Here’s a low carb tuna cake recipe I developed based on very limited information I read in someone’s Instagram post years ago. It’s a perfect lunch or dinner main entree for the 17 Day Diet, or any low carb diet for that matter!
Since then, this Tuna Cakes with Lemon Dijon Sauce recipe has been a HUGE hit with the blog community, and it’s made its way to my Top 10 Most Popular Recipes for the 17 Day Diet.
The secret? The Lemon Dijon Sauce!
Even my boyfriend loves them and he’s very particular about his food! Plus, he’s not about being on a diet, and he still devours them every time I make them!
In fact, he recently requested I make my Tuna Cakes with Lemon Dijon Sauce for lunch. This time I decided to make a bit extra creamy Lemon Dijon Sauce to serve as my salad dressing!
As you can see, these tuna cakes came out perfectly, and the dressing on the salad was a huge hit!
Ingredients for Tuna Cakes
This recipe is rather simple with few ingredients. Plus, there are NO breadcrumbs in this recipe so it’s low carb and perfect if you’re trying to lose weight!
For the cakes:
To make the tuna cakes, you’ll gather tuna fish in water, Greek Yogurt (or regular Plain Yogurt), an egg, Parmesan Cheese (the powdered kind is best), fresh chives (don’t skip this part!), and your seasonings.
The key to the tuna cake mixture is to make sure you thoroughly drain the water from the can.
You want to remove as much liquid as possible as the tuna cake mixture will be pretty wet as it is.
Make sure you mix the tuna cake mixture really well. It’s really important to make sure the tuna chunks are broken up as much as possible and the other ingredients are thoroughly mixed in.
For the sauce:
For the Lemon Dijon Sauce, you’ll want to make sure you have Greek or Plain Yogurt (you can use sour cream instead if you want), Dijon mustard, lemon, chives and your seasonings.
As I mention earlier, the sauce really is the secret to this recipe. A little goes a long way.
It packs a pretty powerful punch of flavor, so go easy your first time!
Use Your Choice of Canned Meat
This recipe is super versatile. So if you’re not a big fan of tuna fish, you can try this recipe with any type of canned meat ranging from salmon, chicken and even crab.
I created a crab cake recipe based on this tuna cake recipe. I have the link below, so keep scrolling.
If you like tuna fish, then you’re going to LOVE this recipe – honestly, I think it’s the lemon dijon sauce that truly makes this dish what it is.
Quick Tips to Make Perfect Tuna Cakes
I’ve been making these for years, and each time I make them, I find something new that helps me perfect the recipe or make it easier to keep the tuna cakes from falling a part.
Quick Tip #1 – How to Form Your Cakes
To form my cakes, I use a small plastic lid that screws onto my pint size jar. It’s the perfect size for tuna cakes!
I simply line the inside of my lid with a small piece of plastic wrap and place a portion of the tuna cake mixture and form my cake within the lid.
I used to form my cakes by hand, but this method is about 10000 time easier! Plus, your cakes all have a uniform shape and they cook evenly!
I place the cakes on a sheet of parchment paper so they’re easy to pick up without sticking to the plate!
All four of my cakes are now the same exact size so they all cook evenly and look pretty! Do you agree?
Quick Tip #2 – Be Gentle When Cooking
This tuna cake mixture is pretty wet as it is so extreme care needs to be given when placing them on the hot skillet.
Using parchment paper allows me to handle them a bit easier when first putting them onto the skillet.
You’ll want to cook them for 10 minutes on each side. This allows for a nice brown crispy texture.
Browning is not only for flavor, but it also helps the tuna cakes from falling apart when flipping them onto the other side. Don’t rush this step! It’s really critical.
When you’re ready to flip, be super gentle as they are pretty delicate until they’re cooked on both sides.
The tuna fish flavor is super mild only because the sauce is tangy and really is the true star of the show!
It’s interesting – some community members who aren’t a huge tuna fish fan try this recipe anyway and they are blown away at how yummy they are!
It really is a great tasting recipe and the tuna fish is super mild, so if you’re not a huge fan, try it anyway and let me know how it goes!
Keto Tuna Cakes with Lemon Dijon Sauce
Keto Lovers: If you landed on this recipe and are Keto, I’ve created a Keto-Friendly version of this recipe: Low Carb Keto Tuna Cakes with Lemon Dijon Sauce.
I only changed a few things on this recipe to make an already low carb tuna cake just a bit more lower carb.
Other Low Carb Recipes (Patties, Meatballs & More)
If you enjoyed this low carb tuna cake recipe, you’ll likely enjoy the following recipes for meat patties, meatballs and more:
- Chicken Feta Spinach Patties
- Greek Turkey Meatballs with Yogurt Tzatziki Sauce
- Buffalo Chicken Meatballs with Roasted Cabbage and Blue Cheese Dressing
Other Low Carb Fish Recipes
If you’re a bit fan of fish in general, you’ll love these other fabulous low carb fish recipes:
- Crab Cakes with Citrus Vinaigrette Dressing
- Mahi Mahi with Citrus Herb Salad
- Shrimp Cocktail
- Pan Seared Salmon with Mediterranean Salsa Fresca
- Mayo Free Tuna and Egg Salad
- Grilled Lemon Sriracha Shrimp
- Sandy’s Tuna Toast
- Broiled Tilapia with Parmesan
If you happen to make these fabulous Tuna Cakes with Lemon Dijon Sauce, make sure you come back to review the recipe below and let me know what you think!
- 2 4-oz cans of White Albacore Tuna, drained
- 1 Tablespoon Greek Yogurt
- 1 egg
- 2-3 Tablespoons Grated Parmesan Cheese
- 1 Tablespoon Fresh Chives, minced
- Salt and Pepper, to taste
- Dash Cayenne Pepper
- Wedges from 1/2 Lemon (reserve other half for sauce recipe below)
Lemon Dijon Sauce:
- 1/4 cup Plain Greek Yogurt
- 1 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
- Zest from 1/2 Lemon
- Juice of 1/2 Lemon
- 1 Tablespoon Fresh Chives, minced
- Salt and Pepper, to taste
- Dash Sweetener (optional)
- Drain tuna fish and lightly flake.
- Mix all ingredients together until well blended.
- Make four patties.
- In frying pan, heat 2 tablespoons Olive Oil on medium heat.
- Brown each side for 10 minutes. Be extremely careful flipping the cakes for the first time as they are delicate.
- To make the sauce, add ingredients to a bowl and mix well.
- Serve cakes on bed of lettuce along with the Lemon Dijon Sauce and lemon wedges.
Approved all cycles.
Be extremely careful flipping the cakes for the first time as they are delicate.
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I’ve been loving the 17 Day Diet since 2011. As you know, your health & wellness is a life-long journey and food is one piece of the puzzle. I love sharing my favorite healthy recipes and meal plans to keep you motivated and on the right path to success!
When I’m not hanging out here, I enjoy quick trips to the Oregon Coast, helping you with your anti-aging & skincare needs over at my Avon store (come say hi!!), and helping you achieve better health through nature with my other love, Busy Bee’s Wellness Co.