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What is the difference between Carabineros prawns and Palamós prawns ?

Jul 9, 2019Shrimp

Carabineros Prawns VS Palamós Prawns

There are many different kinds of shrimp, pawns, and seafood. Sometimes it doesn’t matter if you mix them up because they are almost the same in terms of taste, size, color, and price.
This article will explain the difference between carabineros, prawns, and Palamós prawns. If you are a seafood lover, you will be able to pay attention to these details next time you buy shrimp.

Contents :

What are Carabineros prawns ?

What are prawns from Palamós?

The difference between the two species ?

What are Carabineros prawns ?

The scientific name for Carabineros is Plesiopenaeus edwardsianus.

These large deep-sea prawns are called Carabineros in Spanish, scarlet shrimp or cardinal prawns in English, and Crevette Imperial in French.

Carabineros prawns come mostly from the east Atlantic coast and usually live in deep water. You can find them in the waters around Portugal, Spain, France, Morocco, and all the way down to South Africa.

These prawns are prized for their impressive size, bright red color, and robust flavor. Carabineros are the biggest prawns in the world, bigger than any shrimp. Their distinct flavor is concentrated in their heads. Because of their color it can be harder to determine when they are cooked properly.

What are prawns from Palamós?

The scientific name for Gamba de Palamós is Aristeus antennatus.

“Gamba de Palamós” or prawn from Palamós in English, comes from the northwest Mediterranean sea town of Palamós, north of Barcelona, where they are living in a protected environment and are fished under strict, sustainable regulations. This same species can also be found along the Mediterranean sea, along the Spanish coast.

Palamós prawns are considered the best in the world, and are valued for their firm and tasty meat. We wrote an entire article about them, if you want to know more about the Gamba de Palamós.

To be able to fish and sell them, and brand them as Gamba de Palamós, the boats, gear, and the companies need to have a special certification.

With our unique food selection, mmmediterranean is the only company distributing authentic Gamba de Palamós in the United-States.

The difference between the two species

Compared to Carabineros prawns, Palamós prawns have a lighter color,are smaller in size, and taste differently due to their living environment.

Carabineros prawns don’t hold an official brand or label, whereas Palamós prawns do.

Palamós prawns can only be found and fished in the Palamós region off the Spanish shores in the Mediterranean Sea. Carabineros prawns can be found all along the east Atlantic Ocean and in the Mediterranean Sea.


Carabinero prawn


Palamós prawn

Carabineros prawns lives in deep water whereas Palamós prawns lives close to the shore.

There are stringent fishing restrictions concerning prawns from Palamós while none exist for the Carabineros prawns.

Finally, Carabineros prawns have a different taste than Palamós prawns. Carabineros taste will be closer to a traditional seafood taste, where Palamós prawns will have almost a lobster and vanilla taste.


Be careful to not be fooled between these two kinds of prawns. Both have amazing taste, both are highly valuable, both are a traditional Mediterranean dish. They are both highly coveted by fancy restaurants. And finally, both of them are not easy to find in the U.S.. Usually, prawns from Palamós will be more expensive and harder to find due to their label and restriction. The best way to make sure you are buying the product you want is to check the scientific name, the size of the product, and the color.

In the previous paragraph you can see a picture of a prawns from Palamós next to Carabineros prawns which will help you to see the difference. Feel free to ask us any questions about either prawn. We are experts in shrimp and prawn sourcing and distribution and would be happy to help.

Bon appétit!