Lobsters are larger in size and have a more delicate flavor, often considered a delicacy. Shrimp are smaller and have a sweeter taste.

What is a Lobster?

picture of a cooked lobster

Lobsters are the rock stars of the sea, known for their striking appearance and mouthwatering taste. These crustaceans belong to the family Nephropidae and can be found in various oceans around the world. With their elongated bodies, muscular tails, and large pincers, lobsters are truly a sight to behold.

One distinguishing feature of lobsters is their exoskeleton – a hard protective shell that provides them with both strength and defense. But don’t let their tough exterior fool you; beneath that armor lies tender meat that seafood lovers crave.

These creatures have an impressive array of colors ranging from dark blue-green to vibrant red-orange. In fact, when cooked, lobsters turn a bright reddish hue that adds visual appeal to any dish they grace.

Lobsters are renowned for their succulent flavor profile which is often described as sweet and buttery. Their meat boasts a delicate texture that melts in your mouth with every bite. Whether steamed, grilled, or boiled, lobster dishes never fail to tantalize our taste buds.

What is a Shrimp

picture of a cooked shrimp

Shrimp, unlike their larger cousin the lobster, are small crustaceans that inhabit both saltwater and freshwater environments. They belong to the order Decapoda and are characterized by their long bodies and thin appendages. These creatures can be found in various species around the world, ranging from pink shrimp to tiger shrimp.

Shrimps have a distinctive appearance with segmented bodies covered in exoskeletons. They use their muscular tails to propel themselves through the water with ease. Unlike lobsters, shrimps typically have a curved body shape, allowing them to swim gracefully.

One of the most notable features of shrimps is their size – they are significantly smaller than lobsters. While some species of shrimp may grow up to several inches in length, most average around two inches or less.

In terms of taste and texture, shrimps offer a delicate and slightly sweet flavor compared to lobsters’ meatier taste. Their flesh is succulent and tender when properly cooked.

Due to their smaller size, shrimps are often more affordable than lobsters but still provide an excellent source of protein and other essential nutrients such as omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin B12, selenium, and iodine.

Whether grilled on skewers or added to pasta dishes or salads, shrimps bring a burst of flavor and versatility that makes them popular seafood choices for many culinary enthusiasts worldwide.

Shrimp Vs. Lobster – Key differences

TaxonomyShrimp belong to the order Decapoda and the suborder Pleocyemata.Lobsters belong to the same order Decapoda but are classified in the suborder Astacidea.
SizeTypically smaller, with an average size ranging from 1 to 7 inches (2.5 to 18 cm).Generally larger, with an average size ranging from 6 to 24 inches (15 to 60 cm).
Body ShapeElongated and slender body with a curved abdomen.Wider and more massive body with a straighter abdomen.
AppendagesTwo sets of pincers or claws, also known as chelae, and five pairs of walking legs.Two large, prominent claws (crusher and pincher) and four pairs of walking legs.
Shell TextureShrimp have a soft exoskeleton that is more delicate and needs to be peeled before eating.Lobsters have a harder exoskeleton, which is tougher to crack and often requires tools.
Tail MeatThe majority of the edible meat is found in the tail, with a sweet and tender texture.The tail meat is also the primary edible part and is known for its sweet and firm flesh.
Claw MeatThe smaller pincers or claws contain less meat and are less commonly eaten.Lobster claws have a significant amount of meat, especially the large crusher claw.
FlavorShrimp have a delicate, slightly sweet flavor, often described as "seafood" or "shrimpy."Lobster has a distinct and rich flavor, with a more pronounced seafood taste.
Cooking MethodsShrimp can be boiled, grilled, sautéed, or fried and are commonly used in various dishes like scampi, stir-fries, and shrimp cocktail.Lobsters are often boiled or steamed whole and are typically served as lobster tail, lobster bisque, or in lobster rolls.
Culinary UsesShrimp are versatile and used in a wide range of recipes, including appetizers, salads, pasta dishes, and more.Lobster is considered a delicacy and is often used in gourmet dishes, seafood platters, and fine dining preparations.
CostShrimp are generally more affordable and widely available in various forms, including fresh, frozen, and canned.Lobster is relatively expensive, especially for larger specimens, and is considered a luxury seafood item.
SustainabilityShrimp farming and fishing practices vary, with concerns about environmental impact and sustainability.Lobster populations are managed to some extent, but sustainability practices vary by region and species.
Species DiversityThere are numerous shrimp species, with variations in size, color, and flavor.There are several species of lobster, including the American lobster, spiny lobster, and rock lobster, each with distinct characteristics.

Nutritional Value of Lobster and Shrimp

Lobster (100 grams, cooked):

  • Calories: 89 kcal
  • Protein: 20.85 grams
  • Total Fat: 0.91 grams
  • Saturated Fat: 0.122 grams
  • Cholesterol: 72 mg
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids: 0.225 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 0.2 grams
  • Dietary Fiber: 0 grams
  • Sugars: 0 grams
  • Vitamins and Minerals:
  • Vitamin B12: 2.17 micrograms (91% DV)
  • Zinc: 2.39 milligrams (22% DV)
  • Selenium: 40.2 micrograms (73% DV)
  • Phosphorus: 172 milligrams (12% DV)

Shrimp (100 grams, cooked):

  • Calories: 99 kcal
  • Protein: 21.35 grams
  • Total Fat: 1.41 grams
  • Saturated Fat: 0.315 grams
  • Cholesterol: 189 mg
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids: 0.276 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 0.24 grams
  • Dietary Fiber: 0 grams
  • Sugars: 0 grams
  • Vitamins and Minerals:
  • Vitamin B12: 1.36 micrograms (57% DV)
  • Zinc: 1.34 milligrams (12% DV)
  • Selenium: 36.7 micrograms (67% DV)
  • Phosphorus: 190 milligrams (14% DV)

Note: DV (Daily Value) percentages are based on a 2,000-calorie daily diet.

Both lobster and shrimp are excellent sources of protein and low in saturated fat. They are also rich in vitamin B12, which is essential for nerve function and the production of red blood cells.

Additionally, they provide essential minerals such as zinc, selenium, and phosphorus. Lobster has a slightly lower calorie content and fat content compared to shrimp but is still a good source of protein and important nutrients. The nutritional value can vary slightly depending on the specific species and preparation method.


Image Credits

Featured Image By – ndemello from Pixabay

Image 1 By – luow from Pixabay

Image 2 By – Robert Owen-Wahl from Pixabay


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