Seafood Handbook

The Seafood Handbook is the most comprehensive seafood directory available online. Featuring more than 100 of the most common types of fish and other seafood in the U.S. market, the Seafood Handbook is the ultimate guide to seafood sourcing and preparation, brought to you by the editors of SeaFood Business magazine. And it’s free!

Search by finfish or shellfish. For each type of seafood species, there is a comprehensive overview of the item, its origin, history, availability, product attributes, nutritional value and cooking tips, along with an original hand-drawn depiction. 

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Cod, considered the “default setting from which all other fish species vary,” belongs to the Gadidae family, also comprising haddock, pollock, hake and hoki. Cod sports a distinctive barbel beneath its chin; at its other end is a broom-shaped tail. Atlantic cod is harvested with bottom trawls,… Read More
Don’t confuse this large, warmwater gastropod with the East Coast whelk, also colloquially called conch. From the family Strombidae, the queen conch (pronounced “conk”) is found primarily in the Caribbean, where it uses a muscular foot to drag itself along the ocean floor. Once abundant,… Read More
Blue tinges on dark shells and blue patches on the legs give the crab its name. Males have blue claws; females’ claws are orange-tipped. Blue crabs average 4 to 6 inches across. In the domestic fishery, male crabs (“Jimmies”) and immature females (“Sallies”) may be taken as hardshells… Read More
The Dungeness crab reportedly takes its name from a small fishing village on the Strait of Juan de Fuca in Washington state. It’s also known as “San Francisco Crab,” since the species has been harvested off that city since 1848. Dungeness are commonly sold live, fresh or frozen as whole… Read More
Not long ago, Jonah crabs were considered little more than a nuisance by lobstermen off New England and the Canadian Maritimes, who routinely tossed the crustaceans back when they came up in lobster traps. But in the 1990s, as demand for an alternative to established and costly crab species grew,… Read More
The largest of the commercially harvested crabs, king crabs are characterized by spiny shells and long, spidery legs. Most crabs have 10 appendages, but king crabs have six walking legs, one large “killer” claw and one small “feeder” claw. The best meat is the merus, which comes from the… Read More
Once considered “trap trash” (unwanted bycatch in the lobster fishery), the peekytoe crab has become coveted table treasure, thanks to a Maine seafood entrepreneur’s clever marketing campaign and the species’ delicate, sweet flavor. Known in Down East Maine dialect as “picket toe” or… Read More
The North American snow crab fishery targets three species: Chionoecetes opilio, C. bairdi and C. tanneri. Technically, opilios are snow crabs, and bairdis are tanners. Alaska’s opilio fishery occurs in the Bering Sea and is much larger than its bairdi fishery. Bairdi are taken in the Bering Sea… Read More
Spanner crab is a newcomer to the U.S. market, exported from northeastern Australia for the white-tablecloth-dining market. Because of its limited and recent distribution in this country, the crab does not yet appear on the USDA Fish List. Though Australian supplies dominate the domestic market,… Read More
Florida’s regulatory agencies recognize three species as true stone crabs: the Florida variety (Menippe mercenaria), the Gulf crab (M. adina) and a hybrid resulting from interbreeding of the two primary species. Stone crabs are found along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts from Texas to the Carolinas,… Read More