Entomophagy Recipes: Sloppy Silkworms

Jan. 26, 2020

May contain affiliate links.

Silkworms are juicy and meaty, and just the right substitution for beef in this American sunny summer day classic.The sauce here has a strong flavor, and can always be fortified with more worcestershire, or even tabasco, sauce. If using canned silkworms I rinse first to rid the silkworms of canned flavor, but if you have access to fresh or frozen silkworms, they will be by far superior in taste and texture.

Sloppy Silkworms

Total: 30 mins; Serves 4


  • 9 oz (260 gram) silkworms
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup bell pepper (green or red), chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • Salt; to taste
  • Pepper; to taste
  • 4 hamburger buns; toasted
  • 1 red or white onion, sliced (optional, to garnish)


1. If silkworms are fresh, boil for 3-5 minutes before adding to mixture. If silkworms are dehydrated, you may need to re-hydrate by soaking for 30 minutes, then rinsing. If silkworms are canned, simply open the can, rinse, drain, and set aside.

2. Heat oil in a large pan over medium heat oil. Add onion and bell pepper, and cook until they start to soften; about 1-3 minutes. Then add garlic and cook until fragrant; 1-2 minutes. Add silkworms, Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, brown sugar and vinegar. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and simmer until the mixture has reached desired thickness, about 25-35 minutes.

3. Toast hamburger buns, and ladle sloppy silkworm mixture onto buns. Serve topped with with crisp, freshly cut onions, a side of chips or pickles, and a cold beer, if desired.

This entomophagy recipe is included in Bugs for Beginners, a cookbook which teaches Westerners how to prepare edible insects and safely eat a bug. Text may include affiliate links

Meet Mic

I'm Mic. I love reading about, writing about, thinking about, photographing, and especially eating, food. Especially bug food. Enough talk, let's eat!

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