How to Make the Best Tartar Sauce

This easy homemade tartar sauce is better than anything you can buy at the store. It’s extra creamy and perfect for serving next to your favorite seafood dishes. Jump to the Easy Homemade Tartar Sauce Recipe or watch our quick recipe video showing you how we make it.

Watch Us Make the Recipe

Making the Best Homemade Tartar Sauce

This better than store-bought tartar sauce is incredibly simple to make and you probably already have most of the ingredients you need to make it in your kitchen.

Dipping a fish stick into homemade tartar sauce

Here’s what you will need to make tartar sauce from scratch:

  • Mayonnaise provides the creamy base. You can use store-bought mayo or for the best tartar sauce, try making your own mayonnaise.
  • Pickles add crunch and flavor to the sauce. We use dill pickles and particularly enjoy the refrigerated Claussen pickles for this. For a sweeter style, try bread and butter or sweet pickles instead.
  • Fresh lemon juice is essential for the best tartar sauce. It thins the sauce out so that it’s the perfect consistency for dipping and adds a fresh, zesty flavor.
  • Capers are an optional ingredient since we don’t always have them in the fridge, but they add even more flavor and work wonders when mixed with the lemon and herbs.
  • Fresh or dried dill is a must for us. If you don’t have dill, parsley is a good alternative.
  • Worcestershire sauce is an unusual ingredient, but it really brings the sauce together. We only add a dash.
  • Dijon mustard is another optional ingredient, but if you have it on hand, we highly recommend it.
The Ingredients You Need For Homemade Tartar Sauce

Just a few seconds of stirring turns the sauce into a creamy and delicious mixture. Then, for the best tartar sauce, refrigerate it for at least 30 minutes. It gets better and better overtime.

For a lighter sauce with fewer calories, you can swap the mayonnaise for light mayo or plain yogurt.

How Long Will Homemade Tartar Sauce Last

Here’s the great news, this easy homemade tartar sauce lasts for about a week when stored in the fridge. We love making a double batch so we can enjoy it throughout the week.

Best Homemade Tartar Sauce

How to Make the Best Tartar Sauce

  • PREP

This easy homemade tartar sauce is extra creamy and perfect when served next to shrimp, fish sticks, crab cakes, and even roasted veggies.

Makes about 3/4 cup

You Will Need

1/2 cup mayonnaise, try homemade mayonnaise

1 small dill pickle, chopped very small (3 tablespoons)

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, plus more to taste

1 tablespoon capers, chopped, optional

1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill or 1 teaspoon dried dill

1/2 to 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard, optional

Salt and fresh ground black pepper


    Combine the mayonnaise, pickles, lemon juice, capers, dill, Worcestershire sauce, and mustard in a small bowl and stir until well blended and creamy.

    Season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Taste then adjust with additional lemon juice, salt, and pepper. For the best flavor, cover and store in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.

    Keep, tightly covered, in the refrigerator for one week.

Adam and Joanne's Tips

  • Nutrition facts: The nutrition facts provided below are estimates. We have used the USDA database to calculate approximate values.

If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #inspiredtaste — We love to see your creations on Instagram and Facebook! Find us: @inspiredtaste

Nutrition Per Serving: Serving Size 1 tablespoon / Calories 64 / Total Fat 6.9g / Saturated Fat 1.1g / Cholesterol 3.9mg / Sodium 103.8mg / Carbohydrate 0.3g / Dietary Fiber 0.1g / Total Sugars 0.1g / Protein 0.1g
AUTHOR: Adam and Joanne Gallagher

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62 comments… Leave a Comment
  • marcelle September 29, 2020, 1:35 pm

    Wow wow fab recipe and much nicer than brought tartar sauce. Wont be buying it again as so easy to make.

  • Hendrika Braddock Cooper September 25, 2020, 6:40 pm this was fantastic! Made as is except for the capers because I was out. Perfect ratio of flavors, will never buy store bought again.

  • Bob September 25, 2020, 3:06 am

    Many thanks for a great simple recipe for tartare sauce. I used full-fat mayonnaise, baby capers unchopped and added a tablespoon of Greek yoghurt to counter the heaviness of the mayo. Yummm!

  • Elleasiona Dean September 18, 2020, 10:26 am

    I never leave comments but this taste AMAZING! I’m in love with this simple yet soooooo delicious recipe. I didnt have pickles so i used relish to substitute the pickle instead. And it still taste GREAT. Im NEVER buying store tartar sauce again. Nope! Im making my own for now on using this recipe. Im so excited to see what else is on there website to try. I was so nervous to try it honestly, but im beyond glad i did. My friends love it too! HIGHLY RECOMMEND! Dont hesitate to try! You’ll love it!

  • Kristyn September 12, 2020, 11:07 am

    I needed tartar sauce but didn’t feel like going to the store. Found your recipe and let’s just say I will not be buying store bought anymore. I didn’t have a pickle but had dill relish and didn’t have lemons but lemon concentrate and it was still amazing! It is a pandemic so I have learned to use what you got!

  • blanka September 9, 2020, 2:01 pm

    absolutely wonderful!!

  • Rita September 3, 2020, 9:45 pm

    This was perfect- Mostly followed the recipe using dried dill weed but had to use bottled lemon juice -it still turned out great! Thank you- this is a keeper

  • Reg August 23, 2020, 8:22 pm

    I needed a second option so I choose this one. It will now be my first, second, third, forth, fifth option. We loved it. Crunchy pickle and Dill. We’re wonderful together. Perfect for shrimp.

  • Amanda Walding August 16, 2020, 7:27 pm

    Delicious!! And easy!!

  • Jennifer Price August 9, 2020, 9:49 pm

    AH-MAY-ZING!!!!!!! It went straight into my recipe book. Husband said it was wonderful. Best I have ever tasted. 🙂

  • Brenda Williams July 30, 2020, 9:09 pm

    I tried the tarter sauce. It is the best I have ever had. My children request it everytime we have sea food. It is a must have. Thank you.

  • Freddie :P July 27, 2020, 1:42 pm

    amazing taste texture and everything great

  • Elvis Rodriguez July 14, 2020, 8:44 pm

    Wow. Needed a last minute recipe for tartar sauce. Stumbled upon this recipe and decided to try it. Thankfully, I had all but one ingredient, the pickle. I used relish and it came out great. It is one of the best sauces I’ve ever tasted. Thank you.


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