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Easy Homemade Tartar Sauce Recipe

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This easy homemade tartar sauce recipe is so simple to make. You'll never buy tartar sauce at the store again. 

This creamy condiment has a tangy flavor that pairs so well with seafood dishes like crab cakes, fish sticks, popcorn shrimp, and grilled fish, as well as roasted vegetables, or baked potato.

It's a savory, versatile sauce. If you like citrus, mustard, and pickles - you'll love this traditional tartar sauce recipe.

Tartar sauce in a bowl next to crab cakes.
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Tartar sauce (also called sauce tartare) is originally a French sauce that's become popular worldwide - especially in Commonwealth countries and the US. It's a well-known condiment typically served with fish and chips.

This homemade tartar sauce is so fresh and deeply flavorful! It's easy to make and is made with basic ingredients. Most known to compliment fish, this delicious sauce also tastes great with fried and baked foods like French fries and roasted potatoes

You can tweak it to add more relish, lemon juice, or mustard if you'd like one flavor to be a little stronger. It's so much better than the jarred stuff.  It's a simple enough recipe with basic grocery store ingredients so you can make it whenever you need it. 


This easy tartar sauce recipe makes a small batch of tartar sauce. Feel free to double it if you need to.

Mayonnaise, sweet relish, lemon, parsley, dijon mustard, salt, and pepper.

Here's what you'll need:

  • Mayonnaise - I highly recommend using Duke's Mayo for this recipe - I think it has the best flavor. But you can use any good quality mayonnaise or homemade mayonnaise. A sweeter mayo, like Miracle Whip and many vegan mayos may be too sweet, but unsweetened plain Greek yogurt could work if you don't mind a bit more tang. 
  • Sweet relish - If you don't have sweet relish on hand, you can cut up sweet pickles. You can use dill pickle relish or fresh dill pickles, but the sauce won’t have much sweetness, which is part of the flavor profile of tartar sauce.   
  • Finely chopped fresh parsley - Fresh parsley is recommended because it adds a delicious freshness to this recipe. 
  • Fresh lemon juice - Fresh lemon juice is highly recommended over bottled. 
  • Dijon mustard - Just a little bit of mustard adds a bit of necessary acidity to this sauce. If you don't have Dijon mustard, you can use a Dijon mustard substitute.
  • Sea salt and ground black pepper - You'll use just enough to enhance the flavor. 


Combine the mayonnaise, pickle relish, parsley, lemon juice, mustard, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Stir till fully combined. 

Ingredients for tartar sauce in a glass mixing bowl.

Serve immediately or save in an airtight container (like a small Mason jar) in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. 

Homemade tartar sauce in a mixing bowl.

What to eat with Tartar Sauce

This is really the best tartar sauce recipe and is perfect for all your seafood recipes and roasted vegetables. It's the perfect condiment for fish sandwiches, fish fillets, and all your favorite fish recipes. Here are some of my favorites:

  • Salmon Patties - These salmon cakes are delicious and come together in 30 minutes. This homemade sauce is great with them. 
  • Baked Curly Fries - The spices in this easy recipe for curly fries are great with a good tartar sauce like this one. If you like a creamy dip with your fries, you'll want to give it a try. 
  • Baked Pollock - The crispy topping on this fish adds so much flavor and is really delicious with this homemade tartar sauce. 
  • Parmesan Panko Baked Cod - The subtle and savory flavors of this cod, with the crispy coating, are made for dipping in this tartar sauce.

More Sauce Recipes to Try

If you're looking for more dipping sauce ideas, try one of these great recipes.

  • Remoulade Sauce - Another mayonnaise based sauce that features pickle juice.
  • Easy Cocktail Sauce - A homemade cocktail sauce with a tangy ketchup base that pairs well with seafood.
  • Dill Sauce for Seafood - Another great sauce for all your favorite seafood dishes. With a creamy base, fresh dill, and lemon juice, it's another wonderful sauce. 
  • Tzatziki (Cucumber Yogurt Sauce) - This easy yogurt sauce is brightened up with fresh cucumbers and herbs.


You can save the sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

If you try this recipe, let us know! Connect with us on Instagram and share your photos or leave us a rating.

Yield: Makes ¾ cup sauce

Easy Tartar Sauce

A bowl of tartar sauce with a gold spoon next to crab cakes.

This delicious homemade tartar sauce is incredibly easy to make and is fantastic with crab cakes, shrimp, and fish.

Prep Time 6 minutes
Total Time 6 minutes


  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper


  1. Combine the mayonnaise, pickle relish, parsley, lemon juice, mustard, salt, and pepper in a mixing bowl. Stir till fully combined. 
  2. Serve immediately or save in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. 

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 199Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 17gCholesterol: 12mgSodium: 403mgCarbohydrates: 3gFiber: 0gSugar: 2gProtein: 0g


Wednesday 1st of February 2023

If you have kids waiting? I didn't have parsley or lemon juice so I just hit it with couple dashes of onion powder and the kids ask for fish sticks all the time now.


Saturday 21st of May 2022

Pretty good - I added minced red onions. Felt like it was too salty so when I make it again, I'll cut that back. Tasted like South Carolina low country tartar sauce to me, which is what I was looking for.

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