What Are Tuna Burgers?

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  • Written By: Angie Bates
  • Edited By: John Allen
  • Last Modified Date: 24 October 2019
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Similar to hamburgers, tuna burgers are a type of sandwich that uses canned or chopped tuna instead of ground beef for the meat patty. Quick and simple to make, tuna burgers often offer a cost effective and healthy alternative to traditional hamburgers. Usually prepared with vegetables and spices, these burgers are often topped with lettuce leaves, tomato slices, and some type of condiment.

Canned, drained tuna is most often used to make tuna burgers. Tuna steaks can be used as well but must be chopped prior to being included in the burger mixture. Plain or seasoned bread crumbs or ground oatmeal aid in the burger's consistency and eggs help hold the patties together once cooked. Chopped onions, bell peppers or pimentos, and celery are often included in the patties as well.

Seasonings vary greatly across recipes. The meat patties are usually seasoned with pepper and garlic, but may also be seasoned with celery salt. Old Bay seasoning is sometimes included, and lemon juice may be added as well. Some versions will add horseradish or soy sauce and Dijon mustard. Grated ginger, Worcestershire sauce, or dill weed are occasionally included.


The ingredients are thoroughly combined and then, usually, chilled. Chilling firms the mixture and allows the cook to shape the tuna into patties more easily. Once the patties are created, they can be placed in a non-stick frying pan to cook. Normally, the pan is either sprayed with cooking spray or coated in oil before the meat is added. Tuna patties should always be handled with care because they are often fragile and fall apart easily before they are cooked.

The burgers are flipped once during cooking and should end up browned on both sides. Some versions may also bake the patties briefly to ensure doneness. Once the patties are cooked, they should hold together firmly yet will be softer than traditional hamburger patties. Cooked patties can be placed on white or whole wheat hamburger buns, rolls, bread, or English muffins.

Sliced tomato and lettuce are often added to tuna burgers. Baby spinach leaves may be used instead of lettuce, and cucumber slices and bean sprouts are another option for burger toppings. Sweet pickles can also serve as a topping. Although ketchup can be used as a condiment, flavored mayonnaise is a popular condiment alternative. A simple honey mustard sauce, made by mixing honey and Dijon mustard, is also an option.


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Post 3

As much as I enjoy tuna fish, one thing I've always been cautious about is the mercury content. If you eat too much tuna fish on a daily basis, is it possible to get mercury poisoning? While I'm assuming the answer is yes, tuna fish should be something you eat in moderation. If you consume it, it's not going to kill you, but regardless, you should always be on the safe side.

Post 2

Tuna fish can be used in a variety of ways. One tradition I have is making a tuna patty melt. The instructions are pretty simple. You put tuna fish on two separate pieces of toasted bread. Afterwards, cover the pieces of bread with cheese, and put it in the oven for about ten to twenty minutes. It's a great treat, and really shows how tuna fish can be used. You're enjoying yourself, without having to worry about any fats or cholesterol.

Post 1

When I as a kid, I remember my mom making tuna patties, and I really enjoyed them. Not only do they have a nice fishy taste, but as was mentioned in the first paragraph, they are a better alternative to beef or pork burgers. One thing I've noticed though is that tuna burgers aren't normally sold at restaurants and fast food joints. Maybe that's because they're not as popular as the traditional beef and pork, which though fattier, have a better taste. Regardless, tuna burgers are something everyone can enjoy, especially if you're trying to get your kids to eat dinner.

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