Traditional recipes

Tuna and tomato pasta sauce recipe

Tuna and tomato pasta sauce recipe

  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Side dish
  • Sauce

Super easy to make, with ingredients everyone has hanging around in the pantry! Serve with about 300g of pasta, preferably penne, fusilli or macaroni, cooked according to packet instructions.

Sofala, Mozambique

124 people made this

IngredientsServes: 2

  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 chilli (small, or bird's eye)
  • 260g tuna, tinned (drained weight)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon caster sugar
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 600ml tomato pulp (or chopped, tinned tomatos)

MethodPrep:5min ›Cook:15min ›Ready in:20min

  1. Mince garlic and fry in olive oil with chilli until lightly browned, in a deep frying pan.
  2. Throw in tuna, salt, pepper, sugar and tomato paste, and fry for about 5 minutes.
  3. Add tomato pulp and simmer for an additional 5 minutes until flavours are well combined.
  4. Mix sauce into cooked pasta and serve!

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(3)

Reviews in English (3)

I am only twelve and it was an easy dish for me to make. I usually don't like tuna but now I do.I just added some herbs.-25 Sep 2015

I thoroughly enjoyed this dish. I try not to use oil in my cooking so I used Fry Light to fry the garlic and I used passata instead of the tomato pulp. But it all worked well and the family loved it.-19 Feb 2014

Simple, easy & tasty. I thought 1 tablespoon of sugar sounded a lot so only added 1/2 that & it was plenty. Used the oil that the tuna came in which was sunflower oil but worked well.-29 Feb 2016

Tuna and Tomato Spaghetti

This tuna and tomato spaghetti is an easy, inexpensive meal that comes together from pasta, canned tuna and tomatoes, and Romano cheese. Done in just 30 minutes and requires only a handful of pantry ingredients.

Adapted from Leanne Brown | Good and Cheap | Workman Publishing Company, 2015

We’re quite fond of the title of the book in which we found this tuna tomato pasta recipe. It’s Good and Cheap. As it implies, this recipe won’t set you back and in fact can probably be made entirely from staples that you already have on hand. We don’t need to remind you of the benefit of that.–Angie Zoobkoff


    • 2 tablespoons olive oil
    • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
    • 1/4 cup chopped celery
    • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh Italian parsley
    • 1 garlic clove, chopped
    • 1 1/2 pounds ripe plum tomatoes, peeled, coarsely chopped
    • 1 bay leaf
    • 1 cup fresh basil, torn into bite-size pieces
    • 4 6-ounce tuna steaks (each about 1 inch thick)
    • Fresh basil sprigs

Tuna and Tomato Pasta Casserole


  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 28-ounce can of tomatoes, whole or crushed
  • Salt
  • 1 pound pasta shells
  • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1 6-ounce can tuna packed in olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped or torn
  • A generous 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese


Melt the butter in a medium pot on medium heat and add the can of tomatoes, including the juice. If you are using whole canned tomatoes (or fresh ones) crush them with your (clean) fingers as you put them in the pot. Simmer gently, partially covered, for 30 minutes.

While the sauce is cooking, heat a large pot of well salted water to a strong boil. Add the shell pasta to the boiling water and cook at a vigorous boil, uncovered, until al dente, cooked through but still a bit firm to the bite, which is usually whatever the time specified on the pasta package minus about 2 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Pour off the excess oil from the tuna can and stir the tuna into the tomato sauce. Add the ricotta cheese, and add salt to taste. Turn off the heat. Mix the sauce with the pasta in a large bowl. Mix in the basil.

Pour the pasta into a 2 to 3-quart casserole dish and top with the parmesan cheese. Put under a hot broiler for 4-6 minutes, until the cheese is melted and lightly browned. Serve hot.

  • 500 Grams spaghetti
  • 8 sundried tomatoes, chopped
  • 4 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 Cups canned diced tomatoes
  • 1 can tuna, drained
  • 1/2 Cup whipping cream
  • 1 bunch fresh flat-leaf parsley or cilantro, finely chopped
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, for serving

Cook the pasta until al dente, according to packet cooking instructions. Reserve ½ cup of the pasta cooking water. Drain pasta.

While the pasta cooks, heat the olive oil in a pan. Add the chopped onion and cook until softened and beginning to brown. Add the garlic and sun-dried tomatoes, and stir to combine. Add the diced tomatoes and simmer over medium heat for 5 minutes. Break the tuna into pieces and add to the tomatoes. along with the whipping cream. Season with salt and pepper and gradually add the reserved pasta water until it reaches your desired consistency.

Divide the pasta between plates, top with sauce, and sprinkle with Parmigiano-Reggiano.


