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Seafood Preferences Across State Lines

A look at the most Googled seafood in each state reveals much about preferences and proximity.

It’s no secret that geographic nearness to the ocean will always spell a greater chance for the surf-n-turf suppers of anyone’s dreams. However, due to the popularity and newfound availability of frozen seafood, you certainly don’t have to live by the sea to enjoy nutritious, easy-prep dishes featuring shrimp, crab, Salmon, and even lobster.

Curious about how accessibility and preference impact overall seafood consumption, Chef Lola’s Kitchen scraped 2021 data from Google Trends to determine the most searched seafood term in every state. Read on to see what we discovered. 

Mapping Each State’s Main Marine Meals

Searching for Seafood,  State-by-State

And here you have it, each state’s top searched type of seafood: 

District of ColumbiaSalmonCrabShrimpLobsterTuna
North CarolinaCrabShrimpSalmonLobsterTuna
North DakotaShrimpSalmonLobsterCrabTuna
New HampshireLobsterShrimpSalmonCrabTuna
New JerseyShrimpSalmonCrabLobsterTuna
New MexicoShrimpSalmonLobsterCrabTuna
New YorkShrimpSalmonLobsterCrabTuna
Rhode IslandShrimpSalmonLobsterCrabClam
South CarolinaCrabShrimpSalmonLobsterTuna
South DakotaSalmonShrimpLobsterCrabTuna
West VirginiaShrimpCrabSalmonLobsterTuna

A Few More Fish-tastic Factoids

  • Delicious and rich in vitamin D, shrimp landed on the #1 most searched list for 34 states. 
  • For eight states, salmon ranked as the top seafood: Alaska, Colorado, DC, Idaho, Oregon, Utah, and Washington.
  • Crabs were searched for in Delaware, Maryland, Florida, Nevada, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Vermont – favorites on the East Coast.
  • Lobster was the #1 Googled type of seafood in Maine and New Hampshire. Northern states where this crustacean is abundant.
  • Halibut only appeared once across all search results – Alaska’s #4 most frequent search for seafood.  

Skyrocketing Shellfish – An Exploration of 2021 National Seafood Consumption Rates and Sales

The onslaught of the COVID-19 pandemic changed a world of details about the way both individual consumers and commercial buyers purchase food. The frozen seafood market was not exempt from these changes. Self-isolation fears about food availability, and general supply chain issues caused the demand for frozen food to crest higher than ever before. 

Frozen seafood, in particular, enjoyed such a surge that a host of manufacturers have significantly notched up production. Frozen shellfish, long touted for its value as a nutritious and versatile source of protein, has enjoyed unprecedented sales and this represents a unique opportunity for seafood restaurants, enthusiasts, and other purveyors of healthy fish-based diets.

From a production standpoint, the fact that demand for frozen shellfish has risen at such an astronomical rate during the pandemic calls for new considerations as to how pelagic fish portfolios can be expanded and enhanced. With frozen marine pelagic seafood predicted to continue its swift ascent in statistical popularity over the course of the next ten years, the opportunities for both suppliers and restaurants to lead the charge on bespoke culinary creations using these types of seafood will only exponentially increase in tandem. As product demand continues to steadily escalate, so will the need for more strategically placed manufacturing facilities. This means that frozen seafood may be traveling shorter and shorter distances to make it onto your family’s dinner plate.

Ban Fear and Net Creativity – The Real Secret to Cooking Seafood at Home

Small in size but huge in favor, shrimp was the king of the search engine tides in 34 states. With shrimp figuring so heavily into the search interests and proximity preferences of so many states, finding innovative ways to serve this popular dish can range from twists on the traditional goodness of shrimp and grits to delightful taste-fusion takes on shrimp pineapple fried rice

Some consumers may have preset ideas about seafood being difficult to prepare or needing a degree of precise timing that can be intimidating to more novice cooks. The key takeaway to maximizing creative and satisfying shellfish dishes is to banish worries and dive into inventiveness. Had we not put this very advice into practice at Chef Lola’s Kitchen, our shrimp cake with avocado-cilantro dipping sauce might never have existed!

With other shellfish such as lobster and crab, which some fledgling chefs may mistakenly regard as being dedicated only to complicated or high-end recipes, home cooks can enjoy the same kind of freedom. Not only is creating a simple crab dish using canned lump crab meat easy and filling, the experimentation that is possible with this functional fish protein is truly liberating. Lobster meat can be equally adaptable, lending itself easily to everything from sandwiches to salads.

The best news about all of these boredom-busting delights of the sea is that no one has to be in the kitchen for hours to make a stellar seafood dinner. With hectic lives and changing schedules making dinner time as unpredictable as everything else on the calendar at present, knowing that you can throw something delicious and vitamin-rich like frozen salmon fish in an air fryer means the need for speed never rules out your family’s taste for the sea! By simply embracing the freedom to swim in new flavor pools and knowing how to navigate unnecessary fears about freshness, the possibilities truly are as wide as any ocean when it comes to creating filling, fast frozen seafood meals for your family.

Reeling In The Highlights – Methodology Recap

Chef Lola’s Kitchen scraped 2021 data from Google Trends (From Jan 1 to Dec 7, 2021) to pinpoint the top five most-searched seafood terms in every state. Ninety-five types of seafood were considered and new seafood classes were established for easier recognition if a fish or shellfish had more than one name (i.e. black cod was grouped under “sablefish”). Findings across the board indicate that, while regional leanings will always be applicable, the adaptability of universally popular pelagic seafoods like shrimp are slated to keep shellfish on the top of everyone’s home menus for the foreseeable future. Learning to make the timing and the tastes all part of the fun gives these fish proteins the chance to be a continuous theme at family dinner night. Download Raw Data here