Can My Kids Eat Sushi?

Can My Kids Eat Sushi

Sushi has been gaining popularity worldwide, and so many parents wonder if they can give their kids sushi. However, before you introduce it to your children, make sure you read this article to allow your kids to eat sushi. What are the benefits and health risks of giving it to your kids? More importantly, what is the ideal age to give it to your kids?

Kids can eat sushi for as long as you stick with safety protocols and diet limits. For example, in Japan, where sushi is the main part of their diet, parents often wait until their children are about 2 ½ to 3 years old before introducing this dish. You can even wait until your child is five years old or later, or until your kid gets a Hepatitis A vaccine.

With its gaining popularity, you have to make sure that you stick to child-friendly sushi if you want to give your kid some of it. Sushi is healthy since it has fruits and vegetables, but parents should always keep safety considerations in mind like other food.

What Is The Best Age To Let Your Kids Eat Sushi?

Japanese parenting magazines and blogs recommend that you not feed very young children with raw fish products. Their immature digestive systems cannot cope with stuff that can be more advanced, toughened digestive systems. Most sources agree that you should certainly not feed babies who are not yet on solid food with raw or undercooked fish items.

Japanese moms usually offer fried, shredded fish and other baby-friendly food to their weaned children. Some parents have no problem letting them have raw fish after kids are on solid food. The commonly recommended age at which children should consume raw fish ranges from about the age of 2 1⁄2 to 3. It is better if you can wait for up to the age of school or 6. More importantly, make sure you get the Hepatitis A vaccine first before feeding sushi to your kids.

Sushi Safety Tips for Parents

Sushi may be one of the best food products of all time. Sushi is a tasty, readily available choice beloved by many, whether you meet up with friends, out on date night, or looking for a fast bite before a movie.

According to the Food and Drug Association (FDA), fresh fish or foods are more likely to contain bacteria and parasites than cooked fish. So, there are valid safety issues when it comes to feeding raw fish to very young children. So, for parents, here are your sushi safety tips.

1.Introduce Your Kid With Cooked Sushi First 

California rolls often come with avocado, cucumber, and cooked imitation crab, also called surimi. Moreover, shrimp (Ebi) is a sure hit to any child who is not allergic to it. Many restaurants now sell other innovative rolls that include different cooked fish, and some even cook a piece of fish and make a unique piece of sushi or a roll for you if you ask nicely.

Another nice way to go is tempura rolls, and smoked salmon finds its way into several rolls in the U.S. As long as the word eel does not send your budding gourmet running for the hills. Eel is often fried and always served with a delicious and surprisingly sweet-and-salt barbecue sauce, a surefire success.

2.Limit Or Avoid Sushi That Have High Mercury Content

Tunas and other higher mercury species, such as swordfish, sea bass, dolphin, tilefish, and king mackerel, are best limited to no more than 12 ounces a week. These have the most mercury; avoid bluefin,’ Bigeye,’ and white (albacore) tuna specifically. Yellowfin tuna has less mercury; the smallest is light or skipjack tuna. Little or no mercury is present in other fish, such as salmon and crab.

3.Avoid Raw Shellfish

Eating raw shellfish is considered the riskiest because it is most likely to be infected and may carry higher risks of foodborne disease. Tuna (maguro) and bonito (katsuo, aka skipjack tuna) are considered the easiest to digest, and children are considered nominally healthy.

However, in particular, tuna is high in mercury these days, so everyone should eat it sparingly. Bonito / katsuo is sometimes served seared on the surface (tataki), so for small kids, it might be a little better than fully raw fish.

4.Beware Of Eating Raw Salmon

Can My Kids Eat Sushi

In the United States and many other countries, fresh (raw) salmon sushi is trendy. Salmon also has parasites that you need to handle before the fish is appropriate for consumption. Fortunately, you can eliminate these parasites by cooking. 

However, it was traditionally believed that raw salmon had an oily, unpleasant taste. In Japan, most of the salmon consumed is still salted; smoked salmon is also typical. Before feeding, it is better to fry those untreated salmons before eating to kill bacteria and parasites.

5.Choose The Right Fish

Some fish types are not ideal for raw or sushi-style feeding. It would help if you avoided freshwater fish such as salmon, yellow perch, and pike. Before they are safe for eating, these types of freshwater fish must be cooked thoroughly at 145 degrees F. When it comes to the safest sushi choice, going for tuna is your best bet. Its preparation freezes and defrosts quickly, so if treated correctly, it can stay clear of parasites.

