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Smoked Tuna Dip

Smoked Tuna Dip is an easy, elegant appetizer that’s the ultimate party starter! It’s smokey, creamy, and tangy with perfect heat. Pair it with crackers, fresh veggies, or tortilla chips, and wait for the compliments to flood in!

Dipping crackers into this delicious smoked tuna dip

What could be better than ending the week with family and friends? Whether it’s game day, movie night, or a holiday celebration, I love any excuse for a party. Of course, any gathering needs delicious and satisfying appetizers!

This smoked tuna dip recipe is always a crowd-pleaser. It’s crazy delicious and easy to customize, so you get a new recipe every time you make it. It looks super luxurious but only takes about 10 minutes to make. πŸ˜‰

Best Tuna for Smoked Tuna Dip

Honestly, the choice depends a lot on personal preference. Albacore tuna is always popular because it’s firm and meaty with a mild flavor.

Yellowfin tuna is also delicious, with a softer, richer flavor, so the tuna really shines through. For the tastiest results, I like to smoke fresh fillets for a more intense flavor. But canned tuna will also do the job. πŸ˜‰

Recipe Ingredients

Recipe Ingredients
  • Tuna β€“ Homemade smoked tuna is absolutely delish! Or you can opt to use a 12-ounce can of tuna and add a few drops of liquid smoke.
  • The Base β€“ Cream cheese and mayonnaise make the dip creamy and give it a subtle tang.
  • Worcestershire Sauce β€“ Amp up the flavor with savory, tangy Worcestershire sauce!
  • Lemon Juice β€“ Adds a citrus zing and freshness to the dip.
  • Seasonings β€“ Garlic and onion powders are essential flavor enhancers. Paprika adds a hint of sweetness. Liquid Smoke is a great way to get that delectable smokey flavor if using canned tuna. Hot sauce and Cajun seasoning are optional, but I always love a little kick in this dip.
  • Green Onion β€“ Smoked tuna dip garnished with green onions for a burst of color and a subtle peppery taste is impressive.

How to Make Smoked Tuna Dip

Make the mayo and cream cheese based sauce and add the tuna
  1. Prep Tuna β€“ Smoke the tuna (or use leftover smoked tuna). You can do this part the day before. When ready to make the dip, remove from the fridge and flake. For canned tuna, thoroughly drain and flake.
  2. Mix β€“ In a large mixing bowl, add tuna, softened cream cheese, mayonnaise, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, freshly ground pepper to taste, hot sauce, and paprika (add liquid smoke if using fresh tuna). (Photos 1-2)
  3. Whisk by hand or use an electric mixer for a smoother texture. Mix well until you’ve reached the desired consistency. (Photo 3)
  4. Customize β€“ Adjust the seasonings until you are satisfied with the final dish.
  5. Chill β€“ Place in a serving bowl and sprinkle with paprika and finely chopped green onions. Cover the dip and refrigerate it for at least an hour so the flavors meld and the dip thickens.
  6. Serve chilled with crackers, toasted bread, and veggies. (Photo 4)
A creamy, flavorful dip made with smoked tuna, cream cheese, herbs, and spices, served in a bowl with crackers.

Recipe Variations

  • Fish Swap β€“ Replace the tuna with smoked salmon, mackerel, or halibut.
  • Mayo Swap β€“ If mayo isn’t your thing, you can replace it with the same amount of sour cream. For a lighter option, swap it with Greek yogurt.
  • Veggie Add-Ins β€“ Add some diced red bell pepper, celery, and red onion to the dip for color and texture.
  • Add Some Heat β€“ Replace the hot sauce with horseradish, wasabi, hot mustard, or ginger to get a new recipe every time!
  • Add Bacon β€“ Who doesn’t love bacon? πŸ˜‰ Add crumbled bacon directly into the dip or sprinkle it on top for flavor and crunch.
  • Garnishes – Chopped fresh parsley and cilantro are amazing garnishes.

