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This sardine salad recipe is a simple pantry meal and a fantastic alternative to tuna salad! It’s creamy and has bright fresh herbs to complement the delicious sardines.

I think you’ll also like my Easy Tuna Salad or Canned Salmon Salad next.

a plate with a sardine salad sandwich

Why you’ll love it

Tinned fish is making a big comeback, and for good reason. This canned sardine recipe is inexpensive, easy to whip up and flavorful, and sardines are loaded with goodness like omega-3s for your heart health!

You’ll enjoy these sardine salad sandwiches for a quick and nutritious lunch, or you can make it into lettuce wraps. Pick up a can of sardines and fresh herbs on your next grocery store run, and I bet you have all the other ingredients on hand already.

Did you know?

  • Sardines are a small fish that are named after the island of Sardinia in Italy since they have a ton there.
  • People have been eating them for centuries because they have loads of nutrients and are abundantly available. They’re a great way to get calcium and vitamin B12!

What you’ll need

  • Sardines – I like to buy Crown Prince brand’s Hand packed skinless and boneless sardines in pure olive oil from Trader Joe’s. As with any tinned fish, quality/taste can vary depending on what you buy, so it’s worth trying a few different brands until you find your favorite.
  • Mayo – the creamy base
  • Red onion – for added crunch
  • Herbs – I chose fresh dill and parsley since they’re great with fish for a pop of freshness
  • Lemon pepper seasoning – a jar of this is a must-have in my spice rack. It’s zesty and peppery and bright.
  • Hot sauce – totally optional, but a little Frank’s Red Hot kicks it up a notch
  • Seasoning salt – everything is better with Lawry’s for extra savory flavor!
ingredients for sardine salad in prep bowls on a counter

Tools for this recipe

Check out Natasha’s favorite kitchen essentials, gadgets, and cookware!

  • I like mixing up this salad in a metal prep bowl.
  • If you’re making sandwiches, I recommend this sturdy bread knife for cutting a baguette.

How to make sardine salad

This is an overview with step-by-step photos. Full ingredients & instructions are in the recipe card below.

adding ingredients for sardine salad to a prep bowl and mixing

Drain the sardines, then add to a prep bowl followed by the remaining ingredients. Gently combine with a fork. Give it a taste, and adjust as necessary. Serve as desired.

Substitutions and variations

  • This recipe is very flexible! Feel free to add/omit ingredients to your taste or for what’s in your pantry or fridge. Some other ingredients that would be delicious in here include capers, chopped olives, sun-dried tomatoes, finely chopped celery, lemon juice or zest, or mustard (try Dijon).
  • I’m sure you’re here for an easy sardines recipe, but you could swap the sardines with tuna if you prefer!

What to serve with sardine salad

  • It’s great in a sandwich (try a regular one or open faced). I like to serve it with butter lettuce and sliced tomato.
  • Of course, you could also enjoy it in a regular or lettuce wrap or even on crackers as a snack.
  • Craving a soup and sandwich combo? Try my Easy Tomato Soup or Simple Cream of Broccoli Soup with it.

Leftovers and storage

  • Sardine salad will last 3-4 days in the fridge in an airtight container. Make sure to refrigerate it shortly after making it.
  • I don’t recommend freezing this one.
a bowl of sardine salad

Let us know what you think of this canned sardines recipe by leaving a star rating and review below! Questions? Please ask. I’m also on Instagram so you can follow along.

a plate with a sardine salad sandwich
5 from 3 votes

Sardine Salad

This sardine salad recipe is a simple pantry meal and a fantastic alternative to tuna salad! It's creamy and has bright fresh herbs to complement the delicious sardines.
Prep: 15 minutes
Total: 15 minutes
Servings: 1

Ingredients 

  • 1 (3.75 ounce) can sardines drained
  • 1-2 tablespoons mayo
  • 1/2 tablespoon finely chopped red onion
  • 1 teaspoon chopped parsley
  • 1 teaspoon chopped dill
  • 1/8 teaspoon lemon pepper seasoning
  • Hot sauce optional, to taste
  • Seasoning salt to taste
  • For serving: bread, tomatoes, lettuce, etc.

Instructions 

  • Drain the sardines then add them to a medium bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and mash with a fork to combine. Taste and adjust as needed (e.g. add more salt or mayo… quantities in recipes like this are just a guideline!).
  • Serve in bread, lettuce wraps, etc.

Notes

  • I add a couple dashes of Frank’s Red Hot. If you’re not a hot sauce fan, you can definitely leave it out!
  • I love using Lawry’s Seasoned Salt for extra flavor. Something like Tony Chachere’s Creole Seasoning would be great in here too, but the salt you usually use will work fine.

Nutrition

Calories: 317kcal, Carbohydrates: 0.3g, Protein: 26g, Fat: 23g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 12g, Monounsaturated Fat: 6g, Trans Fat: 0.03g, Cholesterol: 157mg, Sodium: 415mg, Potassium: 430mg, Fiber: 0.1g, Sugar: 0.1g, Vitamin A: 141IU, Vitamin C: 0.3mg, Calcium: 409mg, Iron: 3mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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Hi! I’m Natasha.

Salt & Lavender is a recipe blog with a focus on delicious comfort food using everyday ingredients. Beat the weekday grind with hundreds of easy-to-follow and hassle-free recipes!

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6 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I made this salad last week and had it open-face on multigrain toast with sliced beet pickle and avocado on the side. I’m going to be making it often because it was delicious! i had it for dinner, and there was enough for two consecutive nights. Very economical! I added some fresh tarragon because I happened to have it, also a bit of diced red pepper, some capers and some pickled green peppercorns. I used the hot sauce but not the seasoned salt I’m supposed to watch my salt intake so I substituted Spike. Thank you for another spectacular dinner!

  2. 5 stars
    I wasn’t sure about this but I had the ingredients and was feeling lazy – a recurring affliction in old age. It is scrumptious. I will definitely make this often.