Looking for a tried and true homemade tartar sauce recipe? This one is adapted from a culinary school recipe, but is simple enough for anybody to make at home!!
Friday fish fries are common at Midwest Catholic churches and VFW halls during Lent. And even though my family isn’t Catholic, we love attending fish fries! The fish is almost always delicious, and the people watching can’t be beat. The only thing I don’t love about the tradition is the tartar sauce.
A few churches will make homemade sauce, but most of them serve pre-packaged tartar sauce. I got the crazy idea to make my own tartar sauce and take it with me to fish fries this year, and that’s exactly what I’m going to do.
What is the difference between tartar sauce and remoulade?
I remembered that my culinary school made a delicious tartar sauce to serve with fish and crab cakes, so I dug out my old textbooks. But I noticed the recipe is technically for “remoulade sauce.”
However, after much research on the difference between tartar sauce and remoulade sauce, I’ve come to the conclusion that the lines are very blurred. Some sources say that remoulade sauce contains more herbs, but then a lot of tartar sauce recipes have herbs, too.
Both sauces usually contain mayonnaise, pickles and capers. Some sources even say that tartar sauce is a TYPE of remoulade. Truthfully, I’m a bit confused, and I’m referring to this sauce as a tartar sauce, because I had to choose one or the other.
This easy tartar sauce recipe comes from a culinary school recipe.
This recipe is adapted from the one in my culinary school textbook, with just a few changes to make it easier for the home cook. I’ve substituted white vinegar for the white wine in the culinary school recipe, because who wants to open a bottle of white wine for 1 teaspoon? Not me!
I’ve also used Worcestershire sauce in place of the anchovy paste called for in the culinary school book. Personally, I love anchovy paste and it’s usually in my fridge, but I’m willing to bet that more people have Worcestershire sauce around. And since Worcestershire is made with anchovies, good enough!
One last change I made was to omit the chervil called for in the culinary school recipe. Chervil is hard to find at most grocery stores, and I don’t think it’s integral to this recipe.
The ingredients for this homemade tartar sauce recipe are easy to find:
- dill pickles
- chives (leftover chives can be used to make seafood pasta salad!)
- Dijon mustard
- lemon juice
- white vinegar
- Worcestershire sauce
- yellow mustard
- cayenne and black pepper
How to make tartar sauce:
It’s as easy as adding all of the ingredients to a bowl and stirring! And if you want to make it even EASIER, you could use a food processor to chop up the herbs, capers and pickles. That’s your call!
How long does homemade tartar sauce keep?
It will keep as long as the individual components stay fresh. If you start with nice fresh herbs, the prepared tartar sauce should keep about one week in the refrigerator in an airtight container.
- 3/4 cup mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped dill pickle
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives
- 2 teaspoons capers, drained and chopped
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh tarragon
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon white vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard
- Pinch cayenne
- Pinch ground black pepper
- Add all ingredients to medium bowl and stir until well combined. Refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving, or up to 1 week.
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Serving Size:2 tablespoons
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 143Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 9mgSodium: 198mgCarbohydrates: 1gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 0g
More yummy homemade sauce recipes:
- Spicy Peanut Sauce – for fresh rolls or spring rolls.
- Parmesan Garlic Wing Sauce – take your chicken wings to the next level!
- Quick Culinary School Tomato Sauce – classic and so versatile.
- Red Pepper-Walnut Sauce – love this with roasted cauliflower
- Bourbon Caramel Sauce – lovely on apple pie or stirred into coffee.
- Honey Mustard Recipe from The Novice Chef
- Red Enchilada Sauce from Gimme Some Oven