The Washington Post

Tangy Tuna With Spicy Sauce

Tangy Tuna With Spicy Sauce 2.000

Stacy Zarin Goldberg for The Washington Post; food styling by Bonnie S. Benwick/The Washington Post

Dinner in Minutes May 23, 2018

This makes a crunchy and light and almost no-cook meal (we're warming pita breads in the microwave).


When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 2 servings

  • For the pickled onion
  • 1/2 small red onion
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup warm tap water
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • For the tuna and sauce
  • One 5-ounce can tuna packed in oil
  • 1 carrot
  • 1/2 red bell pepper
  • 1 small or medium zucchini
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon sriracha or sweet chili sauce
  • 2 whole-wheat or white pita breads
  • Salad greens, for serving


For the pickled onion: Cut the onion into thin slices and place in a medium bowl. Add the vinegar, water and sugar, stirring to dissolve the latter. Let sit while you prep the remaining ingredients. (Make sure the onion is submerged.)

For the tuna and sauce: Drain the tuna, reserving a tablespoon of its oil. Scrub the carrot, then cut into thin matchsticks. Cut the flesh of the red bell pepper into 1/2-inch dice. Trim the zucchini, cut it half lengthwise and then into thin half moons. Combine the drained tuna (I like to leave some of it in big chunks), carrot, red bell pepper and zucchini in a mixing bowl.

Mince the garlic. Squeeze 2 tablespoons of juice from the lemon half into a liquid measuring cup, then whisk in the garlic, sugar, salt, Sriracha or sweet chili sauce and reserved tuna oil to form a dressing. Add half the dressing to the tuna salad mixture and toss to incorporate.

Wrap the pita breads in a slightly damp paper towel and microwave on LOW for 8 seconds, or just until pliable. Use each pita to line a cereal-size bowl while the bread is still soft enough to mold in, or place each pita on its own plate. Arrange a handful of salad greens on each one. Spoon the remaining dressing over the greens. Divide the tuna salad mixture between the bowls or plates, on top of each pita.

Drain the pickled onion and use it to top each salad.

Rate it

Recipe Source

Adapted from “Itsu: The Cookbook,” by Julian Metcalfe (Mitchell Beazley, 2014).

Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.

Email questions to the Food Section.

Email questions to the Food Section at

Avg. Rating (2)

Rate this recipe

Nutritional Facts

Calories per serving (without the pickled onion): 500

% Daily Values*

Total Fat: 22g 34%

Saturated Fat: 3g 15%

Cholesterol: 20mg 7%

Sodium: 720mg 30%

Total Carbohydrates: 54g 18%

Dietary Fiber: 7g 28%

Sugar: 14g

Protein: 27g

*Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Total Fat: Less than 65g

Saturated Fat: Less than 20g

Cholesterol: Less than 300mg

Sodium: Less than 2,400mg

Total Carbohydrates: 300g

Dietary Fiber: 25g

Most Read Lifestyle