By Montana Grant

Posted: July 10, 2022

No fish fry is full without a Tartar Sauce. Whether we make a baked, fried, caked, or broiled fish, there will some Tartar Sauce alongside of the meal. Like chips and dip, they just go well together. 

Fish and seafood eaters did not always use a Tartar Sauce. The first recorded Tartar Sauce was a white sauce that was used on top of French recipe called “Beef Tartare”. This simple sauce highlighted this fancy beef dish.

Others say that the Russian Empire made the first Tartar Sauce. Tartars are a tribe that roamed the Russian steps. They had little seafood or fish available to warrant a special sauce. My bet is on the French Tartare beef dish. Other cultures such as the Turks and some Asian cultures claim this saucy creation. 

A proper Tartar sauce is based on Mayonnaise rather than cream. Mayonnaise was a French creation. There is certainly a menu of other special sauces for fish and chicken, but a simple Tartar Sauce is often asked for.

Making a fresh Tartar sauce is way better than a store-bought sauce loaded with preservatives in a plastic squeeze bottle or foil packet. Try to create your own special, secret sauce the next time fish, chicken or seafood is for dinner. 

1 cup or real Mayo

1 tsp lemon juice

1 cup of dill pickle relish

1 tsp sugar

Salt and pepper to taste

1 tbsp of parsley or dill. Fresh ingredients are best.

Combine everything into a bowl and whisk. If you add other ingredients like capers, a blender will smooth the sauce nicely.  This recipe will make 1 ½ cups of tasty topping/ about 8 servings.

Kick your Tartar up a notch! Its ok to personalize your sauce and match your tastes.

Other Tartar sauce add ins!


Old Bay seasoning

Extra white vinegar

Siracha or hot sauce

Whole grain, Dijon, or hot mustard

Plain yogurt

Worcestershire sauce

Chopped hard boiled eggs

Chopped onions, chives, or onion powder

Simple is often the best and most requested to blend your Tartar sauce. Serve the sauce on top of your meal, in a side container, or at a station where the fish sandwiches, tacos, or servings are being prepared.

Enjoy a fresh Tartar sauce for your next fish or seafood affair!

Montana Grant

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