McDonald’s Tartar Sauce Copycat Recipe (Photos + Video)

A sauce can elevate any recipe in a trice. McDonald’s tartar sauce is one of those sauces paired with the signature McDonald’s filet-o-fish, fried snacks, and even nuggets. This special sauce adds a unique twist to the Filet-O-Fish, elevating its taste to a new level.

How to Make McDonald's Tartar Sauce at Home

Now, the exciting news is that by following a simple recipe, you can recreate this McDonald’s Tartar Sauce at home! Gather some mayonnaise, chopped pickles, lemon juice, and a pinch of salt, and you’re ready to go. Mix the ingredients until well combined, and voila!

If you ace this quick and easy tartar sauce recipe, you can explore other McDonald’s menu items to unleash your inner chef. You can incorporate all the restaurant-style recipes at home in no time. 

See the ingredients, equipment, nutritional facts, step-by-step instructions with images and a video, and other facts in the article below. Before you proceed, check out our other copycat recipes below.

Tartar Sauce Recipe

Where Was Tartar Sauce Originated?

The name “tartar” is derived from the tartars, a nomadic Turkic people who inhabited parts of Eurasia. In the 19th century, tartar sauce also gained popularity in France, where it was commonly served with fish dishes.

Moreover, it also spread to other European countries and eventually became a staple condiment in seafood cuisine worldwide. It’s worth noting that different regions have variations of tartar sauce, each with its unique blend of spices and flavors.  

If you like McDonald’s, then I recommend you to check out the origin of McDonald’s too.

Is Big Mac Sauce The Same As Tartar Sauce?

No, the big mac sauce and tartar sauce are two different sauces. The big mac sauce and tartar sauce are two different sauces with distinct flavors and purposes.

Big Mac sauce is a sauce created by McDonald’s mainly for their big mac hamburgers. It is made with mayonnaise, mustard, relish, vinegar, and spices. 

On the other hand, tartar sauce is a sauce associated with seafood dishes. It is made with mayonnaise or aioli mixed with pickles, capers, onions, herbs, and lemon juice. 

While big mac sauce is served to enhance the taste of McDonald’s big mac burgers, tartar sauce is in the infamous Filet-O-Fish sandwich.

Filet O Fish Tartar Sauce

Is McDonald’s Tartar Sauce Different From Normal Tartar Sauce?

Yes, McDonald’s tartar sauce differs from the regular tartar sauce you find elsewhere. While the basic concept of tartar sauce remains the same, McDonald’s has its unique recipe and flavor profile. 

McDonald’s tartar sauce is specially created to complement their filet-o-fish sandwich.

In terms of taste, McDonald’s tartar sauce is more creamy and tangy than the regular tartar sauce. You can add more variations to make the traditional tartar sauce. 

What Equipment Will You Need To Make McDonald’s Tartar Sauce?

  • Bowl – Whisk and combine all the components in a bowl.
  • Knife – Chop the onions and parsley using a knife.
  • Spoon – Use a spoon or a whisk to combine all the elements.

What Is McDonald’s Tartar Sauce Made Of?

  • Mayonnaise – Take half a cup of mayonnaise as the base of tartar sauce.
  • Relish Dill Pickles – Add a few chopped dill pickles. It will bring out the spice to the tartar sauce.
  • Capers – Capers will bring out lemony and minty flavors to the tartar sauce.
  • Onions – Chopped onions will add a savory blend to the tartar sauce.
  • Dried Parsley – Bring out an aromatic blend with parsley flakes.
  • Sugar – Just a pinch of sugar will balance the spicy flavors.
  • Lemon Juice – Make your tartar sauce zesty by adding a teaspoon of lemon juice.
McDonald's Tartar Sauce Ingredients

Ingredients Substitutions For McDonald’s Tartar Sauce

  • Mayonnaise – The base of tartar sauce is made with mayonnaise. However, if you don’t have mayonnaise, you can swap it with Greek yogurt or sour cream. 
  • Pickles – McDonald’s tartar sauce is generally made with pickles. You can substitute the pickles with vinegar, cucumber, or relish. The taste won’t be affected at all. 
  • Seasoning – Tartar sauce recipes include garlic powder, dill pickles, and lemon juice. You can swap the herbs and spices as per your taste preference. A dash of cumin can replace the garlic powder, and a teaspoon of vinegar can substitute for lemon juice. 

How Much Time Will You Need To Make McDonald’s Tartar Sauce?

Preparation Time Cooking Time Total Time
5 Minutes 5 Minutes

McDonald’s Tartar Sauce Recipe Steps With Images

McDonald's Tartar Sauce Step 1

Step 1- Take a bowl and add mayonnaise to it.

McDonald's Tartar Sauce Step 2

Step 2- Then, add onions, relish, and capers to the bowl.

McDonald's Tartar Sauce Step 3

Step 3- Further add dried parsley, sugar, and lemon juice to the tartar sauce mixture.

McDonald's Tartar Sauce is ready

Step 4- Finally stir everything together until well incorporated and serve to enjoy.

McDonald’s Tartar Sauce Recipe Video

Here is the recipe video of the McDonald’s tartar sauce recipe that we’ve made in our kitchen.

Tips To Make This Tartar Sauce Better

Follow some essential tips to make a better version of McDonald’s tartar sauce at home. 

