Tuna Salad

If you’re looking for the best tuna salad recipe, you can end your quest now! I’ve spent no shortage of time testing this one out to perfect it — and I promise you my kiddos appreciated every step of the process.

straight on shot of stack of tuna salad sandwich halves on parchment paper


For this recipe all you need is standard canned tuna and some other simple ingredients you likely have in your kitchen already. When it comes to the tuna, most of my household prefers water-packed tuna. But if you’re a fan of oil-packed tuna, you can use it instead.

This tuna salad comes together quickly and easily and is arguably one of best tuna salads you may have ever had. But, bonus: it’s also super customizable, so you can add to it or change it to please the palates at your house.

Reasons to Try This Tasty Tuna Salad

You may have made plenty of tuna salad sandwiches in the past, but this one takes humble canned tuna to the next level. 

  • Full of Flavor – This tuna salad recipe goes beyond the classic tuna salad that just mixes canned fish with mayo, salt, and pepper. Greek yogurt gives it a subtle tanginess, fresh herbs add fresh flavor, and Dijon gives it depth.
  • Room for Creativity – I love this recipe as it is but it also leaves the door open for creative customizations and add-ins. 
  • Crave-Worthy Creaminess – Traditional tuna salad uses just mayonnaise while this kicked-up version incorporated Greek yogurt to make an almost sinfully creamy salad. 
close up of tuna salad on a spoon


This sandwich is a breeze to whip up in the time it takes to toast the bread. All you need are these simple ingredients.

  • Canned Albacore Tuna – Whether you use tuna packed in oil or water, be sure to fully drain it. Placing it in a paper towel or cheesecloth can help to drain excess moisture. 
  • Plain Greek Yogurt – I prefer to use full-fat yogurt so that the salad is super creamy, but you can use lowfat if you prefer.
  • Mayonnaise – It’s incredibly easy to make your own homemade mayonnaise, but you can also just use your favorite brand.  
  • Diced Red Onion – Red onions add a pop of color to the salad but their flavor also perfectly pairs with the tuna. 
  • Chopped Fresh Parsley – I love the herbaceousness that fresh parsley adds to the salad. 
  • Chopped Fresh Dill – Dill also pairs well with fish and it gives this salad fresh flavor. 
  • Dijon Mustard – Dijon adds a touch of tanginess and earthiness to the tuna. 
  • Lemon Juice – Citrus is always a winner with fish and it gives this salad bright flavor. 
  • Salt and Pepper –  You can use as much or as little of each as you prefer.
  • Slices of Bread – I often use slices from whichever loaf I have handy. But if you feel like channeling your inner baker, you can try one of these easy no yeast and quick bread recipes. 
  • Optional Sandwich Ingredients – You can add any of these to take your tuna sandwich up a notch: sliced red onion, romaine lettuce, sliced tomato, or sliced avocado. 
overhead shot of tuna salad ingredients

How to Make Tuna Salad

In just a few minutes, you can have a tuna salad sandwich ready for a quick lunch or dinner.

  1. Combine ingredients. While the bread is toasting, add all of the salad ingredients to a large bowl and mix together until completely combined. Using a fork, break the tuna into smaller pieces.
  2. Spread butter on toasted bread. Spread butter onto one side of each of the slices of bread. 
  3. Add tuna to slice of bread. Top one slice with the tuna salad and spread it out across the surface of the bread. 
  4. Top with second slice of bread. Place the other slice, buttered side down, on top of the tuna. 
  5. Slice and serve immediately or store in the refrigerator until ready to eat. 

What to Serve With Tuna Salad

When I’m assembling the sandwich, I like to add red onions and lettuce. They add bright color and a little crunch — plus the lettuce can act as a barrier between the tuna and bread so the sandwich is less likely to get soggy if you store it. 

I also love to serve this salad with sides like dill pickles and  potato chips or homemade tortilla chips. If you’re trying to squeeze more veggies in, though, you can opt for kale chips, baby carrots, celery or pickled vegetables.  You can also serve it with toasted pita bread or crackers.

And if you want to skip the sides and the bread, you can pile the tuna on top of a simple side salad or a kale salad or wrap it in lettuce leaves to make a tuna salad lettuce wrap.

angled shot of stack of tuna salad sandwich halves on parchment paper


You can transform this tuna salad in lots of different ways. 

