The Real Spaghetti al Tonno (tuna spaghetti)

tuna spaghetti

If you are not stranded in a snow storm and can buy what you need,  here is my favorite use for a can of tuna:


  • 1/5 kg of spaghetti (de Cecco, Barilla)
  • 1 onion (red if possible)
  • fresh parsley, a bunch
  • cherry tomatoes in a ridiculous amount ( like 5)
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • one or two chili peppers (optional, depens on your taste for spicy)
  • a 1/2 glass of average white wine (this one goes in the sauce)
  • a 1/2 glass of good white wine ( this one is for you, while you prepare)
  • a can of tuna
  • salted capers (not in vinagre!)


The worst part as usual is slicing the onion. To reduce tearing, you can chew on some bread while slicing, soak the peeled onion in water for 10 minutes before slicing, and keep a bowl of water very close to your cutting board. As an alternative pour yourself a half glass of good chilled white wine. It doesn’t really stop your eyes from watering, but it makes it more acceptable. You could also play some good music that reminds you of good ol’ times, and give some sense to those tears.
Now, put  large pot of water to boil with a fistful of coarse salt, heat a large frying pan and let the onions and the olive oil become mushy in it. Add the chili, capers, cherry tomatoes cut in halves, and shortly after add the tuna, roughly mushed with a fork or wooden spoon.
When your water starts boiling briskly, throw in the spaghetti and gently push them in all the way.
Also pour the other half glass wine in your sauce, and let simmer on low fire until the spaghetti are very “al dente”. Drain them and pour them in your frying pan, throw in a generous fistful of parsley, and mix briskly over fire for one minute.
Remember that capers will contribute with a lot of salt, so taste first!

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