What do insects taste like?
Edible Insects – Photo credit to Wilhelm Thomas Fiege
Have you ever wondered what dozens of different edible insects taste like? Read this comprehensive guide to insect flavors! Find edible insect species easiest to start with, but remember that reading about tastes and textures is only the first step in the adventure. The second step is to try edible insects yourself!
How do you know which edible insect species you like?
Find out with this comprehensive guide what edible insects taste like.
How do I describe something entirely new for my friends? Difficult right? But it’s part of the fun! If you can deliciously describe the taste and texture, your friends will want to try it. If you can compare insects to available foods, your friends will be encouraged to try insects like any other food. If you can’t, they have to try because they have no idea what you are talking about.
People asking about the taste of edible insects can be roughly divided into three groups in which people have different motives for tasting insects. Which group do you belong to?
First of all, these people want to make sure that their first experiences with edible insects are not frightening or traumatic. At the same time, they feel curiosity, attraction, and rejection. Using the right words can fuel their curiosity and kill rejection. Tell them mealworms taste like popcorn, and they will put a mealworm in their mouths. Give them a delicious Party Bugs cricket, and they’ll want their friends to try it too!
The practical eater
These people already know the benefits of consuming insects and are looking for practical ways to incorporate insects into their regular diet. They like the high protein content of insects and the environmental benefits. Now all they want to do is schedule it into their weekly menu planner. The main question for these people is, where can I find insects in my local supermarket?
But there are other tasters, too. These are the future star chefs who hope to take their creations to a new level. They believe, for a good reason, that edible insects will be found impressive by their guests.
Each person chooses to eat insects for different reasons. But before everyone takes the step, everyone wants to know what they’re getting into. That is why we have developed a definitive guide to help you take an educated risk.
Beetles, centipedes and silkworms on barbecue sticks in China – Photo credit on Phil Bus – Flickr
what do bugs taste like?
Insects taste much like shellfish. You can think of insects like lobsters or crabs but without the salty smell and taste of the sea. Instead, they have a more down-to-earth quality like mushrooms or root vegetables. Because they feed the forest and eat plant material, they may have some bitterness in their taste. Many insects have a nutty flavor.
The taste of insects is greatly influenced by what they eat. Some insects eat delicious fruits and grains, and they taste mildly like fruits and grains. If you let your crickets eat rosemary during their last week, they’ll taste like rosemary.
The drying method also affects the taste of insects. Freeze-drying retains the intensity of the flavor of the insects. Roasting can improve the taste experience through caramelization and Maillard reaction on the surface of the food. Some edible insects have a higher fat content, which gives their taste additional richness, and this results in a nutty flavor that makes them great snacks when toasted. Powdered insects also have their flavors compared to whole insects.
But in general, edible insects have a mild taste, so that you can use them in virtually any food.
Insects are all arthropods, and this means that they have outer skeletons in the shape of “shells” or exoskeletons. The texture of edible insects varies depending on the species. The exoskeleton in small insects, like house crickets or mealworms, is quite soft, and you can easily eat the whole insect. You may need to remove the hardest parts from bigger insects before eating.
What do ants taste like?
Different ants have different tastes. There are more than 12,000 species of ants globally, so there is no such thing as the “taste of ants.” The pheromones they communicate with also give them a very unique and aromatic taste. Since most food is honeydew – basically nutritious sugar water – they often taste sweet too. Most importantly, their flavor is very strong, which is essential when they are the size of your nail.
You can eat ants raw as long as you’ve made sure they’re dead first; otherwise, they may bite you. However, you may like them more after you’ve cooked them for six minutes first because boiling them neutralizes their acidity.
Adult ants, their larvae, and their eggs can be eaten. Ant eggs are a unique form of insect caviar and come at a high price. The insects can be eaten raw (even live), roasted or mashed, and added to drinks.
Lemon ants have a spicy and citrus taste.
The lemon and is a species of ant from South America. With their own herbicide, they kill all the plants in an area. They live in symbiosis with Duroia hirsuta and give their symbiont a selection advantage by killing all other plants in their habitat with their ant venom. To do this, they inject the poison – the main component is formic acid – by biting, preferably into the young shoots of the unwanted plants, which then die. In this way, the ants ensure the spread of their host plant, which is counted among the ant plants.
Leafcutter ants taste like a mixture of bacon and pistachios.
