Can you eat herring when pregnant?

In this article we are going to answer can you eat herring when pregnant, what is herring, is herring healthy to eat when pregnant, what are the risks of eating herring when pregnant, what fish to avoid, and what fish to eat when pregnant.

Can you eat herring when pregnant?

Yes, you can eat herring when pregnant but only if fully cooked. Herring are usually eaten raw and even if the risk is small, you can still have the chance to catch food poisoning bacteria. 

What is herring?

Herring are forage fish in the wild that are important for the fish industry and human consumption. Sardines, meaning small fish, are called this way when they are young and small. When they get older they are known as herrings. 

Is herring healthy to eat when pregnant?

Herring is an excellent source of lean protein. A single 3 ounces filet has 20 grams of protein and is packed with omega 3 fatty acids. Is one of the leanest proteins you can get. 

According to the NHS, it is recommended to eat no more than 2 portions per week of oily fish including salmon, trout, mackerel, or herring. 

3 ounces, grilled or baked
Calories173 calories
Fat10 grams
Cholesterol65 mg
Sodium98 mg
Carbohydrates0 grams
Fiber 0 grams
Sugar0 grams
Protein20 grams

Fish provide key nutrients that support a child’s brain development. It provides key nutrients, omega 3 fatty acids, iron, iodine, choline, zinc, protein, vitamin b12, and selenium.

  • Support fetal growth
  • Excellent for baby’s brain
  • Boost and improves mom’s brain
  • Support mom’s heart
  • Reduce the risk of preterm 

Support fetal growth

It is an excellent source of protein that is crucial for a baby’s growth and development. 

Excellent for baby’s brain

It is an excellent source of omega 3 fatty acid, it has been proven to boost baby’s brain development. 

Boost and improves mom’s brain

It helps to improve and boost mom’s brain and memory. It’s essential for moms’ and babies’ brains. 

Support mom’s heart

Omega 3 fatty acids are very important for heart health. It reduces the risk of cardiac disease and helps blood clotting to work well. Reduces levels of triglycerides. s are

What fish should you avoid when pregnant?

Usually, pregnant women should avoid:

  • Swordfish
  • Shark
  • Tilefish from the Gulf of Mexico 
  • Mackerel King
  • Marlin
  • Bigeye tuna
  • Orange roughy

To reduce the risk of eating mercury, do not eat any uncooked fish or raw seafood.

What fish should you eat when pregnant?

Enjoy two 6-oz servings per week

  • Salmón
  • Anchovies
  • Catfish
  • Flounder
  • Tilapia
  • Canned tuna
  • Gefilte
  • Skate
  • Smelt
  • Squid (calamari)
  • Whitefish
  • Whiting
  • Sole

It is recommended to eat 8 to 12 ounces of low mercury fish. That amount is to be approx 2 to 3 servings per week of low mercury fish, according to the FDA. 

What is the risk of eating raw herring when pregnant?

No, you can’t eat raw herring or any raw fish because you are at high risk of contracting listeriosis. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends that pregnant women avoid eating sushi or anything with raw fish. 

Even though herrings are salted and are cooked a little before they are sold, it is not enough to prevent bacteria. The risk of food poisoning with raw fish is very high. Pregnant women are too susceptible to this type of food poisoning. 

They are 20 times more susceptible to having worse side effects. The main side effects you can experience with a foodborne illness:

  • Blood or brain infections
  • Seizures
  • Diarrhea 
  • Vomiting
  • Miscarriage
  • Preterm labor
  • Headaches
  • Muscle pain
  • Fever

How to cook herring when pregnant?

The best way to cook herring is to grill it or bake it so you don’t add too many calories and don’t lose the nutrients. Here is a link for grilled herrings sauteed in butter


This article answered Can you eat herring when pregnant? What is herring? Is herring healthy to eat when pregnant? What are the risks of eating herring when pregnant? What fish to avoid, and what fish to eat when pregnant.


Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.