Being Mrs. Pierce

Life as a wife, hiker, wanna-be chef, book-lover, traveler, and now, mom

Garden Tuna Melt (New Recipe #59) August 2, 2013



A friend gave me a copy of Ellie Krieger’s Comfort Food Fix cookbook a while back. Despite being an enthusiastic fan of Ellie Krieger, the cookbook sat on my bookshelf, unused, for months. Last week, I spontaneously added it to my stack of books to take to Menard with the hope that I would finally sit down with it and give it the attention it deserved. Luckily, I did just that during my visit with my in-laws, and I find myself fired up to try a host of new Ellie Krieger recipes now that I am back home.


First on the list: the Garden Tuna Melt. I must thank my husband, John, for getting me interested in tuna melts. He occasionally orders them in restaurants, and every time he does I find them surprisingly appetizing. Ellie Krieger’s tuna melt recipe was interesting to me because of the addition of vegetables to the tuna mixture. It also was a relatively simple recipe, which I decided last night would be an ideal one to try after a day of car travel.


The recipe calls for very little mayonnaise (and an even smaller amount of Dijon mustard), so the tuna mixture was not very creamy, as seen below. Next time, I plan to up the mayo/mustard slightly in order to achieve a creamier texture.



For my tuna melt, I followed the recipe exactly. For John’s, I doubled the amount of cheese and added a top slice of toast, making his a true sandwich. We both liked the tuna melts; I gave mine 3 stars and John gave his 3.5 stars (the more cheese, the better, apparently). The fresh parsley is a must in the recipe, as it provided a burst of fresh flavor in each bite.


Garden Tuna Melt

Two 6-oz cans or pouches light tuna in water, drained
2 cups lightly packed fresh baby spinach leaves, finely chopped (2 oz)
1 medium red bell pepper, seeded and finely diced (about 1 cup)
1 medium carrot, shredded (about 1 cup)
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
3 TB mayonnaise
1 TB Dijon mustard
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
4 slices whole-wheat bread
4 thin slices extra-sharp cheddar cheese (2 oz total)

1. Preheat the oven to 325°F.

2. In a medium bowl, combine the tuna, spinach, bell pepper, carrot, parsley, mayonnaise, mustard, and black pepper. Place the bread on a baking sheet, divide the tuna mixture among the 4 pieces of bread, and top each with a slice of cheese.

3. Bake until the cheese melts and the edges of the bread are toasted, 6 to 8 minutes.

Yield: 4 servings. Per serving, 7 PointsPlus.