Ever find yourself craving warm delicious comfort food, without all the calories? And how often is comfort food actually healthy for you? My toasted tuna sandwiches are both satisfying and nutritious! I can’t wait to share the recipe with you!
The warm comfort part of this recipe is the bread. I absolutely love a fresh French baguette. You can pair it with simple butter and it’ll still taste exquisite. But what’s most important is the freshness. When you make toasted tuna sandwiches, be sure the bread is freshly baked. It’ll make all the difference.
Of course there’s no right or wrong bread to use when it comes to tuna melts, there are only preferences and favorites. You can explore tons of varieties. French baguette, sourdough, garlic bread, and even plain sliced white bread will work perfectly.
Buying your fresh breads from local bakeries is not only a great way to support small businesses in your area, but it’ll ensure you receive the absolute freshest bread possible. Most successful and famous sandwich joints always receive fresh buns and bread from local bakeries daily, sometimes even multiple times per day. Either that or they bake the bread fresh at their shop. That’s why their sandwiches are always so delicious. And you can truly taste the difference.
Buuuuut…we know bread has carbs, lots of carbs. And that’s why bread is the “comfort food” part of this recipe. The other part, and the most nutritious and healthy part is the tuna! Tuna fish is just bursting with health benefits galore!
Research and doctors recommend consuming fish at least twice weekly. Specifically recommended are fish that are high in omega 3 fatty acids. And tuna happens to be abundant with omega 3 fatty acids. What are omega 3 fatty acids? These oils are essential nutrients that manage and even prevent heart disease!
These omega 3 fatty acids provide better blood flow through arteries by reducing bad cholesterol. The better flow in arteries, the better the pump of the heart. These fish oils also reduce blood pressure as they are full of potassium.
Tuna is also rich in antioxidants such as zinc, manganese, selenium, and vitamin C. Antioxidants are important for consumption because they fight and block free radicals. Free radicals are cancer causing molecules, that are also responsible for other serious illnesses.
Research even suggests tuna is equally, if not more effective than certain medications in preventing and treating depression. Tuna fish is full of vitamins, antioxidants, and essential nutrients our bodies need and eating tuna multiple times per week actually boosts our mood and energy levels.
Protein is one of tuna’s most desirable health benefits. Since it is so abundant in protein, and low in fat, tuna becomes an essential meal for those that are building muscle and wanting to lose fat. And speaking of losing fat, not only does tuna increase the metabolism, but the abundance of fatty acids actually reduces the leptin, the hunger hormone.
For more tuna fish facts and benefits, and 3 delicious recipes for tuna salad, check out 3 Ways To Make Tuna Salad. And we’re actually going to be using a tuna salad recipe similar to one of the recipes from 3 Ways To Make Tuna Salad in our tuna melts!
What You Need:
2 cans tuna
1 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1 cup slivered almonds
1 cup dried cranberries or cherries
2 tbsp chopped fresh dill
1 tbsp salt
1 tsp pepper
3/4 cup mayonnaise (or light mayonnaise)
6 slices havarti cheese
2 fresh French baguettes
1 stick butter (for buttering bread)
In a bowl, combine tuna, celery, red onion, dill, salt, pepper, and mayonnaise. Fold in dried cranberries, dried cherries, or raisins and slivered almonds. Chill the tuna mixture in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes and allow the flavors to “marry”.
Heat up a griddle, or a large flat pan. Slice baguettes in half lengthwise and use a stick of butter to butter the inside of the bread. Place buttered open baguette down into the griddle as toast. Once baguettes are toasted, add the havarti cheese slices to one half, and the tuna salad to the other half. Cover and allow the cheese in the sandwiches to melt.
A “melt” type of sandwich is one that contains some type of filling, in this case tuna, topped with cheese, and toasted. These sandwiches can be closed or they can be open faced sandwiches. If you’re watching your carb intake, you can opt for an open faced version of these tuna melt sandwiches.
There are also no rules on extra toppings for these beauties. Sliced tomatoes are amazing on these tuna melts, as are tangy pepperoncini peppers. Add avocado, bacon, even eggs for an even bigger protein punch!
Cut the baguettes into small tuna melt sandwiches. Serve immediately and enjoy!