Are Squirrels Edible? Squirrels are one of the most common animals in the world, and they exist in more areas than almost any other type of animal you can think of. This is no surprise when you consider how versatile these creatures are and how many different tasks they can perform within their habitat and ecosystem.
But did you know that some squirrels can be eaten by humans? Squirrels make an excellent source of protein, and if you’re looking for an affordable alternative to fish or poultry, eating squirrel may be your best bet.
Learn all about whether or not squirrels are edible in this article.
Are Squirrels Edible?
Yes, they are edible and taste a lot like rabbit. Squirrels are great to eat if you can catch one alive because they are much more tender than those that have been killed by predators.
If you want to eat squirrels that you have caught, it is best to skin them first before cooking them so that the fur does not get stuck in your teeth. Once you skin the animal, then cook them over an open flame.
You can either cook the squirrel whole or cut it up into smaller pieces. The most popular way to cook a squirrel is roasting it whole with vegetables on top of an open flame or oven-roasting it inside of a covered pan with onions and garlic cloves on top of some fresh herbs.
When preparing a roasted squirrel, you may wish to take out its organs (heart, liver) before cooking. It will help keep the meat from being too tough and also prevent them from getting mixed up in your food.
If you plan on using any parts of the animal for other purposes besides just eating it as a meal (such as making clothing out of its pelt), then this step would be even more important since organs contain lots of fat which would make things very difficult when trying to tan the hide.
Is It Safe to Eat Squirrel?
Yes, squirrel meat is safe to eat. However, before you cook one, make sure it is safe and legal to do so in your area.
When preparing a squirrel for cooking, remember to remove any organs that may be unhealthy to consume (i.e., the lungs and intestines).
Squirrels can also be cooked like other small game animals such as rabbits or quail.
These are typically pan-fried with oil and butter, but they can also be boiled if they are too fatty. It is common to flavor squirrel meat with lemon juice, salt and pepper before cooking.
Some people enjoy frying up some bacon before adding their squirrels to the skillet, while others will add diced onions or garlic to their recipes. Diced tomatoes are often added when frying up a batch of these little creatures for added flavor and nutrition.
As long as you follow safety precautions when handling them (i.e., wearing gloves), squirrels are delicious eaten by themselves or mixed into dishes such as shepherd’s pie.
But they may carry bacteria. Squirrels can also carry Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease which is a human brain disease that is not contagious and always fatal. Other animals like deer and rabbits can also carry the disease.
The common way for people to get this disease is by eating contaminated beef products or organs from infected animals. For most people the risk of getting this disease from squirrels is very small because squirrel don’t contain as much of the infectious agent as other animal do.
Is Squirrel Meat Healthy?
Yes, but it may not be the healthiest option on the table. Squirrel meat is lean, white meat, with a mild flavor and a high protein count. The fat content is low and it’s rich in vitamins B3, B6, and B12.
However, squirrels also contain an enzyme that can damage red blood cells called peroxidase. These enzymes can lead to hemolytic reactions in humans when consumed in excess amounts which could potentially lead to death.
Cooking for a long time, such as boiling for several hours, will remove most of these enzymes from the meat. Other preparations such as baking or frying will result in less destruction of these enzymes.
If you plan to consume squirrel meat, make sure you cook it thoroughly first. As stated before, these proteins are still present even after cooking so overconsumption can cause problems for your body.
What Does Squirrel Meat Taste Like?
The taste of squirrel meat is not as bad as you would expect. If you fry it, it can get a bit too greasy, but if you cook it like chicken (or do anything to make it healthier), the taste is not bad.
I don’t think I’ve ever had the pleasure of cooking squirrel myself, but my friend did and he said that the meat was pretty good. He said that he used different spices than what he usually cooks with and that’s why it tasted so good.
So, the answer to this question really depends on how you cook it. If you want your squirrel to taste great, fry it up.
If you want your squirrel to be healthy, cook it like chicken or use other spices when frying. It all just depends on what you want out of your meat.
Also, Read Do Wasps Make Honey?
Squirrels are edible but they are a wild rodents and contain parasites that could be harmful to humans.
The reason for this is that squirrels eat nuts, seeds, fruits, and vegetables which can hold parasites like toxoplasmosis or salmonella. It is also possible for squirrel meat to have bacteria on it due to the fact that they live in their own fecal matter.
Plus, they carry diseases such as rabies or leptospirosis, which can be transferred through bites or scratches. In conclusion, even though they taste really good when you cook them, they are not safe to eat because of the high chance of catching a deadly disease.
Meet Tomas Clayton, a seasoned plant gardener who has been passionate about horticulture since he was a child. Tomas John developed a love for the natural world and a strong appreciation for the beauty of plants while growing up on a farm.