Fish Salad

Healthier Open Faced Tuna Melts

Tuna Melt_1 on Whisk Together

My favorite sandwich at Panera/St. Louis Bread Company is the tuna salad sandwich.  Eating out just seems to be getting more and more expensive especially with both kids now eating their own kids’ meals.  $4.50 for a PB&J anyone?  Soo… I started going back to one of my favorite cookbooks:  Comfort Food Makeovers by America’s Test Kitchen and had ALL the ingredients at home.

BEFORE:  calories – 610; fat – 45 grams; saturated fat – 10

NOW: calories – 320; fat – 13 – saturated fat – 5

Mine probably has even fewer calories because I used whole grain sandwich bread instead of rustic bread.  Use whatever you like!

*Random fact I learned about bread making*:  I’ve been making bread dough in the bread machine for several years now because… well, I’m lazy, I like the time to do other things and I don’t like getting my hands messy all the time.  Apparently, my laziness is a good thing!  After studies done with different breads made different ways (hand kneading, electric mixer, etc.), the BEST way to knead bread is in the bread machine!  No joke!  Hey, the company has been making bread flour for like 200 years… they know their stuff.  The gluten formation is best in the bread machine and the baked bread has a better texture when made in the machine.  Now maybe you have a good excuse to get one if you don’t have one 😉

Open-Faced Tuna Melt
serves 4

4 – 1″ thick slices of rustic bread (or whole grain sandwich bread)
15 oz. of solid white tuna packed in water, drained and flaked (canned or in foil package)
1/3 cup light mayonnaise
1 celery rib, minced
1/4 cup minced red onion (or omit, or place on top in slices with the tomato if some people don’t like it)
2 Tb. minced fresh parsley (or 1 tsp. dried parsley)
1 Tb. lemon juice
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 garlic clove, minced
salt and pepper
1 tomato, cored and cut thin
8 slices of reduced fat American cheese (I used 1 slice in the photo)

1.  Oven method:  Heat oven to 450 degrees and line a sheet with foil.  Toast your bread on both sides (8 minutes in the oven).
No Oven method:   Toast your bread in the toaster oven or toaster if it will fit.

2.  In a big bowl:  mix your tuna, mayo, celery, red onion, parsley, lemon juice, mustard, garlic, salt and pepper.  Divide the mixture between the 4 slices of bread.  Spread on top.

3.  Place two thin slices of tomato on top of the tuna.

4.  Place two slices of cheese on top of the tomato.

5.  Oven method:  bake until melted (about 5-10 minutes)
No Oven method:  broil in the toaster oven.  Or you could microwave… but it would make the bread soggy.  Or just turn your oven onto broil for a few minutes with the oven door open  A few minutes on broil shouldn’t heat up the house too much.

Recipe adapted from Comfort Foods by America’s Test Kitchen

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