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Comforting Tuna Patties

My grandmother and mother made these tuna patties on Fridays during Lent. I'm not the biggest fan of tuna, but it's perfect in this dish. These patties are even good cold the next day, if there are any leftovers. —Ann Marie Eberhart, Gig Harbor, Washington
  • Total Time
    Prep: 25 min. + chilling Cook: 5 min./batch
  • Makes
    6 servings


  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 pouch (6.4 ounces) light tuna in water
  • 1/3 cup plus 1/2 cup dry bread crumbs, divided
  • 1 green onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • Oil for frying


  • In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in flour until smooth; gradually whisk in milk. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly; cook and stir until thickened, 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat. Transfer to a small bowl; cool.
  • Stir in tuna, 1/3 cup bread crumbs, green onion, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Refrigerate, covered, at least 30 minutes.
  • Place remaining 1/2 cup bread crumbs in a shallow bowl. Drop 1/3 cup tuna mixture into crumbs. Gently coat and shape into a 1/2-in.-thick patty. Repeat. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add tuna patties in batches; cook until golden brown, 2-3 minutes on each side. Drain on paper towels.
  • Freeze option: Freeze cooled tuna patties in freezer containers, separating layers with waxed paper. To use, reheat tuna patties on a baking sheet in a preheated 325° oven until heated through.
Nutrition Facts
1 tuna patty: 255 calories, 17g fat (5g saturated fat), 34mg cholesterol, 419mg sodium, 15g carbohydrate (5g sugars, 1g fiber), 10g protein.
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  • Moonbeam
    Feb 20, 2021

    So I did make these last night for dinner. They are very tasty. I didn't have evaporated milk so I used 1/2 n 1/2, worked fine. I also added a couple of ingredients which really kicked them up. I added about a teaspoon of pepper flakes and about a dozen chopped green olives. Also I increased the green onion from 1 to 3. Oh and the one thing I should have done was drain the tuna. It was too wet when trying to make the patties. Otherwise it's a yummy and we have 2 left over so they will be put into sandwiches!

  • Cookie
    Feb 19, 2021

    I've been using a different recipe for 50 years but I think I'm going to try this one just for a little variety.

  • bnrudy
    Feb 19, 2021

    Do you drain the tuna?

  • Debbie
    Apr 17, 2020

    I also have a recipe from my Grandmother and Mom; but made differently. :)

  • JerseyGal262
    Mar 14, 2020

    I tried these patties and they are delicious. They are easy to make and the chilling time lets me make them early and then put them on the griddle just before dinner. I served them with mashed potatoes and a salad, but I think that having them on a burger bun with the extras would be good also. A nice tartar sauce would make a tasty go-with too. Definitely a keeper! And economical as well.