Quick Tuna Burgers

Quick Tuna Burgers

6 Reviews
From: EatingWell Magazine, March/April 2011

Turn a couple cans of tuna into a zesty tuna burger with this quick recipe. If you can't find good whole-wheat hamburger buns, whole-wheat English muffins are a great substitute. The burger mixture might seem a little soft going into the pan, but once the first side is cooked, you'll be able to flip them easily. Serve with steamed broccoli or sweet potato fries.

Ingredients 4 servings

for serving adjustment
Serving size has been adjusted!
Original recipe yields 4 servings
Nutrition per serving may change if servings are adjusted.
  • 2 5- to 6-ounce cans chunk light tuna (see Note), drained
  • ½ cup coarse dry whole-wheat breadcrumbs (see Tip)
  • ½ cup low-fat mayonnaise, divided
  • 1 4-ounce jar chopped pimientos, drained, or ⅓ cup chopped roasted red peppers, divided
  • ¼ cup finely chopped celery
  • ¼ cup finely chopped onion
  • ½ teaspoon Old Bay seasoning, divided
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 whole-wheat hamburger buns or English muffins, toasted
  • 4 lettuce leaves
  • 4 slices tomato


  • Active

  • Ready In

  1. Combine tuna, breadcrumbs, ¼ cup mayonnaise, half of the pimientos (or roasted red peppers), celery, onion and ¼ teaspoon Old Bay seasoning in a medium bowl, breaking up any larger pieces of tuna until the mixture is uniform and holds together.
  2. Combine the remaining ¼ cup mayonnaise, the remaining pimientos (or peppers) and ¼ teaspoon Old Bay seasoning in a bowl.
  3. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Using a generous ⅓ cup each, form the tuna mixture into four 3-inch burgers. Cook until heated through and golden brown, about 2 minutes per side.
  4. Spread the top half of each bun (or English muffin) with pimiento mayonnaise and place a burger, lettuce and tomato on the bottom half.
  • Note: Chunk light tuna, like all fish and shellfish, contains some mercury. According to the FDA and EPA, women who are or might become pregnant, nursing mothers and young children should limit their consumption to 12 ounces a week of fish with lower mercury, including canned “light” tuna. Consumption of albacore tuna (which is labeled “white”) should be limited to no more than 6 ounces a week. And, if you're looking for an environmentally sustainable canned tuna option, check the label—tuna that was caught by troll or pole-and-line is considered the best choice, according to Monterey Bay Aquarium's Seafood Watch Program. Or look for the blue Certified Sustainable Seafood label from the Marine Stewardship Council.
  • Tip: To make your own coarse dry breadcrumbs, trim crusts from whole-wheat bread. Tear bread into pieces and process in a food processor until coarse crumbs form. Spread on a baking sheet and bake at 250°F until dry, about 10 to 15 minutes. One slice of bread makes about ⅓ cup dry breadcrumbs. For store-bought coarse dry breadcrumbs we like Ian's brand, labeled “Panko breadcrumbs.” Find them at well-stocked supermarkets.

Nutrition information

  • Per serving: 308 calories; 12 g fat(2 g sat); 5 g fiber; 39 g carbohydrates; 14 g protein; 34 mcg folate; 22 mg cholesterol; 7 g sugars; 5 g added sugars; 1,428 IU vitamin A; 23 mg vitamin C; 67 mg calcium; 2 mg iron; 670 mg sodium; 341 mg potassium
  • Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (38% daily value), Vitamin A (29% dv)
  • Carbohydrate Servings:
  • Exchanges: 2 starch, 1½ lean meat, 2 fat

Reviews 6

September 22, 2014
profile image
By: Ann Marie Natal
Yum... This was a very delicious and simple to prepare tuna burger recipe. I used panko breadcrumbs and added a teeny bit of salt to taste. I loved the creativity of using the pimentos and Old Bay seasoning to form the mayo mixture. This is a keeper!
April 07, 2013
profile image
By: EatingWell User
Easy and yum! So delicious, I will definitely make these again. Would have been awesome if they hadn't fallen apart a bit when turning them. Maybe next time I'll add an egg? This time I did make a few modifications due to preference and lack of certain items: -Didn't have light mayo, so used a little full fat mayo, some lowfat sour cream and some lowfat plain yogurt -had no celery, so I used finely diced carrot instead -substituted Paul Prudhomme's Seafood Magic seasoning for the OId Bay, and put an extra shake of it into the burger mixture. Cons: fell apart a bit
January 25, 2013
profile image
By: Shannon Wells Michael
We love it! Healthy and filling We love this recipe. I use it all the time. Just found it again and going to make it tonight. It's great leftover too. Super easy and healthy. Will fill you up all night. :) Pros: Easy, fast, ingrediants on hand
June 20, 2012
profile image
By: EatingWell User
healthy, fine burger but lacking? This was a fine burger, very fresh and I like all of the ingredients. It did seem to be a bit lacking in the flavor department, granted I followed the recipe to a T. Also it was a bit mushier than I would have liked in a burger, but I'm sure I can't expect too much firmness from a canned tuna burger. It certainly didn't taste bad, and at certain parts the flavor shined through better than others. Pros: fresh and light, fine taste Cons: a bit mushy, a bit bland
April 11, 2011
profile image
By: TheGiantPeach
Hubby loved it. My hubby loved this, and he's a red meat and potatoes kinda guy. I doubled the Old Bay in the tuna mix and used Miracle Whip instead of the mayo (didn't have any mayo). I served with fresh corn on the cob. This will definitely be added to the regular dinner rotation. Pros: Easy and delicious. Cons: I did have some trouble keeping the "burgers" together in the skillet.
February 22, 2011
profile image
Family Gave It A Thumb's Up! Made this after seeing the recipe in my Eating Well magazine. Used my own light chipotle mayo to give it a little extra spice and increased the Old Bay slightly. Also used pimentos. My husband and kids loved it - hubby said it was a "do-over", but my daughter complained that it didn't have much texture because she wanted it a little more like a typical burger. That was the only negative for this tasty, healthy burger. I don't eat red meat so it's a big hit with me. Definitely plan on keeping this as a regular meal item. Pros: Easy, Quick, Flavorful Cons: No Texture
More Reviews