This Tuna Cucumber Sandwich is really easy to make and super versatile. You can keep it simple or add more toppings! It makes a great lunch, snack, or breakfast.
Why This Recipe Works
- Simple and easy - This spread couldn't be easier to make! It requires only a few simple ingredients and comes together in one bowl and a few minutes.
- Versatile - The recipe is delicious on its own but you can also add a lot more toppings to make these into bigger sandwiches. Add sliced tomatoes, red onion, different greens, roasted peppers, sundried tomatoes, or pickles!
- Flavorful - The tuna spread has a ton of flavor thanks to added capers, chili garlic sauce, and lots of fresh herbs. You can make the spread as spicy or as mild as you like! The cucumber and lettuce add a nice crunch and texture to the sandwich.
- Canned tuna - Canned tuna is such a pantry staple for me and something I always have on hand for quick lunches or dinner. I recommend the ones in water, not oil, because you can regulate the amount of oil you want to add as needed.
- Goat cheese - The recipe calls for soft goat cheese but you could also use cream cheese if that's all you have or like. You just need a soft cheese that will make make a creamy tuna spread.
- Capers - This is what adds some acidity and umami to the spread. If you don't have any, you can add a squeeze of lemon juice or sliced pickles to the sandwich.
- Shallots - Both shallot or red onion work in this spread. I prefer shallots because they're slightly milder than red onions but they can be interchangeably.
- Extra virgin olive oil - Adding oil is totally optional but it adds a nice extra layer of flavor. Alternatively, you can add a few chopped olives to the spread for even more olive flavor.
- Chili garlic sauce - This is a chili sauce with garlic I like using in a ton of different Asian-inspired recipes. If you don't have it, you can use crushed red pepper flakes or your favorite hot sauce.
- Fresh herbs - I highly recommend adding fresh herbs or dried ones if you don't have any fresh available. They add flavor and freshness. I like chives, or parsley but thyme, oregano, or even cilantro also work.
- Cucumber - The thinner you slice your cucumber, the easier the sandwich will be to prepare and eat. Thicker slices usually tend to fall out. I like using regular english cucumber and leave the peel on if organic.
- Bread - You can use any kind of bread for this sandwich. Regular, sourdough, or gluten-free are all great options.
The tuna spread comes together really easily and can be made in just one bowl. You can make it right before serving or up to a day ahead.
Simply add all your ingredients to a large bowl and mix together with a fork until everything is well mixed. Add more capers, salt, pepper, or herbs to taste.
If you're making it ahead, cover it well with a cling wrap or trasfer to an airtight container and store in the fridge for 1-2 days. I wouldn't recommend storing it for any longer than that because of the canned tuna and goat cheese.
Serving and Storing
You can divide the spread into two parts for 2 large sandwiches or 4 parts for smaller ones or if you plan to add more toppings.
Toasting your bread is totally optional but it adds a nice crunch. I usually don't toast the bread if I'm making the sandwiches to take with me for lunch or snack because they lose the crunch as they sit anyway and last better when they're not toasted.
Make the sandwich - you can add the spread to both slices of the bread to avoid the other slice being dry. Top with thin slices of cucumber, lettuce (I use romaine or iceberg), and any other veggies or toppings you like. Close with the other slice of bread and slice in half. Enjoy right away or pack into a sandwich box or a bag to eat later. Ideally it should be stored in the fridge but it can be outside of the fridge for 2-3 hours if fridge isn't available. Avoid storing it in a very hot space or in the sun.
Variations and Substitutions
- If you want to make a vegetarian version of this spread, definitely check out my Goat Cheese Lentil Dip with Dill and Capers! It's pretty much the same thing but with capers and dill instead of chives. It also uses Roasted Garlic which would be delicious in this tuna spread too!
- Add more veggies - Sliced tomato, red onion, roasted bell peppers (try the ones from this Halloumi Sandwich with Roasted Vegetables), or sundried tomatoes would be delicious addition.
- If you don't like capers or don't have them, add some sliced pickles to the sandwich instead to add more flavor and acidity. You can also add a squeeze of lemon to the tuna spread instead of capers.
You can use mashed chickpeas instead of the tuna to make the spread vegetarian. Check out my Goat Cheese Lentil Dip with Dill and Capers, it's very similar but with lentils and can be used as a spread too.
It can be! The classic tuna sandwich is made with lots of mayonnaise which isn't very healthy so I opted for goat cheese instead and added cucumber and lettuce for freshness.
More Sandwich Recipes
The three sandwiches below are my favorite, especially the halloumi one because it can be prepared ahead just like this tuna one! I also highly recommend the pear grilled cheese for the fall. To see all my sandwich recipes, head to the Sandwiches category that's always getting updates!
- Halloumi Sandwich with Roasted Vegetables
- Heirloom Tomato Grilled Cheese with Fresh Basil
- Goat Grilled Cheese with Pear and Sage
This sandwich is really easy to make and super versatile. Keep it simple with just cucumber and lettuce or add more veggies!
- 1 can of tuna in water, drained
- 100g soft goat cheese (or cream cheese)
- 2 tbsp capers + 1 tablespoon of the liquid (chopped if large)
- 1 shallot or ½ small red onion, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- ½ tsp chili garlic sauce (sub crushed red pepper flakes or hot sauce)
- 1-2 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives
- 4-8 slices of bread (4 for two large sandwiches, 8 for when you’re adding more to the sandwich)
- ½ cucumber, thinly sliced
Optional sandwich add-ons: lettuce, tomatoes, red onion, dijon mustard, sundried tomatoes, roasted red peppers
- Prep your bread slices and set aside. You can toast them right before serving if desired.
- Into a large bowl, add the tuna, soft goat cheese, capers, chopped shallot, olive oil, sea salt, pepper, chili garlic sauce, and fresh chives. Use a fork to break up the tuna and mix everything together well.
- Taste and add more salt, pepper, or more of the tangy liquid from the capers.
- When ready to serve, toast your bread if desired and load up with tuna spread. I like dividing the spread between only two sandwiches, or more if I’m adding additional ingredients to each sandwich.
- Add sliced cucumber to the sandwich and any other toppings you like and top with the other slice. Repeat with remaining bread slices.
If you don’t have capers, you can use lemon juice to instead.
If you don’t like to have a dry slice of bread in your sandwich, add some of the spread on each slice and the cucumber slices in the middle.
Store any leftover spread in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days.
Keywords: cucumber, tuna sandwich, lunch