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This easy keto tartar sauce recipe is the perfect creamy and tangy compliment to your fish and seafood main dishes. It includes simple ingredients compared to bottled tartar sauce. Plus, it takes less than 10 minutes to make. Enjoy this low carb tartar sauce with my keto crab cakes for an easy main dish!
What is Tartar Sauce
Classic tartar sauce is a mayonnaise-based condiment that includes add-ins like dill pickle relish and fresh herbs like dill weed and tarragon.
Most people typically serve it with seafood such as crab cakes, salmon cakes, fish and chips, and coconut shrimp.
Why Make it
Though you can get tartar sauce at your local grocery store near the seafood or condiment sections, it’s much better to make it at home. Here’s why:
- Simple ingredients with no weird stuff: Compared to bottled sauce, this easy tartar sauce recipe includes simple ingredients and more flavor since it skips out on things like preservatives.
- No added sugar: Plus, given that some bottled tartar sauce includes things like corn syrup (an ingredient in some pickle relish), this keto tartar sauce is the perfect option for those following a clean or keto diet.
- Easy recipe: though you can make this in a food processor, this easy recipe really just requires you to dump the ingredients in a bowl and mix them up!
Ingredients in Homemade Tartar Sauce
This keto tartar sauce recipe doesn’t require much. Here’s what you’ll need to gather:
- Mayonnaise: If you are following a low carb or keto diet, you want to look for full-fat mayo. Fat-free, reduced-fat, or mayo dressings often contain added sugars to help offset flavor lost from the removal of fat.
- Dill Pickles: You can chop these to mimic the size of relish or use no sugar added dill relish (if you can find it). Larger chunks will result in more bite. I personally don’t use sweet pickle relish because it includes added sugar.
- Onions: I’m using diced red onions
- Lemon Juice: You can use bottled or fresh lemon juice.
- Dijon Mustard
- Old Bay Seasoning: I use this as an all-purpose seafood seasoning. So, it works perfectly in this easy tartar sauce recipe. In one bottle, you’ll find spices like salt, celery seed, red pepper, black pepper, and paprika.
You can get the full list of ingredient amounts and instructions from the full recipe card at the end of the post.
How to Make Keto Tartar Sauce
To make homemade tartar sauce, measure the ingredients and add them all into a small bowl (photo 1).
When they are all in the bowl, mix the ingredients together (photo 2).
Top Recipe Tips & FAQs
- Let the tartar sauce sit for 15 to 20 minutes to allow the flavors to come together.
- Spice it up with horseradish add a 1/2 teaspoon at a time since a little goes a long way and things can get too spicy quick!
- Keto Tartar Sauce with Sour Cream: feel free to substitute some of the mayo for sour cream or even greek yogurt. But, you should know that adding these would add dairy.
- Dairy-free Tartar Sauce: this recipe uses a mayo (made with eggs, egg yolks and oil) so it is already dairy-free.
- Swap the tangy ingredient: though I’m using lemon juice, you could swap some or all of the lemon juice with another acid like apple cider organic vinegar, pickle juice (which has white vinegar). Just add it to taste.
Storage & Leftovers
Store your leftover keto-friendly tartar sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. If it separates, be sure to give it a stir before using it next time.
Bottled versions of tartar sauce are usually low-carb, but not necessarily keto because it contains added sugar, preservatives and other stuff to stabilize it’s shelf life. If you are following strict keto, Whole30, or paleo, homemade versions are better options.
If you are following a Whole30 or paleo diet, you will need to substitute the mayo from the one I suggested. Here are some vegan mayo options.
If you plan on storing homemade keto tartar sauce, keep in mind, the recipe does not call for any preservatives. In the refrigerator, the homemade sauce will last 2 to 3 days in a sealed container. I prefer to use a glass jar to store the tartar sauce in. And, to save a bowl from being washed, I will often make the tartar sauce in the same jar.
Recipes to Enjoy Low Carb Tartar Sauce with
Tartar sauce is a great accompaniment to all sorts of fish and seafood dishes. Some of my favorite pairings include:
- Air Fryer Keto Crab Cakes
- Ninja Foodi Air Fryer Salmon
- Fried Cod Fish Sticks – Keto Recipe
- BEST Keto Salmon Patties
It’s also great to make if you are simply boiling, broiling, or baking some fish, shrimp, or other seafood. It provides a nice tangy flavor to plain seafood that is hard to top.
If you try this recipe, please stop back and leave it a star rating and/or a review in the comments. Stay connected & share photos of your creations with me & others on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest!
Keto Tartar Sauce Recipe
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- Add and mix all of the ingredients in a small bowl.
- Store in the refrigerator for 15-20 minutes to allow flavors to come together.
The nutrition facts come from entering the recipe ingredients into Spoonacular API, a database of food ingredients. They may vary for any recipe based on the exact product used. The keto sweeteners I use have 0g net carbs & are not included because sugar alcohols do not impact most people. This is provided as a courtesy, but you can do your own calculations if you wish!