mmm... tuna salad... even better in a sandwich... here's my recipe... somewhat traditional but contains more than enough vegetables to make it a salad, and pretty healthy too. This is for those who like a lot of zest, but the spice can be toned down for tamer palates.

1 can tuna;

1 cup mayonnaise-style dressing (I prefer not to use real mayonnaise, which I find too creamy);

1/2 cup each of finely diced red onion, celery, and radishes
(about 1 and 1/2 stalks celery, 5 radishes, and 1/5 of a medium-sized red onion);

a generous squirt of lime juice - squeeze of about 1/4 lime;

lots of cayenne pepper (I've never measured it but suspect I use about 1 and 1/2 to 2 teaspoons... basically I keep shaking it in until I think it's got to be too much, then add a little more. Somehow with the other flavours it becomes more mellow);

a generous dash of fresh-ground black pepper.

Mix it all together... taste... try not to eat it all before you've made it into tuna salad sandwiches! I recommend multi-grain toast, buttered, and lots of crunchy lettuce.

For those of us who like the crunch but hate the onions and radishes:

1 can of solid white albacore tuna (Bumblebee rocks)
about 4 tbsp. mayonnaise
1 tbsp. stoneground mustard
1/3 c. diced dill pickles
1/2 c. sliced black olives
1/2 c. chopped celery
(optional) - 1/2 c. chopped canned pineapple
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp basil
salt and pepper to taste

Mix it all together, and add more mayo or mustard to make sure the mixture is just creamy enough to spread. This goes best on toast or crackers.
My mother, who is an awesome cook, came up with this recipe because my then-baby sister would only eat fish in tuna salad form and the rest of the family were puking the normal mayoed version all over the kitchen from sheer culinary boredom. I'm pretty sure she invented it herself. Break up the tuna with a fork. Chop the onion and egg as finely as you can, season and then fold the mixture carefully (if you mix it up too vigorously the egg will go all mushy) until all the ingredients are well combined. This salad is best served well chilled.

And don't anybody tell me cooking is hard work!

Here's one simple recipe I have for tuna salad.

Drain water from tuna. Mix tuna with other ingredients in bowl. Mix thoroughly. Serve over a bed of lettuce or as a sandwich. Serves two.

Update 2022:  If you want my current tuna salad recipe, head on over to the egg salad node.  It's there along with my criticisms of this node, left here for historical purposes.


Being the southern food connoisseur that I am, I have developed a wonderful recipe. It should only be attempted if followed to the letter (brand names and all!)


Mix tuna, mayo, mustard, hot sauce, garlic, and pickle juice in a bowl. Fold in onion, egg, pickle cubes, and celery. Add crushed saltines to achieve the desired consistency.

The only variance that I suggest from the recipe is the hot sauce. Never use less than the suggested amount, but feel free to pile it on if that's your thing (like mine).

I had a heated discussion with my roommate the other day as I was making myself dinner. She asked me what I was making, and I replied with "Tuna salad." She looked at the mug I was mixing the tuna and mayonnaise in, stared at me blankly for a few seconds, and said, "That's not tuna salad." I protested for a while, feeling that my beliefs and convictions had been challenged by this arrogant girl, but I couldn't help but tend to agree with what she was saying. Salad really requires vegetable matter of some sort (I even checked the dictionary definition.

We eventually came to the agreement that it becomes tuna salad upon the inclusion of relish, onions, or celery. Now, every time I go to a diner or deli, and get a tuna salad sandwich, I can't help but feel infuriated if it's just tuna and mayo. I feel that I have reached a new paradigm in my thinking, and culinary interpretation. Could these fools still be left behind in a world where mayonnaise counts as a vegetable? I pity these people for it, but I also resent that their incorrect beliefs must infringe on my lunch.

Next topic for discussion: SPAM stands for SPiced hAM, but how come the only things listed in the ingredients that even remotely resemble spices are salt and sugar?

My favorite tuna salad is not mayo-based at all. It's canned tuna, vinaigrette dressing, grated carrots, and chopped flat-leafed parsely, served with tomato wedges and grapefruit sections with or without a bed of watercress. Coarsely ground pepper on top is good, as is Salad Supreme, a cheese-sesame seed condiment from Mc Cormack.

This fact is less interesting than the way I arrived at it. At one point, I lost my appetite for food, and while otherwise fairly lively, though slightly feverish (I've Got Problems), I couldn't eat more than a little at a time. Consequently, I read an old nutrition book that stated that a cup of tuna, 1 grated carrot, 4 cups of tomato juice, 1 cup grapefruit juice, 10 tablespoons of brewer's yeast, some skimmed milk, 2 shrimp, and a few other odds and ends (somehow calves' liver got in there) would yield a full day's compliment of vitamins and minerals. This gave me the idea of making up nutrient-dense trays of food and leaving them where I'd pass them often. Every so often, I'd grab a forkful or handful of whatever, and eat it fast, and at the end of the day, I'd have eaten it all. I included lots of parsley on things (parsley is the vitamin powerhouse of all greens), and watercress for the fiber factor.

It worked, in that I'm still here. The above recipe is simply the cream of the crop, and I've even served it to guests with rave reviews. Now if I could only work in the shrimps and the liver...

Although mayonnaise suits tuna well, it does not make a salad... I'm a minimalist when it comes to food, but I still like tuna salad. I usually mix:

Dice the onion and mix it all in a bowl. Being from Denmark, I enjoy this on an openfaced coldcut (see Smorgasbord, Traditional Danish Cooking) made from rye bread. Then I add mayonnaise and salt & pepper as needed.

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