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Simply Delicious Tuna Pasta

Serve this Tuna Pasta for a light, meat-free dish that is packed with flavor and texture. It is a simple and tasty dish that is ready in no time. If you are looking for a more decadent pasta, try my Baked White Spaghetti or Cheddar Cheese Chicken Fettucine.

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Tuna pasta on a plate.

Living with my nanay several years ago was a bliss. The fridge rarely had a low supply of food. My nanay is a greatly avid cook. On Sundays, she cooked big batches of food that were good for the next few days.

Then even before that food ran out, she will cook more. We are lucky for her. Let me rephrase that, I am so lucky to have her.

But then, there were times when even though I was surrounded with elaborate dishes, my palate was craving something different. So I end up cooking something simple. This Tuna Pasta was always the perfect dish.

Tuna pasta served on a plate.

A Simple Tuna Pasta

Despite the regular appearances of caldereta, kare-kare, and menudo in our house, I always get the craving for a simple Tuna Pasta.

This dish is definitely the type of meal that is easy to put together. With simple preparation and ingredients, a tasty pasta dish is ready for you.

It combines light and flavorful in one simple dish.  In less than an hour and minimal chopping, I am one satisfied girl.

Ingredients for the Tuna Pasta.

Tuna Pasta Ingredients

  • Spaghetti. Cook pasta to al dente. You can also use fettucine if you prefer that.
  • Canned Tuna in water. This is the plain variety. Drain the cans of the soaking liquid.
  • Chicken Broth. The chicken broth will be the base for the pasta sauce. You can use vegetable broth instead of this.
  • Cherry Tomatoes. The tomatoes give a nice flavor to the sauce and adds a nice pop of colour to the pasta. Some of them gest mushed to the sauce and some remained intact for a nice fresh component.
  • Butter and Olive oil. The combination of these fats give a note of richness to the sauce.
  • Onion and Garlic. These aromatics impart flavor to the dish. Red onion is preferred for a deeper flavor and nice colour.
  • Parmesan and Chopped Basil. Added as garnish to the dish, they give a flavor boost The basil adds a fresh element too the while the parmesan adds richness.
  • Mozzarella. This is optional but it is a great addition to the pasta if you want a richer, cheesy version.
  • Olives. The saltiness if the olives adds a nice flavor contrast.

Let’s Make It!

  1. Cook the pasta until al dente, according to package directions. Heat the butter and olive oil in a pan.
  2. Cook the onions until softened. Add and cook the garlic.
  3. Add and let the tomatoes cook until softened. Add in the chicken broth and let everything simmer.
  4. Add the tuna and olives.
  5. Add the pasta. Toss everything to combine. Season with salt and pepper, then turn off the heat. If you are using, stir in the mozzarella cheese.
  6. Serve the pasta, topped with parmesan and basil.
The process of making the Tuna Pasta.

Additional Tips

  • If you want to elevate this dish further, add shrimps or some dried anchovies. Precook the shrimps first then add it at the end, together with the tuna. Sauté the anchovies with the garlic and onion.
  • You can add a bit more chicken broth as needed. I find that the amount in the recipe is just right, but if the pasta gets too dry during cooking, you can always add more.
  • You can also use grated parmesan for toppings. However, for flair, I chose shaved ones.
Tuna pasta on a dish.

What are your favorite simple lunch recipes? If you feel like cooking a light lunch for yourself and a few companies, try this one. You will love it.

 Need more delicious meals? Check out these recipes:

Tuna pasta on a plate.

Tuna Pasta

Serve this Tuna Pasta for a light, meat-free dish that is packed with flavor and texture. It is a simple and tasty dish that is ready in no time.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian, Western
Keyword: tuna pasta
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 817kcal
Author: sanna


  • 375 grams spaghetti
  • 2 170 grams can tuna flakes in water drained weight is 120 grams each can
  • 1 cup chicken broth or vegetable broth
  • 1 medium red onion sliced very thinly
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 and ½ cup grape or cherry tomatoes sliced lengthwise
  • ½ cup black pitted olives
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt plus more, to taste
  • ¼ tsp pepper plus more, to taste
  • ½ cup mozzarella cheese cubed, optional
  • chopped basil leaves for garnish
  • ¾ cup shaved parmesan for toppings


  • Cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  • Heat olive oil and butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the sliced red onion and cook until soft and a little bit caramelized. Add the garlic and cook for a minute or so.
  • Add the tomatoes and toss everything for another minute. Add the chicken broth. Let this simmer for 5 minutes, until the broth has slightly reduced. 
  • Add the tuna and the olives to the saucepan. Season with salt and pepper. Add the drained pasta to the saucepan and mix everything, making sure to coat the pasta with the sauce. Add more salt and pepper if needed. Turn off heat.
  • If you are adding mozzarella, add and stir them in. Divide pasta into pasta plates. Top pasta with chopped basil and parmesan. Serve.



  • Make sure to use plain canned tuna and not the flavored ones.
  • You can add a bit more chicken broth as needed if you think the pasta needs more liquid.
Adapted from Pioneer Woman Cooks.


Serving: 1servings | Calories: 817kcal | Carbohydrates: 91g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 39g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 18g | Trans Fat: 0.5g | Cholesterol: 55mg | Sodium: 1556mg | Potassium: 467mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 933IU | Vitamin C: 15mg | Calcium: 345mg | Iron: 2mg

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  1. This looks so good I could take a mouthful from my monitor hehehe. I love pasta and tuna is just so healthy, I think. You’re right, it won’t feel as heavy as with spaghetti.

    Glad the little girl is okay now. 🙂

    1. Thank you, Aileen! I missed you. I am glad you are back. Yes, this is healthy and at the same time yummy. I hope you try it sometime!

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