Sardine Pâté

Sardine Pate
Sardine Pâté

After writing my article PÂTÉ: THE REASON FOR IT AT YOUR NEXT PARTY I started making even more than I had before. I guess it is partly because they are so easy and there are so many variations. I’m a firm believer in cooking being an art, so there is nothing wrong with changing the traditional recipes…those will always exist. This sardine pâté is a simple spread made from marinated sardines with a mixture of herbs and spices, and a little bit of mayonnaise, as all pâté have some sort of fat involved.

For this sardine pâté recipe I was inspired by my many trips to Italy where they do something similar with anchovy. Although I’ve yet to go to Sardignia so maybe they make this exact thing there. simply took some sardines marinated in lemon juice and olive oil and mashed it together with a bit of mayonnaise until it formed a paste. This can be easily spread on a nice crusty french bread, or used as a dip for crackers. As tacky as it sounds, I am a big fan of Ritz Crackers.

As with most of my dips, I prefer to serve them in ramekins as they are a perfect size and the bright colors look great on a spread. The ramekin featured in the picture is my Emile Henry 8.5oz Burgundy Red.

Sardine Pâté Ingredients:

100 grams Sardines; packed in olive oil is fine, or fresh and cleaned is even better.

1/2 Lemon

1 tbsp Olive Oil; you can leave this out if you are using canned sardines. In that case just use the olive oil they were packed with

1 tbsp Mayonnaise; store-bought is fine but it’s just as easy to make homemade using this recipe

Salt and Pepper; to taste

Sardine Pâté Instructions:

1. Using fresh sardines (or canned, just don’t need to clean them), clean the fish from the backbone and insides and let marinate in the juice of half a lemon for a half hour.

2. In a wooden bowl add the sardines plus lemon juice marinade, the olive oil, mayonnaise, salt and pepper. Mash everything up using two forks until a paste begins to form. If it is too runny you can press some of the liquid out and discard. Taste and adjust seasonings of salt and pepper. Serve with crackers, crusty french bread, or beautiful homemade foccacia.


I’m really not a stickler when it comes to using fresh vs canned sardines. I understand how difficult they are to get fresh if you don’t live by a coastal city in the Mediterranean so just use whatever you can find. I’d rather use canned than frozen and defrosted anyway.

Pate of sardines with crackers

Sardine Pâté

5 from 1 vote
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Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: European
Keyword: Sardine Pate
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