The leafcutter ants are found in America’s tropical and subtropical parts, north to Louisiana and Texas and south to Patagonia. What particularly distinguishes the workers of allied species is the disproportionate size and heart-like shape of the head, which is associated with a colossal development of the muscles of the powerful jaws. They don’t eat the leaves themselves but chew them up and use them as a substrate to grow a special mushroom from the genus of the Egerling umbrella family (Leucoagaricus), on which they feed. Strong thorns on the head and thorax give the ants a distinctive appearance.
In Mexico and Colombia, leaf cutter ants are eaten as a culinary specialty, “hormiga culona”. Ants of the species Atta laevigata are eaten as food insects in Colombia. “Hormigas Culonas” is a culinary specialty of the Santander region. For this purpose, females (queens) are used, which have a significantly enlarged abdomen. The animals are fried. The dish is considered an aphrodisiac.
Honey ants taste like sweet flower nectar. However, when toasted, they have a bacon-like flavor. As you bite into their body, their abdomen will explode in your mouth releasing these intricate notes.
Honeypot ants are typically eaten by humans, not only for their taste but also for their nutrients. Most of these ants contain large amounts of iron, zinc, and potassium. They are also packed with protein and calcium. Although they are healthy because they contain sugar, they are mainly eaten as a dessert.
Honeypot ants can be eaten anywhere they are native to, but they are mainly consumed in Australia. In fact, this insect was once a favorite of Australia’s Indigenous people, including residents of Papunya who named their territory after this intriguing creature.
The honeypot ant is a unique insect that’s known for its sweet tooth and interesting food storage capabilities. Despite their small size, they have an important job of keeping their colony fed to ensure its survival.
They are basically overfed ants that carry the burden of food storage for the colony in the event of a dry season. Her genitals, the size of a small grape, are full of sweet and sour nectar.
Honey ants, or honeypot ants, are ants with specialized workers fed on food so much that their bellies swell tremendously. They act as living pantries. Other ants then extract nutrients from them through trophallaxis, which means transferring food or other fluids between community members through mouth-to-mouth or anus-to-mouth feeding.
Honeypot ants – Photo credit to Chiara Coetzee
In Northern Europe, there are wood ants in the forests, and of course, they are also edible.
What do wood ants taste like? Formic acid wood ants have a sour taste, but this is often combined with citric acid. You can use them on salads, sandwiches, etc., as any condiment.
Red forest ants – Photo credit to Richard Bartz
How do I pluck ants?
To eat ants in the wild, you can stick a thin stick in their anthill, and a train of ants will crawl up to examine the source of the resurrection. You can collect them on top of the stick.
In Northern Europe, wood ants are found in the forests. You can easily collect these ants by placing your hand on the nest and then letting the ants take your hand. With your hand, you can shake the ants in a jar and then freeze them when you get home.
What do Asian giant hornets taste like?
Asian Giant Hornets
Hornet has a musty and slightly grainy taste like flaxseed or wheat. Hornet has exoskeletons. Therefore, these giant insects have a consistency similar to a fried prawn head eaten whole with a piece of sweet prawn sushi, but perhaps a little less meaty inside. Many insects have a “muff” that can be described as a kind of earthy or tasteless taste (smells like an old cellar, but good); others compare the taste to mushrooms.
An Asian Giant Hornet – Photo credit to NUMBER7isBEST
The Asian giant hornet (Vespa mandarinia) is a hornet species found in East and Southeast Asia. Asian giant hornets are up to five times larger than western honey bees. A sting from the giant hornet is described as extremely painful. In Japan, an average of 40 people dies each year from an allergic reaction to the stings of its largest subspecies, the Japanese giant hornet (Vespa mandarinia japonica).
Processing denatures the poison, making commercial giant hornets good to eat.
As bees, you can eat hornets both as adults and as larvae. Try to cook them and eat them with rice, as Emperor Hirohito apparently did in Japan. Japan even has a festival for people who like to eat hornets.
Cooking with Japanese giant hornets.
What do bee larvae taste like?
It turns out that bees are not
suitable only for the honey they produce!
Bi larvae – Photo credit to nicephotog – Flickr
You can eat both adult bees and bee larvae. Fry the larvae in a buttered pan or fry the adult bees. The tiny white larvae are delicious!
A bee larva tastes more like bacon or oily honey, but it has also been described as tasting like almonds or peanuts.
The taste of fried baby bees is described as the taste of smoked fish or oysters.
The structure is slightly crispy on the outside. Tough and starchy inside.
