A tuna sandwich is among the easiest and quickest lunches using pantry staple ingredients. Canned tuna and chopped veggies mixed with a mayonnaise base with dijon and spices for added flavor.

This sandwich joins our classic favorites like the egg sandwich, the popular club sandwich and philly cheesesteak.

Two sandwiches stacked.

Tuna Sandwich

For busy days, a lunch like this tuna sandwich will be a lifesaver! Not only can it be an easy lunch, but you can serve it as an appetizer, a light dinner, or even as a part of a brunch spread. Because there are countless ways to serve the tuna salad sandwich, you will come back to it over and over when you’re out of meal ideas!

Why You’ll Love this Recipe

  • High in omega-3s. Tuna is rich in important vitamins such as omega-3s fatty acids and vitamin B12. The sandwich is an easy way to sneak in those essential nutrients!
  • A filling sandwich. For a lunch that’s quick, yet filling, a tuna sandwich is your best bet. Tuna is high in protein and the bread will provide carbs to give you energy.
  • Great party appetizer. Make the sandwiches mini, or scale up the recipe, and serve at a brunch or as part of a potluck spread. 
All ingredients needed to make tuna sandwiches in ramekins.

Tuna Sandwich Ingredients

Because the tuna sandwich is made of basic ingredients, this is the ideal lunch to make when you don’t have time to run to the grocery store!

  • Canned tuna- use what canned tuna you have on hand, whether it be water-packed tuna, oil-packed tuna, or packaged tuna.
  • Mayonnaise- to add creaminess and to bring the filling together, opt for a high-quality mayo.
  • Veggies- we use a combination of finely chopped celery and sweet onion for crunch and flavor but feel free to swap these out, using our suggestions below.
  • Flavorings-  dijon, salt, and pepper season and add flavor to the filling.
  • Lettuce- romaine or iceberg lettuce is typically added to a tuna sandwich.
  • Bread- the choice here is yours! Use whatever bread your family loves.

For a full list of ingredients and quantities, see the recipe card below.

Step by step image collage of how to make tuna sandwich.

How to Make Tuna Sandwiches

The best part about the healthy sandwich is that it is so easy to make in just a few steps.

  • Drain tuna: Drain the canned tuna and add it to a medium bowl.
  • Add vegetables and season: Add the mayonnaise, chopped celery, finely diced onion, chopped garlic, dijon mustard, salt, and pepper. Stir everything until well combined.
  • Assemble: Add a piece of lettuce to one slice of bread. Top with a quarter of the tuna salad filling. Top with the second slice of bread to complete the sandwich. Repeat to make the second sandwich!
  • Serve and enjoy, friends!

Substitutions and Variations

A tuna fish sandwich is very forgiving, so use what you have available to make the filling.

  • Different bread: Make the sandwich on a sliced croissant, bagel, or even an English muffin for breakfast.
  • Vary the vegetables: Finely diced peppers, carrots, or cucumbers can be used in addition to the veggies already in the filling, or instead of them if you want to swap things around!
  • Add acidity: For a briny, salty kick, and a tablespoon of capers, chopped pickles or relish, or even sliced olives if you prefer their flavor!
  • Add spice: Kick the filling up a notch by adding a diced jalapeno or a touch of hot sauce.
  • Tuna pasta salad: You can easily turn the tuna into a pasta salad by adding your favorite cooked pasta like macaroni (you’ll need to adjust the dressing amounts).
  • Other toppings: Some of the other toppings you can add when serving your sandwich are sliced tomatoes, avocado slices or even boiled eggs.
Tuna on sliced bread and lettuce.

Serving Suggestions

The tuna sandwich can be served alongside a variety of sides, but the filling itself can be served separately in a variety of ways!

  • Serve with crackers: For a lighter lunch or to serve as an appetizer, combine all ingredients for the tuna salad filling and dump into a serving bowl. Serve the tuna salad filling with your choice of crackers.
  • With pickles: Compliment the tuna sandwich with a side of refrigerator pickles or store-bought dill pickles.
  • Chips: Fish and chips are a restaurant favorite, and while this is different, the fish can still be served with a side of potato chips or the classic “chips” served at restaurants.
  • Lettuce wraps: Leave off the bread and just serve the filling inside of lettuce leaves a low-carb option.

REcipe FAQs

Can I make the sandwich in advance?

This is a great recipe for meal prep, and the filling will taste even better once you let the flavors meld! However, to prevent a soggy sandwich, make the sandwich filling up to 4 days in advance and assemble just before serving the sandwiches.

Is tuna in oil or water better?

Both types of canned tuna can be used in the sandwich. Tuna in oil may result in a creamier salad, but you may need to decrease the amount of mayo in the recipe if you use an oil-based tuna. 

Do I have to use mayo?

You may substitute with greek yogurt, a mashed avocado, or even cottage cheese for the mayonnaise.

Can I freeze the tuna sandwich?

We do not recommend freezing the mixture or the sandwich. For best results, enjoy the sandwich fresh.

Store & Freeze

  • Storage. Keep the sandwich filling in the refrigerator for up to 5 days in an airtight container.
  • Freeze. We do not recommend freezing these sandwiches, as mayonnaise does not hold up well if frozen.

More Sandwich Recipes

If you enjoyed this tuna sandwich recipe, check out these similar sandwiches ideas:

Tuna Sandwich Recipe

Author: Valentina
Sqaure image of tuna sandwich.
5 from 1 vote
A tuna sandwich recipe is so easy and kid-approved lunch or dinner idea. It can be served in a variety of unique ways. Serve the tuna mixture on bread, with crackers, as a lettuce wrap or as a dip!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 2 sandwiches


  • 2 5 oz each tuna, drained
  • cup mayonnaise
  • 2 Tbsp celery finely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp sweet onion finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • ½ tsp dijon mustard
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 2 slices lettuce
  • 4 slices of bread


  • Drain the tuna completely, and add to a medium mixing bowl. Lightly break up the tuna.
  • Add the mayonnaise, chopped celery and onion, garlic, and dijon mustard. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and mix everything with a fork until combined.
  • Toast the sliced bread, if desired.
  • Add one slice of lettuce to a slice of bread. Top the lettuce with one quarter of the tuna salad mixture. Close the sandwich with another slice of bread. Repeat to make the second sandwich.
  • Serve and enjoy, friends!


Add-ins: Chopped pickles, jalapenos, capers, or olives can be added to the filling for a unique twist on the base recipe.
Serve: Serve the filling in a sandwich, in lettuce cups for a low-carb option, or on crackers as an appetizer.
Store: Store the tuna filling separately in an air-tight container, refrigerated, for up to 5 days and assemble sandwiches just before serving if you are making the sandwiches ahead of time.