Can You Eat Beetles?

Whether you live in the United States or abroad, beetles are a common sight — especially if you have a garden. And though you may have seen them (the beetles, not the gardens,) did you know that insects are an important and nutritious part of your diet? They’ve been eaten for thousands of years.

In this article, we find out why you can eat beetles, which one to avoid, and how to eat them safely.

Can You Eat Beetles?

Yes, you can eat beetles. In fact, there are dozens of edible beetle species throughout the world, but they don’t tend to be popular foods in the western world.

However, they are very common in other countries such as Thailand, where you can find them on street corners being sold by vendors and in restaurants.

The most popular beetles eaten around the world are scarab beetles. These include the rhinoceros beetle and the Hercules beetle (named after its size and strength). They are also known as stag beetles because they are large insects with horns on their heads.

Other types of edible beetles include June bugs (also called May bugs), which are large brown beetles with red spots on their wings; Japanese horned beetle larvae; and mealworms or waxworms, which are white larvae of several different species of darkling beetles.

Are Beetles Safe To Eat?

Yes, it’s safe to eat beetles. Beetles are a type of insect that is generally safe for humans to consume. Many people may be surprised to learn that the majority of insects that live on Earth are edible, according to the National Geographic Society.

While there are some types of beetles that are not safe for human consumption because they may carry diseases or parasites, most types of edible beetles are safe to eat if they are prepared properly. Before eating an edible beetle, you should always make sure that it has been cooked thoroughly so that any harmful bacteria present in its body will be killed off during the cooking process.

Benefits Of Eating Beetles

Beetles are a great source of protein, B vitamins, iron, and zinc. They are also high in calories which means they can be an effective way to gain weight. The benefits of eating beetles include:

Beetles Are High In Protein

Beetles have a higher percentage of protein than most other insects. A single beetle has about 20 grams of protein which is more than twice the amount found in a whole egg. This makes them an excellent source of protein for those who are vegetarian or vegan and cannot consume meat products.

Beetles Are High In Iron And Zinc

Iron is essential for the formation of red blood cells which transport oxygen around the body. Zinc is also important for red blood cell formation as well as helping with wound healing and immune system function. Both nutrients can be found in many foods but some people may not get enough from their diet alone so insects like beetles can be an excellent alternative source of both nutrients.

Beetles Are High In Calories

The calorie content of beetles varies depending on the species but they tend to be high in calories compared to other common insects such as crickets or grasshoppers so if you need to gain weight then eating beetles could be beneficial for you!

What Do Beetles Taste Like?

Beetles are found in most kitchens and there are many different types of beetles. Beetles can be found on the ground, flying around, or even in your food. There are many species of beetle that are edible and can be cooked in a variety of ways.

The taste of beetles varies depending on the type of beetle and where it comes from. Some species can taste sweet, salty, or even bitter. Some people claim that some species have a nutty flavor, which is often described as tasting like almonds.

Some beetles can be eaten raw while others need to be cooked first before eating. The size of the beetle also affects how it tastes, as smaller beetles tend to taste better than larger ones due to their higher fat content and lower density.

How To Eat Beetles

Beetles are a great source of protein, fat, and nutrients. They’re also easy to catch, so you can add them to your diet without ever having to leave the comfort of your home.

One of the best ways to eat grubs and beetles is to simply boil them in water for about 10 minutes. This is a great way to prepare them if you have limited cooking skills or if you don’t want to waste time on complicated recipes.

After boiling the beetles, remove them from the pot and let them cool down for about 5 minutes before eating them. When they’re cool enough to handle, peel off their outer shell with your fingers or a knife, then pop out their legs and wings (if present), then chew on their bodies!

Another way to prepare beetles is by frying them in oil or butter until they turn brown. This method works well if you want to prepare large batches of these insects at once, but it’s not recommended for home cooks who prefer smaller quantities of food because it requires much more effort than boiling them in water.

Beetles are also delicious when roasted over an open fire or grilled over high heat until they become crispy on the outside and soft on the inside.


It’s completely safe to eat beetles. They’re one of the many forms of edible insect—a great protein source that comes with plenty of vitamins and minerals (a hundred grams of cooked locusts provide seven times more iron than beef!). What’s more, they’re also a sustainable source of food: raising insects uses less land and water than cattle or pigs, and doesn’t produce any methane. Insects are a healthy alternative to other protein sources, so instead of being scared of them the next time you encounter them on your plate, why not try eating them?