Tuna Salad Recipe

5 from 10 votes
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This tuna salad recipe with avocado and cucumbers is a modern twist on a classic favorite. Flaky tuna is combined with creamy avocado, fresh cucumbers, and sharp red onions for a refreshing and flavorful dish.

top view of tuna topped with avocados and red onions


An Easy Tuna Salad Recipe

Tuna salad is one of the easiest recipes to whip together. It involves very few ingredients and even fewer steps. But this is not your mama’s tuna salad. The ingredients in this dish really pack a punch! I’ve selected each one very carefully to deliver the most bangin’ flavor combo imaginable, featuring creamy avocados, crunchy cucumbers, and sharp red onions.

Aside from being super easy, one of the best things about tuna salad is its versatility. Serve it on top of a bed of lettuce, put it in a wrap, turn it into a mouthwatering club sandwich, or stir it into a macaroni salad. Once you know how to make it, you can do so much with this simple salad!

This easy tuna salad recipe uses avocado instead of mayo for that creamy texture, making it healthier than your traditional tuna salad. Plus, we’re using tuna packed in water instead of oil, which also helps to lighten things up. So, get ready to enjoy a fresh, flavorful twist on a classic favorite!

canned tuna, sliced avocados, cucumbers, and onions in a bowl

Recipe Ingredients

The big difference between my tuna salad and most others you’ll come across is the swap of mayo for avocado. Aside from that, you won’t find any surprise ingredients. Here’s what you’ll need – for precise measurements and directions, please scroll down to the recipe card.

  • Tuna: You’ll need 3 cans of tuna in water, drained and flaked.
  • Avocados: I use 2 avocados and cut them into a larger dice.
  • English Cucumber: Sliced the cucumber into half moons. You can also use Persian cucumbers.
  • Red Onion: Slice it thinly to add a sharp flavor to the salad.
  • Parsley or Cilantro: Adds a fresh, herbal taste.
  • Olive Oil: Used in the dressing for a rich, smooth base. Extra virgin olive oil is a good substitute.
  • Lemon Juice: Juice of 1 lemon adds brightness and acidity.
  • Salt and Fresh Ground Black Pepper: A simple seasoning that enhances the overall flavor of the tuna salad.

How to Make Tuna Salad

Here’s a step-by-step guide to making this flavorful salad. Whether you’re preparing a quick lunch or a light dinner, this recipe has got you covered!

  • Prep: Place the prepped tuna into a large salad bowl. Add in the diced avocado, cucumber slices, sliced onions, and parsley or cilantro, then set it aside.
  • Mix: In a small mixing bowl combine olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Whisk it until it is combined. Taste for seasonings and adjust accordingly. I almost always add more lemon and salt.
  • Combine: Add the salad dressing to the salad, then toss to combine.
  • Serve: Top it with a little fresh ground pepper and enjoy!
serving tuna avocado salad in a white bowl

Recipe Tips

  • Use English Cucumbers: They have fewer seeds and will add less water to the tuna salad, keeping it from getting soggy.
  • Ripe Avocados: Look for ripe avocados, as unripened avocados will affect the texture and make the salad less smooth and creamy.
  • Fresh Herbs: Whether you choose parsley or cilantro, make sure it is fresh, not dried.
  • Drain the Tuna: Properly draining the tuna helps avoid excess moisture so that the salad has the perfect consistency.
  • Adjust Seasonings: Always taste the dressing before adding it to the salad. You might want to add more lemon juice or salt to suit your taste preferences.
  • Mix Gently: When combining the ingredients, mix gently to avoid mashing the avocado too much, keeping some nice chunks for texture.
  • Chill Before Serving: For the best flavor, let the salad chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before serving. This allows the flavors to meld together beautifully.

Serving Ideas

No doubt, you can enjoy this tuna salad recipe on its own, straight out of a bowl or on a plate, but why not turn it into something even more exciting? Here are some delicious serving ideas to inspire you. Pair any of these with a side of kettle-cooked chips and a pickle for the perfect meal! 😍

  • On Top of Your Favorite Salad: Add a scoop of tuna salad instead of salmon to my chopped salmon salad. Or add it to your favorite greens for a hearty and refreshing meal.
  • In a Wrap: Combine with bacon, tomato, and a slice of provolone cheese for a tasty wrap.
  • Lettuce Wraps: Use large lettuce leaves to create a light and crunchy wrap.
  • Stuffed Tomatoes: Hollow out tomatoes and fill them with tuna salad for a fun presentation. See my quinoa stuffed tomatoes for inspiration.
  • Standard Tuna Sandwich: Keep it classic with a simple tuna salad sandwich.
  • Club Sandwich or Tuna Melt: Kick up your sandwich game with a layered club or a gooey tuna melt.
    salad mix with tuna, cucumbers, and avocado

    Proper Storage

    Since this tuna salad does not contain mayo, it can stay in your fridge a bit longer. You can store it in an airtight container for about 3-5 days.


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    5 from 10 votes

    Tuna Salad

    This Tuna salad with avocado and cucumbers is a modern twist on an American classic. Flaky tuna mixed with creamy avocado, fresh cucumbers, and the best herbs and spices make for the easiest warm-weather lunch!
    Prep Time: 10 minutes
    Total Time: 15 minutes
    Servings: 6


    • 3 cans (5-ounces each) tuna in water, drained and flaked
    • 2 large avocados, peeled, pitted, and cut into a larger dice
    • 1 English cucumber, sliced into half moons
    • 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
    • ¼ cup chopped parsley or cilantro
    • ¼ cup olive oil
    • juice of 1 lemon
    • salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
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    • Place prepped tuna into a large salad bowl.
    • Add in diced avocado, cucumber slices, sliced onions, and parsley or cilantro. Set aside.
    • In a small mixing bowl combine olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper; whisk to combine.
    • Taste for seasonings and adjust accordingly. I almost always add more lemon and salt.
    • Add salad dressing to the salad; toss to combine. If time permits, chill the salad in the fridge for 15 to 30 minutes before serving.


    Calories: 263kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 26mg | Sodium: 183mg | Potassium: 566mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 401IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Calcium: 36mg | Iron: 2mg

    Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.

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    1. Diana says:

      Delicious! Even my husband liked it!

      1. Katerina Petrovska says:

        That’s great! Thank YOU! I am very glad you enjoyed it! 🙂

    2. Kim DeVries says:

      I made this for a family get together and now I’m here sending the recipe to my sister in law because they loved it so much. With the leftovers, I added feta cheese crumbles and turned it into a Greek salad! So good!

      1. Katerina Petrovska says:

        That’s wonderful! I am very glad you enjoyed it! Thank YOU! 🙂

    3. Sara Welch says:

      This was such a light a flavorful salad; definitely worthy of a restaurant! Looking forward to enjoying this again, tomorrow!

      1. Katerina Petrovska says:

        That’s great! I am very happy you enjoyed it! Thank YOU!:)