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Best Ever Tuna Salad Sandwich

What makes the best ever tuna sandwich? It's all in the combination of ingredients—the best tuna you can find, cottage cheese and mayo, and good use of fresh dill, parsley, and more.

Best tuna sandwich
Elise Bauer

My parents started making tuna salad sandwiches this way years ago and, as far as I'm concerned, theirs is the best and only way to make a tuna fish sandwich.

In addition to tuna, it has red onions, celery, capers, lemon juice, parsley, mayo, and the kicker? Cottage cheese. You might think that cottage cheese is a weird thing to add to tuna salad, but believe me, it really works!

Best Canned Tuna for Tuna Salad

To make the best tuna salad sandwich, it helps to start with high quality canned tuna. We prefer tuna that is packed in extra virgin olive oil, because the oil intensifies the flavor of the tuna.

Both Trader Joe's and Whole Foods have excellent canned tuna packed in olive oil that work perfectly for this tuna salad. The brands we most often use are Wild Planet Albacore Solid Wild Tuna in Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Genova Yellowfin Tuna in Olive Oil.

How to make tuna fish
Elise Bauer

If you don't like the oil that the tuna is packed in, you can always drain it, and add back a tablespoon or so of your own high quality extra virgin olive oil.

If all you have is tuna packed in water, drain it, and add a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil to it. Finding the best canned tuna for your taste may require a bit of experimentation with brands.

Doubling This Recipe

This recipe makes enough tuna salad for 1 large sandwich or 2 smaller sandwiches. You can easily double the recipe. Any leftover tuna salad will keep in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days.

Love a Good Tuna Sandwich? Try These 5 Recipes!

Best Ever Tuna Salad Sandwich

Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 0 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Yield 1 to 2 Sandwiches
If you are using canned tuna packed in water, drain it and add in 1 tablespoon of good quality extra virgin olive oil. If you are using canned tuna packed in olive oil, you can use as is, without draining it. Or, if you don't like the oil the tuna is packed in, you can drain it, and add back in 2 teaspoons of your favorite extra virgin olive oil.

Ingredients

  • 1 (5 or 6-ounce) can tuna fish
  • 1/3 cup cottage cheese
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1 celery stalk, finely chopped (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • A pinch or two of dill
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 slices bread, lightly toasted
  • Lettuce and sliced tomatoes (optional)

Method

  1. Mix:

    In a medium bowl, mix all of the ingredients until combined.

    Tuna salad sandwich
    Elise Bauer
    How to make tuna salad
    Elise Bauer
  2. Serve:

    Serve tuna salad on toast, either open faced, or in a regular sandwich with lettuce and tomatoes. For a low carb option, serve on sliced lettuce.