Tips and Tricks

  • Opt for high-quality smoked tuna, which gives the dip a unique flavor. Canned tuna works in a pinch but drain it well to prevent a soggy dip.
  • Adjust the amount of mayonnaise to your preference. Some like a creamier dip, while others prefer it denser. Start with a lesser amount and add according to your liking.
  • Liquid smoke provides that smoky flavor reminiscent of traditionally smoked tuna. Start with a small amount because it can be pretty potent, and adjust to your preference.
  • Adjust the hot sauce and Cajun seasoning to your heat preference. Remember, you can always add more, but you can’t take it out.

Make-Ahead Instructions

Want to get a headstart on party day? This is a fantastic make-ahead dip! You can whip it up the day before and store it in the refrigerator overnight. So easy!

Dipping into smoked tuna dip with a crunchy cracker

Serving and Storage Instructions

Smoked tuna dip is best served chilled with saltine crackers, toasted bread, tortilla chips, and fresh veggies for dipping.

Store leftover smoked tuna dip in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days. You can freeze leftover dip in a plastic freezer bag or airtight container for a couple of months. To defrost, leave it in the refrigerator overnight and give it a good stir before serving.

FAQs

How can I use leftover smoked tuna dip?

This tuna dip is divine when spread on sandwiches or inside a veggie wrap. It’s also delicious on a bed of lettuce and veggies for a light lunch. Additionally, you can use the leftover dip to stuff baked potatoes for a satisfying side dish.

What kind of crackers should I serve with smoked tuna dip?

Any cracker is fine, but I usually look for sturdy crackers like Triscuits or Wheat Thins. They’re less likely to break when scooping up this hearty dip. πŸ˜‰

What if I don’t have Liquid Smoke?

No worries! You can replace it with smoked paprika, chipotle powder, or your favorite smokey hot sauce to get the same delicious taste.

What to Serve With Smoked Tuna Dip

This delectable appetizer loves sharing the spotlight with smoked meatballsgrilled avocados, and smoked turkey wings. Slather it on grilled bread for an extra elegant appetizer. 

More Tantalizing Appetizer Recipes to Try

Conclusion

This elegant, versatile smoked tuna dip is a must-have for your next game day, holiday celebration, or evening with friends. Interested in more easy ideas for entertaining? Follow me on Facebook! 😊

Dipping crackers into this delicious smoked tuna dip

Smoked Tuna Dip

An easy, elegant appetizer that's the ultimate party starter! It's smokey, creamy, and tangy with perfect heat. Pair it with crackers, fresh veggies, or tortilla chips, and wait for the compliments to flood in!
Makes about 3 cups
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: dip, smoked tuna
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 16
Calories: 116kcal
Author: Imma

Ingredients

  • 6-8 pieces (10 ounces) smoked tuna (or two 5-ounce cans)
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • Β½-ΒΎ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Β½ lemon, juiced (about 1 tablespoon lemon juice)
  • 1-2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1-2 teaspoons onion powder
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • hot sauce to taste
  • Β½-1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 green onion, finely diced
  • 1-2 drops liquid smoke (optional)

Instructions

  • Smoke the tuna (or use leftover smoked tuna). You can do this part the day before. When ready to make the dip, remove from the fridge and flake. For canned tuna, thoroughly drain and flake.
  • In a large mixing bowl, mix tuna, softened cream cheese, mayonnaise, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, freshly ground pepper, hot sauce, and paprika (add liquid smoke if using fresh or canned tuna).
  • Whisk by hand or use an electric mixer if you prefer a finer, creamier texture. Mix well until you've reached the desired consistency.

Notes

  • If you can, always opt for high-quality smoked tuna, as it gives a unique flavor to the dip. Canned tuna can be used in a pinch, but ensure it’s well-drained to prevent a soggy dip.
  • The quantity of mayonnaise can be adjusted based on your preference. Some like a creamier texture, while others prefer a denser dip. Start with less and adjust according to your liking.
  • If using canned tuna, liquid smoke provides that smoky flavor reminiscent of traditionally smoked tuna. Start with a small amount, as it can be quite potent, and adjust to your preference.
  • Adjust the hot sauce and Cajun seasoning based on your heat preference. Remember, you can always add more, but you can’t take it away.
  • Please remember that the nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary significantly based on the products used in the recipe.

Nutrition

Serving: 3tablespoons | Calories: 116kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 24mg | Sodium: 287mg | Potassium: 71mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 245IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 21mg | Iron: 0.4mg

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