Homemade Tartar Sauce is easy to make with simple, fresh ingredients. Capers, fresh dill, and crunchy dill pickles make for the best flavor. A creamy, tangy condiment, delicious with salmon, fish or seafood! Vegan-adaptable.

homemade tartar sauces with capers and dill.

Why make homemade tartar sauce, you may wonder? Too many good reasons! You can control the ingredients; high quality ingredients taste better and feel better! Add more dill pickles for extra crunch if that is your thing, swap out some of the mayo with Greek yogurt for a lighter version, spice it up with cayenne, and definitely don’t skip the fresh dill! Have fun creating your perfect blend. While this is delicious on seafood, it’s true, don’t stop there. We love it on grilled veggies, oven fries, and as a spread for sandwiches and burgers! It’s fantastic on our Salmon burgers, Salmon Patties, and Crab cakes!

Why You’ll Love This Tartar Sauce Recipe

  1. High customizable! Store-bought tartar sauce often contains ingredients we like to stay away from. Making it from scratch is healthier and tastes so much better! Vegan adaptable.
  2. Fresh and flavorful! The fresh dill and lemon juice brightens and enlivens while the briny capers add depth and umami!
  3. Delicious on many things! You’ll find a hundred ways to use this.

Ingredients In Tartar Sauce

tartar sauce ingredients.

Tartar Sauce Ingredient Notes

  • Mayonnaise – use all mayo for a rich, luscious sauce or use half mayo and half Greek yogurt to lighten it up (my preferred version). Even better, make your own mayo with good healthy oils! Or use vegan mayo!
  • Dijon mustard– adds a little tang and flavor.
  • Fresh Lemon juice– brightens and enlivens the sauce.
  • Salt– use to taste as capers and pickles have salt.
  • Black peppercorns– for peppery goodness.
  • Cayenne– used to taste, adds a subtle heat.
  • Capers– salty bits of lovely sea flavor.
  • Dill Pickles– a star ingredient here, tart, tangy, and salty. We opt for fermented pickles– for extra probiotics. You could use dill relish or sweet pickle relish as a shortcut, but most are sweetened with high fructose corn syrup.
  • Fresh herbs– fresh dill is our favorite choice here but fresh parsley, basil, and cilantro are fun too!
  • Optional additions– sweet onion, garlic clove, chives, scallions, etc.

See the recipe card for a detailed ingredient list and measurements.

How to make The Best Tartar Sauce

chopping the tartar sauce ingredients.

Step One- Chop the dill pickles, capers, and dill. Small bits will ensure you get a full flavor burst in every bite. Feel free to add chopped onion or a finely minced garlic clove.

Tartar sauce ingredients in a bowl.

Step Two- Place everything in a bowl and stir all ingredients together. Chill in the refrigerator until ready to serve. If storing for later use, place it in an airtight container or jar in the fridge for up to one week.

Homemade Tatar sauce in a bowl with a wood spoon.

Ways to use Tartar Sauce!

Pair Tartar Sauce with fish and seafood! Think fish and chips, or spoon over crab cakes, Salmon burgers, shrimp, french fries or crispy fish sandwiches!


How long does tartar sauce keep?

Fresh homemade tartar sauce keeps up to one week in the fridge.

What is the origin of Tartar sauce?

Tartar sauce is believed to originate in France in the mid-1800s, as “sauce tartare” named after the Tatars. However, there is some debate about this; some believe it goes back to the Romans.

Is there a difference between tartar and tartar sauce?

Yes, there is a big difference! Tartar refers to ‘cream of tartar,’ a fine white powder (potassium bitartrate) often used in baking to stabilize the whipped egg whites in meringues. Comparatively, Tartar Sauce is a creamy mayonnaise-based condiment most commonly served as a sauce with fish or seafood.

What does tartar sauce taste like?

Tartar sauce is rich, creamy, savory, tangy, lemony herby flavor with crunchy bits of dill pickle.

Can tartar sauce be made vegan?

Yes! Swap out the mayo for vegan mayo- either store-bought or make our vegan mayo!

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Homemade Tartar Sauce is easy to make with a few simple, fresh ingredients- we add capers, fresh dill and crunchy dill pickles for the best flavor. A creamy, tangy condiment, perfect for salmon, fish or seafood!

Tartar Sauce Recipe

  • Author: Tonia | Feasting at Home
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: ⅔ cup 1x
  • Category: condiment, saue
  • Method: stirred
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Gluten Free


Homemade Tartar Sauce is easy to make with a few simple, fresh ingredients- we add capers, dill and fresh dill pickles – a creamy, tangy condiment perfect for salmon, fish or seafood! Vegan-adaptable! 


  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise (or 1/4 cup mayo and 1/4 cup Greek yogurt for a lighter version)
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustusrd
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 or 2 pinches cayenne pepper- optional
  • 1 tablespoon capers, rough chopped (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons dill pickles, finely diced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
  • Optional additions: chopped sweet onion, garlic, chives, scallions, other herbs- basil, parsely, cilantro.


  1. Place all ingredients in a small bowl. 
  2. Stir to combine.  Adjust lemon and salt to taste. 
  3. Chill until ready to use. 


Storage: Tartar sauce will keep up to 1 week in the fridge. 

Vegan: Use vegan mayo, either store south or make our Vegan Mayo.



  • Serving Size: 1 tablespoon
  • Calories: 69
  • Sugar: 0.1 g
  • Sodium: 145.9 mg
  • Fat: 7.5 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.2 g
  • Carbohydrates: 0.2 g
  • Fiber: 0.1 g
  • Protein: 0.1 g
  • Cholesterol: 4.2 mg

Keywords: tarter sauce, tarter sauce origin, how to make tarter sauce, tarter sauce recipe, homemade tarter sauce, tarter sauce recipe with capers, easy tarter sauce, taster sauce recipe dill

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  1. I have an excessive amount of dill in my garden ATM and this recipe is perfect! SOOO good, thank you, Tonya!

  2. Hi. I haven’t tried this yet, but I have avocado mayo and won dered if that woyld work in this recipe?

  3. Did not have any cayenne or capers, so substituted with yuzu hot sauce. Family loved it.

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