In China, people use bees to create bee meals to relieve sore throats. Indigenous peoples eat bees in the larval stage almost everywhere. In Vietnam, it is usually eaten life straight from the honeycomb.
What do black soldier fly larvae taste like?
Black Soldier Fly Larvae
Fly larvae can be safe and perhaps suitable food for both humans and animals. For example, the larvae of the cheese fly make Sardinia’s famous Casu Marzu cheese so unique in taste (and lively appearance!).
The iron-rich and healthy fatty acid-filled larvae of the black soldier fly larvae are among the most popular insects on the market.
The black soldier fly (Hermetia illucens) is a leading insect for animal feed applications. If you’ve ever seen a chicken eat black soldier fly larvae, you know why: the chickens love it!
Black soldier fly – Photocredit to Muhammad Mahdi Karim
However, there are three reasons black soldier fly larvae are overlooked as human food
As the sector has grown in recent years, crickets have received extensive media coverage as food (and, to a lesser extent, mealworms). In contrast, black soldier fly larvae have been rewritten as waste management and animal feed solution. Black soldier fly larvae are rarely if ever, referred to as food.
Europe is a leader in regulation, and most of the world is looking for guidance from the EU. They made it very clear that black soldier fly larvae are only legal for specific animal feed applications. Not like human food. So you think: “If the EU says it is not food for people, then it must not be.”
Insects tend to adopt the taste profile of which substrate they were fed for. For larvae that eat rotten food (or worse), this will not produce a delicious end result. I have to admit that I tried some really high-level larvae. It won’t come back to that.
But in the past few years, it has led to tons of new discoveries in the industry, especially when it comes to soldier flies. In Asia, producers have experimented with cleaner efforts, achieving higher nutritional values, faster harvest times, and delicious taste!
So if they’re as nutritious as crickets or mealworms, undoubtedly more durable and drastically cheaper … it seems like they should be viewed as a human food solution.
Today nobody seems to be targeting the use of black soldier fly larvae as food. This insect should be cooked fresh, but let’s compare both the fresh and dried varieties. Let’s answer the question of what black soldier flies taste like.
What do fresh black soldier fly larvae taste like?
Freshly cooked black soldier fly larvae have a mild taste, but that’s because the food larvae have eaten.
Some say they taste like black pudding.
What do dried, whole black soldier fly larvae taste like?
Sharp, strongly earthy, fishy. The aroma is not very appetizing. In some ways, the taste is similar to dry and roasted cricket flour. Black soldier fly larvae are more fishy than shrimp-like and taste stronger.
Down-to-earth, chocolate-like malt, the taste experience of the fish is very low, mildly sweet. The taste is much better than the aroma.
The dried whole black soldier fly larvae have a very soft texture. They dissolve most when chewed. The structure is not chalk.
Black soldier fly larvae – Photo credit on MD-Terraristik
What do buffalo worms taste like?
Buffalo worms are smaller than mealworms but have a very similar taste and appearance. You can eat them whole or use buffalo worm flour as an ingredient.
Buffalo worms – Photo credit to Raimond Spekking
What do centipedes taste like?
They taste like shrimp or fish with a touch of grass and have a dried meat-like texture. The taste is probably not something you’ve tried before.
Centipedes on sticks – Photo credit to Denise Chan – Flickr
Roasted centipedes on sticks are also said to taste like dried spaghetti noodles. In other words, they taste like nothing or like a bunch of clams. No mushroom, creaminess, toughness, or texture other than crispy and slightly crispy. Without salt, the taste is entirely neutral.
what do cicadas taste like?
As such, cicada tastes like lobster or asparagus.
Cicadas are often cooked in garlic and salt and taste like seafood, popcorn, or bacon. Some nibblers also like these bugs raw.
Adult cicadas – Photo credit to Sharon Hahn Darlin – Flickr
Cicadas live underground for up to 17 years and eat tree roots until they crawl to the surface to mate. They are popular snacks worldwide and one of the few insects traditionally considered a food source in North America. They taste good when fried or roasted with salt.
What do cockroaches taste like?
They taste like oily chicken.
While we assume that cockroaches are dirty garbage collectors, they can be grown in extremely clean environments. In China, they are believed to offer significant health benefits.
Cockroaches – Photo credit to Matt Lemmon – Flickr
Although considered disgusting in Western culture, cockroaches are eaten in many places around the world. While domestic pest roaches can contain bacteria and viruses, roaches reared under laboratory conditions can be used to prepare nutritious foods. In Mexico and Thailand, the heads and legs are removed, and the rest can be boiled, sautéed, grilled, dried, or diced.
