This easy recipe for Tuna Pasta with Olives in tomato sauce is made with ingredients from your pantry so no need to run out to the store!
Since most of us are hunkered down and staying home, now is the perfect time to cook from your pantry!
This recipe uses dried pasta, canned tuna, olives, and tomatoes to create a delicious homemade meal that won’t require a trip to the grocery store!
Why This Recipe Works
- Using canned tuna keeps this recipe flavorful and is economical to make.
- Using curly pasta ensures the pasta holds the tuna and sauce in the twists of the corkscrews.
- Red Pepper flakes add a spicy kick to the sauce.
Canned Tuna In Italian Food
Believe it or not, canned tuna is very common in Italian cuisine. It’s one of the easiest ways to make a seafood pasta dish!
In Italy, It’s actually so it’s so popular that it’s one of the first things young cooks learn to make!
How To Make Tuna Pasta
Start by boiling a large pot of salted water for the pasta. Cook until just underdone.
Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat and add the onion and cook until translucent. Add the garlic. Cook, stirring, just until fragrant.
Add the tomatoes and parsley.
Don’t Have Fresh Herbs? Dried herbs can be used in place of fresh. Dried Italian seasoning, basil, or oregano have the most flavor.
Season to taste with salt and add pepper and the red pepper flakes if using.
Add the Tuna.
Stir in the olives, bring the sauce to a boil, cover, and simmer 10 minutes while the pasta cooks.
Add the pasta, coat with the sauce and cook until the pasta is done adding the reserved pasta water to loosen if necessary and serve.
If making ahead, make the sauce and store in the fridge for up to two days.
When ready to serve, reheat the sauce and follow the pasta instructions in the recipe.
Other Italian Dishes You’ll Love
Tips For Best Results
- Be sure to salt your pasta water – pasta water should taste like the ocean. Skipping this step will result in bland pasta that can’t be saved by the best sauce in the world!
- Don’t Fresh Garlic? Use a teaspoon of jarred or garlic powder in a pinch.
- Don’t have any onions? That’s ok, this recipe will work without them!
- Don’t add oil to your pasta water – this will make the pasta slippery and cause the sauce to slide right off.
- Taste your tuna – If it’s salty, wait until the end to season your sauce. Taste, and then season accordingly.
- Dried herbs can be used in place of fresh. – Dried Italian seasoning, basil or oregano have the most flavor.
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Let’s Make Tuna Pasta with Olives
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 6.5oz can tuna
- 1 onion chopped
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 14 oz chopped tomatoes (1 can)
- 2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley chopped
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- ½ teaspoon dried red pepper flakes optional
- ½ cup pitted black olives such as kalamatas
- 1 pound pasta
- Start by boiling a large pot of salted water for the pasta. When the water for the pasta comes to a boil. Cook until just underdone. Remove 1/4 cup of the cooking water and set aside before draining.
- Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat and add the onion and cook until translucent. Add the garlic. Cook, stirring, just until fragrant, and add the tomatoes.
- Add the parsley and mix together.
- Season to taste with salt and add pepper and the red pepper flakes if using.
- Stir in the olives and the tuna bring the sauce to a boil, cover, and simmer 10-15 minutes while the pasta cooks.
- Add the pasta, coat with the sauce and cook until the pasta is done adding the reserved pasta water to loosen if necessary.
- Serve hot.