10 things to do with tinned tuna

Tuna is a storecupboard staple, but it can sometimes be overlooked. There's no tuna-mayo in sight in these recipes… only inventive, quick and easy recipes to make the most out of the king of canned fish.

1. Tuna, red onion and white bean salad

This protein-packed salad is a quick and easy midweek meal. It’s ready in just 10 minutes and is also healthy, at only 321 calories per serving. Make double the amount, and pack into a couple of lunch-boxes, ready for the next day.


It will taste better the next day as the tuna will have marinated in the dressing… just leave out the rocket until you’re ready to eat it. If you don’t like red onion, you could add sweetcorn, spring onions, or even peas, instead.  

2. Loaded potato skins with spring onion, tuna and chilli

Great for lunch with friends. You can make a big batch on one roasting tray in advance, and serve with some side salads.

*Prick baking potatoes all over and microwave for 5-10 minutes until cooked through.

*Cut in half, and scoop out most of the potato. Tip into a large bowl, and mix with a tin of drained tuna, a bunch of finely sliced spring onions, a handful of grated cheddar, a seeded and diced red or green chilli and a small bunch of chopped coriander.

*Season really well, and add back into the potato skins, onto an oiled baking tray. Top with more grated cheddar. Bake for 15-20 minutes at 200C/fan 180C/gas 6 until the cheese had melted and golden.  

3. Linguine with tuna, lemon and dill

A quick and simple pasta dish with tuna, lemon, red onion and dill. Add some chilli or a tablespoon of drained capers for an extra kick. This would make a great fresh pasta salad too, if you mix the salad with cooked and cooled short pasta like fusilli or farfalle.  

4. Edamame, potato and tuna salad

This salad is a winner because of the harrissa dressing that sticks to the new potatoes really well. Great on its own, or as a lunch-box. If you can’t get hold of edamame, double-podded broad beans or sliced mangetout would work well instead.

*Boil 300g new potatoes until almost tender, then add 175g frozen soy (edamame) beans and 175g trimmed and halved green beans, and cook for 5 minutes.

*Whisk 2 tsp harissa with 1 tbsp red wine vinegar and season. Whisk in 2 tbsp olive oil until the dressing has thickened. Drain veg well, toss with half the dressing and cool.

*Add a flaked tin of tuna and the rest of the dressing then toss. Add rocket leaves to finish.

5. Tuna fishcakes with parsley and caper salad

Fishcakes = the ultimate comfort food. Our tuna fishcakes are made from store cupboard ingredients, so are super-easy to make. Squeeze over plenty of lemon juice and serve with a parlsey, cucumber and caper salad.

6. Orecchiette salad with tuna, capers and red onion

Orecchiette (little ear) is a type of pasta from Italy’s Puglia region. You can buy it from most supermarkets, and it’s usually served with vegetables or a simple tomato sauce. Try tossing cooked orecchiete with flaked tinned tuna, drained capers and very finely chopped red onion. Season with lemon juice, drizzle with olive oil and toss a few salad leaves in before serving. Grind over lots of black pepper before serving.

You could also add sundried tomatoes, parmesan or pesto to this dish. The pasta will soak up the flavours really well.

7. Tuna, sweetcorn and onion plait

This is a really big winner with kids, and is cheap to make too.

*Fry ½ bunch finely sliced spring onions in 1 tbsp butter until softened. Add 1 tbsp flour to make a paste, then pour in 250ml milk slowly, to make a thick sauce.

*Stir in a tin drained tuna, a small tin drained sweetcorn, a bay leaf and season well. Cook for another 5 minutes stirring continually. Tip into the middle of a sheet of puff pastry, down the middle.

*Tuck in the both sides of pastry at the shorter ends, and cut strips of pastry down the sides of the tuna mix, away from the middle, out to the sides. Alternate each strip, folding over the top of the mix until completely covered.

*Wash with beaten egg then cook for 25-30 minutes at 180C/fan 160C/gas 4 until pastry has puffed and golden.  

8. Deli-style tuna ciabbata

Your packed lunch doesn’t have to be boring, and neither does tinned tuna. Try this deli-style sandwich packed with artichokes, basil, rocket, tuna and hard boiled egg for a great tasting sandwich.

*Stuff fresh ciabatta with tuna, sliced hard-boiled egg, chargrilled artichokes from a jar, roasted red pepper slices, basil and rocket.

*Drizzle with balsamic vinegar and olive oil.

9. Tuna Nicoise

A great summer starter, or light supper sat in the garden.

*Mix cooked, sliced new potatoes with blanched green beans, drained and flaked tinned tuna, black olives, chopped cherry tomatoes and little gem lettuce.

*Whisk 4 tbsp olive oil, 1 tbsp white wine vinegar and 1 tsp dijon mustard with ½ bunch chopped tarragon and a squeeze of lemon juice.

*Toss the salad with most of the dressing, and divide between plates. Top with a poached egg a couple of anchovies if you like, drizzle over more dressing and serve.

10. Roasted red pepper and tuna panini pizzas

Ready in 15 minutes, these cheat’s pizzas are great for a snack. Crusty ciabatta is topped with sweet roasted red peppers, flaky tuna and melted mozzarella. You could add a few sliced peppadew peppers for a sweet and spicy mix, black olives, or capers – whatever you have in the fridge!

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