Remake your classic tuna salad with this no-mayo, Whole30-approved recipe. Filled with seasonal berries, avocado and dill, this salad will become a lunch staple.
For better or worse, I have strong and distinct memories of my past. Smells, places, sounds, tastes, you name it, I’ll associate it with something. Pink Sugar body spray reminds me of middle school, particularly the locker room after gym class. The song “If I Die Young” reminds me of a family vacation in high school (not the words of the song, just listening to it on repeat). Tuna fish reminds me of crazy weeknights growing up when I had to run between a million after school activities. And by run, I mean my mom had to drive me.
Tuna has been in my life for years but it’s ONLY eaten when my dad is not around. He despises it…calls it cat food. Truthfully, I understand. It’s not the prettiest food out there (I tried my best with the photos). And yeah, it’s probably best to have a mint afterward. But my mom, sister and I love it so we work around his distaste.
In middle school when the extracurriculars were abundant and I needed to eat dinner in the car on the way from basketball practice to CCD, a tuna fish sandwich from QuickChek in New Jersey was the go-to meal. New readers: I lived in northern New Jersey for five years before moving to Florida in high school.
My mom cooked dinner probably 5/7 days a week but some nights there was no time to stop at home. She let my sister and I go to this dumpy, quick-mart-type place (it might have been a gas station, I can’t remember) and pick out a sandwich. We usually got tuna melts with cheese on a big roll. If we were lucky we got a slushy, too. Not the most nutritious meal, but it didn’t hurt every now and then. Or maybe it did because I got diagnosed with celiac soon after? Haha. Occasionally we went to Atlanta Bread Company (does that still exist?) where we’d order the same thing but on bread, not a roll. That was a fancier fast-meal.
Yet even when we were home for dinner, tuna fish sandwiches/wraps were always a staple, and for good reason. It’s a super quick, healthy (when made at home) and versatile protein. Have it with salad, stuff tomatoes, eat it with crackers. I do all the above.
Ok, here’s where the funny part comes in. I felt some random need to make a red, white and blue recipe for the 4th of July. There are a million and one festive recipes and desserts on Pinterest but I thought this was a different way to still get the holiday colors. No, tuna fish isn’t “white” but go with it. And yes, if you add avocado and lemon to the bowl it somewhat takes away from the patriotic theme. JUST HUMOR ME.
Plus, it’s another way to sneak berries into my food. Maybe that’s my real motivation.
A quick note about the recipe: I didn’t use mayo because I typically don’t have it around
and I’m lazy. I don’t think you need it at all, but feel free to add it if you think you do! The berries and Dijon mask a lot of the fishy-taste, if you aren’t in the “I love tuna fish” camp.
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- 1 can of tuna fish (I used Wild Planet)
- 2 tbsp of Dijon mustard
- 1/2 lemon
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 2 tsp of dill
- 4 strawberries
- 1/2 cup of blueberries
- 1 tbsp sunflower seeds
- 1 avocado
- Mixed greens
- Mix tuna with lemon, olive oil and Dijon.
- Chop fresh dill, strawberries and blueberries and add to tuna.
- Add sunflower seeds, mix until throughly combined.
- Make two salads with mixed greens, sliced avocado (half in each bowl) and tuna salad.
- Serve with additional berries*
- *Optional, if you'd like to get in more summer fruit
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