Zesty Sardine Toast with Capers and Herbs

Just mentioning sardines will get a cringed-face reaction. I’m here to hopefully change that response. These little fish come with a long list of reasons why you should be eating them. They are shelf-stable, inexpensive, sustainable, packed with protein, rich in omega-3 fatty acids, a good source of calcium and they can help you get dinner on the table in under 10 minutes. Still not convinced? Give this recipe a try to see if it will win you over. Here are a few suggestions when using sardines. Sardines love herbs, lemon, olive oil, mustard and onion. Adding these ingredients will mellow their flavor. Try different brands of sardines. Not all tins are created equal. Buying skinless, boneless sardines will have a less fishy flavor. For this recipe, I’m mixing together many of the above listed ingredients as a topping for a piece of olive oil toasted whole grain bread for one of the fastest, healthiest meals you’ll ever make. Serve it for breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack.

Zesty Sardine Toast with Capers and Herbs


4 slices whole grain bread

8 teaspoons olive oil, divided

4 ounce can olive oil packed sardines, drained

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon red wine or white vinegar

2 tablespoons capers

3 tablespoons finely chopped red onion

1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint, basil or parsley

1 garlic clove, halved


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Brush each bread slice with 1 teaspoon of olive oil (4 teaspoons for 4 slices of bread). Place bread on a baking sheet and bake in the oven until toasted.
  2. In a medium bowl, add sardines, lemon juice, and vinegar. Mash with a fork to break up the sardines. Add capers, onion, and mint. Mix until combined.
  3. When bread is toasted, rub one side with cut half of the garlic clove. Top each slice with a heaping 1 tablespoon of the sardine mixture.
  4. Drizzle each slice with remaining olive oil, I teaspoon of olive oil per slice.

Recipe adapted from The Mediterranean Diet Cookbook for Beginners by Elena Paravantes, RDN


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