Easy Homemade Tartar Sauce

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Homemade Tartar Sauce is so easy to make, you’ll never go back to store bought again. Made with simple ingredients and taking just a few minutes, this is the best tartar sauce recipe ever!

Serve this homemade tartar sauce with all kinds of fish, from Grilled Salmon Kabobs and Grilled Fish Tacos to Air Fryer Fish Sticks and Fried Shrimp.

homemade tartar sauce recipe - sauce in a yellow cup with lemon wedges near by

Tartar Sauce Ingredients

Just 5 ingredients is all it takes to make a quick tartar sauce. This is a super forgiving recipe; you can keep adjusting the flavors until you’re happy with the result. You probably even have all of the ingredients on hand!

  • Mayonnaise – I use real mayonnaise, but you can use Miracle Whip if you’re into that.
  • Pickle relish – My preference is relish, but if you don’t have that you can finely chop some dill pickles and add a little bit of pickle juice.
  • Fresh dill or dried dill
  • Fresh lemon juice
  • Black pepper

How to Make Homemade Tartar Sauce

Get a detailed list of ingredients & instructions in the recipe card below.

Now here’s the kicker…the instructions are super complicated. Are you ready?

  1. Combine ingredients together in a bowl.
  2. Serve with fish.

Yup, that’s it! Easy peasy, right?

homemade tartar sauce recipe - with fish sticks and salmon cakes and lemon wedges


What does tartar sauce taste like?

Some people seem a little scared to try tartar sauce and I’m not really sure why because it’s delicious. It’s creamy, has a subtle crunchy from the dill pickle, and a nice tang from the lemon juice, with a fresh bite from the dill. The mayo makes it super creamy, but if you’re not a fan you could also swap in plain yogurt or sour cream.

What is tartar sauce used for?

This creamy, tangy sauce is ideal for topping all kinds of fish, but it can be spread on burgers and sandwiches, or even used in stir-fries.

Serving Suggestions

A good tartar sauce recipe can really enhance all kinds of seafood dishes. It’s creamy and tangy and pairs well with fish sticks, breaded fish fillets, and is a must for classic Fish & Chips, Salmon Patties, and Crab Cakes.

And a few more ideas:

salmon patty dipped in tartar sauce


Storage: Keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. I highly recommend making this dip a few hours or even a day in advance. It gives the flavors time to blend together.

Freezing: Mayo doesn’t freeze well, so freezing is not recommended.

Recipe Tips

  • I prefer chopping dill pickles for my homemade tartar sauce recipe, but you could also just use dill relish. With pickles, make sure to finely chop them.
  • Dill pickles go best with this recipe in my opinion, but if you’re a fan of sweet pickles, you can use those instead.
  • Feel free to play around with the ingredients, adjusting the amounts as you wish.
  • Fresh is best – use fresh lemon juice and fresh dill.
fish sticks on a plate with a dish of tartar sauce

More Delicious Sauces to Try

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A dish of tartar sauce

Tartar Sauce

4.36 from 14 votes
Homemade Tartar Sauce is so easy to make with simple ingredients and just a few minutes. It's the perfect pairing for all kinds of fish!
Prep Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Course condiment
Cuisine American
Servings 1 cups
Calories 125kcal


  • 1 cup real Mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped dill pickles or pickle relish
  • 1 tablespoon fresh minced dill or 1 teaspoon dried dill
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  • Combine ingredients in a small bowl.
  • Serve with all kinds of seafood recipes, like salmon patties, fish sticks or fish tacos. 
  • Store in the refrigerator in a tightly sealed container – lasts for 2 weeks in the fridge.


Storage: Keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. I highly recommend making this dip a few hours or even a day in advance. It gives the flavors time to blend together.
Freezing: Mayo doesn’t freeze well, so freezing is not recommended.


Serving: 2tablespoonsCalories: 125kcal

Kristin Maxwell

Kristin Maxwell is the creator and main recipe developer, writer, and photographer of Yellow Bliss Road. A self-taught cook and self-appointed foodie, she specializes in easy, flavorful and approachable recipes for any home cook.

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  1. This tartar sauce is amazing, I didn’t even follow the recipe and it tasted great! I just threw in the ingredients and WOW!?

  2. This is really a great recipe! I recently started making all of my sauces such as mayo, ketchup, salad dressings, etc. because I want my food to be as pure as possible without all of the preservatives and other filler crap they put in foods now. Well I had some salmon and realized that I didn’t have any tartar sauce. So I googled this one (used my homemade mayo) and my goodness was this the bomb! Absolutely scrumptious!

  3. Delish! I have made tartar sauce from scratch before but I don’t recall using dill…well duh the added dill was what put this over the top! So much so I added a little more and the family devoured it for fried fish fri. I’d say mission accomplished.

  4. I tried the tartar sauce with fresh baked salmon and it’s delicious! I will forever use this recipe!
    Thank you!

  5. It is a very good Tartar Sauce. No more store bought for me. I had no lemons so I used pickle juice instead and it was great. Next time, I’ll have lemon for a fresher taste.

  6. This is fantastic!! I highly suggest to make a hour ahead of time to let the mayo absorp all the flavors. This is the best tartar sauce I have ever had! Thank you so much for this recipe!

  7. I also add just a pinch of granulated garlic or garlic powder, a dash of onion powder and about a tablespoon of finely minced onion.

  8. Awesome tartar sauce!! I will never buy store bought again. Thank you for sharing your recipe.

  9. This tartar sauce is soooo f*%!ing GOOD! My girlfriend hates mayonnaise, so she’s not really big on tartar sauce and even she absolutely LOVES it! We had fish (halibut) and chips and she forgot to buy tartar sauce and I was kinda’ annoyed, but I googled this recipe and we both fell in love! She asks me to make this whenever we have fish.

  10. I mixed this up after realizing I hadn’t made any fish in a long while because store-bought tartar sauce really is gross. NEVER again will I buy it!! This was utterly delicious and so dang easy to make. Loved it. The fresh dill really makes it perfect. Can’t wait to make another fish dish so I can eat it again!