6.Start With Vegetarian Sushi Options

To ensure that your child enjoys the other ingredients in sushi, consider beginning with vegetarian choices. Raw fish and sushi shellfish may carry bacteria or toxins, but the information reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ( CDC) has rarely been found to cause disease. For example, between 1998 and 2015, sushi accounted for 0.3 percent of all foodborne illnesses in the U.S. 

Eating other raw or undercooked animal protein sources, including beef and poultry products, poses a comparable, if not greater, risk of disease. Parents frequently wait until children are 2 1⁄2 to 3 years old to introduce sushi in countries such as Japan, where sushi is a big part of the diet, although in some cases, they wait until they are five years of age or later.

7.Choose Some Healthy Rolls

“These do not scream for beginners,” fish! As noisy as different bits. They are easy to pick up and dip gently into soy sauce with your fingertips. Hand rolls are also nice, shaped like cones. They’re tall, so when you know what fish you want, order them.

8.Give Your Kid The Hepatitis A Vaccine

Eating raw fish, though rare, puts you and your child at risk for infections like hepatitis A and parasites. Before he or she attempts sushi, ensure that your child has received the Hepatitis A vaccine.

9.Cook The Surfaces Of Sashimi Slices

Suppose small kids serve raw-fish sushi or sashimi at home, and you still want them to start enjoying the texture and taste. In that case, it is recommended to cook the surface of sashimi slices gently by quickly sewing them in a hot frying pan or swishing them a few times in shabu-shabu-style boiling waters. Their older siblings and parents can enjoy the raw fish as-is.

Of course, many cooked sushi products, such as tamagoyaki (omelet), boiled shrimp, kanpyo (dried and simmered gourd strips), and so on, as well as cucumber and radish sprout vegetables. For children who are on solid food, fried sushi, or sushi made with vegetables is okay. Most makimono (rolls) are made with cooked neta or vegetables or contain only a little bit of tuna (tekkamaki). There is a lot of cooked sushi to enjoy.

10.Avoid Giving Sushi To Kids that Are Too Young

Children under the age of 5 should not, as a general rule of thumb, eat raw fish because they are particularly vulnerable to foodborne diseases. Young children do not have a fully developed immune system to encounter bacteria and parasites in raw fish or shellfish without cooking it.

It can be devastating if a child develops food poisoning. However, as long as they are not at risk for food allergies, it is a safe idea to introduce cooked fish or shellfish to children over 4 to 6 months of age.

11.Choose Reputable Sushi Restaurants

You don’t want to buy the cheapest sushi you can find, even though your children are of the right age to eat sushi. To ensure its customers’ safety, a high-rate sushi restaurant would have professional chefs and well-trained staff. A trained sushi chef would know how to treat fish and quickly spot the larvae of anisakis that they can find in raw fish.

For the handling, storage, and transportation of fish, always follow the FDA recommendations. To ensure the quality and protection of the ingredients, reputable sushi restaurants will follow these guidelines. When eating at a sushi restaurant, here are some ways to do it right.

Frequently Asked Questions

Sushi is now happily, beautifully, readily available in Japanese restaurants worldwide, and this is fantastic news for those who crave it. The FDA advises against supplying “little people” with raw fish, and several nutritionists suggest waiting until about the ages of 5 or 7. The probably obvious caveat you can buy any sushi in locations with strong reputations for fresh fish is applied to these cautions.

Can my child have raw fish?

Children’s full immunity does not grow until the child is around five years of age, so that young children can get sick from the bacteria used by the average adult body in raw fish. Children under the age of 5 should, therefore, not have raw fish or raw sushi.

Enable them to go with you before your child can have raw fish, and choose child-safe choices such as cooked sushi instead of going for the child’s meal that does not include beneficial fish.

Can my 18-month old eat sushi?

Children’s full immunity does not grow until the child is around five years of age, so that young children can get sick from the bacteria used by the average adult body in raw fish. Children under the age of 5 should, therefore, not have raw fish or raw sushi.

Can toddlers eat tuna?

Tuna is part of many healthy and healthier fish options. The best is “light.” The EPA and FDA list canned light tuna (solid or chunk) among the “best options” to eat for kids, suggesting 2-3 portions a week.


Sushi is not an everyday food, and you should not feed it to your kid more than the recommended serving. Since sushi rice is high in salt and sugar, you have to keep in mind the risks of overfeeding. Regardless of the type of sushi, make sure that you only let your kid consume good sashimi or sushi-grade fish. Most of all, always follow precautionary and safety measures when allowing your kid to eat sushi. 

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