  • Consistency – Adjust the consistency of tartar sauce as per your preference. You can make this sauce thick by adding less lemon juice. Just make sure the sauce is thick enough and sloppy.  
  • Ingredients – Chop the onions, chives, or parsley nicely to avoid lumps in the sauce. Stir in all the elements properly to achieve the desired creamy consistency. 
  • Refrigerate – When you prepare the tartar sauce, allow it to sit for some time to infuse all the flavors evenly. Once you let the sauce sit before serving, the flavors meld together nicely for tastier results. 
McDonald's Tartar Sauce

How Will McDonald’s Tartar Sauce Look & Taste Like?

McDonald’s Tartar sauce is sweet, creamy, and flavorful sauce served with fried snacks and nuggets.

The flavors are infused evenly. Moreover, the sauce tastes amazingly delicious with a thick and creamy texture. This is due to the presence of mayonnaise in this sauce.

McDonald’s Tartar Sauce Nutritional Values

Calories 140 kcal
Fat 15 g
Sodium 1540 g
Cholesterol 10 mg
Dietary Fiber 1.9 g
Carbohydrates 1.6 g

If you are a health-conscious person, then I highly recommend you check the nutritional values of different McDonald’s foods and why McDonald’s food is not a good food option for all of us.

What Can You Eat With This Tartar Sauce?

Tartar sauce is a versatile sauce that is well-paired with an assortment of dishes, especially seafood. Check out some popular options that can be paired with tartar sauce. 

  • Fish – Tartar sauce is a classic accompaniment to fish. Be it grilled, fried, or baked fish, the tartar sauce compliments each type. The creamy and tangy flavors amp up the flavor of most seafood dishes like crab, shrimp, lobster, and calamari. 
  • Burgers – Spreading the creamy layers on each burger bun will create a juicy and fantastic blend of flavors. The burgers will taste even better with tartar sauce. 
  • Chicken – Tartar sauce can add flavor when paired with grilled or baked chicken. People often use tartar as a dipping sauce for chicken nuggets, tenders, and wings. 
  • French Fries – Another option to serve homemade tartar sauce with is French fries. The fries are best complemented with creamy, zesty, and rich tartar sauce. 
Delicious Tartar Sauce

How To Store McDonald’s Tartar Sauce Properly?

Homemade sauces have a shorter shelf life when compared to store-bought as it does not include preservatives. So check out the easy and quick ways to store tartar sauce correctly below. 

  1. Refrigerate – After making a batch of tartar sauce at home, saving it for later use is essential. Pour the sauce into an airtight container and place it in the refrigerator. It can be used for up to a week if stored right. 
  2. Airtight Container – You can also store the tartar sauce in an airtight container without refrigeration. It will be fresh for 2-3 days. Just make sure to close the lid of the container properly. 
  3. Freezing – If you wish to expand the shelf life of homemade tartar sauce, then transfer the sauce to the freezer-safe container. Freezing will help you to store the homemade tartar sauce for up to 2 months.

Other McDonald’s Recipes You Can Try

McDonald’s tartar sauce is not only offered on McDonald’s menu. The restaurant has a long list of sauces available that people love.

The list includes McDonald’s Habanero Sauce Recipe, McDonald’s Szechuan Sauce, McDonald’s Honey Mustard Sauce, McDonald’s Hot Mustard Sauce, and McDonald’s Sweet And Sour Sauce. Click on these recipes to get a complete recipe that we have covered. 

Also for all McDonald’s fans, we have a separate blog post that covers all the McDonald’s recipes. So do check out it as well.

Printable Version

How to Make McDonald's Tartar Sauce at Home

McDonald’s Tartar Sauce Copycat Recipe

Tartar sauce is one of those sauces that I love to have with my McDonald's snacks like nuggets or fish and chips. So check out how you can clone McDonald's tartar sauce at your home.
4.67 from 6 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Course copycat
Cuisine American
Servings 2
Calories 140 kcal


  • Bowl
  • Knife
  • Spoon


  • ½ cup Mayonnaise
  • 1 ½ teaspoon Capers
  • 3 ½ tablespoon Relish Dill Pickle
  • 2 tablespoon Chopped Onion
  • ½ teaspoon Sugar
  • ½ teaspoon Dried Parsley
  • teaspoon Lemon Juice


  • Take a bowl and add mayonnaise to it.
    McDonald's Tartar Sauce Step 1
  • Then, add onions, relish, and capers to the bowl.
    McDonald's Tartar Sauce Step 2
  • Further add dried parsley, sugar, and lemon juice to the tartar sauce mixture.
    McDonald's Tartar Sauce Step 3
  • Finally stir everything together until well incorporated and serve to enjoy.
    McDonald's Tartar Sauce is ready



Calories: 140kcal | Carbohydrates: 1.6g | Fat: 15g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 1540mg | Fiber: 1.9g
Keyword American, McDonald’s Tartar Sauce
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is Mcdonald’s tartar sauce made of?

McDonald’s tartar sauce is prepared by adding onions, pickles, capers, parsley, lemon juice, mayonnaise, and sugar.

Is cream of tartar unhealthy?

The creamy tartar sauce is not at all unhealthy. It is prepared with nutritious and flavorful elements. However, consuming in excess quantity may lead to negative consequences.

Did McDonald’s change tartar sauce?

The traditional McDonald’s tartar sauce is swa[pped with spicy wasabi sauce.

What exactly is the cream of tartar?

Tartar sauce doesn’t contain any tartar cream. The cream added in the tartar sauce is the mayonnaise base.

Make and save this sauce for serving with snacks or whatever you like. We’re eagerly waiting for your suggestions and experience in the comment section below. Also, don’t’ hesitate in asking any queries, I’ll try to help with any doubts you might have. Till then, happy eating!

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