Tuna Pilaf

Do you have meals you can prepare without even thinking? Dishes you’ve made many, many times before and cooking them has almost become a habit?


When I don’t have much time or inspiration and want something that will definitely taste good (because experimenting doesn’t always deliver the tastiest results…), I often opt for this tuna pilaf. The original recipe is from Delicious magazine, but I’ve modified it a bit over the past few years.

tuna pilaf


The pilaf can be prepared within 20 minutes and is great for a weeknight meal. The curry paste and turmeric give this dish an aromatic, slightly spicy Indian taste and a beautiful warm yellow colour.

You can substitute other vegetables for the zucchini (for instance bell pepper, eggplant), but don’t forget to serve it with the sides. The fresh, slightly sour yogurt and sweet and spicy chutney really transform this easy and quick meal into something special.


tuna pilaf

Tuna Pilaf

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 16 minutes

Serving Size: 4

Tuna Pilaf


1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped
1 tablespoon mild curry paste
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 ½ cups (about 300 gr) basmati or pandan rice (whatever you prefer)
1 teaspoon dried pepper flakes (or use fresh chilli pepper to taste)
3 1/3 cups (800 ml) vegetable stock
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 zucchini, sliced in ¼ inch slices
2 cans tuna in oil
Serve with:
mango chutney
thick yogurt


  1. Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook for a few minutes until soft and translucent.
  2. Add curry paste and turmeric, cook for 1 minute until fragrant.
  3. Add rice, stir to combine. Add stock, lemon juice and dried pepper and bring to a simmer.
  4. Cover the pan with a lid and reduce heat to low. Cook for +/- 13 minutes, until all liquid is absorbed and rice is cooked (Check a few times to make sure the dish doesn’t dry out, in that case: add some water)
  5. Meanwhile: heat a griddle pan and grill the zucchini slices.
  6. Add tuna and zucchini to the pilaf, stir gently to combine.
  7. Serve with chutney and yogurt.

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