This simple and flavorful meal is made with economical canned tuna. You can serve these Tuna Patties on a platter as a party appetizer, with a side salad for a light dinner, or serve them in a roll or bun for school lunches — your kids will love them.

tuna patties with avocado Crema on a vintage white platter with lemon slices and jalapeño on the side        

This recipe is very similar to my mom’s classic tuna salad, but made with albacore tuna and the addition of an uncooked egg and panko bread crumbs to bind the mixture.

Albacore tuna has a firm texture – it tastes fresh, delicious, and has a milder flavor than the solid or chunk light fish varieties.

This canned tuna is packed with a great deal of lean protein, omega 3, vitamin B6, Niacin, and many essential minerals. It is truly an excellent product for your health.

2 cans of solid white albacore tuna with a bull of ingredient to make a muster for tuna patties and a lemon the side

Make ahead

These tuna patties can be made ahead of time or even frozen after frying. They are a great option for a delicious lunch or a light dinner. The combination of lemon and diced jalapeños gives these tuna patties plenty of flavor.

ingredients to make tuna patties - tuna, Panko, mayonnaise, eggs, cilantro, celery and lemon in a bowl

Coating lightly in additional bread crumbs and refrigerating the patties right before frying keeps their shape.

tuna salad mixture in a teal scalloped bowl and a lemon half on the side on a Mexican textile

These tuna cakes can be prepared and stored in the fridge for up to four days. They make for a quick and easy lunch or light dinner on a busy day.

tuna patties formed and on a black plate on a Mexican white runner

Can I bake?

Rather than lightly frying these tuna patties you can bake them in the oven. Simply arrange prepared tuna patties on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Bake in 375 degrees F oven for about 18 to 20 minutes.

tuna patties lightly pan fried in a non-stick skillet

How to freeze

Cool cooked or baked tuna patties completely. Arrange them on a baking sheet and freeze for 2 hours. Next, remove from the sheet and place in a plastic freezer bag. Freeze for up to one month. Thaw in the fridge and serve cold or reheat in the microwave when ready to eat.

close up of a sandwich with a tuna patty on an artisan roll

How to serve

Place tuna patties on a platter as an appetizer, serve with a side salad for a light dinner, or place a patty between a roll or bun for a delicious school lunch — your kids will love them.

tuna patties on a serving tray ready to serve as appetizers

The toppings and garnishes are endless — top with this homemade creamy avocado sauce, chimichuri sauce, avocado and tomatillo salsa, tartar sauce, ketchup, mayo, or hot sauce.

Watch this video to see how easy these tuna patties come together.

tuna patties dolloped with avocado Crema sauce

Love tuna? Check out these other tuna recipes:

Have you made these tuna patties? Rate the recipe and leave me a comment below to let me know how they turned out! To get more Muy Bueno recipes delivered straight to your inbox, sign up for my email newsletter

Tuna Patties

5 (1 rating)
This simple and flavorful meal is made with economical canned tuna. You can serve these Tuna Patties on a platter as a party appetizer, with a side salad for a light dinner, or serve them in a roll or bun for school lunches -- your kids will love them.

Ingredients

Creamy Avocado Sauce

  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt or light sour cream
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 jalapeño (optional), chopped
  • 1/4 cup cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Salt to taste

Tuna patties

Instructions 

Creamy Avocado Sauce

  • Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
  • For a thinner sauce, add more lemon juice.

Tuna patties

  • In a medium bowl, combine together the tuna with yogurt or mayonnaise, breadcrumbs, celery, jalapeño, onion, egg, lemon juice, salt and pepper. 
  • Scoop 1/3 cup of tuna mixture and form into one patty and lightly coat with 1/2 tablespoon bread crumbs. Continue with remaing mixture and bread crumbs to make approximately 8 total patties.
  • Heat the olive oil in a non-stick skillet on medium-low. Gently place the patties in the pan, and cook until nicely browned, 3 to 4 minutes on each side.
  • Serve with creamy avocado sauce, chimichuri sauceavocado and tomatillo salsa, tartar sauce, ketchup, mayo, or hot sauce.

Video

Notes

  • I used albacore tuna in water. You may use any canned tuna or salmon, just drain the oil or water.
  • For firm patties, place patties on a tray and chill for an hour before cooking.
  • These tuna patties can be prepared and stored in the fridge for up to 4 days. Serve cold or reheat in the microwave when ready to eat. You can freeze for 1 month.
  • Rather than frying, these tuna patties can bake at 375 degrees F for about 18 to 20 minutes.
Calories: 109kcal, Carbohydrates: 9g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 26mg, Sodium: 509mg, Potassium: 180mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 157IU, Vitamin C: 9mg, Calcium: 44mg, Iron: 1mg

Photography by Jenna Sparks.

Originally published: August 2020.