35 things to make with a tin of tuna

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  • Got a tin of tuna sitting in the cupboard? It's not just for jackets and sarnies - here's 35 different ideas for things to make with a tin of tuna...

    Got a tin of tuna sitting in the cupboard – we’ve got loads of great tinned tuna recipes to make right here! Tuna’s not just for jackets and sarnies – so here are 35 different ideas for things to make with it.

    Tinned tuna is one of the most versatile ingredients you can keep in the cupboard. Add it to salads, stir it through pasta, serve with jacket potatoes or try one of our tinned tuna recipes, from a tuna crumble to seeded tuna fishcakes.

    Tinned tuna is an affordable and excellent source of protein. We like to buy a few tins when it’s on offer, then keep them in the cupboard, knowing there’s always some on hand to make quick and easy family meals.

    Have a look through our 35 things to make with a tin of tuna recipes to get some fresh ideas…

    Tuna recipes: Things to make with a tin of tuna

    1. Tuna and tomato calzone

    Tuna and tomato calzone

    You will need: 180g tin tuna chunks

    We love calzones – a type of folded pizza, baked in the oven and with the topping hidden inside. Bite through the outside for a gorgeous, gooey filling of mozzarella, tomatoes and tuna.

    Get the recipe: Tuna and tomato calzone

     

    2. Tuna pasta bake

    Tuna, sweetcorn and pasta bake

    You will need:185g tin of tuna in sunflower oil

    Tuna pasta bake is a family favourite. Here’s our fail-safe recipe, made with a can of tuna, sweetcorn, tinned tomatoes, cheese and the secret ingredient – crisps! Trust us, they make for a seriously crunchy topping.

    Get the recipe: Tuna pasta bake

     

    3. Pappardelle with tuna sauce

    Pappardelle with tuna sauce

    You will need: 1 x 198g tun tuna in brine

    It’s easy to turn tuna pasta from everyday to ‘a bit fancy’. Swap spaghetti or penne for pappardelle and make a fresh tomato sauce with olive oil and herbs. Top with oregano and capers for a restaurant-worthy dinner.

    Get the recipe: Pappardelle with tuna sauce

     

    4. Baked potato with tuna and spring onion

    Baked potato with tuna and spring onion

    You will need: 160g tinned tuna

    Sometimes you can’t beat a jacket potato. It’s one of our fave budget comfort foods, and we love them filled with tuna mayo, spring onions and a grinding of black pepper.

    Get the recipe: Baked potato with tuna and spring onion

     

    5. Tuna and lemon mayonnaise wraps

    packed lunch ideas

    You will need: 160g tin tuna in brine

    For a twist on tuna sarnies, make these yummy tuna and lemon mayonnaise wraps. A squeeze of lemon gives the mayo a citrussy tang, and you can pack the wraps with salad and tomatoes to get 2 of your 5-a-day.

    Get the recipe: Tuna and lemon mayonnaise wraps

     

    6. Tuna and chickpea salad

    Tuna and chickpea salad

    You will need: 250g tinned tuna in olive oil

    There’s so much goodness in this filling salad – eat it for lunch and you’ll feel virtuous for the rest of the day! Tuna and chickpeas go really together, and there’s also Vitamin E-packed avocados, red onion and rocket in there, too.

    Get the recipe: Tuna and chickpea salad

     

    7. Tuna and noodle salad

    You will need: 200g can tuna

    This is a handy recipe to have up your sleeve on busy weeknights. Throw together egg noodles with a tin of tuna, cherry tomatoes, bought teriyaki sauce and chopped peanuts: dinner sorted!

    Get the recipe: Tuna and noodle salad

     

    8. Cheese and tuna jackets

    You will need: 1 x 185g tin tuna

    We love cheese on our spuds, we love tuna on our spuds – so when we can’t decide we have both at the same time! A pinch of cayenne pepper and a sprinkle of fresh parsley make this one delicious but easy dinner.

    Get the recipe: Cheese and tuna jackets

     

    9. Seeded tuna fishcakes

    You will need: 1 x tin tuna in brine

    Give fishcakes a healthy twist by mixing the breadcrumb coating with 50g of mixed seeds like pumpkin, sunflower and linseed. They’re packed with vitamins and minerals and give the fishcakes a fantastic crunch, too.

