The tuna burger is a flavorful mix of canned tuna, fresh herbs, and veggies, pan seared to crisp, golden brown perfection. Place them between two toasted buns with a slice of melty cheese, homemade remoulade sauce, and your favorite toppings for the ultimate seafood burger recipe!
The tuna burger satisfies my burger craving every time. Between the rich salty flavor of the tuna, the creamy, spicy remoulade Sauce, and the generous seasoning, I guarantee you won't miss the meat! So the next time you're grilling or cooking up some burgers, consider making these delicious tuna burgers.
Why You'll Love This Tuna Burger Recipe
Great Pescatarian Meal. Whether you want to take a break from beef and pork, or you're really about that pescatarian life, this a a geat option for any cookout or barbecue. With that said, you still get your protein and tuna us packed with omega-3s.
Cost-Effective. Ever have one of those days where you're low on groceries but don't feel like heading to the store? This tuna burger is the solution! Nearly everyone has at least one can of tuna in their cupboards. It's cheaper than crab cakes, salmon burgers, and even beef burgers.
Customizable. These patties are full of flavor but there are plenty of ways to customize them; from the way you season them to the way they are prepared.
This list may look extensive but this recipe is easy to customize so if you're missing some ingredients or don't want to use them, feel free to swap or omit.
- Tuna. Canned tuna is a cheap food but that doesn't mean you shouldn't use a high-quality tuna. When the price difference is maybe $1, it's worth it in my book. Look for tuna packed in olive oil instead of water because it tastes better and is more moist.
- Mayo. This acts as a binding ingredient.
- Fresh Dill. This has a distinct bright flavor and adds a light, fresh taste to the patties.
- Dijon Mustard. This has a tangy, spicy quality
- Veggies. I use celery stalks and shallots (or onion) but you can use whatever vegetables you prefer.
- Egg. This is another ingredient.
- Breadcrumbs. This gives the burger structure and helps the burger retain moisture.
- Seasoning. I use a mix of lemon and pepper seasoning, garlic powder, onion powder, and cajun seasoning.
- Hot Sauce. Although this is optional, I strongly suggest using it for a pop of spicy flavor.
- Cooking Oil. Use this to brown the patties as they pan sear.
- Havarti Cheese. This is a soft, mild cheese that melts down beautifully. It's super creamy!
Tuna Burger Toppings
- Brioche Buns. These buttery, fluffy buns are the perfect pairing.
- Arugula. This adds a peppery bite.
- Tomato Slices. Add to your burger for fresh, juicy flavor.
- Sliced Red Onion. This adds a nice crunch.
- Mayo. This is the rich, creamy base for your sauce.
- Dijon Mustard. Add for a bit of zest.
- Horseradish. This condiment packs a fiery heat.
- Cajun Seasoning. This spice blend has an earthy, herbal, smoky flavor.
- Hot Sauce. This adds a pop of spiciness.
- Worcestershire Sauce. Add for a deep umami taste.
How to Make a Tuna Burger
Form patties, freeze them, sear them in a hot pan, and then assemble your tuna burgers!
Prep ingredients by draining the tuna and roughly chopping the dill, celery and shallot. In a large mixing bowl, combine tuna, mayo, dill, mustard, celery, shallot, beaten egg, breadcrumbs, seasonings and hot sauce (optional).
Form Tuna Patties
Next, mix with fork or hands until ingredients are thoroughly combined. Evenly divide the mixture and form two patties. If making 4 smaller tuna burgers, divide into four sections and form patties.
Freeze Tuna Burgers
Place tuna burgers onto a lined baking sheet and place in the freezer for 30 minutes. Then, while they freeze, prepare the remoulade sauce and prep tuna burger toppings.
Prepare Remoulade Sauce
In a small/medium sized bowl whisk together the mayo, dijon mustard, horseradish, cajun seasoning, hot sauce and worcester sauce. Adjust seasonings to your liking. Refrigerate until ready for use.
Pan Fry Tuna Burgers
In a large frying pan on medium/high heat, add cooking oil. Sear the tuna burger patties on both sides for 4 minutes until cooked through to the center. During the last minute of cooking, place the sliced havarti cheese on top of each tuna burger and allow the cheese to melt.
Assemble Tuna Burgers
Place each seared tuna burger with cheese on a cooling rack until assembly time. Then, using the same pan, place brioche buns in a skillet and toast for 1-2 minutes until charred.
