Tuna pasta salad, a lunchtime classic, my version features peas and corn and gets a real deep flavour from capers and anchovies.
It takes 15 minutes to cook and will serve two as a main comfortably with some leftovers or will be the perfect 5-day lunchbox filler.
Lunch Time Pasta Salad.
I love a good pasta salad, they are easy to cook, light to eat and infinitely versatile.
My simple tuna pasta salad is pretty classic with a mayonnaise dressing.
The dressing gets some chopped anchovies, a controversial ingredient that you can omit if you wish. I also add some capers and extra lemon juice.
It is light and full of vibrant sharp flavours that are the perfect complement to the sweet peas and corn.
This recipe is one that I will make up at the weekend and then eat for lunch as the week progresses. It will last in the fridge for a week.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use tuna in oil?
Tuna in oil can be used if you wish but it does give the whole dish a mouthfeel that is a bit “rich”. I find that too much of a contrast with the sharp flavours.
I personally recommend tuna in spring water for this recipe rather than oil.
Do I have to use frozen peas and corn?
No, fresh or frozen peas and corn can be used in this recipe. But, please do not skip the step where I suggest you chill them after cooking.
This ensures that they stay both sweet and the most beautiful colour!
Can I use homemade mayonnaise?
If you are eating this tuna pasta salad as a main then splash out and make homemade mayonnaise.
However, if you are eating over the week and storing it in the fridge, then storeboought mayo is best because it is more shelf stable.
Pasta salads with a thick creamy sauce like this easy tuna pasta salad are great with short pasta with lots of surface area.
I think that it is particularly good with farfalle. A pasta shape that I often overlook but it is great with thick sauces.
Another pasta shape that works well is fusilli, the pasta that I use in my smoked mackerel pasta recipe.
Finally, a nice outside call for pasta is the orecchiette pasta that I use in my pork ragu. It is big and bold and will make this recipe much heartier, perfect for a winter-packed lunch.
As for a side for this tuna pasta salad, I tend to keep it pretty simple and add a nice slice of bread to mop up the sauce, however, some garlic bread is good too.
I only name-check brands of equipment if I think that they make a material difference to a recipe. But if you have any questions feel free to ask them in the comments section below the recipe.
- 20cm or 8″ saucepan.
- Kitchen knife.
- Chopping board.
- Serving and stirring spoons.
- Weighing scales and or measuring jug, cups and spoons.
- Mixing bowl.
A simple creamy tuna pasta salad is a well trodden path and this recipe features peas and corn along with capers and anchovies, I often make up a batch and have it for lunch all week.
- 150g (1½ Cups) Short Pasta
- 150g (1 Cup) Frozen Peas
- 150g (1 Cup) Frozen Sweetcorn
- 75g (½ Cup) Red Onion
- 160g (6oz oz) Can of Tuna in Spring Water
- 30g (3 Tbsp) Capers
- 2 Anchovy Fillets
- 1 Tsp Lemon Juice
- 100g (⅓ Cup) Mayonnaise
- Salt to taste
- Bring a 20cm or 8" saucepan of well-salted water to a boil. I use 1½ teaspoons of salt in a pan this size.
- Drop in the pasta and cook for 30-60 seconds less than the packet instructions.
- Chop the anchovies as finely as you can and add to a large mixing bowl.
- Roughly chop the capers and add them to the anchovies.
- Add the tuna to the bowl and stir.
- 90 seconds before you remove the pasta place the peas and sweetcorn in a sieve and drop the sieve into the pasta pan and allow them to warm through in the pasta water.
- Drain the pasta and place it into the bowl.
- Cool the peas and sweetcorn under cold running water, this helps keep the colour.
- Add the vegetables to the pasta and stir it all together.
- Throw in the mayo and lemon juice stir and taste adding more salt if required.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 352Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 23mgSodium: 588mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 3gSugar: 4gProtein: 15g
Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.