    Get the recipe: Seeded tuna fishcakes

     

    10. Italian Tuna and Tomato Penne Pasta

    Italian tuna and tomato penne pasta

    You will need: 2 x 160g tins tuna chunks in brine

    Turn the flavours of a classic tuna nicoise salad into a filling pasta dish for the family. Black olives, fresh basil and tomatoes make this feel like a real taste of Italy.

    Get the recipe: Italian Tuna and Tomato Penne Pasta

     

    11. Tuna and provençal vegetable crumble

    Tuna and provençal vegetable crumble

    You will need: 450g tinned tuna

    Crumbles aren’t just for fruit. This delicious savoury crumble has a cheese and breadcrumb topping and is filled with aubergines, courgettes, mushrooms, pepper and tuna.

    Get the recipe: Tuna and provençal vegetable crumble

     

    12. Tuna and potato layer

    150 meals under 500 calories

    You will need: 2 x 200g tins tuna in brine

    Another brilliant budget recipe involving the humble tin of tuna. Even better, this simple dish of potatoes, tuna and white sauce tastes delicious cold in lunchboxes the next day.

    Get the recipe: Tuna and potato layer

     

    13. Slimming World’s tuna penne nicoise

    Tuna penne niçoise

    You will need: 2 x 185g tins tuna in spring water

    Slimming World knows its way around a healthy but filling recipe, and we’re big fans of this tuna nicoise – it’s got protein-packed eggs and a little penne in it to help keep you filled up.

    Get the recipe: Slimming World’s tuna penne nicoise

     

    14. Tuna and tomato salsa pasta

    Tuna and tomato salsa pasta

    You will need: 130g tinned tuna

    A quick-to-cook pasta recipe using a pot of fresh tomato salsa and a can of tuna. Great for a lunch or a snack for 2 people.

    Get the recipe: Tuna and tomato salsa pasta

     

    15. Tuna spaghetti Bolognese

    You will need: 2 x 185g tins tuna in spring water

    Save money by making spag Bol with a tin of tuna instead of mince. The meaty flavour and firm texture of tuna means it can stand up to strong flavours like tomato and garlic. Delicious.

    Get the recipe: Tuna spaghetti Bolognese

     

    16. Tuna, lime and coriander jacket

    healthy lunch ideas

    You will need: 2 x tins tuna in springwater

    Give baked spuds a zesty twist by adding the classic Asian (or Mexican!) flavour combo of coriander and lime. Serve it with a red cabbage, carrot and coriander slaw.

    Get the recipe: Tuna, lime and coriander jacket

     

    17. Tuna fish cakes

    You will need: 400g tin tuna in brine

    A tin of tuna makes a budget-friendly alternative to expensive fresh salmon or cod in homemade fish cakes. Our recipe calls for cheesy mash but leftover plain mashed potato will work equally well.

    Get the recipe: Tuna fish cakes

     

    18. Crab or tuna, lemon and chilli linguine

    Crab, lemon and chilli linguine

    You will need: 340g tinned tuna

    Flake tuna into warm linguine to make this summery and sophisticated bowl of pasta. The lemon and chilli give it a real kick. Serve with a fresh green salad.

    Get the recipe: Crab or tuna, lemon and chilli linguine

     

    19. Tuna and onion jacket potatoes

    Jacket potato fillings

    You will need: 100g tinned tuna

    Here’s another idea to jazz up baked spuds. Mix the tinned tuna together with cottage cheese, diced cucumber and red onion for a easy dinner with minimal washing up.

    Get the recipe: Tuna and onion jacket potatoes

     

    20. Tuna and caper spread

    You will need: 1 x 185g tun tuna chunks in oil

    This is such a versatile little recipe to have up your sleeve. Whizz together tuna, capers, butter and lemon to make a creamy spread for toast, dipping and party snacks.

    Get the recipe: Tuna and caper spread

     

    21. Tuna and cheese ciabatta melt

    Tuna and cheese ciabatta melt

    You will need: 400g tinned tuna

    Mmmmm…tuna melts are one of our favourite sarnies, and this one is our fave of all. The rich ciabatta base is topped with a tuna mayo with basil and olives and coated with golden, melted Cheddar.