Assemble tuna burgers by starting with the bottom bun and placing 1-2 teaspoon of remoulade sauce on top. Next, add tuna burger with cheese, sliced tomato, red onion and arugula. Top with additional bun and sauce if desired and enjoy!
Tips and Tricks
- Use a nonstick skillet. This helps to prevent the patties from sticking to the hot surface and burning.
- Remember to drain the tuna. Otherwise your mixture will be too wet and it will be difficult to form the tuna cakes.
- Don't skip the freezing step. The patties will form best if placed in the freezer for at least 30 minutes before cooking.
- Cheese. You can substitute the cheese for other options such as cheddar, colby jack, or pepper jack!
- Mayo. Save a few calories and use plain yogurt or sour cream instead.
- Veggies. Add finely chopped vegetables like bell peppers, carrots, or even olives. For herbs, try fresh parsley or cilantro.
- Baked. After freezing the patties, place them on a baking sheet and set them in the oven at 375ºF for 10 minutes on each side.
- Tuna. Although the main purpose of this recipe is to make an affordable meal, you can use fresh tuna for tuna burgers if you prefer. Follow all the same steps but you may want to chop the ahi tuna in a food processor before combining all the ingredients.
How to Store Leftovers
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. Reheat leftovers in the microwave, cover with a damp paper towel or in the air fryer at 350°F for 5-8 minutes.
Can I make a tuna burger in advance?
Yes, this recipe can certainly be made ahead of time. Frozen tuna burgers can last up to 3 months when properly stored. Thaw for one hour before cooking if the patties are frozen solid.
What goes well with tuna burgers?
The obvious pairing for tuna burgers are french fries or sweet potato fries. You can also enjoy it with a salad.
What can I mix with a can of tuna?
There are so many easy quick tuna recipes to make using canned tuna. Aside from mayo and seasoning for a classic tuna sandwich or tuna melt, you can mix it with pasta for a Tuna Pasta Salad or Tuna Noodle Casserole.
How do you keep tuna patties from falling apart?
There are a few ways to prevent your tuna burger from falling apart. Remove excess moisture by draining the canned tuna. Use binding ingredients like egg and mayonnaise. And let the patties freeze so they form properly.
I HOPE YOU ENJOY THIS TUNA BURGER RECIPE!
- 9 oz Tuna
- 2 tablespoon Mayo
- 2 tablespoon Fresh Dill
- 2 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
- 1 Celery Stalk
- ¼ cup Shallot or onion
- 1 egg
- 1 cup Breadcrumbs
- 1 teaspoon Lemon and Pepper Seasoning
- 1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
- 1 teaspoon Onion Powder
- 1 teaspoon Cajun Seasoning
- Dash of Hot Sauce optional
- 2 tbs Cooking Oil
- 2-4 Slices Havarti Cheese
- 2 Brioche Buns
- ½ cup Arugula
- 2 Tomato Slices
- Sliced Red Onion 2-4 slices
- ¼ cup Mayo
- 1 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
- 1.5 teaspoon Horseradish
- ½ teaspoon Cajun Seasoning
- 1-1.5 teaspoon Hot Sauce
- ¼ teaspoon Worcester Sauce
- Prep ingredients by draining the tuna and roughly chopping the dill, celery and shallot.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine tuna, mayo, dill, mustard, celery, shallot, beaten egg, breadcrumbs, seasonings and hot sauce (optional).
- Mix with fork or hands until ingredients are thoroughly combined.
- Evenly divide the mixture and form two patties. If making 4 smaller tuna burgers, divide into four sections and form patties.
- Place tuna burgers onto a lined baking sheet and place in the freezer for 30 minutes.
- While the tuna burgers freeze, prepare the remoulade sauce and prep tuna burger toppings.
- In a large frying pan on medium/high heat, add cooking oil.
- Sear tuna burgers on both sides for 4 minutes until cooked through to the center. During the last minute of cooking, place the sliced havarti cheese on top of each tuna burger and allow the cheese to melt.
- Place tuna burgers with cheese on a cooling rack until assembly time.
- In the same pan, place brioche buns in a skillet and toast for 1-2 minutes until charred.
- Assemble tuna burgers by starting with the bottom bun and placing 1-2 teaspoon of remoulade sauce on top. Next, add tuna burger with cheese, sliced tomato, red onion and arugula. Top with additional bun and sauce if desired and enjoy!
- In a small/medium sized bowl whisk together the mayo, dijon mustard, horseradish, cajun seasoning, hot sauce and worcester sauce.
- Adjust seasonings to your liking.
- Refrigerate until ready for use.