What Is the Difference Between a Grouper and Haddock?

The only similarity between haddock and grouper is that they are both fish. These fish are completely different species and have almost nothing in common. The biggest difference is in their appearance, as the grouper is much bigger compared to the haddock. Both grouper and haddock are saltwater species. Except for this, there are many more differences between the two fish. If you want to know more about the differences between these two fish, this article is perfect for you. By the end, you will know which one of these fish is perfect for you, as we will mention their appearance, size, and even nutritional value.

The Differences Between Grouper and Haddock

Now, let us get started by discussing the differences between these two fish, which is the most important part. As mentioned above, there are many differences between the two, as these two are completely unique fish, so you will not find anything in common between them. Without further delay, here are all the ways to distinguish between the two fish.

The appearance

To start off, let us discuss what each fish looks like. Grouper is a fish that is round bodied and pretty large in size. This fish has a very large mouth, which helps it swallow its prey whole. This fish is a very unassuming fish, as the color of its body is usually brownish red. The deeper the fish resides, the redder it gets.

On the other hand, haddock has an elongated, tapering body shape that is common in other cod fish. The mouth of this is very small. Appearance-wise, the upper side of the fish varies from dark gray-brown to nearly black, while the lower part of the body is dull silvery white. It resembles the Atlantic cod in appearance, but unlike the cod, it has a black smudged mark on both sides of its body.


The habitat

The grouper is found in almost all waters around the world. In the water, this fish occupies shallow tropical waters mainly among coral and artificial reefs. However, it can occupy deeper water as well. The grouper is found mainly in the Gulf of Mexico, the Florida Keys in the United States, the Bahamas, most of the Caribbean, and most of the Brazilian coast.

Haddock is a saltwater fish that is found in the North Atlantic and occurs on both sides of the ocean. The fish is the most found north of the English Channel. This is a deep-sea marine fish, so it is found deep in the water, unlike the grouper.

The size

One of the biggest differences between the two fish is their size. The grouper fish is known to be large in size. On average, this fish can get around seven feet in length and weigh more than 400 pounds, especially the Atlantic grouper, which is one of the largest grouper species. Even with a smaller species like the Nassau grouper, it gets around 35 inches long and weighs around 55 pounds.

Whereas haddock is a smaller fish that only gets around 14 inches to 23 inches in size and weighs between two and seven pounds. This fish is tiny compared to a grouper. If they even do come across each other, the grouper can easily swallow haddock.

Nassau grouper

The popularity

Even though grouper is popular for its uniqueness, especially the Goliath grouper, which is a huge fish that is also found in very small amounts, finding one is a sport. However, grouper is normally not eaten very often because of the chemicals found in their bodies, which means they cannot be consumed more than once a week.

Haddock is a very popular fish to eat. Particularly popular in the United Kingdom, where it is one of the main fish served in fish and chips. There has been a lot of overfishing of this fish, but it is still a very popular fish that is eaten around the world. This is a fish that is found in many places as a preserved fish in a can, as well.

The nutritional value

The nutritional value of both fish varies as well. The grouper is higher in selenium, iron, and vitamin B5. This fish also contains less sodium in some species like the red grouper and black grouper. Overall, grouper has many more minerals in it, like calcium, zinc, and potassium.

Haddock is higher in vitamin B12, vitamin B3, and phosphorus. In fact, it has 64% more vitamin B12 compared to grouper. Haddock also has a much higher cholesterol level compared to grouper. When it comes to vitamins, haddock is the clear winner as it has more vitamin B2, vitamin B3, and folate. Both of these fish have almost the same amount of protein.

The taste

Grouper is a very mild fish. The black grouper and red grouper are both very mildly sweet and have a firm texture. This makes this fish good for absorbing flavor. The red grouper is eaten more widely than the black grouper because it is sweeter in taste.

Haddock is also mildly sweet but is eaten much more widely. It has a lean white flesh and medium flakes that are firm but get tender after being cooked. When compared to cod, it is said that haddock is sweeter, so it is much sweeter than a grouper fillet. Since this is a more flavorful fish, it also has more of a fishy taste compared to grouper.


Here are all the differences between grouper and haddock and what makes them so different. Appearance-wise, the grouper is a much duller fish which is also much bigger in size. Other than that, they have a different habitat, and as a food item, haddock is much more famous and more available. The taste of haddock is much better than that of grouper, as haddock is a pretty sweet fish with soft flesh and edible skin, unlike grouper.

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