Tuna Salad Sandwich

filed under: Food + Drink on January 22, 2019

A Tuna Salad Sandwich is one of my kid’s favorite after-school snacks. It is definitely one of my go-to meals when I am hungry and want something fast! We love Tuna recipes and this Tuna Mornay, Tuna Melt Casserole, and Open Faced Tuna Melt are some of our favorites!

Tuna Salad Recipe

This is a flavor-packed recipe.  I admit, there are days when I grab a can of tuna, add some mayo and celery salt, and am done! But there are also times that I want the most satisfying and delicious tuna salad sandwich ever… and this recipe fits the bill.

Tuna Salad

To this recipe, I add mayonnaise, seasonings, and shallots. The crunch comes from the onions, so I do recommend picking the best (freshest) shallot you can find.

The easiest way to make a tuna salad sandwich is to prepare the tuna salad, get your bread, and start layering. Our favorite (and the most classic way of eating it) is to grab a piece of bread (not toast!), lay lettuce on the bread, scoop the tuna salad on top of the lettuce, add sliced tomato, and then cover with another piece of bread. Serve with some chips or fries and you are good to go!

Tuna Salad Ingredients

How to Make Tuna Salad

Easy ingredients combine to create what I am sure will be your FAVORITE tuna salad recipe!

The formula could not be easier: Prepare, Combine, Assemble, Enjoy! I like to chop all the shallots, pickles, and garlic and then start the assembling process. I also like to make each sandwich upon request. The longer the tuna salad sits on the bread the soggier it may be.

More Easy Lunches You’ll Love

Tuna Salad Recipe

What Kind of Tuna to Use

I prefer using a tuna canned in water. When you are draining the tuna prior to use, as most recipes will recommend, you could lose some of the flavor if it was packed in oil. Tuna packed in oil can absorb some of the flavor of the tuna.

In general, water-packed is usually what folks choose because it has fewer calories and retains more omega-3s. Not to mention it can taste “fresher”.  One thing that I highly recommend is to make sure that you fully drain the water from the packed tuna.  Extra moisture in the tuna salad is not typically considered a good thing.  A watery tuna salad mixture will make the sandwich a little sloppy and could also make the bread soggy.

How to Make Tuna Salad

How Long Does Tuna Salad Last?

This recipe makes a lot of sandwiches, so you may need to refrigerate the leftovers. To maximize the shelf life of tuna salad for safety (and make sure it still tastes good!), refrigerate it in an airtight container for up to 3-5 days.

The BEST Tuna Salad

Tuna Salad Ingredient Variations

The great thing about tuna salad is that it can be changed up based on what you have on hand.  Keep the ratios the same as the recipe below but swap out what you love.

Greek Yogurt– Replace the mayo with yogurt for a healthier and lighter option.

Red Onion– I prefer shallots as they have a wonderful onion flavor but are not overpowering. Some folks really prefer a strong onion flavor and opt for red onion or even a sweet onion.

Celery– If you want even more crunch and texture you can add in chopped celery. 

Croissants– My favorite way to eat tuna salad! However, I have to remember to buy them special because it’s not something we normally have on hand. Our next favorite option is 12-grain bread, but in truth, any sandwich bread will work!

Make it a Wrap –  Completely change the game by making it a tuna salad wrap.  We use a flour tortilla, some romaine lettuce leaves, tomato, sometimes some extra pickle, and wrap it all up!  This is also a great alternative if you are taking these on a picnic because the tortilla holds everything together nicely.

Feel free to get creative and add/replace your own favorite ingredients.

4.39 from 13 votes
Tuna Salad Sandwich
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
5 mins
Total Time
10 mins

This will be your new go-to recipe for tuna salad!

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Tuna Salad Sandwich
Servings: 12
Calories: 206 kcal
Author: Amanda Rettke
  • 4 cans (20 ounces) tuna, drained
  • 1 cup (239g) mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup shallot, finely diced
  • 2 tablespoons dill pickle, finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 head romaine lettuce
  • 1 medium tomato, sliced
  • sliced bread of your choice
  1. In a medium bowl, combine tuna, mayonnaise, shallot, pickle, lemon juice, and garlic. Add salt and pepper to taste. (You could also add a little celery salt for added flavor.)

  2. Lay a piece of bread on your plate (or slice a croissant) and top with lettuce, tuna mixture, and then a slice of tomato.

  3. Serve Immediately.

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  • Miriam Wedel says:

    What brand of tuna do you use. The last time I bought a small can of StarKist there was more water than Tuna disgusting!

    • Amanda Rettke says:

      Hi Miriam- You can use whatever brand you prefer!! You would definitely want it to fit your tastes. I happen to like tuna packed in water over oil, but some disagree! 🙂

  • Beverly vince says:

    Love your recipes.

  • K Jacobs says:

    Love your recipes! I wish people would carefully READ the whole recipe before commenting! Also, if you change most or all of the ingredients, it’s not the same dish.

  • Bethany Alexandra says:

    Soooo good! I forgot the lemon juice but it was still amazing. I’m going to make another batch since me and my husband demolished the first. Any tips on how to make it thick? Every time I’ve made any tuna salad it ends up runny (yes I drain the tuna). Thanks!

  • Michael Eugene Shaner says:

    REPLY TO BETHANY ALEXANDRIA: “Any tips on how to make it thick? Every time I’ve made any tuna salad it ends up runny (yes I drain the tuna). Thanks!”

    Potential solutions: 1. Reduce mayonnaise by perhaps 1/4 cup; 2. Reduce lemon juice by 1/2; or 3. Add 1/4 cup Panko®️ Bread crumbs to mixture.

  • Marsha francis says:

    I love all your recipes they are so amazing and homely you are an awesome cook and I’m Learning alot from you so thank you so very much I am from the Caribbean but I am in love with everything you make,you make it as simple as it can get so thanks and please continue what your doing you are remarkably talented thank you thank you thank I m bot sure if you will get this but I’m trying my lucks anyways but if you do just know that I love your page and you recipe’s Much Luv and keep up the amazing work

  • Fran Druse says:

    I add a little finely chopped crisp apple. I also use sweet pickle relish instead of dill.

  • Jean Logwood says:

    Add celery and red peppers and pickle relish to your tuna salad it is a treat!

  • Maurice says:

    Because I do like sour cream in these salad dishes, I did 1/2 cup each of Mayo & Sour cream

  • C says:

    No too large. Only one tomato foe 12 servings is ridiculous.

  • Nancy Rice says:

    Your recipes look delicious, will definitely try some of them.

  • Mike says:

    I sure wish you would leave nutrition values like sodium, sugar etc on your recipes for us diabetic viewers. Your recipes look so good

  • Chris says:

    I prefer Dill pickle relish or season with dill instead of pickles. I’d rather eat a pickle on the side. Garlic? I have never used garlic in Tuna salad…I’ll give it a try. Thanks!

  • Maurice says:

    Basic. Love the dill pickle idea. However, a little Celery Salt and 1/2Mayo & 1/2 Sour Cream is my ideal. Gonna make a Tuna Dreamwich. That’s Open Face with Melted Cheddar on top.

  • Fleda says:

    You left out tuna noodle cheese casserole. With Reames frozen noodles velveeta cheese. Yummy

  • Louise says:

    In uk we add small diced green pepper and cucumber and we call this tuna crunch

  • I Am Baker Logo

    Brand new recipes that people find kinda acceptable.