McDonalds Tartar Sauce – Copycat Recipe

McDonalds Tartar Sauce is served on their Fish Filet sandwich, but there is no need to ask for extra when you can make it at home.

Homemade McDonald's Tartar sauce and fish filet sandwiches.

There is no need to ask for extra packages of tartar sauce. You can enjoy this simple to prepare tartar sauce at home. This recipe is so easy to make from scratch you will be amazed you ever asked for more when you went to eat at McDonald’s. Don’t worry; you too can unlock this secret recipe.

I don’t know why, but tartar sauce is quite honestly, incredible. It has the perfect amount of tartness, and it is creamy and makes so many things taste better when you pair it with your favorite dishes. Years ago when I was in college, I was a short-order cook at a hole-in-the-wall place. Burgers with tartar sauce were one of my favorite meals to make.

The perfect sauce for a fish sandwich!

This tartar sauce is perfect for fried fish! You may want to your own homemade filet o’ fish at home. All you need is a fried fish fillet, a hamburger bun, a slice of American cheese, and you can all of the extra tartar sauce you want.

McDonalds Tartar Sauce is easy to make at home

This copycat recipe for McDonalds Tartar sauce is super easy to make. You only need mayonnaise, a bit of sugar, some dill pickle relish, and some chopped white onion.

Ingredients to make the McDonalds Tartar sauce copycat recipe.

This tartar sauce tastes perfect on your favorite fish fillets. McDonald’s tartar sauce is the best tartar to make with ingredients you have in your refrigerator. Sure other tartar sauce may be more complicated, you could add some lemon juice and some capers, but this one is perfect just like this.

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Ideally, when you make this recipe, you should allow it to rest for a bit after you make it, and before you use it. The tartar sauce will stay good in your fridge for several days, so it’s ok to make a little extra.

Ingredients for McDonald’s Tartar Sauce

To make this recipe you will need:

  • Mayonnaise – I prefer either Dukes or Hellman’s. Both have a sharp flavor that is perfect for this recipe.
  • Sugar – this adds the perfect amount of sweetness
  • White onion – diced onion is exactly what you want in here. Yellow onion is too hot, so grab a white onion for this recipe.
  • Dill pickle relish – is perfect to bring out the flavor of your fish

Homemade McDonald's Tartar sauce in a small bowl next to fish filet sandwiches.

Do you like McDonald’s recipes? Be sure to check out these copycat recipes

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Homemade McDonald's Tartar sauce and fish filet sandwiches

McDonalds Tartar Sauce - Copycat Recipe

Make McDonald's tartar sauce at home.
5 from 29 votes
Print Pin Rate Add to Collection
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: McDonald's Recipes, Tartar Sauce
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 12
Calories: 129kcal


  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons dill pickle relish
  • 3 teaspoons white onion finely chopped


  • Combine all ingredients in a small bowl.
  • Cover and allow to rest for at least 30 minutes before serving.



Store in an airtight container in your refrigerator.


Calories: 129kcal | Carbohydrates: 0g | Protein: 0g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 127mg | Potassium: 3mg | Sugar: 0g | Vitamin A: 10IU | Calcium: 1mg | Iron: 0mg

About Stephanie Manley

I recreate your favorite restaurant recipes, so you can prepare these dishes at home. I help you cook dinner, and serve up dishes you know your family will love. You can find most of the ingredients for all of the recipes in your local grocery store.

Stephanie is the author of's Dining Out in the Home, and's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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Reader Interactions


  1. Aysegul Sanford

    5 stars
    I’ve always wanted to get a hold of the recipe for this sauce. Can’t wait to put it to some good use. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Jeanne Lewis

    Tartar Sauce

    1 c. mayo (use good brand)
    1 TBS. red onion or (sweet onion)
    1 TBS. capers salted rinse chop
    1 TBS. dill pickle relish (no juice)
    1 tsp. salt
    1 tsp. lemon or (fake lemon juice)
    1 tsp. sugar

    This is the copycat recipe I’ve had for years. It’s great!
    1/2 tsp. pepper

    Mix all ingred. together.
    Put in refer for 1 hour before

    • Karenina

      I read that thyme is a good substitute for capers. How much thyme (fresh or dried) and would you recommend in lieu of the capers? Thank you!

  3. Billy D

    McDonalds Tartar sauce copycat

    1 cup mayonnaise
    1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon sweet dill pickle relish
    1 tablespoon of freeze dried shallots crushed but not to a fine powder
    1/2 teaspoon of Dill extract.
    1/2 teaspoon MSG (Accent)
    sprinkle of Black pepper ground

    This is much more like theirs and I have been using this recipe for last 30 years.
    The secret is the Dill extract it really turns it into the same taste. You can leave out the msg but it really makes it more authentic tasting.

  4. Marilyn Watt

    Do you ever get to Seattle? We have a place called Dicks–who has the best tartar sauce and they use it and chopped lettuce (only) on their middle burger called the “Special”. There are probably 4 of these places, but none across the lake in Bellevue where we live. Every time we go to downtown Seattle–we try to bring back Dicks–great homemade fries, and Specials. We are now nomadic grandparents so spend some time in San Jose, CA and I’d really love to have this recipe so I can get a “Dick’s fix” there.
    Seattle is a beautiful city–you’ll like our mountains after growing up in Montana–and Puget sound and the lakes are stunning–unless it’s winter and dark and raining. Please! Please!

  5. Sylvieann

    Stephanie, thanks for sharing this easy recipe. Don’t use tartar sauce often, so don’t always have it when I need it. Your recipe sounds tasty and easy to make! Sylvieann 🙂

  6. C J Hyatt

    Let me give you a clue. There is no recipe for McDonalds tarter sauce.
    McDonalds tartar sauce is Kraft tartar sauce straight out of the bottle.

  7. pansylu

    Hello Stephanie,

    I truly enjoy reading your recipes. The ones I have made are delicious!

    Thank you

    Keep up the good work

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Yes, you CAN make it at home! 
I'll show you how.