Food & Drink

How Many Oysters Are in a Serving?

G&G readers have their say, and it might make you feel better about your next briny binge

An oyster with cocktail sauce sits on a bed of crushed ice next to a lemon wedge with a fork in it.

Photo: Peter Frank Edwards

In a recent Talk of the South newsletter, we asked readers “How many oysters are in a serving for one?” Read some of the many responses below:

At least eighteen for me, maybe two dozen. I eat my oysters alone: no saltine crackers to change the taste and texture and, worse yet, take up room in my stomach that more oysters could fit in. —Vicky D.

Stay in Touch with G&G
Get our weekly Talk of the South newsletter.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Six oysters for an appetizer at a restaurant. An oyster roast goes on for hours, so there’s no counting. —Dale J. 

My personal best was forty-eight at the Indian Pass Raw Bar. We were served by a very personable fella named Gator. The only downside of eating that many oysters is being up all night. —John C.

Eight to ten, depending upon size and preparation style. I can easily eat a dozen smallish on the half shell. —Deborah M.

A single serving of oysters should be a baker’s dozen. —Winnie B.

Gulf oysters: four. Alaska oysters: at least six, a dozen is better. —Judy P.

The correct answer is as many as the platter will hold…and keep them coming until I say stop. – Leigh B.

As someone who is gastrointestinally allergic to oysters, a big fat zero is the magic number. – JJ M.

At minimum two dozen, especially if raw and freshly shucked. —Michael B.

I would suggest six per person.  If my two nephews are attending, they have to be allotted four dozen each. —Ed L.

At least a peck for one. A bushel for a group. —Kimberly H.

Here in Down East Maine, we get together with neighbors for an oyster fest twice a year.  We count on eighteen fresh-shucked oysters per person and never have any leftovers. —Don H.

Eight is the right amount. Six is not enough and leaves you wanting just a few more.  When you have twelve you know you overdid it and you try and get others to finish the plate. And if they don’t like oysters, you have to stuff the remainder down a reluctant gullet or you look like you don’t like the briny masterpieces of the sea. —Jay E.

Reasonable to large-size oysters: eighteen to twenty-four for an entree-size portion. Smaller oysters: twenty-four to thirty. —Carl D.

One dozen. Always has been, always should be…unless it’s a baker’s dozen. Then that’s okay too. —Bryan F. 

As many as you can eat, silly! —Cynthia R.

I’m still trying to figure out who looked at an oyster and thought, “Gee, that looks yummy.” —Margaret C.

Eighteen to twenty-four with an ice cold draft beer. —Matt C. 

If raw, a minimum of six, up to twelve. If baked or grilled, a minimum of nine up to eighteen. —Mark R. 

Minimum, one dozen; maximum, a shipload. —John L.

In an oyster bar: twenty-four with saltine crackers and Texas Pete hot sauce. —Jere B. 

It depends on the preparation. For raw oysters: two dozen accompanied by mignonette sauce, a handful of saltines, and a cold glass of sauvignon blanc. For fried oysters (preferably in duck fat): a minimum of a dozen, with tartar sauce, fries, and an excellent bottle of sangiovese. —Jim C.

Zero.  I’d rather eat pencil erasers. —Jan A.

I’d say thirty-six for a serving. Steamed the best way, over a fire covered in wet burlap. —Robert M.

Heck, they aren’t gonna hurt you. As many as you want. —Chester J.

Minimum of thirteen. Any less and it’s just a tease. —Doug D. 

Also see: How Many Chews Are in an Oyster?

Get G&G’s Talk of the South newsletter in your in-box each week. Sign up here.