Cheesy tuna pesto pasta

Cheesy tuna pesto pasta

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(41 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 15 mins


Serves 4
Throw together some storecupboard ingredients and pop under the grill for a simple midweek meal

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal696
  • fat27g
  • saturates11g
  • carbs79g
  • sugars5g
  • fibre4g
  • protein40g
  • salt1.5g
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  • 400g penne
  • 200g can yellowfin tuna in olive oil



    A member of the mackerel family, tuna are mainly found in the world's warmer oceans. They…

  • 190g jar basil pesto (or try a different flavour such as spinach, tomato or aubergine pesto)



    Pesto is a generic Italian name for any sauce made by pounding ingredients together.


  • 100g cheddar, grated



    Once cheddar was 'Cheddar', a large, hard-pressed barrel of cheese made by a particular…

  • 250g punnet cherry tomato, halved


  1. Boil the pasta. Meanwhile, tip the tuna and its oil into a large bowl with the pesto. Mash together with a wooden spoon. Stir in a third of the cheese and all of the tomatoes. Heat the grill to high.

  2. When the pasta is cooked, drain and toss through the pesto mix. Tip into a shallow baking dish and scatter with the remaining cheese. Place the dish under the grill for 3-4 mins until just melted, then serve with a green salad and garlic bread.

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Comments (54)

Azlanova's picture

P.S. Add a bit of lemon juice, it makes it sparkle ^-^

Azlanova's picture

Nice. I was curious about tuna-pesto-tomato taste and it's OK. Obviously the taste of pesto covers everything else but I'm glad it didn't create something weird. Hah. So, I used cloud shaped pasta and a big, plane, peeled and chopped tomato + just a simple (free range, organic) cheese. Also I added a bit of a pasta seasoning mix and of course black pepper. It's nice.

lurvlyloz's picture

Simple, tasty and satisfying. Easy to become a weekly staple. I used tuna in spring water, a combination of green and fiery chilli pesto and added spinach

smilerc's picture

Great recipe and very easy. You don't need the oil from the tin of tuna though - fine without it.

janelle25's picture

Have been trying to find Tuna recipes to add to my meal list and this one is a real winner. Added onion and capsicum to ingredients and baked it in the oven as well. Very nice.

lizlemon's picture

This is the best pasta ive ate in a long time. Very simple to make and im very pleased ive found this recipe.

leigh-anne1977's picture

Very simple recipe and my twin toddlers loved it! I didn't have fresh tomatoes so sieved a tin of chopped tomatoes which still worked well. This recipe makes loads so have put half in the freezer hopefully that'll work ok!

debandlola's picture

I've given this five stars because for how easy it is to make, it's sooo tasty, and very easy to vary depending on what's in the cupboard, such as by adding olives, sundried tomatoes or peas.

freshcream's picture

i was wondering how to use up my red pesto, so I threw it into a pot w/ some olive oil, added salt n pepper, garlic and tuna. Then I added fresh spaghetti from Waitrose, and stirred in some cheddar. Im on a juice fast so I cant taste it, but my son is wolfing it down and saying "best pasta ever!" with nearly every bite. For something that took less than 10 min to rustle up, I'd definitely make this again. Easy, quick, and apparently tasty too (I'll make it again in a fortnight and know for sure).

claire3t's picture

So, so easy and really tasty. Definitely in the binder for those tired evenings - am thinking it's probably pretty healthy too.

cat123's picture

I'm surprised I haven't commented on this before, as it's one of my favourite meals and has been since I first came across the recipe. I usually use tuna in water rather than oil as otherwise it can be a bit greasy, and cook it in the oven to make sure it's hot all the way through. To save a small amount of washing up, I don't usually bother mixing the tuna, pesto, etc in a bowl - just wait until the pasta's cooked, drain it and put it back in the saucepan, then add everything else and stir. It's so easy, quick and tasty.

tinydancer's picture

For what this is, which is a simple, quick mid week meal, I'd give it 5 stars. So easy to throw together and suprisingly tasty.

mercuryzelda's picture

Really enjoyed this. I used tuna in spring water (didn't drain it), mozzarella instead of cheddar, and some tomato sauce as my husband and I don't fancy raw tomatoes. Turned out lovely.

valleybaker46's picture

Not a big fan of pasta bakes myself but this was lovely!! Everyone ate it all and any leftovers (There was a lot and filled us up!) are being used to go to work for dinnner!!

fionaandailis's picture

Quite disappointing. Didn't use all the pesto and still very greasy. Kids not keen either and they eat most things. Won't try again

jollypops's picture

worked well for a quick, last minute, Sunday dinner for 6. We used half the pesto, added a serving spoon of cream cheese and a bit more cheese and tuna. Also scattered fresh basil on the top (made it look quite posh)

cshields's picture

Really is storecupboard ingredients hence cheap.
Oh so easy to make, full of flavour enjoyed by all the family - loved it.

drhshires's picture

Made this tonight and it is now firmly one of my favourite storecupboard recipes. I wouldn't make it for a dinner party, but as a tasty and easy family supper it is excellent. I am not a huge fan of the usual tuna sweetcorn bakes - the tuna can be a bit overpowering - but the pesto and tomatoes go really well in this recipe. A big thumbs up!

chinnymummy's picture

Made this for dinner tonight and it really went down well! It was so quick and easy to make - will definitely make this again for a quick mid week meal. Instead of using penne pasta, I used some spinach pasta which made it look really interesting and added a slightly different taste. Next time I think I'll not mix in the tomatoes and just layer them on top with the cheese so that they get nice and grilled.


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