  1. Aioli
    • 1 large egg yolk
    • 1 garlic clove, finely grated
    • ¼ tsp. kosher salt, plus more
    • ½ cup (or more) extra-virgin olive oil
  2. Casserole and Assembly
    • 1 medium onion, cut into large pieces
    • 2 garlic cloves
    • ½ cup coarsely chopped roasted red peppers from a jar
    • 3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
    • 12 oz. rigatoni, mezzi rigatoni, ditali, or other short or medium-length straight tube pasta
    • 2 (5𔃄-oz.) cans or jars oil-packed tuna
    • 1 oil-packed anchovy fillet, coarsely chopped
    • 1 tsp. kosher salt, divided
    • Freshly ground black pepper
    • 2 Tbsp. double-concentrated or regular tomato paste
    • 1 (14.5-oz.) can crushed tomatoes or whole peeled tomatoes with their juices, crushed
    • 1 tsp. ground turmeric
    • ¼ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
    • Coarsely chopped parsley (for serving optional)


1. Heat the oven to 200 / 180 Fan.
2. First, make the tomato sauce. Fry the onion in the oil for 7-8 minutes until softening, add the garlic and cook for another minute.
3. Add the tomatoes and chilli flakes, stir and remove from the heat.
4. Meanwhile, cook the pasta for 10 minutes until al dente. Drain.
5. While the pasta is cooking, make the ‘tuna’. Roughly mash the chickpeas with the back of a fork, and then stir in all the other ingredients. Season to taste.
6. Now, combine the cooked pasta with the ‘tuna’ and the tomato sauce and tip into a baking dish.
7. Combine the crushed crisps and vegan cheese together and sprinkle them on top.
8. Bake in the oven for 15-20 mins or until the top is golden and bubbling.
9. Sprinkle some parsley over the top to serve.

Tuna Pasta in Tomato Sauce

Ever juggled what to cook on a hectic day? For myself, I’ll turn to make a pasta dish. This tuna pasta dish will only take 20 to 25 minutes.

Although I was planning a quick meal, I still wanted to impress my family with a tasty tomato sauce, that’s incorporated some semi sun-dried tomatoes. For convenience, canned tuna was used. What I like using canned tuna, it’s inexpensive and packed with protein, going so well with the tomato sauce.

  • 80 gm semi sun-dried tomatoes
  • 200 gm pasta
  • 6 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 can (400 gm) Italian diced tomatoes
  • 2 slices Prosciutto, torn by hand into smaller pieces
  • 1 can (185 gm) tuna in oil, drained
  • salt, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups (60 gm) baby spinach (can sub parsley)
  • ½ cup shredded Parmesan
Top left: Prosciutto. Top right: Semi sun-dried tomatoes. Bottom right: canned tuna.

  1. Use an electric food processor to blend the semi sun-dried tomatoes into a paste. Set aside.
  2. Prepare the tomato sauce. Heat oil in a fry pan to sauté onion over medium high heat. Add garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook until aromatic. Stir in the sun-dried tomato paste. If you feel it’s dry, add some more oil to adjust. Pour in the diced tomatoes with juice. Add Prosciutto and tuna.
  3. In the meantime, following the package instructions, cook the pasta in salted boiling water, but 2 minutes less, as it’ll continue to cook in the sauce.
  4. Drain out the pasta and save 1 cup of the pasta water to adjust the consistency of the tomato sauce if needed.
  5. Add the pasta into the sauce. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in baby spinach and Parmesan. Serve immediately.
  • The semi sun-dried tomatoes taste sweet and enrich the tomato sauce, available at supermarkets.
  • Bacon can be used instead of Prosciutto. If using bacon, sauté and render its fat before adding the onion.

***If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #christinesrecipes — We love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter.

Why you’re feeling too full and drowsy after lunch?

Have you ever had that moment after lunch when you’re feeling too full and eager to take a nap? You’re not the only one.

Usually this happens when your meal is too big and contains an excessive quantity of unhealthy fats and carbs. Therefore, your digestive system takes all your remaining energy to…well…digest.

As a result, you get hit by a lack of energy. To avoid this, include more salad, vegetables, fruits in your diet eat less processed food and drink plenty of water.

This pasta recipe is an example of a balanced meal. Although the white pasta has lots of carbs, it’s still equilibrated, because is paired with vegetables, fish and a light dressing made of tomato sauce. As a result, it is easier to digest. Moreover, it will leave you feel energised and more active, giving you fuel for the rest of the day as well. Make it, and see for yourself.

Similar Pasta Recipes you may fall in love

Spanish Tuna Steaks with Spicy Tomato Sauce

Author Albert Bevia @ Spain on a Fork


  • 2 tuna fillets
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1/2 tsp sweet smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp hot smoked paprika
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup tomato puree
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley
  • pinch sea salt
  • pinch black pepper


Finely mince 2 cloves of garlic, finely dice 1/2 onion and finely chop a handful of fresh parsley, grab 2 tuna steaks (I bought mine frozen and thawed them out), pat them dry with paper towels and season them with sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper on both sides

Heat a nonstick fry pan with a medium-high heat and add 2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil, after 2 minutes add the tuna steaks into the pan, push down on the tuna steaks with a spatula, this will give them that beautiful sear, cook for 90 seconds per side (the thickness of my steaks where 1/2 inch), after a total cooking time of 3 minutes transfer the tuna to a plate and cover with foil paper

Using the same pan with the same heat add the diced onions and minced garlic and mix with the oil, after 1 minute add 1/2 tsp of sweet smoked paprika and 1/2 tsp of hot smoked paprika, quickly mix it all together and then add a 1/4 cup of white wine and mix, after 2 minutes add a 1/2 cup of tomato puree, season it all with seal salt, freshly cracked black pepper and 1 tbsp of the freshly chopped parsley, mix it all together until well combined and lower the fire to a LOW heat, after simmering for 3 minutes add the tuna steaks back into the pan and coat them with the spicy tomato sauce, after heating the tuna steaks for 2 minutes remove the pan from the heat and serve directly from the pan, garnish with freshly chopped parsley, enjoy!

Recipe Notes

I recommend you use the highest-quality spices & seasonings to make this recipe, it truly makes all the difference in the world. Shop for Spices & Seasonings.

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