22 Best Tuna Recipes

Canned tuna has to be one of the most versatile, tasty, and nutritious pantry staples you always have at hand. Fresh tuna is also a great weeknight protein that feels healthy, light, and yet somehow as decadent as a steak. And a salad topped with sushi-grade tuna is the bomb. It's so easy to write off tuna as a basic ingredient that needs nothing more than a dollop of mayo and some salt and pepper. However, there's more to tuna than this basic approach, and it works in an incredible variety of recipes if you broaden your horizons a little. You can make a comfort-food casserole as well as a fresh-tasting, citrusy poke, plus many different salads. 

Here are some of our best tuna recipes using both canned and fresh tuna. You'll never be stuck trying to figure out what to do with this fish again, and what's great is so many of these recipes are customizable to your taste.

1. Tuna Salad

Tuna salad is perhaps the most classic dish of all time made with this fish. It's a great idea to dice a red onion and a stick of celery and add these to tuna with a creamy mayonnaise bringing the ingredients together. Crispy fried onions elevate this salad, as do pickles. And don't forget to season with salt and pepper to enhance the flavors. This tastes so good simply spread between two slices of wholegrain bread.

Recipe: Tuna Salad

2. Basic Tuna Salad

Basic doesn't mean that this tuna salad lacks flavor. Ingredients are important here, so don't just grab any old can of tuna, but use a tin of albacore white tuna. Instead of rough-chopping the other ingredients, you should finely mince the onion, carrot, and celery. Leave out the vinegar if you don't want a salad with a bite, and while mayo creates a creamy texture, the tuna is soft enough without it. If you do add mayonnaise, do so one spoonful at a time to get the right consistency. 

Recipe: Basic Tuna Salad

3. Classic Tuna Salad

To make the star ingredient of this salad shine, you need what might be some unlikely supporting ingredients that sparkle too. You'll never guess what you add to this recipe: It's golden raisins and diced dill pickles. Talk about adding flavor. A more classic pairing is also added with some diced red onion, and this wouldn't be a classic tuna salad without a creamy sauce. Combine mayo with Dijon mustard to create some tangy creaminess and make the salad spreadable too. It tastes so good with crackers, on toast, or with lettuce leaves. 

Recipe: Classic Tuna Salad

4. Simple Tuna Salad Sandwich

Many home cooks make the mistake of thinking that if they are only making a simple sandwich they don't have to consider taste and texture so much. The simpler the recipe, however, the more important it is to get the few ingredients you use just right. Tuna, red onion, celery, and mayo go superbly together to create a salad that's delicious as a sandwich filling. Dice the veggies smaller if you don't want the texture to be chunky. And do add lemon pepper and Dijon mustard to bring out some zinginess.

Recipe: Simple Tuna Salad Sandwich

5. Easy Tuna Steak

Frequently, the longer you marinate meat the better it tastes. This isn't the case for this tuna steak recipe, however. Any longer than an hour in the fridge and the fish will start to cook in the lemon juice. But don't skip the marinade altogether as the taste of soy sauce, honey, sesame oil, garlic, and bagel seasoning takes a simple dish to a whole other level of flavor. Sprinkle on sesame seeds and green onions before serving. The steak pairs well with rich greens like broccoli, kale, or spinach. 

Recipe: Easy Tuna Steak

6. Simple Tuna Melt

This recipe is a grilled cheese sandwich with a twist or a tuna sandwich with a twist. Either way, the combination of melted slices of provolone cheese and a creamy tuna mixture is a winner. If you want to up the creaminess, add a touch more mayonnaise to the tuna, red onion, and celery. Squashed between slices of thick bread, the thought of the cheese melting into the tuna as the outside browns and crisps up is enough to make you want to grab a skillet right now and make this classic dish.

Recipe: Simple Tuna Melt

7. Copycat Jimmy John's Tuna Salad

Tuna fish is soft and flavorful, mayo is luxuriously creamy, and celery is super crunchy. What gives this super salad an umami blast is the salty soy sauce. Serve this salad how you like, either with big green lettuce leaves or with a side of veggies. You can also enjoy it in a sandwich or a pita as well as with some rice. The key to ensuring that this recipe tastes fresh and not soggy is making sure you drain the canned tuna properly. 