Edible cockroaches are fried twice in a hot wok oil, causing them to become crispy and have soft entrails that look like cottage cheese.
A cockroach recipe from Formosa, Taiwan, specifies salting and roasting cockroaches after the head and intestines have been removed.
Cockroaches as medicine
In China, cockroaches have become popular as the cultivation of cockroaches for medicinal purposes increases by over 100 farms.
Fried cockroaches are ground and sold as pills for stomach, heart, and liver diseases.
“The essence of cockroaches is good for healing mouth and stomach ulcers, skin ulcers, and even stomach cancer,” said Wen Jianguo, director of Gooddoctor’s Cockroach Facility.
Researchers are also investigating the uses of cockroach extracts in beauty masks, diet pills, and even hair loss.
How about some Japanese style cockroach tempura?
What do crickets taste like?
House crickets (Acheta domesticus) have a crispy texture, and umami taste like parmesan. Crickets are a bit like tofu in that they don’t have a flavor of their own, but they absorb the flavors of whatever else they’re in the pot with.
House cricket (acheta domesticus) – Photo credit to Geyersberg, Professor emeritus Hans Schneider
In addition to their taste, crickets are an excellent nutritional supplement for almost any recipe. They are full of protein and offer a satisfactory crispness. Otherwise, they taste a lot like popcorn or almonds.
Whether sautéed, baked, roasted, or fried in tempura batter, the possibilities for cooking and serving barbecues are almost unlimited. Many cricket chefs recommend working with frozen insects to make the whole process easier.
If eating a whole insect is too much, then there is also the option of using cricket powder. Cricket flour is a complete source of protein with a mild, nutty taste. It can be mixed into pastries, smoothies, and even salad dressings. It’s a simple introduction to the world of edible insects.
what does cricket flour taste like?
Cricket flour, flour from grilling, can contain up to 68 percent protein. You can use it to add protein to pancakes, cakes, bread, cookies, smoothies, and virtually any food. At Party Bugs, we especially love crunchy flour on yogurt! Check out some of the recipes we’ve put together for you!
However, the taste of cricket flour is mild and pleasant with a hint of umami. Cricket flour shouldn’t smell strange, and cakes should taste better with 5% cricket flour. We’ve heard that cricket flour tastes like rye bread or roasted chickpeas. Still, we’ve listened to dozens of other comparisons as well. Who is right? Try it!
What do in diving beetles taste like?
Fried diving beetles taste like clams. Feeding on small fish and shellfish, it has a typical spicy taste.
What do giant waterbugs taste like?
Giant Water Bugs
Big and ugly giant bugs are popular in Thailand. When steamed, the meat has the consistency of fish.
The taste of giant bugs has been described as a salt-banana or salt-melon flavor. The meat is described in various ways. The flavors resemble citrus fruits, black licorice, or even chewing gum and gummy bears. Like many arthropod insects, people often compare the taste to sweet shrimp, scallops, or crab meat.
In this video, the boiled giant water bugs smell like pears.
In this video, these ever-fun Japanese edible insect lovers test whether they can tell the smell of giant water bugs from real pears.
At Party Bugs, we personally think that dried giant bugs taste like fried fish fins.
You can eat giant water bugs raw, steamed, or fried.
The best way to find out what giant bugs taste like is to try them yourself!
Roasted giant water bugs – Picture credits to Alpha – Flickr
Giant water bugs are quite thick and very strong and have a lot of flesh. In Thailand, you can find female giant bugs in the market. To eat the insects, add a little salt, break off the head and pull out the meat. A practical illustrated guide to this technology can be found on the” Eating Thai Food” website.
If eating giant bugs whole doesn’t sound appealing, consider using a concentrated essence of giant male bugs. The concentrate is popular in Vietnam, Thailand, and other Southeast Asian countries. It is so strong that just a small drop can taste a whole dish. The taste comes from the liquid pheromone that male beetles secrete to attract women. There are many rumors about its aphrodisiac. Similarly, the giant bugs are sometimes ground into powder or made into a sauce, such as Thai chilli dipping sauces.
