The Best Tuna Melt

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I recently enjoyed the most amazing tuna melt! Usually, I make it with just a few ingrdients. However, with a few more added ingredients, you can experience the Best Tuna Melt!

I am going to explain how to use the tuna mixture to make a warm tuna melt. It’s just like a grilled cheese sandwich, but it also includes a tuna salad mixture. However, the tuna salad mixture is also excellent served on a cold sandwich along with some lettuce. If using it this way, I do like to toast the bread in a toaster.

the best tunna melt with ingrdients in background

One of the key ingredients for this sandwich is fresh dill. The taste of the fresh dill truly brings a freshness to the sandwich. Plus, the flavor pairs so well with the tuna!

The other key item is pickles. This is where you can taylor the flavor to your liking. The pickles you choose to use will change the flavor. I personaly love using bread and butter pickles. They add a nice sweetness that isn’t too overly sweet. However, dill pickles are another good option.

As far as the cheese goes, I prefer to use American because of it’s melting factor. I love how the cheese gets so melty and creamy that it almost blends right in with the tuna layer. However, feel free to use whatever cheese you like.

At my house, we love a good soft and fluffy sandwich bread for the bread part of the sandwich. However, this is another part that you can get creative with. Try it with your favorite bread.

It also has to be spread with butter! Not mayo, not margarine, but BUTTER! Butter adds a nice flavor and crunch to the bread when you grill it. I use salted butter because it brings out the flavor so much more!

making of the best tuna melt

Begin by adding the tuna to a medium bowl and break it up with a fork. Add in the mayo, dijon mustard, pickle juice and dry minced onion. Stir together until well combined.

Next, add in the celery, pickles, and dill. Fold together until it’s well combined. Divide the tuna mixture between 4 slices of bread. Top with cheese followed by another slice of bread.

Butter the outside of the bread. I like to butter one side and place it butter side down in the skillet and butter the other side while it cooks in the skillet. Toast both sides in the pan over medium heat until they are golden brown.

The bread will only toast on the parts of the bread with the butter. So, make sure to cover the entire side of the bread with the butter so you get that nice golden and crunchy outside! Also, make sure to not put the butter on too thick as that will effect the crunchiness as well.

This sandwich is so flavorful. I love the crunch you get from the celery and pickles side along the toasted bread outside. Then, there’s the nice creaminess from the mayo and American cheese.

The pickle juice and mustard adds a nice tang. Then, you have the feshness of the dill. Such an amazing sandwich experience. It really is THE BEST!

the best tuna melt sandwich paired with sweet potato chips

What type of tuna should I use for a tuna melt?
For the best flavor and texture, use canned tuna packed in water. Chunk light or Albacore tuna are popular choices as well.

Can I use tuna packed in oil instead of water?
Yes, you can use tuna packed in oil. Be sure to drain it well before mixing it with other ingredients to avoid making the sandwich too greasy.

What other kind of bread will work for a tuna melt?
Rye, whole wheat, or sourdough bread work well for tuna melts. These types of breads hold up better to the moisture in the tuna mixture and provide a satisfying crunch when toasted.

What other type of cheese is best for a tuna melt?
Swiss, provolone, or sharp cheddar cheese are all great choices for a tuna melt. They melt well and complement the flavors of the tuna.

Can I prepare the tuna mixture ahead of time?
Yes, you can prepare the tuna mixture up to a day in advance and store it in the refrigerator. Assemble and cook the sandwich just before serving for the best results.

Can I use a different method to cook the tuna melt besides the stovetop?
You can bake the tuna melt in the oven at 375°F for 10-12 minutes. Check if the cheese has melted and the bread has turned golden brown. Remove from the oven when ready. You can also use a panini press or a toaster oven.

tuna melt made with fresh dill and bread and butter pickles

The Best Tuna Melt

Real Mom Kitchen

Enjoy the ultimate comfort food with this recipe, featuring perfectly seasoned tuna salad with melted cheese on toasted bread. This easy-to-make sandwich offers a delicious blend of flavors and textures, making it a go-to meal for any time of the day.
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Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Sandwiches
Cuisine American
Servings 4 servings
Calories 532 kcal


  • 2 (5 oz) cans tuna drained
  • ¼ cup celery finely chopped
  • ¼ cup pickles chopped (I use bread and butter)
  • 1 tsp dry minced onion
  • 1 Tbsp fresh dill finely chopped
  • cup mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp pickle juice
  • 4 slices American cheese
  • 8 slices of bread
  • 4 Tbsp butter


  • Add the tuna to a bowl and break it up with a fork. Add in the mayo, dijon mustard, pickle juice and dry minced onion. Stir together until well combined.
  • Add in the celery, pickles, and dill. Fold in until well combined.
  • Divide mixture between 4 slices of bread. Top with cheese followed by another slice of bread.
  • Butter the outside of both slices of bread.
  • Toast both sides to a golden brown in a skillet. Serves 4.


Serving: 1 serving | Calories: 532kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 35g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 10g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 84mg | Sodium: 1.135mg | Potassium: 291mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 657IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 320mg | Iron: 3mg
Keyword grilled sandwich, melt, sandwiches, tuna
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

This recipe was inspired by The Palatable Life.

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