Recipe: Copycat Jimmy John's Tuna Salad

8. Seared Ahi Tuna

Less is more when you sear ahi tuna steaks, as the quality of the seafood is what stands out. You can also use bluefin tuna for this recipe. Since there's no marinade in this recipe, the flavor comes from the rub. For this dish, add salt and garlic powder to the raw steaks before frying. However, you can customize this. You might want to add smoked paprika or onion powder, for example. Use untoasted sesame oil to cook the fish for a nutty, earthy taste, as the smoke point of the toasted version is too low. 

Recipe: Seared Ahi Tuna

9. Healthy Tuna Wrap

You don't want to cook, and you've got limited time to make a light yet tasty lunch. If you don't know it already, the flour tortilla wrap is your friend. You can literally add any filling you like, but what you're definitely going to love about this recipe is the balanced combination of flavors and textures. The romaine lettuce adds some crunch and taste, while the tuna is a healthy, flavorful protein and the Greek yogurt and red onion bring some tanginess to the table. Fried onions are an absolute must for crispiness. 

Recipe: Healthy Tuna Wrap

10. Tuna Casserole

Golden breadcrumbs fried in melted butter add a crunchy topping to this creamy casserole. Mozzarella gives this tuna bake a wonderfully stretchy-cheese texture, and you don't just mix it into the sauce. You also add it to the top of the dish to create a classic, oh-so-good browned-cheese topping that enhances the tastiness. The peas add flashes of brilliant green and the tuna turns this into a fabulous comfort food recipe. What's more, it's destined to become a weekday favorite as it's so easy to make. 

Recipe: Tuna Casserole

11. Seared Ahi Tuna Salad

Seared ahi tuna is the star of this Asian-inspired gem of a dish that's flavorful and delicate. Pair strips of barely-cooked tuna with mixed greens, slivers of refreshing cucumber, and slices of creamy avocado for a fresh, summery plate. A honey, sesame oil, and ginger dressing adds a divine taste that's both sweet and salty. What's vital with this recipe is that you cut the tuna strips against the grain. To do so, make sure you're cutting across the natural lines of the fish. That way, you'll get the tenderest texture. 

Recipe: Seared Ahi Tuna Salad

12. Gordon Ramsay's Tuna Tartare

Only sushi-grade tuna is suitable for this recipe, and it's the quality of the ingredients that really counts. You also need to make sure that each cube of tuna isn't too mushy. A great tip is to half-freeze the fish so that it hardens a little and you can cut it more easily without it disintegrating. The trick then is to pair the high-end tuna with classic Asian flavors: soy sauce, mango, fresh ginger, sesame oil, and chili garlic sauce. Serve with fried wonton wrapper halves for a crispy cracker. 

Recipe: Gordon Ramsay's Tuna Tartare

13. Pan-Fried Tuna Patties

When it's burger season (isn't that all year round?) and you don't want to forgo the taste of seafood, you can make these moreish tuna patties instead. While the fish is more delicate than beef, the flavor is robust with Dijon mustard, green onions, and Sriracha adding some kick. If you don't have a hamburger press then simply shape them with your hands. Don't fry them at too high a temperature as you want to cook them through without them browning too much. Serve them with crisp lettuce, fries, or rice. 

Recipe: Pan-Fried Tuna Patties

14. Easy Tuna Casserole Anyone Can Make For Dinner

Don't you just love a bake you can throw in the oven? This tuna casserole is a dream for home cooks who want an easy kitchen life. Cream of mushroom soup, Greek yogurt, and cheddar cheese give this dish a creamy taste and texture that pairs well with flakes of tinned tuna. Don't miss out on the red pepper flakes as they cut the creaminess. Velvety noodles with crunchy fried onions on top are so good. 

Recipe: Easy Tuna Casserole Anyone Can Make For Dinner

15. Bobby Flay's Tuna Steak

Grilling tuna steak is much the same as grilling entrecote — you want to get your grill nice and hot. It's so good cooked rare or medium-rare, and you should always rest a steak for 5-10 minutes off the heat before serving. If the tuna is sticking to the grill let it cook a little longer. The pickled red onion with cinnamon-infused oil, mango, and chili flakes plus fresh mint and parsley makes a refreshing salsa that transforms an appetizing piece of fish into a spectacular dish packed with punchy flavors. 