Giant water bug – Photo credits to Andy Reago & Chrissy McClarren – Flickr
Giant water bugs belong to the family Belostomatidae which are freshwater hemipteran insects known as giant water bugs or colloquially as toe-biters, Indian toe-biters, electric-light bugs, alligator ticks, or alligator fleas (in Florida)
what do grasshoppers taste like? (Chapulines)
Crickets and grasshoppers are the two most commonly mentioned edible insects in the west. Experienced edible insect connoisseurs seem to agree that these two insects are among the best tasting of all edible insects.
Chapulines are grasshoppers of the genera Sphenarium, Schistocerca, Taeniopoda, Trimerotropis, Spharagemon, Plectotetra, and Melanoplus, which are used as food insects in Mexico. The non-spicy capulins taste like mushrooms, chicken, and peanuts.
Grasshoppers taste like what they were fed with and what spices they are cooked with. Some of the meatier ones taste a bit like prawns. Remember to pluck your legs before you eat them, or be sure to chew them well. They tend to be tough and can get stuck in your throat.
Chapulines in Oaxaca – Photo credit to NUMBER7isBEST
Chapulines in Oaxaca
Chapulines are grasshoppers of the genus Sphenarium commonly eaten in some regions of Mexico. There they are almost as common as any meat. Chapulines are prepared in various sauces and spices that are as different as chili lime and mole sauce.
One of the regions of Mexico where chapulines are most widely consumed is Oaxaca. There they are sold as snacks at local sports events and are becoming revived among foodies.
There is one reference to eating grasshoppers in the early records of the Spanish conquest, in the early to mid 16th century.
In fact, Christopher Columbus and the Conquistadors can be held partially responsible for it that people in today’s western world avoid eating insects. In their expedition diaries, the newly arrived Europeans described how indigenous people used insects as food. With this example, they branded and dehumanized Native Americans as savages to enslave them later. Furthermore, monoculture cultivation, supported by modern-day industrial farming and slavery, also exposed crops to insect pests. This has further stigmatized insects in Europe and the Americas.
Besides Oaxaca, chapulines are popular in areas surrounding Mexico City, such as Tepoztlán, Cuernavaca and Puebla. They may be eaten individually as a botana (snack) or as a filling, e.g. tlayuda filled with chapulines.
Chapulines are rust-colored grasshoppers, usually served fried and seasoned with chile, lime, garlic, onion, and/or salt. They’re nearly everywhere you look in Oaxaca—though they’re technically in season spring through early fall. They constitute an old food tradition in these parts as a cheap and plentiful protein. They are ingrained in Oaxacan culture.
Read a story about chapulines prepared in Oaxaca style here.
What do locusts taste like?
Migratory locusts taste like shrimp. Something between chicken schnitzel, roasted sunflower seeds, and shrimp … they say.
Fried grasshoppers are said to taste like sardines.
From a nutritional perspective, locusts and locusts are excellent sources of protein and other essential nutrients.
Locust (locusta migratoria) – Photo credit to Holger Krisp
Eating swarms of locusts is widespread wherever pests have emerged – such as in Africa, the Middle East, South Asia, and North America. The plague was an ancient challenge that many societies accepted by turning it into food.
For centuries, Native Americans had grasshoppers and other insects in their diet. This included swarms of locusts. For example, when the swarm encountered the Great Salt Lake, millions were trapped in the water and died. These ended up on the lakeshore, already salted by the water and ready for collection.
In the Middle East, like Israel, eating swarming locusts was also a strategy. Locusts and migratory locusts are actually the only halal insect in the local diet.
Locusts have also been eaten in parts of Africa for centuries. And in some places, it is still today. In Madagascar, for example, locusts are used both as food and as animal feed in grasshopper outbreaks when the harvest is gone.
Given that governments are now turning to chemicals to fight outbreaks, the correct advice is that people shouldn’t eat locusts or use them as animal feed. Chemical residues pose a significant health risk.
What do maguey worms taste like?
Maguey Worms / Agave worms
Fried agave worms taste like sunflower seeds.
Chefs make the most of the maguey worms’ nutty taste using them like fried pork “cracklings.” With crispy maguey worms, they add flavor to mole sauce, texture to rice soup, and a savory pop to tacos served in warm tortillas with guacamole. Those who may not be ready to consume a whole insect can use smoked powder from ground worms, salt, and red chili (sal de gusano). The powder flavors excellently a favorite pairing of lime slices and mezcal.
