Tartar Sauce is a simple condiment that pairs well with seafood, adding a creamy and briny contrast to Crab Cakes, Salmon Cakes, and more. It only takes about 5 minutes to mix together this homemade sauce, and you’ll be rewarded with something much better than anything you can buy at the store.

Tartar Sauce - In a white Bowl with Spoon on Wooden Board

Freshness makes all the difference in flavor with sauces like this, and I think it’s why people are so blown away when they make things like Blue Cheese Dip, Buffalo Wing Sauce, or Caesar Dressing at home.

You can get it bottled at the store, but when it’s been sitting on the shelf for months, it’s not going to taste as good.

Fortunately, this sauce only takes about 5-10 minutes to mix together.

What is Tartar Sauce?

If you’re not familiar, it’s a creamy, briny condiment that’s typically served with seafood, and it’s primarily made of mayonnaise and pickles.

Tartar Sauce Recipe In a white Bowl with Spoon on Wooden Board

My pickle preference is to use Cornichons, which is a tiny kind of pickle that people also refer to as gherkins:

Cornichons in a Glass Jar

You can get them in the pickle section of nearly all grocery stores.

How to Make Tartar Sauce:

In a small bowl, combine high-quality mayonnaise, chopped cornichons, parsley, capers, whole grain mustard, lemon juice, salt, and pepper:

Tartar Sauce Ingredients - In Glass Bowl with Mayonnaise, Cornichons, Mustard, Capers, and Herbs

I use homemade Mayonnaise when I make this sauce because I’m really picky about the flavor, but using a storebought mayonnaise is perfectly fine, so long as you love the flavor of the one you’re using.

Stir everything together to combine:

Homemade Tartar Sauce - In a Glass Bowl Freshly Mixed

And that’s it! It really only takes a few minutes to mix together, and it can be stored in the fridge, at the ready for any seafood dish you prepare.

Homemade Tartar Sauce Recipe - Served in a White Bowl with Spoon

Fried Calamari is another one of my favorite recipes to pair with a homemade tartar sauce. Enjoy!

Dietary Restrictions: This Tartar Sauce is gluten free, dairy free, and Whole30 compliant. You can make it vegan by using a fabanaise or other vegan mayonnaise.

Tartar Sauce In a white Bowl with Spoon on Wooden Board

Tartar Sauce

Tartar Sauce is a creamy and briny condiment that pairs well with seafood, such as Crab CakesFried Calamari, and more!

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  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise (use a high-quality one with a flavor you enjoy)
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped cornichons
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp chopped parsley
  • 2 tsp minced capers
  • 1 tsp whole grain mustard
  • 1/4 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • 1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper


  • In a small bowl, stir to combine all ingredients.
  • Place in an airtight container or cover with plastic wrap, and store in the fridge until ready to use.


Storage time depends on what kind of mayonnaise you’re using. If using storebought mayonnaise, the tartar sauce will keep for at least a week. If using a homemade unpasteurized mayonnaise, I don’t suggest keeping the tartar sauce for more than a few days.


Calories: 82kcal, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 5mg, Sodium: 155mg, Vitamin A: 35IU, Vitamin C: 0.7mg, Calcium: 1mg

Nutrition is estimated using a food database and is only intended to be used as a guideline for informational purposes.