Recipe: Bobby Flay's Tuna Steak

16. Mediterranean Tuna Pasta

The mildness of albacore tuna gives this splendid lunchtime pasta a delicate taste so that the flavors of the Mediterranean-style ingredients can truly zing. These include Roma tomatoes, parsley, capers, olive oil, Parmesan cheese, and lemon juice. While this recipe tosses the ingredients with rigatoni, you can also use penne or some other short pasta. The only cooking you have to do is to boil some water so that you can make the al dente pasta. You can boost the flavor with chili flakes and bacon bits. 

Recipe: Mediterranean Tuna Pasta

17. Passionfruit-Marinated Tuna Poke

Celebrate summer days with a dish inspired by islands in the sun. Hawaiian poke is totally tropical with passionfruit, avocado, and mango elevating the melt-in-the-mouth softness of sushi-grade tuna. To really brighten the taste even more, don't forget to add a spritz of lime juice and soy sauce. However, tempted you are to dig in, let the flavors come together by refrigerating for at least 30 minutes. Add to the terrific taste with a drizzle of honey if you like or some rice wine vinegar. Serve as is or with rice or salad.

Recipe: Passionfruit-Marinated Tuna Poke

18. Poke Nachos

Aloha to an exceptional recipe made with fresh, sushi-grade ahi tuna that's fun, inventive, and tastes incredible. This is one stunning sharing dish that promises to wow. The nachos are fried wonton wrappers, and in place of the classic toppings of salsa, guac, and sour cream you add seaweed salad, cubes of tuna, and a Korean sauce with mayo. Japanese seasoning, serrano pepper, eel sauce or teriyaki glaze, cilantro, and green onions finish off this culinary creation. Serve and eat straightaway before the chips get soggy and while the tuna is at its freshest. 

Recipe: Poke Nachos

19. Easy Spicy Tuna Sushi Roll

Flakes of canned tuna in a Sriracha mayo with rice vinegar, scallions, and sesame oil are transformed into Japanese-style sushi for this recipe. Perfect for party canapes, there's something deliciously satisfying about rolling sushi rice in a nori seaweed sheet. Add a couple of grains of rice to the seal to stick it together. For neat, bitesize pieces, dip a sharp knife in hot water with vinegar so that there aren't any ragged edges when you cut. Serve with soy sauce, wasabi, and pickled ginger for the full taste experience. 

Recipe: Easy Spicy Tuna Sushi Roll

20. Best Tuna Chili Pasta

The citrusy flavors combine with chili flakes and parsley to elevate a simple tuna pasta into a light, fresh-tasting dish made with tinned fish. The velvety ribbons of tagliatelle enhance the taste and texture and give a classic budget-style dish a far more sophisticated character. A great tip is to add a little pasta water to the cooked pasta and sauce to make sure every element is properly mixed together. Since all the ingredients are staples that you'll likely have at home, this tuna dish is deliciously easy to make too.

Recipe: Best Tuna Chili Pasta

21. 30-Minute Tuna Pot Pie Casserole

If you love chicken pot pie, then you'll be down with trying this fishy version that switches out the chicken with canned tuna. You can thicken the milky gravy as much or as little as you like too. It's super-simple, and store-bought biscuit dough makes it a quick recipe that is perfect for a weekday supper dish. All you need to do is keep an eye on it as it cooks in the oven and cover the biscuits if they start to brown before they are cooked through. 

Recipe: 30-Minute Tuna Pot Pie Casserole

22. Simple Nicoise Toast

Turn a classic Nicoise salad into a brunch delight in the simplest of ways: by adding it as a topping to slices of a rustic loaf griddled in olive oil. Don't just mix the salad up and spoon it on — take the time to create each layer so each bite is full of every flavor. After spreading with aioli, add the tomato and shallots, and then the tuna, followed by the quartered hard-boiled eggs and glistening kalamata olives. Make sure to drain the tuna otherwise, you might end up with a soggy slice. 

Recipe: Simple Nicoise Toast