Home > Dinner > Quickest Tuna Pasta Quickest Tuna Pasta August 22, 2023 | 2 Comments SAVE TO RECIPE BOX Jump to Recipe This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy. This Tuna Pasta is bursting with rich flavors from olive-oil-infused tuna, tangy sun-dried tomatoes, and fresh lemon, complemented by the subtle heat of red pepper flakes. A final garnish of Parmesan adds a creamy, salty finish that ties all these vibrant flavors together beautifully! Love tuna in pasta? Try our Cheesy Tuna Pasta or Creamy Tuna Pasta next! Tuna Pasta is part of our Back-To-School Lifesavers — a series of recipes that are intended to have little (or no) veggie chopping, minimal prep time, around 10 ingredients or less (not including pantry staples), and use kid-friendly ingredients. Click here to see all the recipes in the series! Quickest Tuna Pasta A can of tuna stands as a go-to for speedy meals, and combined with pasta and a handful of flavorful ingredients, it transforms into an unbeatable, crowd-pleasing dish. Quickest Tuna Pasta is not only a breeze to prepare but also packs a punch of diverse flavors — from its richness and texture to its vibrant, salty, and aromatic notes. Dive in and enjoy the depth of flavors this simple pasta dish delivers! Tuna Pasta Ingredients Spaghetti: Regular spaghetti is our top pick, but you can’t go wrong with thin or thick variations either. Frozen peas: We use frozen sweet peas; if you aren’t a fan of peas, leave ’em out! Olive-oil-packed tuna: For the best flavor and texture, choose high-quality tuna that’s sustainably sourced. Remember to select tuna in olive oil, as this oil becomes our sauté base. We personally love Genova’s® canned tuna (not sponsored). Minced garlic: For a speedy prep, reach for jarred pre-minced garlic. Unsalted butter: Opting for unsalted butter grants you the freedom to adjust the saltiness of this Tuna Pasta. If you happen to use salted butter, remember to modify the salt you add. Ingredients, Continued Freshly chopped Italian parsley: In most grocery stores, you’ll come across flat-leaf Italian parsley and curly parsley. Stick to the former; the curly type is more for garnishing and lacks the rich flavor we need in this Tuna Pasta. Oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes: Choose tomatoes steeped in olive oil with herbs, rather than the dry-packed ones. The julienne-cut variety is a time-saver when it comes to chopping. Red pepper flakes (optional): You can tweak the spice level to your liking. If you’re serving a group, consider offering the flakes on the side. Juicy lemon: Always opt for fresh lemons. The juice introduces a lively zing, and the zest infuses a subtle citrus undertone. When zesting, make sure you only get the yellow exterior, avoiding the bitter white pith beneath. Tools like a microplane and citrus juicer can simplify the process. Parmesan cheese (optional but recommended): For Parmesan, we like to use a block of Parmesan cheese and grate it right over the dish using a microplane. This small step can elevate the overall flavor profile of this Quick Tuna Pasta. How To Make Tuna Pasta (Tips) Pasta perfect: Cook pasta to al dente, as it will cook longer as it’s tossed with the sauce to emulsify. Tuna texture: Be careful when mixing the tuna into the pasta to maintain some of its chunkiness. Over-mixing can make the tuna too flaky or mushy. Pasta water: Don’t forget to reserve some pasta water. The starchiness from this water will bind and thicken the sauce. Serve hot: Pasta dishes, especially those with simple sauces, are best served immediately while they’re hot. Waiting too long can cause the pasta to absorb more sauce and become overly soft. Salt the water: Properly salting the pasta water is crucial. It’s the primary seasoning for the pasta itself and can make a significant difference in the overall taste of the Tuna Pasta. Quality matters: Investing in good quality tuna packed in olive oil can significantly elevate the flavor of this recipe. QUICK TIP “Al dente” is an Italian phrase meaning “to the tooth.” It describes pasta being cooked so it remains firm to the bite, rather than soft or mushy. What To Serve With Tuna Pasta Salad: Choose from a crisp mixed greens garden salad, a crunchy cucumber-pepper salad, or a classic Caesar salad. Each provides a light and complementary side to the hearty tuna pasta. Bread: Whether you opt for garlic bread, crusty French bread, or our effortless no-knead Focaccia, bread is always a great pairing with pasta dishes. Roasted or Grilled Vegetables: Complement your