    Get the recipe: Tuna and cheese ciabatta melt

     

    22. Baby-friendly tuna fish cakes

    You will need: 1 x tin tuna in spring water

    These small fish cakes are suitable for babies over 6 months old. They may be small, but they’re packed with nutritious ingredients your little one needs – tuna, peas, carrots and potato.

    Get the recipe: Baby-friendly tuna fish cakes

     

    23. Puttanesca

    You will need: 200g tinned tuna in spring water

    If you like bold flavours, you’ll love this classic Italian pasta dish. It’s packed with chilli, anchovies, garlic and capers…and of course our old friend, tinned tuna!

    Get the recipe: Puttanesca

     

    24. Spanish-style fish stew

    You will need: 250g tinned tuna

    You can use a mixture of any affordable fish in this fragrant fish stew, including fresh or tinned tuna. Serve with potatoes, cous cous or white or brown rice.

    Get the recipe: Spanish-style fish stew

     

    25. Tuna and pea quiche

    Tuna and pea quiche

    You will need: 200g tinned tuna

    Quiche is normally off the menu if you can’t eat eggs, dairy or gluten. Luckily those clever types at Woman’s Weekly have come up with this brilliant free-from quiche that doesn’t contain any of them.

    Get the recipe: Tuna and pea quiche

     

    26. Crunchy tuna filler

    You will need: 1 x tin tuna in oil

    Don’t waste money on expensive sandwich fillers from the supermarket when it’s so easy to make your own. Our crunchy tuna filler has a summery, zesty taste as it’s packed with cucumber and yellow pepper.

    Get the recipe: Crunchy tuna filler

     

    27. Potato and corn cakes

    You will need: 1 x small tin tuna

    Turn these delicious potato and corn cakes into a filling meal by stirring in drained tuna and serving with a big green salad. Wrap any leftovers between sheets of kitchen paper and keep in the fridge to eat cold the next day.

    Get the recipe: Potato and corn cakes

     

    28. Fennel pesto gnocchi with tuna

    You will need: 1 x 200g tin tuna steak in brine

    Here’s an easy pasta dish that’s posh enough to serve when friends are over. Stir fragrant fennel pesto, tuna and anchovies into gnocchi and serve with crisp green beans.

    Get the recipe: Fennel pesto gnocchi with tuna

     

    29. Quick pasta Nicoise

    You will need: 200g tin tuna

    Give weekday pasta a French makeover with the classic flavours of a Nicoise salad like tuna, black olives, boiled egg and French beans. It makes a delicious pasta salad for lunchboxes.

    Get the recipe: Quick pasta Nicoise

     

    30. One-pot tuna pasta puttanesca

    One-pot tuna pasta puttanesca

    You will need: 100g tinned tuna

    This easy one-pot dish is on the table in thirty minutes and comes in at under 500 calories per portion! It’s sure to become a family favourite…

    Get the recipe: One-pot tuna pasta puttanesca

     

    31. Tuna and red pesto pasta

    You will need: 1 x 400g tun tuna chunks in oil

    Give your pesto pasta a protein boost by stirring in some tuna chunks. Add fresh basil or parsley to give it a fresh-tasting finish.

    Get the recipe: Tuna and red pesto pasta

     

    32. Tuna and brown rice salad

    meals under £1

    This quick, healthy and tasty tuna and brown rice salad is perfect for lunch boxes.

    Get the recipe: Tuna and brown rice salad

     

    33. Phil Vickery’s potato, apple and tuna frittata

    Phil Vickery's potato, apple and tuna frittata

    Phil Vickery’s potato, apple and tuna frittata is a deicious twist on the classic Italian dish. It’s super easy to make and can be ready in 20 minutes.

    Get the recipe: Phil Vickery’s potato, apple and tuna frittata

     

    34. Crushed potatoes with tuna

    Such an understated recipe, but packed full of flavour and nutritious ingredients.

    Get the recipe: Crushed potatoes with tuna

     

    35. Pasta salad with tuna and peppers

    Simple and nutritious, this pasta salad is packed with chunky tuna, diced peppers, spring onions and fennel shavings in a creamy mustard dressing.

    Get the recipe: Pasta salad with tuna and peppers