  • Warm – Turn this tuna salad into a tuna melt by spreading it on bread, topping it with cheese, and baking it in the oven or a toaster oven until the cheese is melted and the bread is crispy. Kinda like a crab melt!
  • Pickles – Toss in some diced dill pickles or stir in sweet pickle relish.
  • Type of Tuna – Swap out the light Albacore for your preferred variety of canned tuna. 
  • Mayo and Greek Yogurt – Change up the ratio of these two for a tangier or less tangy salad.
  • Spicy – Add some diced jalapenos or a dash of cayenne pepper powder for a spicy version. 
  • Asian-Influenced – Stir in soy sauce or sesame oil for an Asian-inspired salad. 
  • Mediterranean – Fold in some black olives or green olives, capers, roasted red peppers, or sun-dried tomatoes.
  • Hummus – Swap out the mayo and Greek yogurt and use hummus instead. 
  • Avocado – Substitute mashed avocado for some or all of the mayonnaise and Greek yogurt. 

Storage and Freezing

Assembled tuna salad sandwiches can become soggy. To avoid that, store any leftover tuna separately and assemble your sandwich just before enjoying it or within a few hours. 

You can make this simple salad and store it in the fridge until ready to eat. 

How to Store Tuna Salad

Store tuna fish salad in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Can I Freeze Tuna Salad?

I do not recommend freezing prepared tuna salad. 

straight on shot of stack of tuna salad sandwich halves

Common Questions About Tuna Salad

What can I mix with a can of tuna?

There are tons of ways to dress up canned tuna. You can mix it with mayo, Greek yogurt, sour cream, mashed avocado, hummus, tzatziki, or just a drizzle of olive oil.
It’s also terrific tossed with diced veggies or pasta.

Why does restaurant tuna salad taste better?

Restaurant tuna may taste better because they are possibly using a much higher quality tuna. However, even if they are using the same type of tuna, a restaurant version of the salad is likely to have a different flavor and superior texture because they often use heavy-duty mayonnaise which has more eggs in it than standard mayonnaise.

Why is tuna salad good for you?

While we aren’t doctors, so we can’t make health recommendations, we can say that tuna is chock-full of nutrients. It’s packed with protein, B vitamins, and omega-3 fatty acids, all of which can be beneficial to your health.

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angled shot of stack of tuna salad sandwich halves with text overlay
angled shot of stack of tuna salad sandwich halves on parchment paper

BEST Tuna Salad Recipe

3.34 from 12 votes
This EASY Tuna Salad recipe comes together quickly and easily and is arguably one of best tuna salads you may have ever had!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 2



  • In a large bowl, mix together the drained tuna, Greek yogurt, mayonnaise, red onion, celery, apple, parsley, dill, Dijon mustard, lemon juice, salt, and pepper.
  • Toast the slices of bread and spread butter on one side of each slice.
  • Spoon the tuna salad mixture onto two slices of the bread, spreading it evenly.
  • Top each sandwich with the remaining slices of bread, buttered side facing out.
  • Cut the sandwiches in half and serve.


Calories: 315 kcal, Carbohydrates: 30 g, Protein: 16 g, Fat: 14 g, Saturated Fat: 2 g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 8 g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3 g, Trans Fat: 0.04 g, Cholesterol: 19 mg, Sodium: 555 mg, Potassium: 252 mg, Fiber: 3 g, Sugar: 5 g, Vitamin A: 391 IU, Vitamin C: 8 mg, Calcium: 119 mg, Iron: 3 mg
Author: Jessica Formicola
Calories: 315
Course: Salad
Cuisine: American
Keyword: tuna salad
Did you make this recipe?I’d love to see your recipes – snap a picture and mention @savoryexperiments or tag #savoryexperiments!
collage of tuna salad
Jessica Formicola in her ktichen

About the Author

Chef Jessica Anne Formicola

Jessica the mom, wife and chef behind Savory Experiments. You might see her on the Emmy- nominated TV show Plate It! or on bookshelves as a cookbook author. Jessica is a Le Cordon Bleu certified recipe developer and regularly contributed to Parade, Better Homes & Gardens, The Daily Meal, Mashed and more!

Read More About Jessica

3.34 from 12 votes (7 ratings without comment)

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Questions and Reviews

  1. 5 stars
    This weekend, I used your tuna recipe for sandwiches with toasted multigrain bread, tomatoes, and avocado slices. It was the best tuna sandwich I’ve ever made!