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Bugging Out: What Do Mealworms Taste Like?

Eating mealworms might sound like a dare to some and a delicacy to others.

Yes, we’re talking about popping those tiny, wriggly insects into your mouth.

Before you make a face, hold up. Across the globe, many cultures cherish mealworms as a crunchy, nutty snack that’s packed with protein.

This snack might just surprise you with its flavor and texture.

Curious about what these little critters taste like? You’re in the right spot.

Our guide will walk you through the unexpected journey of tasting mealworms for the first time.

What are Mealworms?

what are mealworms

Deceptive to the name, Mealworms are not worms per se but the larvae of flour beetles.

In Latin, these worms are called Tenebrio Molitor.

The mealworm species is noninvasive, so they are virtually harmless to humans and for human consumption.

You’ll find mealworms in almost every region of the world.

The ideal environment for mealworms is in dark spaces with very high density.

In fact, they thrive in environments that have at least 70% humidity and a temperature of up to 29 degrees Celsius.

When they’re raw and in a big pile, you might find the look and smell revolting but get over this block, and you’ll be able to enjoy an excellent nutritious meal without the initial aroma.

Although mealworms look like they will be squishy and soft, they’re surprisingly very firm to the touch and slick.

What Do Mealworms Taste Like?

what do mealworms taste like

Mealworms are known to have an inconspicuous umami flavor that leaves your taste buds tingling with a mixture of nutty and rich flavor.

Because of this reason, mealworms are known to be a delicious snack once you roast or sauté them to perfection.

Don’t be deceived by the look of the mealworm because the taste is very light and subtle, almost pleasant if you’re willing to overlook the appearance of the mealworm.

Mealworms are known to be a great source of protein.

In fact, some research claims it has the same amount of protein you get from beef.

Some other nutritional benefits are:

· High-quality Vitamins.

· Amino acids.

· Omega 3 fatty acids.

· Fibers.

They are also versatile, so you have them roasted or deep-fried, and they still state well.

If you’re deep-frying hem, you can add them as part of a fresh vegetable salad for the crunchy texture.

Because its mild and subtle taste doesn’t overpower any dish, they pair well with anything.

You can use roasted or deep-fried mealworms as an alternative to croutons in your salads.

You have even eaten them raw if you’re daring enough, which is how many people consume mealworms.

Overall, mealworms are a bit bland to the taste, which is why it is good to add some seasoning to fried or roasted mealworms or mix them with other food items that already have a lot of flavors.

How to Eat Mealworms?

how to eat mealworms

The one crucial precautionary measure to take when cooking with mealworms is to wash them properly.

Because you don’t know the origin of these worms, you may get a nasty bacterial infection if you eat them without first washing them thoroughly.

The best practice is to run them under tap water in a colander and rinse them off nicely.

After this, you can start preparing them however you want to have them- raw, fried, roasted, or cooked.

A novel way to cook mealworms is to make them into balls.

After finely chopping up the larvae or after throwing them into the food processor, give it a good mix.

Add whatever seasoning you want to.

We recommend garlic and onion to mask the earthy smell of fresh mealworms.

You can also add other meats like turkey or beef and breadcrumbs for more texture and hold.

Deep fry them like you would any other meatball and drain all excess oil.

You can dip it into a sauce of your choice to bring the flavor together.

Since mealworms are virtually tasteless, you’ll get the occasional crunch and a mild umami flavor, but otherwise, it tastes like any other meatball.

Another innovative mealworm recipe is baking mealworm cookies.

Just add your mealworms to your chocolate chip cookie dough and bake them as you would normally.

The crispy texture of the sautéed mealworms will have you wanting second helpings for sure.

Final Thought

Mealworms are the best gateway insect to try if you are embarking on an adventurous food journey.

They almost taste like nothing, only leaving a faintly nutty flavor and aroma when you have them roasted.

You won’t even know that you’re tasting mealworms in salads and trail mixes because of their mild taste, but your body will enjoy the nutritional benefits.

What Do Mealworms Taste Like? Do Mealworms Taste Good?

Curious about the taste of mealworms? Explore the flavor of mealworms and discover if they're palatable. Find out if mealworms are a tasty addition to your culinary repertoire.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Food Taste
Servings 1 Serving


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