When mature, these larvae appear fleshy red and can measure up to 65 mm. They are considered a very nutritious delicacy in Mexican cuisine. A 100-gram serving contains over 650 calories or the equivalent of two plates of rice (500 g). While they are sometimes eaten live and raw, they are also considered delicious in tortillas when fried or braised and flavored with salt, lime, and a tangy sauce.
Fried agave worms – Photo credit to T.Tseng – Flickr
Are you wondering about the worm at the bottom of your tequila? The red maguey worm usually got into the bottle as a marketing ploy for selling mediocre spirits in the mid-20th century.
Mezcal and tequila have long been associated with worms (“Gusano” or “Mezcal con Gusano”). There are myths that all tequila and mezcal are made with a worm in the end. There are other myths that no agave distillery uses worms, even if the bottle says “con Gusano” or with a worm on the mezcal.
The maguey worm is not actually a worm but a caterpillar. And if you know your tequila, you know the agave plant or maguey (pronounced “mah-GAY”) that these larvae make their home in. Both white and red maguey worms are among the most respected insects consumed in Mexico and were once an important source of protein for the Aztecs. Today they make crispy fried snacks and juicy taco fillings.
The caterpillars in some mezcal brands’ bottles belong to the species Aegiale hesperiaris or the species Hypopta agavis. These caterpillars are often referred to as “worms” (Spanish gusano). Common names of Aegiale hesperiaris are gusano de maguey, agave worm, mezcal worm or maguey worm, while Hypopta agavis is named as gusano rojo, red agave worm or red mezcal worm.
LISÄÄ TIETOA: https://www.tequilareviews.com/gusano-de-maguey-mezcal-worms/
What do mealworms taste like?
Mealworms have a discreet umami taste that leaves a light, nutty aftertaste. They go well with more or less everything.
You can use either whole or ground mealworms to add protein and a feeling of adventure to your dishes. Try mealworms roasted, freeze-dried, or buy frozen ones and fry them on a pan.
You can serve mealworms using almost any cooking technique, whether roasting, roasting, or sautéing. You can cook and eat them exactly how you want.
Mealworms’ mild and nutty taste blends with everything like bread, meatballs, tacos, hamburgers, spaghetti, caramels, lollipops, paellas, pizzas, chocolate, cookies, etc. You can toss them in salads or on tacos or throw them in your mouth as a snack. Internet is full of mealworm recipes.
Mealworms – Picture credit to Peter Halasz
We highly recommend trying mealworms from different producers because mealworms’ taste highly depends on the feed they eat. Depending on their diet during their last 2-3 days, the taste of mealworms can differ from slightly unpleasant to very delicious!
I must admit that I was not too fond of the taste of mealworms when I tried them for the first time in 2018. The taste was mild, but I did not like the not-so-delicious aftertaste, which stayed for minutes in my mouth and returned time after time for hours. Those mealworms were from one of the biggest mealworm producers in Europe, and in 2021, their worms still taste the same.
Later, after tasting mealworms from other producers, I have changed my mind. Mealworms can have a very delicious taste of their own and without any unpleasant after tastes.
At Party Bugs, we like mealworms so much that we wanted to create a new Party Bugs product line using mealworms.
Mealworms are also high in protein, so you know they will do a lot of good for you. Often used as a nutrient booster, they give you the same amount of protein as beef but with no environmental effects.
Mealworms are already mass-produced in large quantities as animal feed, and mass production for consumption is the next step.
We are very proud of Party Bugs’ new mealworm products. Look how beautiful Party Bugs Asian Magic mealworms we created! And that is only one of our mouthwatering mealworm snacks. Find more mealworm products in our Party Bugs Shop and try them! They taste amazing!
What do mopane worms taste like?
The taste of mopane worms is described as “beef jerky,” “crispy and salty” (which I’m sure will taste good when you fry it), and of course, “butter and peanuts.” But many stories about eating mopane larvae are written by westerners, treating mopane worms as a kind of freak adventure food rather than a regular, daily staple. After drying, the Mopan larvae are ready to be eaten as a snack. You can also have them kept in a few places.
Mopane worms with onions – Photo credit to ComQuat
Dried mop worms can be eaten raw as a healthy snack; in Botswana, people don’t tend to eat their heads off. Alternatively, you can rehydrate mopane worms by soaking and fry them until crispy or cook them with onions, tomatoes, and spices and then serve with pap or sadza. The flesh is yellow, and the intestines may still contain fragments of dried leaves that are not harmful to humans. The taste of dried leaves, if not removed, is somewhat reminiscent of tea leaves. Dried mop worms are often canned in tomato sauce or chili sauce to add flavor.
