Best Ever Tuna Salad Sandwich

SandwichQuick and EasyCanned TunaFish and Seafood

Best ever tuna salad sandwich! Uses tuna, canned or freshly cooked, cottage cheese, mayo, red onion, celery, capers, lemon, parsley, dill, and Dijon.

Photography Credit: 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. This really is the best ever tuna sandwich.

Canned Tuna for Tuna Salad

A good tuna salad sandwich starts with the the tuna salad. And a good tuna salad must have high-quality canned tuna. If you have leftover cooked tuna steaks, then by all means use them instead of the canned tuna.

Both Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods have excellent canned tuna packed in olive oil that work perfectly for tuna salad. (The brand I like at Whole Foods is Wild Planet.)

Tuna sandwich on toasted bread sliced in half on plate

Tuna packed in olive oil may be more flavorful than tuna packed in water, but check on the quality of the oil. It may be better to use tuna packed in water, drain it, and then add a bit of your own high quality extra virgin olive oil. This requires a bit of experimentation with brands. Once you have decided on the best canned tuna, your tuna salad (and tuna salad sandwich) won’t disappoint.

Best Ever Tuna Salad Sandwich Recipe

  • Prep time: 5 minutes


  • 1 (5 or 6 ounce) can of tuna fish (drained, if packed in water, drain it, and add a teaspoon of good quality olive oil to the tuna)
  • 1/3 cup of cottage cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons of mayonaise
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1 celery stalk, finely chopped (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 Tbsp of capers
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • Pinch or two of dill
  • 2 Tbsp minced fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard
  • (optional - lettuce and sliced tomatoes)
  • Sliced bread, lightly toasted


Mix all of the ingredients. Serve on toast, either open faced, or in a regular sandwich with lettuce and tomatoes. For a low carb option, serve on sliced lettuce.

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Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

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120 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  • Bill

    I am a fan of using cottage cheese in salad, one of my favorite is “Men’s Favorite Salad” recipe from the 60’s.
    But you are right on with this Tuna Salad!

  • Stephanie

    Love it! I made the exact recipe just with a slightly bigger amount of tuna in it, it’s delicious. I used low fat cottage cheese and whole wheat bread and layered it on top of crispy iceberg lettuce. I will make this again and keep the recipe in my book of favorites!


  • Sarah

    Yep, definitely the best ever tuna salad sandwich! Made it today and it was a hit! Thank you


  • Janice

    This was so good! Best tuna salad for sure!!! Thank you for sharing the recipe!!! I made a double batch for myself as well as for my Dad for his 84th birthday. Not much he needs so I get him food items or make some meals as a gift. He enjoyed it as well.

  • Peggy

    This was delicious! Made it just as the recipe stated and everyone in my family loved it!

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