Tuna Melt, A True American Classic

When I see Tuna Melt on the menu, I immediately think of a 1950’s roadside diner, a mom and pop, jukebox joint where Salisbury Steak and Open Face Sandwiches are also featured on the menu. In my book, a Tuna Melt is a true ‘retro’ recipe therefore a True American Classic.

tuna melt


Simple Ingredients

A few simple ingredients can turn a pouch or can of tuna into a satisfying and affordable meal. For this recipe I combined two pouches of lemon-pepper tuna, a few tablespoons of mayonnaise or salad dressing and dried dill weed. Lightly toasted English muffins are topped with the tuna mixture. Now I know many people will say this isn’t a true classic, ‘retro’ tuna melt because I didn’t top the tuna with an American cheese slice. Shame on me.

American Cheese

I decided not to top my tuna melt with American cheese slices because I really don’t care for them. Maybe it’s because I live in Wisconsin, America’s Dairyland, and I know what good cheese is and the many varieties of cheese that are out there but American cheese slices seem rather waxy and rubbery to me. Now in a pinch I have used American cheese slices before.

Each Has a Purpose

For this recipe American cheese slices work nicely, plus my hubby loves American cheese. They do make a nice grilled cheese sandwich but over all I prefer not to use American cheese slices. Don’t get me wrong, I like and use cheese whiz, Velveeta cheese and processed cheese slices but each has its own specific recipe and purpose.

tuna melt

Tuna Melt

A True Classic
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  • 2 English muffins, split and toasted
  • 2 2.6 oz pouches lemon-pepper tuna
  • 2-4 tablespoon mayonnaise or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill weed
  • 1 cup shredded or sliced sharp cheddar cheese


  • Preheat broiler and set the rack about 4 to 5 inches from the heat source.
  • In a medium bowl, stir together lemon-pepper tuna, mayonnaise and dried dill. Set aside.
  • Place toasted muffins on a baking sheet.
  • Spread tuna mixture on toasted muffins. Place cheese on top.
  • Place baking sheet under broiler and broil for 3 to 5 minutes or until cheese has melted.
  • Serve immediately.


Serving: 1g, Calories: 230kcal, Carbohydrates: 14g, Protein: 9g, Fat: 15g, Saturated Fat: 7g, Cholesterol: 33mg, Sodium: 353mg, Potassium: 65mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 300IU, Calcium: 223mg, Iron: 0.6mg
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tuna melt
For this recipe we used: Chicken of the Sea Tuna
Here is another tuna classic: Tuna Noodle Casserole