Italian Tuna Salad

Italian tuna salad is a zesty, tasty spin on the classic you know and love. If you love Mediterranean food, you will love the added zest of flavor from the lemon, tomatoes, basil, and olives! Perfect for lunch or dinner any time!

Italian tuna salad on croissants

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By the end of the week, my brood of boys wants some variety in their standard lunches.

There are only so many boring sandwiches they can eat.

If your family is no longer loving their lunch, it is time to switch it up.

This Mediterranean inspired tuna salad is just what you need to spice up their ho-hum lunches and have them begging for more.

Ingredients

  • Solid white albacore – Go for the ones packed in water. You could use other varieties, but if you do, the ratio of dressing may need to be adjusted slightly. No matter what kind you use, drain it well!
  • Mayo – I use regular mayo for a creamier salad, but a low fat option can work too. Just don’t use mayonnaise dressing. Go for the real stuff.
  • Lemon – You’ll need both lemon juice and lemon zest. Fresh lemon juice will yield the brightest flavor, but bottled lemon juice can also work.
  • Salt & pepper – These are added to taste, so you want to omit them, you could.
  • Sliced black olives – Though you can use a standard can of black olives, I love using whole olives marinaded in Italian seasonings that I slice up myself. It adds great flavor to the salad.
  • Diced red onion – I find red onions have the right taste for this, but a dice yellow or white onion can work too.
  • Chopped fresh basil leaves – There is really not substitute for fresh basil. The aroma and fresh flavor is something you can’t get from dried basil leaves.
  • Capers – You can pick your favorite brand.
  • Grape tomatoes  – You could use grape or cherry tomatoes. I would avoid dicing up a larger tomato since they don’t have the same sweetness or texture.

Italian tuna salad on croissants

How to make

Here’s how to make this delicious, Mediterranean inspired tuna salad.

Italian tuna salad in a white ceramic bowl topped with fresh basil leaves

First, open the cans of tuna, drain them well, and then add them to a medium sized mixing bowl.

Use a sturdy fork to flake the tuna until it’s all apart and no big chunks remain.

This helps get the dressing evenly spread and prevents big bites of just tuna.

Italian tuna salad in a white ceramic bowl topped with fresh basil leaves

Once the tuna is broken up, add the mayo, lemon juice, zest, salt, and pepper to the bowl.

Use a sturdy wooden spoon to stir it all together until it is evenly combined.

Finally, add the remaining ingredients to the bowl and gently toss to evenly combine.

You can serve the tuna salad right away or cover and chill before serving.

Italian tuna salad on croissants

Serving and storing

Tuna salad is really versatile.

Here are some of my favorite ways to serve it:

  • on toasted croissant
  • in a pita
  • on toast
  • as a tuna melt on top of French or Italian bread
  • in lettuce cups or over salad
  • with chips or other dip-ables

To store, spoon the salad into an airtight container.

It can remain fresh in the fridge for about 2 to 3 days.

If you are going to a get together or planning a get together, you can definitely make this a day ahead to save some time.

Italian tuna salad on croissants

Tips and tricks

Here are some tips and tricks to make this easy recipe come out right every time!

  • Serve it how you want on bread, over salad, with cooled pasta, as a dip, or as part of melt.
  • Lettuce wraps are a great low carb option when you want to eat it like a sandwich but don’t want the extra carbs.
  • Use olives marinated in Italian seasoning for added flavor.
  • If you can, use fresh lemon juice to really bring out a brighter flavor.
  • Make sure you drain the tuna really well! You don’t want any added moisture in the bowl or it can make the tuna salad runny.
  • If you don’t use it right away, make sure to place it in the fridge in an air tight container as soon as you can to help keep it fresher for longer.

Italian tuna salad on croissants

Other lunch ideas you might like

Fresh Italian tuna salad sandwiches are a great break for my family after eating cold cut sandwiches for the week.

If you love tuna salad, you have to try to this Italian spin for a great spin on a classic.

Keep your lunch ideas interesting with some of our favorite ideas:

If you’ve tried these ITALIAN TUNA SALAD, or any other recipe on my site, let me know in the comment section how it turned out, we love hearing from our readers! You can also follow along with me on PINTERESTFACEBOOK, and INSTAGRAM to see more amazing recipes and whatever else we’ve got going on!

Italian tuna salad on croissants

Italian Tuna Salad

Italian tuna salad is a zesty, tasty spin on the classic you know and love. If you love Mediterranean food, you will love the added zest of flavor from the lemon, tomatoes, basil, and olives! Perfect for lunch or dinner any time!
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Print Pin Rate
Course: Appetizer, Lunch, Sandwich, Snack
Cuisine: Italian, Mediterranean
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 182kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 5.4 oz cans solid white albacore packed in water
  • 1/3 cup + 1tbsp mayo
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp lemon zest
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup sliced black olives
  • 1/4 cup diced red onion
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 2 tbsp capers
  • 1/2 cup grape tomatoes quartered

Instructions

  • Open the cans of tuna, drain them, and then add them to a medium sized mixing bowl.
  • Using a sturdy fork, flake the tuna until it's all apart and no chunks remain.
  • Add the mayo, lemon juice, zest, and salt & pepper to the bowl. Stir together until the mixture's evenly combined.
  • Add the remaining ingredients to the bowl, and gently toss to evenly combine.
  • Serve the tuna salad as is, or cover and chill before serving.

Nutrition

Serving: 4g | Calories: 182kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 394mg | Potassium: 77mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 262IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 14mg | Iron: 1mg

This post may contain affiliate links. As an amazon associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. See my full Disclosure Policy for details.

 

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