New Year Recipe Ideas: Tuna Pasta Salad with Orecchiette

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Tuna Salad

The secret to the success of any recipe lies in the quality of the ingredients used.  There is probably no ingredient that this is more true with than canned tuna.  I was fortunate enough to tour the Ortiz  tuna and anchovy factories in Ondarroa during a recent trip to Spain.  The quality of the Bonito Del Norte line-caught fish was amazing and the care and expertise that goes into producing their fine products was absolutely inspiring!  So the next time someone tells you that canned tuna tastes like cat food – tell them that all canned tuna is not equal.  Also tell them they probably shouldn’t eat cat food. (I will write more about the tour in a future blog post.)

I wanted to come up with a recipe that really shows off the tuna.  I decided to use grape seed oil and lemon juice in the dressing.  I thought olive oil and vinegar, or mayo, would be too dominant.  That being said, the dressing is rather “kicky”, but not overwhelming.

The salad tastes incredibly fresh and is now officially a family favorite!  I thought I’d throw it on my blog as a nice option for Christmas Day or a buffet contribution.

Buon Appetito!

Holiday Recipe Ideas: Tuna Pasta Salad with Orecchiette
Recipe type: Pasta Salad
Cuisine: Italian/Spanish
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
A fresh take on a tuna pasta salad!
  • 1 pound orecchiette pasta (cooked al-dente)
  • 3 cups fresh baby spinach
  • 18 ounces oil - packed Spanish or Italian tuna (drained)
  • ½ cup Italian parsley
  • 1 small red onion (diced)
  • 4 large grilled artichoke hearts (packed in oil - quartered)
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh oregano
  • ½ cup fresh lemon juice (2-3 lemons)
  • 1 cup grape seed oil
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • ½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  1. Combine dressing ingredients in a small bowl with an immersion blender or whisk.
  2. Combine spinach, tuna, parsley, and onion in a large bowl.
  3. Add pasta and dressing to the tuna mixture.
  4. Toss to combine leaving the tuna in bite-sized chunks.
  5. Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving. The flavor intensifies as the salad soaks up the dressing.
  6. Serve topped with artichokes.



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