What You Can Use Instead Of Celery In Tuna Salad

Celery might be one of the most underappreciated members of the vegetable family. While it has a nice, refreshing crunch, many people find it bland and boring, the type of "diet" food that gives low-calorie vegetables a bad name. Naturally, too, this is just one of the mistakes everyone makes with celery. However, celery isn't simply a big, low-calorie stalk of nothingness. While it is a low-calorie food, delivering just 14 calories in a single cup, it is also a great source of fiber and essential antioxidants, including vitamin C and flavonoids, which have been shown to help reduce the risk of cancer, according to WebMD. Eating celery has also been linked to lowering blood pressure, aiding in weight loss, and improving one's digestion.

And while it might not deliver as rich or strong a flavor as more superstar vegetables like peppers or ripe tomatoes, there are still few things more satisfying than breaking into a crisp, crunchy stalk of fresh celery. This makes it an essential ingredient for dishes like tuna salad, which are enhanced by the added texture — not to mention it is an easy way to slip some extra veggies into your diet and enjoy all those additional health benefits.

Celery can be replaced with a number of crunchy vegetables

For those who are truly opposed to celery, or simply don't want to have to buy a whole stalk of celery for just one recipe, there are plenty of other ways to deliver that tasty crunch to your homemade tuna salad. In fact, just about any other fresh, crisp vegetable will do. Kristine's Kitchen Blog recommends adding slices of carrots, chopped cucumber, or bell peppers to achieve that crunch, along with an extra punch of flavor. 

If you want to make your tuna salad extra crunchy, a combination of carrots, onions, and minced fennel can add a little something special. And if you are not looking to just make your grandmother's tuna salad, cilantro, lime juice, minced red peppers, and minced jalapeño peppers deliver a tasty kick of both texture and heat (via Simply Recipes).

But if the only thing holding you back from adding the celery to your tuna salad is the worry that whatever you don't use will go to waste, there are plenty of other yummy ways to utilize celery in other dishes. It can also be made into a hearty vegetable stew, braised and served as the main course, or even blended and used as a base ingredient in your new favorite cocktail (via Epicurious). 

Ultimately, these are just a few of the best celery substitutes, but there is no shortage of ways to use up that whole stalk of fresh, healthy celery if you have some left over after preparing your tuna salad.