Dried larvae can be soaked in water for up to four hours before they’re ready to cook, depending on how juicy you like them. Then they can be fried until crispy or put in a saucepan. When traveling through southern Africa in the countryside, you are likely to come across mopane worms, either canned or at a market.
These colorful worms are a staple food for many people in southern Africa, especially Zimbabwe, Namibia, and Botswana. A Mopane butterfly larva contains 48 to 61 percent protein. Mopane worms also contain iron, potassium, calcium, zinc, and magnesium in high concentrations. Because the dried worms last several months without cooling, they are an excellent source of emergency protein in Africa.
What does praying mantis taste like?
Praying mantis fried over open fire taste like shrimp or raw mushrooms.
What does the sago worm taste like?
The sago grubs are said to taste like beef bone marrow.
The sago worm is the larva of the beetle Rhynchophorus ferrugineus. Originally native to Southeast Asia, the pest has meanwhile also spread to the European Mediterranean region. It causes massive damage to palm trees, which serve as food for the larvae—one more reason to eat this protein supplier in Europe.
Common in Southeast Asia, sago worms have received fantastic reviews as a food. Thanks to their high-fat content, they have a delicious taste that is reminiscent of syrupy bacon. The flavor should also be reminiscent of fried kidneys.
This delicious food is especially popular when fried in its own fat. Sago grubs taste lovely for a bug and have none of that … “buggish” … taste for them. These are usually roasted but can be eaten raw, while the raw ones are valued for their creamy texture.
The sago worms are considered a delicacy in Vietnam, where they are usually eaten alive with fish sauce.
Goes well with beer!
What do silkworms taste like?
Silk worm pupae
Cooked silkworms have a pungent, almost bitter smell and taste. If you bite them (get ready if you have a sensitive stomach and don’t know how to eat insects), they will appear juicy in your mouth.
The representation of how silkworms taste is very different. Due to the size of the industry and the long tradition of eating silkworms, these caterpillars are widely available not only in Asian supermarkets but also online. This means that more and more of these “Hey, I’ve tried these weird insects” blogs are popping up. Not very useful, but we found a great tip: To avoid cracking and the liquid, pasty inside sticking out, you can chop up the larvae so that the inside is cooked too. Most recipes recommend frying them until crispy and tossing in salt (a bit of an insect boiling topic!). But a lot of the reports just say that Westerners are too scared to even try silkworms …
Fried silkworm pupae – photo credit to Blueberry87
Silk is usually made from silk cocoons. Silk is a protein fiber that larvae spin to form a protective cocoon in which to complete metamorphosis. For silkworms, this means that they appear as a moth.
To get out of the cocoon, the larvae release enzymes that burn a hole in the shell, but those industrially grown for silk usually don’t reach that point. They are often cooked rather gloomy; This kills the larvae and allows producers to tear the entire cocoon into long threads.
Silkworm Cocoons – Photo credit to Krish Dulal
However, the method creates an important by-product: dead larvae. These are commonly eaten in East Asia: particularly Japan, China, Korea, and Vietnam. Silkworm is a high protein snack or ingredient that is generally fried in China and cooked in Korea.
Animal rights activists have long questioned this aspect of silk production. An alternative “cruelty-free” wild silk called ahimsa silk is being made in southern India.
On the other hand, if silkworms have produced silk, silkworms have no better alternative than becoming a food source. Because they have lived as domesticated species for centuries, they can no longer survive in the wild.
What do scorpions taste like?
Scorpios are not for the weak!
But who knows, you might love her!
People resemble scorpion taste with a soft crab, delicious jerky, and fishy beef taste. The large fleshy body of a scorpion looks and tastes like seafood. Don’t worry about the scorpion venom being non-toxic while cooking the insect.
You can eat fried, roasted, grilled, or live (!) scorpions. Live scorpions are usually eaten with the venomous sting cut off and soaked in a type of wine.
Scorpions in a plate – Photo credit to Graeme Newcomb – Flickr
What do stink bugs taste like? (Jumile)
Stink Bugs (Jumile)
Jumiler has a strong, bitter, cinnamon-like taste.
Jumiler has anesthetic properties like menthol and is considered an aphrodisiac.
Stink bug – Photo credit to USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab – Flickr
Jumiles are small bugs that are native to the Taxco region of the Mexican state of Guerrero. Hemiptera from the families Coreidae or Pentatomidae can also be regarded as Jumiler.
