Catfish is a fairly large predatory fish that prefers to live in rivers and lakes with fresh water. Catfish is a prominent representative of the class of ray-finned fish, the order of catfish, the catfish family.

This representative of the catfish family has a rather long and, at the same time, the flattened body that does not have scales. This fish’s rather strong body is covered with a thick layer of mucus, which provides the predator with excellent movement in the water. The head is wide and thick with relatively small eyes.

The mouth is also wide with a set, albeit small, but numerous teeth. One can easily distinguish catfish from other fish species by long whiskers on both the lower and upper jaws. The whiskers play an important role in the food search, as they are organs of touch. Scientists are aware of more than 500 species of this fish, which differ from each other, both in color and size.

How long does catfish live?

Catfish, which live in comfortable conditions, can live for about 60 years, although there is information indicating that individuals who have reached 75 years of age were caught.



Catfish live in almost all water bodies of Europe and Asia, including rivers flowing into the sea, so you can often see them in the seas’ water area, not far from river mouths. At the same time, this fish will not live long in such conditions. But the channel catfish can live in such conditions.

Types of catfish

Catfish ordinary or European


It can grow up to 5 meters in length and weigh up to 400 kg. Distributed throughout the rivers and lakes of Europe and the European part of our country. There are known cases of attacks by large individuals on people, not to mention animals.

American catfish (dwarf catfish)


This is representative of the reservoirs of South America. Its length is within one meter with a maximum weight of 10 kg. The mouth of this predator is distinguished by a special structure and arrangement of teeth. The teeth are located in the mouth in several rows, and in each row, the teeth have different sizes: from small to large. This arrangement of teeth allows the predator to capture and hold its prey reliably.

Electric catfish


Represents reservoirs of the African continent and the Arab countries. It is capable of generating enough electrical impulses to handle fairly large prey. There is evidence that animals that were in the water died from the electric discharges of this predator.

The catfish family also boasts a huge variety of ornamental fish such as catfish, Ancistrus, tarakatum, pladitoras, etc. Moreover, their color variety is often amazing, as evidenced by many photographs.

Catfish history

This fish lives in water bodies around the world. But the largest number of catfish is found in lakes and rivers of Europe. In the eastern part of the continent, this species’ main population reaches the Rhine, and in the north, southern Finland. In southern Europe, you can find catfish in almost all rivers and lakes; it is also found in Asia Minor’s water bodies and the Caspian and Aral Seas. The rivers that flow into them have rather large populations of catfish. Sometimes You can find this fish on the American and African continents.

Catfish meat composition

Calorie content 115 kcal
Proteins 17.2 g
Fat 5.1 g
Carbohydrates 0 g
Dietary fiber 0 g
Water 77 g

Beneficial features


Catfish meat is quite fatty, but there are fewer calories in it than it might seem at first glance. It is great for dietetics and people who are looking for weight loss. For diabetics and people who are overweight, the middle part of the catfish is irreplaceable. If you steam it, it will make a wonderful dietary dish.

Since catfish meat contains a lot of potassium, regular consumption of this fish reduces the risk of hypertension and heart disease.

Catfish benefits

And this is far from an exhaustive list of useful properties of catfish. Vitamins of groups A, B, and C, E, and PP, combined with the low-calorie content of catfish (125 Kcal per 100 grams of product), make this fish healthy and dietary. Perhaps the vitamin and mineral composition of fish is the main benefit of catfish for human health.

Scientists say that catfish contains all the amino acids the body needs. Only 200 grams of fish can meet the daily human need for natural protein. This is a distinctive feature of the catfish that rare fish possess.

Nutritionists say that everyone should include catfish in the diet who cares about their health and shape. The body better absorbs fish; this is primarily because it does not contain such a huge amount of connective tissues as even in the lightest animal meat.

The low-calorie content of catfish, the benefits of its meat for the health of human internal organs, and the skin and nervous system make this product both a dietary and nutritious dish that should be present in every healthy person’s diet.

Taste qualities


Catfish meat contains practically no bones. White meat is tender and soft, with a slightly sweet taste. Catfish is a fatty fish, but we should note that most of the fat accumulates in its tail.

However, the catfish also has a significant drawback: it has a strong fishy smell. But this does not prevent gourmets from enjoying the tender and oily flesh of the fish.

Cooking applications


Before you start cooking catfish, you need to clean and gut it. Be sure to remove the gills and blood clotted under the spine. You cannot keep catfish fresh for a long time since the fat contained in the fish can turn rancid. But you can freeze it.

Today people eat catfish whole, and earlier fishers threw out most of the fish, using only its fat tail. The tail is indeed the most delicious part of the catfish. It is good to prepare first and second courses, snacks, pie filling.

Smoked catfish is tasty. This is how the pronounced river smell that fish has is not felt. If you want to cook fish differently, the following tips will help you get rid of the smell. Soak the carcass for half an hour in a citric acid solution or for several hours in milk.

Catfish is perfectly fried and stewed. You can add various sauces to its meat. In this case, the calorie content of the resulting dish will be high. And for dietary nutrition, it is best to steam fish or boil it, bake it in foil in its own juice or with vegetables, grill it without adding fat.

Catfish go best with a side dish containing grains. This is due to the content of lysine in its composition, which is low in cereals.

Baked catfish



  • 2 fish halves catfish fillet of whole fish
  • two tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp dried marjoram
  • 2 tsp dried tarragon tarragon
  • ½ tsp granulated garlic
  • ½ – 1 tsp hot pepper flakes
  • 1-2 tsp olive oil
  • salt
  • ground black pepper
  • 2 lemon wedges plus lemon for serving


  1. Blot the fish with a paper towel (especially for thawed fish – it must be completely defrosted and as dry as possible).
  2. Brush the fish on both sides with olive oil. Rub the spices and herbs into the fillet. Drizzle with lemon juice.
  3. Heat oven to 200 C (400 F). While the oven is heating up, the fish is lightly marinated.
  4. When the oven is hot, place the fillets on a baking sheet. Bake for about 20 minutes or until fish is done.
  5. Serve with a lemon wedge.


If you want to cook fish and potatoes (or a mixture of vegetables) on one baking sheet, preheat the oven to 210 C (425 F). On a baking sheet, place the potato wedges mixed with olive oil, salt, and, if desired, herbs and spices (paprika, black pepper, garlic, granulated onions, thyme, rosemary). While the fish is marinating, bake the potatoes in the oven for about 15 minutes. Then lower the oven temperature to 200 C (400 F). Slide the potatoes to one side of the baking sheet, place the fish side by side and bake for about 20 minutes, or until fish and potatoes are done.

Enjoy your meal!

Health benefits of Catfish: Is it healthy for you?

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