Why Does My Chicken Taste Like Fish? (Is It Safe to Eat?)

You probably tried so many recipes and flavors infused with it if you love chicken. In general, chicken is a versatile protein, and it works well with so many flavors. However, it can seem completely different when you suddenly taste fish in your chicken dish. So, if such a thing happens, you may ask:

Why does my chicken taste like fish? There are several reasons why your chicken tastes like fish. The most common reason is that your chicken has gone bad or because your chicken got mishandled and poorly prepared. If your chicken is fresh, you can always fix it by adding something acidic to conceal the fishy taste.

When your chicken tastes like fish, it’s one of the moments when you may worry and think of throwing away the dish. However, it would be best to look into it first and check if the chicken is safe to eat. This way, you might be able to save the dish and still enjoy it after fixing the fishy taste.

In this article, our goal is to explain why you might think that your chicken tastes like fish and determine if it is safe to consume. We will also learn how to fix the flavor of a chicken that tastes like fish by finding the best way to fix the flavor.

Without further ado, let’s get into it!

Why Does My Chicken Taste Like Fish

Why would chicken taste like fish?

As I mentioned earlier, chicken tastes like fish if it has gone bad, if it’s mishandled, or poorly prepared. 

This may seem like a disaster to you, which may be the case. However, if your chicken is safe to eat, you may be able to fix its fishy flavor by simply adding a few ingredients.

Instead of throwing it away, let’s analyze what might have gone wrong with your carefully cooked chicken!

In the first place, we do not take any chances for chicken. Whenever there is a slight possibility that something may be bad, you just throw it away.

Check your chicken thoroughly before cooking is the only way to be sure if you have already cooked it.

The second problem is that you cannot always tell if a raw chicken has been spoiled. It is a severe problem if a raw chicken is left at room temperature since bacterial growth will increase rapidly, making it unsafe to eat.

Nevertheless, there are some reasons for your chicken to taste like fish even if it hasn’t gone bad.

Why would chicken breast taste like fish?

If your chicken breast tastes like fish, it’s likely because you prepared it poorly. On the other hand, if your chicken breast is fresh and safe to eat, the fishy taste may be caused by the oil or pan you used when you cooked.

For instance, if you fry a fish in a pan with oil and then use them, later on, to cook your chicken breast without cleaning, then your chicken breast can taste like a fish.

At the same time, your chicken breast can get a fishy taste if it stays in the fridge for too long with a fish beside it.

In short, you can fix this by changing the oil and cooking your chicken breast in a thoroughly cleaned or different pan.

Why does my fried chicken taste like fish?

If your fried chicken tastes like fish, you fried your chicken in the same oil where you fry your fish. You can fix this by changing the oil and using a new one. Also, make sure your chicken is fresh so it won’t have any fishy taste or smell when you cook it.

Why does chicken sometimes taste like tuna?

If your chicken sometimes smells like tuna, it’s because it goes through oxidization when you fry it. In general, 

There is a possibility that chicken fried in oil will smell like tuna. This is caused by oxidation. Upon oxidation of some fats, such as linoleic acid, volatile compounds with an unpleasant odor are produced. 

You can fix this by deep-frying the chicken in new oil. Then, you can get the chicken entirely submerged and not exposed to oxygen, preventing oxidization.

Is it OK to eat chicken that smells like fish?

It depends. When your chicken is fresh, it’s OK to eat such even though it smells like fish because the odor can come from poor preparation. However, when your chicken is not fresh and gives off a fishy smell, you should throw it away.

The smell of bad chicken is a telltale sign. Fresh, raw chicken has a very mild scent or none at all. Therefore, you should throw out chickens that have a very noticeable smell, such as one that smells like rotten eggs or a lot of sulfur. Despite this, you should never rely on smell to determine the safety of the chicken.

Is chicken that tastes like fish bad?

In most cases, chicken that tastes like fish is bad. However, in some instances, the chicken that tastes like fish is still safe to eat.

A few different reasons can explain why your chicken tastes like fish, but one of the most common is that it has gone bad and is no longer safe to eat. 

A fishy flavor can often be a sign that meat is no longer fresh and is an indication that it is no longer safe to consume.

Now, if you’re sure that your chicken is fresh, then the cause of the smell is poor handling and preparation. However, such as thing can get fixed in several ways.

How do you get the fishy taste out of chicken?

If you are serving your family chicken for dinner, but it tastes like fish, you may have a tough time getting them to eat it right away. However, if you follow a few simple tips, you can turn your chicken into a delicious dinner for another night.

If your goal is to disguise fishy flavors in chicken, anything acidic will do the trick. With such simple ingredients, your chicken will taste rich and flavorful. Even though it won’t taste exactly like chicken, it will taste delicious!

Use Vinegar.

You can easily hide the fishy taste of your chicken with vinegar, which is one of our favorite household tips! Adding plenty of cracked black pepper to a creamy white wine vinegar sauce will have your family devouring it in no time.

Add Tomatoes.

Adding tomatoes to your chicken will mask any fishy flavors. You might like to try making a rich, herb-flavored ragu to serve over pasta.

Marinade in Lemon Juice.

Lemon juice is one of our favorite pairings with chicken in general, and it is excellent at countering the taste of fish. Warm your chicken gently with a marinade of lemon juice and herbs, followed by a hot summer salad.

Can Covid cause the chicken to taste like fish?

No, Covid cannot cause the chicken to taste like fish. Many Covid cases bring symptoms such as loss of taste, but it won’t affect how we taste our food. Thus, even if you got Covid, you may eat chicken, and it may seem bland and flavorless despite adding seasoning. However, if your chicken tastes like fish, it’s less likely caused by Covid,

Why does my chicken taste like fish when pregnant?

If your chicken tastes like fish when pregnant, it’s likely because you’ve become pretty sensitive to flavors that you taste fish even in chicken. 

Pregnant women are more sensitive to smell and taste, so anything with a pungent smell can make them nauseous. However, this is not a rule. For example, even though chicken doesn’t smell that strong, many people have a strong aversion.

In short, this is entirely normal, and it can also mean that nothing is wrong with your chicken. However, it would still be best to make sure that your chicken is fresh before eating it. This way, you avoid any problems if the chicken isn’t fresh.


In a nutshell, the taste of your chicken is due to several reasons. First, you most likely got your chicken bad because it got mishandled and unprepared or went bad after going bad. If you’ve got fresh chicken, you can always add acidic liquid to mask the fishy taste.

The moment your chicken tastes like fish is when you may worry and consider throwing it away. If you are unsure of the chicken’s safety, it’s best to look it up first. The dish might still taste good after being fixed from the fishy taste.



Image credits – Canva

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