meal with seasoned and grilled or roasted vegetables. Options like zucchini, bell peppers, asparagus, and broccoli add both flavor and color. Dessert: Round off your Tuna Pasta dinner on a sweet note. Try our favorite Tiramisu or this incredibly refreshing mango sorbet. Both choices provide delightful conclusions to your dining experience. More Tuna Recipes: Tuna Melts with sharp Cheddar Tuna-White Bean Salad with sun-dried herby tomatoes One-pan Tuna Casserole Tuna Stack with rice and avocado Tuna Macaroni Salad with the best dressing! FOLLOW ALONG! Subscribe to my newsletter and follow along on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram for the latest updates, recipes and content. Tuna Pasta 5 from 2 votes - Review this recipe Quickest Tuna Pasta is bursting with rich flavors from olive-oil-infused tuna, tangy sun-dried tomatoes, and fresh lemon, complemented by the subtle heat of red pepper flakes. A final garnish of Parmesan adds a creamy, salty finish that ties all these vibrant flavors together beautifully! SAVE TO RECIPE BOX Print Recipe Tuna Pasta 5 from 2 votes - Review this recipe SAVE TO RECIPE BOX Print Recipe Quickest Tuna Pasta is bursting with rich flavors from olive-oil-infused tuna, tangy sun-dried tomatoes, and fresh lemon, complemented by the subtle heat of red pepper flakes. A final garnish of Parmesan adds a creamy, salty finish that ties all these vibrant flavors together beautifully! Course Dinner, lunch, Main Course Cuisine American, Healthy Keyword tuna pasta Prep Time 15 minutes minutes Cook Time 10 minutes minutes Total Time 25 minutes minutes Servings 2 -3 servings Chelsea Lords Calories 428kcal Author Chelsea Lords Cost $9.56 Ingredients▢ 7 oz spaghetti (Note 1)▢ ¾ cup frozen peas▢ Fine sea salt and pepper▢ 2 cans olive-oil packed tuna, (5 oz EACH) save oil for the dish (Note 2)▢ 2 teaspoons minced garlic▢ 2 tablespoons unsalted butter▢ ⅓ cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, coarsely chopped (Note 3)▢ Tiny pinch red pepper flakes, optional▢ 2 tablespoons fresh Italian parsley▢ 1 large juicy lemon (1 tsp zest; 2 tbsp juice)▢ Optional, but recommended: Parmesan cheese for garnishing (Note 4) InstructionsPASTA AND PEAS: Bring 12 cups of water to a boil. Once boiling, stir in 1 tbsp fine sea salt and add the pasta. Cook for 1 minute less than the lowest time indicated on the package. When timer rings, add peas and continue to boil for 1 more minute. Just before draining, scoop out 1 cup of the cooking water and drain pasta and peas.SAUTE: Using the same pot, heat the oil reserved from the tuna cans over medium heat. Add the butter. Once melted, stir in the garlic, red pepper flakes (if using), and sun-dried tomatoes. Sauté for 1 minute. TOSS: Return the drained pasta and peas to the pot. Add⅓ cup of the reserved pasta water. Toss everything together using two spatulas for about 2 minutes.FINISH: Turn off the heat. Add tuna from can, parsley, lemon zest, juice, salt and pepper to taste (I add ¼tsp of each). Toss gently, aiming to maintain some tuna chunks for texture. ENJOY: Serve immediately! If desired, use a microplane to garnish individual plates with freshly grated Parmesan cheese. Enjoy! Recipe NotesNote 1: Spaghetti: Be sure to not use the entire box! If you have a food scale, use that to weigh out 7 oz. Note 2: Olive-oil-packed tuna: For the best flavor and texture, choose high-quality tuna and remember to select tuna packed in olive oil, as this oil becomes our sauté base. We personally love Genova’s® canned tuna (not sponsored). Note 3: Sun-dried tomatoes: Choose tomatoes steeped in olive oil with herbs, rather than the dry-packed ones. The julienne-cut variety is a time-saver when it comes to chopping. Note 4: Parmesan cheese: For Parmesan, we like to use a block of Parmesan cheese and grate it right over the dish using a microplane. Nutrition FactsServing: 1serving | Calories: 428kcal | Carbohydrates: 63.7g | Protein: 23.3g | Fat: 9.4g | Cholesterol: 38.8mg | Sodium: 71.4mg | Fiber: 4.7g | Sugar: 7.8g We do our best to provide accurate nutritional analysis for our recipes. Our nutritional data is calculated using a third-party algorithm and may vary, based on individual cooking styles, measurements, and ingredient sizes. Please use this information for comparison purposes and consult a health professional for nutrition guidance as needed. DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE? I love hearing from you when you've made one of my recipes! Tag me on Instagram at @ChelseasMessyApron or leave me a comment below.