Conserves of canned fish with different types of fish and seafood, opened and closed cans with Saury, mackerel, sprats, sardines, pilchard, squid, tuna,  over white stone surface top view.
Food - Drink
Surströmming: Sweden's Incredibly Potent Canned Fish
What is It?
Surströmming is a Swedish tinned fish with an extremely pungent smell and a salty, peppery, and slightly sour flavor. Surströmming is made with Baltic herring, which is packed in barrels of brine to ferment for about six months before being packed in cans and fermenting for another six to 12 months.
A Challenging Aroma
Surströmming is frequently the star of online videos in which people test their mettle and see if they can withstand the fish’s assaulting scent. In fact, the fish not only smells, but the stink tends to linger, making surströmming ideal for a picnic or just generally best consumed in well-ventilated environments.
How Does It Taste?
Once you’ve taken your first bite, you’ll be met by an umami bomb of flavor with a hefty dose of salt, a background pepperiness, and a pronounced cheesiness similar to gruyere, brie, or even blue cheese. Swedes typically eat the fish on flatbread with sour cream, sliced potato, red onion, dill, chives, and butter.
Nutrition and Health
By weight, surströmming is about 11.8 percent protein, and since Baltic herring is one of the most sustainable fishes, surströmming is an environmentally-friendly protein source. Plus, as a fermented food, surströmming is loaded with beneficial bacteria that aid in digestion, nutrient absorption, and general well-being.
Where to Buy It
If you want to try surströmming, a great place to start would be the fishing village Skeppsmalen in Sweden’s Gulf of Bothnia. If you can’t make it to Sweden, check out, which ships the tinned fish around the globe along with other Swedish treats such as tunnbröd flatbread to enjoy with your fish.