A glorious Crispy Tuna Burger, flavored with lemon, parsley and capers and topped with an easy, spiced aioli tartar sauce! Transform your canned tuna into a scrumptious tuna brunch burger or spectacular dinner with just a few easy steps.
There are always a few cans of tuna in our house. Not just because we love eating tuna, but also because there are few other protein options with as much potential. Canned tuna isn’t just for quick, convenient snacks – although they work quite handily that way too. Back when I was a student, there were times when I just took a can of tuna with me to university, and that was my lunch with a side salad. Even now, they often make for a quick and healthy lunch for Mr K too.
But with a couple of ingredients and a teensy bit of thought, you can easily transform your canned tuna into a substantial and spectacular meal. Like this Crispy Tuna Burger with Lemon and Capers! Imagine a crispy tuna burger like this for brunch, on a lazy weekend, with a perfectly poached egg on top…
This crispy tuna burger is flavored with lemon, capers and parsley, and served on a toasted bun with avocado, tomatoes and a poached egg. All topped with an easy, spiced aioli tartar sauce that makes it that much more juicy, zesty and flavorful!
These tuna brunch burgers were made with Wild Selections Solid White Albacore Tuna in water (or olive oil is an option too). This is a brand that I love and have used consistently before, like when I made these scrumptious tuna melt mini quiches that are perfect as party appetizers or even as a simple weeknight family meal. Wild Selections tuna is packed with meaty chunks of delicious tuna, unlike those cans where all you get is just a lot of liquid with some squishy tuna pieces as a bonus.
What I also really love about Wild Selections Tuna is that it’s certified sustainable tuna. Their tuna comes from well-managed fisheries and healthy fish stocks and it’s 100% traceable.
These crispy tuna burgers are easy to make. The tuna is mixed with lemon, capers, parsley, eggs, bread crumbs and other seasonings to form a loosely packed burger, which ensures that you have a juicy, flavor-packed tuna burger without having to mash up all the meat. Bread crumbs are pressed onto the burger on the top and bottom, and then the patty is fried until crispy on both sides. These are incredibly juicy and filling, I’ve also had them just with lettuce leaves instead of burger buns.
The tartar sauce here is a cheats version of tartar – just get your favorite mayonnaise, and mix in sweet relish, softened grated garlic, paprika and cayenne pepper. The garlic and the spices add a really great punch to the tartar sauce. The poached egg is optional, and we usually leave it out when we have these burgers for dinner. But it always features in our tuna brunch burgers!
Crispy Tuna Burger with Lemon and Capers
Crispy Tuna Burger
- 226 g canned tuna chunks not flakes, drained (8 oz / 2 cans)
- ½ onion finely chopped
- ½ tsp sugar white or brown sugar
- 1 ½ tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tsp lemon zest grated
- 2 tbsp capers chopped
- 1 large egg
- 3 tbsp bread crumbs
- Handful of parsley leaves roughly chopped (about ¼ cup loosely packed)
- 2 tsp chili flakes crushed red pepper, add less if you prefer it less spicy
- 2 tsp brown sugar
- Extra bread crumbs for breading
- Oil for frying
Aioli Tartar Sauce
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- 2 tbsp sweet pickle chopped
- 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 2 tbsp shallots / red onion finely chopped
- 1 tbsp capers finely chopped
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- ¼ tsp paprika
- 2 burger buns
- 2 poached eggs
- Heat a pan to medium heat with a tablespoon of oil. When the pan is hot, add the onion and sugar and cook until the onions are soft and lightly caramelized. Set aside to let it cool down.½ onion, ½ tsp sugar
- Place the drained tuna in a bowl. Add the softened onion and the rest of the ingredients (except for the extra bread crumbs).226 g canned tuna, 1 ½ tbsp lemon juice, 2 tsp lemon zest, 2 tbsp capers, 1 large egg, 3 tbsp bread crumbs, Handful of parsley leaves, 2 tsp chili flakes, 2 tsp brown sugar
- Mix all the ingredients until well combined. Be careful not to crush all the tuna - it’s good to have some nice chunks in there. The tuna should be a wet mix.
- Shape the tuna into 2 patties. You can use an egg ring to help form uniform-sized patties.
- Sprinkle some bread crumbs on a plate and place the tuna patty on top. Press more bread crumbs on top of the patty as well (so that both top and bottom are coated with bread crumbs).Extra bread crumbs
- Heat a pan with a shallow amount of oil. Carefully place the tuna patty in the hot oil and fry until golden brown. Using a wide spatula, flip the patty over and fry for a few more minutes until golden brown on both sides.Oil
- Place on a rack or paper towel to drain.
Aioli Tartar Sauce
- Place all the ingredients in a bowl and mix to combine. Keep it in the fridge, covered, until needed.½ cup mayonnaise, 2 tbsp sweet pickle, 2 cloves garlic, 2 tbsp shallots / red onion, 1 tbsp capers, ¼ tsp cayenne pepper, ¼ tsp paprika
- Halve the burger buns and toast the cut sides on a pan or grill.2 burger buns
- Place lettuce leaves on the bottom burger bun, top with a tuna patty, tomato slices, avocado slices, egg and tartar sauce.Lettuce, Tomato, Avocado, 2 poached eggs
- The tuna patty can also be served over your favorite salad, topped with tartar sauce.
“This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.”