Jumiles are collected for their culinary value and can be roasted, fried, ground, or eaten raw. Salsa is made by combining fresh tomatoes, chilies, and onions with jumbles that have been mashed in a molcajete. Salsa is served with corn tortillas. The beginning of the anniversary season on November 1st is the occasion for a big party in Taxco. Fiesta goers gather in Huistecos Mountain Park to collect Jumiles and crown a Jumiles Queen. Jumiles are abundant from November to February and become scarce after the first few drops of rain.
Jumiles has a cinnamon-like smell. They are considered an acquired taste due to their high iodine content, which gives a bitter, medicinal taste. Jumiler is also a good source of tryptophan and the vitamins riboflavin and niacin.
LISÄÄ TIETOA: https://e.vnexpress.net/news/life/trend/catching-stink-bugs-for-food-in-central-vietnam-3902257.html
what do tarantulas taste like?
The taste of tarantulas has been described as bland, “rather like a cross between chicken and cod.” There is a contrast in texture from a crispy exterior to a soft center. The taste of tarantulas is also described as sunflower seed, buckwheat, and crab. The crispy legs remind you to eat a crab, but it tastes nuttier. The legs contain little flesh, while the head and body have “a delicate white meat inside.” However, there are certainly those who might not enjoy the abdomen as it contains a brown paste consisting of organs, possibly eggs, and excrement. Some call it a delicacy, while others recommend not eating it.
Tarantula appetizer – Photo credit to istolethetv – Flikr
These giant leg creatures are a typical food in Cambodia, where people believe they can improve manhood. The spiders are a species of tarantula called “a-ping” in Khmer and are about the size of a human palm. They often belong to the species Haplopelma albostriatum, also known as the Thai Zebra Tarantula, and the same species’ common name has been the “edible spider” for more than a hundred years. However, the popularity of the dish in Cambodia is a recent phenomenon, starting perhaps as late as the 1990s.
Cambodians typically toss the spiders in a mixture of MSG, sugar, and salt. Crushed garlic is fried in oil until fragrant. Then the spiders are added and fried alongside the garlic until “the legs are almost completely stiff, by which time the contents of the abdomen are not so runny.”
In Cambodia, tarantulas are sold fried as street food. These either come from the wild or are bred specifically for consumption.
In Mexico, tarantulas have been offered in tacos, with a splash of guacamole. However, Mexican law forbids the sale of many tarantula species for human consumption, and vendors providing this delicacy have been shut down by the authorities.
what do termites taste like?
Raw termites are said to taste like pineapples or carrots.
Termites have high oil content in relation to their body size and are very tasty with a slightly nutty taste.
Termites are a common source of food in parts of Africa. They can eat termites in nature as a source of survival, but especially flying termites  are a real delicacy.
Fried termites – Picture credit to Dick Culbert – Flickr
Different countries are home to different termites. Naturally, this affects which types of termites are preferred by which countrys’ citizens. However, geographical factors do not solely dictate which countrys’ citizens eat which termites. For example, studies show that people living in Africa and South America eat the greatest number of different termite species. On the other hand, Asia is also home to an abundance of people who eat termites regularly. Still, Asians tend not to eat as many different species when compared to other nations.
You already know that much of the world’s population consumes termites regularly. Still, you would not believe how many termites are actually consumed. In fact, termites are the second most consumed insects of all insects, just behind grasshoppers. According to one study, there are currently forty-five different termite species consumed around the world. In some countries, termites are even used as livestock feed.
what do wasps taste like?
Wasps taste like musky butter.
Some insects take on the taste of what they feed themselves on. Wasp larvae live in the nest, and the adults feed them. Wherever you get blackberries, adults bring blackberries to the larvae, the larvae turn purple. When you eat them, they have a distinctly fruity taste.
A wasp is staring at me! – Photo credit to Erlend Birger Hatteberg – Flickr
what do wax moths caterpillars taste like?
Wax Moth Caterpillars
Said to be the best-tasting insect, the “wax worm,” or wax moth caterpillar, feeds on beehives’ wax and honey.
Wax moth larvae taste like pine nuts and mushrooms.
Fried wax moth larvae taste like potato chips or corn puffs.
These hungry wax eaters that destroy honeycombs are perfectly edible and easy to prepare. Like most other insects, you can brown or broil them.
Wax moth larva (Galleria mellonella) – Photo credit to USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab – Flickr