrimp” interchangeably; however, depending on the region from which you hail, one of these terms might be more prevalent in common parlance than the other.

Even though they are technically distinct, they can be utilized in recipes in a manner that is very similar to one another and serve as excellent stand-ins for one another. Both are excellent at soaking up flavors, and both have similar positive effects on one’s health.

Frequently Asked Questions to What Do Prawns Taste Like?

Do Prawns Taste Like Shrimp?

Although they belong to different species, prawns and shrimp share a flavor profile that is so close to identical that it is almost impossible to tell them apart. Because of their larger size, prawns are typically considered to have a more succulent and meaty flavor than shrimp; however, when it comes to culinary applications, the two can be used interchangeably.

Do Prawns Taste Like Chicken?

The flavor of prawns and the flavor of chicken are completely distinct from one another and cannot be compared. However, prawns can also have a meaty texture like chicken, so depending on how they are cooked and what kinds of sauces and seasonings are used, they may have a flavor that is comparable to that of chicken.

What does a prawn taste like?

Because of their mild and sweet flavor, shrimp and prawns are extremely versatile and make excellent pairings with a wide variety of ingredients, ranging from the most basic to the most intricate.

Do prawns keep better peeled or unpeeled?

Prawns have a shelf life of between six and eight months if they are stored at a temperature that is lower than -18 degrees Celsius. When preparing prawns, you should never remove their shells until just before you start cooking them.

Which prawn is tastiest?

Large and flavoursome, tiger prawns have moist, firm flesh and a medium flavour. They have distinct stripes that can be gray, blue, or black, and when cooked, the stripes turn red. When to eat them: Tiger prawns can be found in stores at any time of the year.