Ahi Tuna Salad Recipe: A Flavorful American Classic

Ahi Tuna Salad

Ahi Tuna Salad Recipe: A Flavorful American Classic
Region / culture: USA | Preparation time: 1 hour | Cooking time: 10 minutes | Servings: 4


Ahi Tuna Salad
Ahi Tuna Salad

Ahi Tuna Salad is a refreshing and nutritious dish that combines the rich, savory flavors of marinated and grilled Ahi tuna with the crisp freshness of salad greens and vegetables. This recipe is perfect for those looking for a light yet satisfying meal that packs a punch in terms of flavor and health benefits. Whether you're a seasoned chef or a cooking novice, this Ahi Tuna Salad is sure to impress with its simplicity and gourmet appeal.


The history of Ahi Tuna Salad is deeply rooted in the culinary traditions of coastal regions where tuna is a staple. Ahi, also known as yellowfin tuna, has been a significant part of diets in these areas for centuries. The method of marinating and grilling tuna was developed to enhance its flavor and texture, making it a popular choice for salads and other dishes. Over time, this recipe has evolved, incorporating various ingredients and dressings to suit different tastes and preferences.


How to prepare

  1. Marinate the Tuna in the refrigerator for an hour.
  2. Preheat the grill.
  3. Grill the Tuna on high heat for 2 to 3 minutes on each side.
  4. Lower the heat and continue cooking until the Tuna reaches the desired doneness.
  5. Remove the Tuna from the grill and allow it to cool slightly.
  6. Slice the Tuna and toss it with yogurt, mayonnaise, onion, lemon, garlic, relish, and tomatoes.
  7. Serve the Tuna open-faced on toasted bread or with salad greens.
  8. Nutritional Information: Calories 300, Protein 39 g, Fat 6 g, Saturated Fat 1.5 g, Cholesterol 23 mg, Fiber 1 g, Sodium 470 mg
  9. Temperature: Grill - high, then low.
  10. From the cookbook of George Hirsch "Living It Up".


  • There are many ways to vary this recipe to suit different tastes or dietary needs. For a spicier version, add a dash of hot sauce or some diced jalapeños to the marinade. For a dairy-free option, substitute the yogurt and mayonnaise with avocado or a dairy-free alternative.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

To ensure the best results when preparing Ahi Tuna Salad, consider the following tips and tricks:

- Always use fresh Ahi tuna for the best flavor and texture.

- Marinate the tuna for at least an hour to infuse it with flavor.

- Preheat your grill to achieve a nice sear on the tuna.

- Avoid overcooking the tuna; it should be pink in the center for the best taste and texture.

- Let the tuna rest for a few minutes after grilling before slicing to retain its juices.

Serving Suggestions

Ahi Tuna Salad can be served open-faced on toasted bread for a satisfying sandwich or atop a bed of mixed salad greens for a lighter option. It pairs well with a side of fresh fruit or a light soup for a complete meal.

Cooking Techniques

Grilling the Ahi tuna is the preferred cooking technique for this recipe, as it adds a smoky flavor and a desirable texture to the fish. However, the tuna can also be seared in a hot pan on the stove if grilling is not an option.

Ingredient Substitutions

If Ahi tuna is not available, other types of tuna or even salmon can be used as substitutes. Greek yogurt can be used in place of regular yogurt for a thicker dressing, and any variety of fresh vegetables can be added to the salad according to preference.

Make Ahead Tips

The tuna can be marinated up to a day in advance to save time. The salad components can also be prepared ahead of time and assembled just before serving to ensure freshness.

Presentation Ideas

Serve the Ahi Tuna Salad on a platter with the tuna slices fanned out over the greens for an elegant presentation. Garnish with lemon wedges and a sprinkle of fresh herbs for added color and flavor.

Pairing Recommendations

Ahi Tuna Salad pairs beautifully with a crisp white wine, such as Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio. For a non-alcoholic option, a sparkling water with a squeeze of lemon complements the flavors of the dish.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

It is best to consume Ahi Tuna Salad fresh. However, if there are leftovers, store the tuna and salad components separately in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to two days. The tuna can be gently reheated in a pan over low heat, but it is best enjoyed cold or at room temperature.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

Each serving of Ahi Tuna Salad contains approximately 300 calories. This makes it an ideal dish for those looking to enjoy a flavorful and nutritious meal without consuming too many calories. The balance of protein, fats, and carbohydrates provides sustained energy without the heaviness of more calorie-dense foods.


This Ahi Tuna Salad is relatively low in carbohydrates, making it an excellent choice for those following a low-carb or ketogenic diet. The primary sources of carbohydrates in this dish come from the vegetables and the small amount of yogurt and mayonnaise used in the dressing. Overall, the carbohydrate content is minimal, focusing instead on the protein-rich tuna and nutrient-dense vegetables.


The fats in this Ahi Tuna Salad come primarily from the tuna itself and the mayonnaise used in the dressing. Ahi tuna is a good source of healthy omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial for heart health. The mayonnaise contributes some saturated fats, but using a low-fat mayonnaise can help reduce this. Overall, the fat content is moderate and consists of a healthy balance of saturated and unsaturated fats.


Ahi Tuna Salad is an excellent source of high-quality protein, thanks to the generous portion of Ahi tuna in the recipe. Protein is essential for building and repairing tissues, making this dish a great option for post-workout meals or for those looking to increase their protein intake. The yogurt in the dressing also adds a small amount of additional protein.

Vitamins and minerals

This salad is packed with vitamins and minerals, primarily from the Ahi tuna and the fresh vegetables. Tuna is a good source of B vitamins, particularly vitamin B12, which is important for brain health. It also contains significant amounts of selenium, a mineral that plays a crucial role in metabolism and thyroid function. The vegetables add a variety of vitamins, including vitamin C, vitamin K, and folate.


The main allergens to be aware of in this recipe are fish (tuna) and dairy (yogurt and mayonnaise). Individuals with allergies to these ingredients should exercise caution and consider suitable substitutions.


Overall, Ahi Tuna Salad is a nutritious and balanced dish that offers a variety of health benefits. It is high in protein, low in carbohydrates, and contains a healthy balance of fats, including omega-3 fatty acids. Additionally, it is rich in vitamins and minerals, making it a great addition to any diet.


Ahi Tuna Salad is a versatile, nutritious, and delicious dish that is perfect for any occasion. Whether you're looking for a light lunch, a healthy dinner, or a sophisticated dish to serve to guests, this recipe offers a delightful combination of flavors and textures. With its high protein content, healthy fats, and array of vitamins and minerals, Ahi Tuna Salad is a meal that not only tastes great but also contributes to a balanced diet.

How did I get this recipe?

The first time I saw this recipe, it left a lasting impression on me. It was a warm summer day, and I was visiting my friend in Hawaii. We decided to have a picnic on the beach, and she pulled out a delicious looking dish from her cooler. It was a vibrant Ahi Tuna Salad, filled with fresh vegetables and perfectly seared tuna.

As soon as I took my first bite, I knew I had to learn how to make this dish for myself. My friend shared the recipe with me, and I made it a goal to master it. I started by researching different techniques for cooking tuna, as I wanted to make sure it was perfectly seared on the outside while still rare on the inside.

I practiced making the Ahi Tuna Salad every chance I got, experimenting with different marinades and salad dressings. I learned that the key to a great Ahi Tuna Salad is using the freshest ingredients possible. I would visit the local fish market early in the morning to pick out the best tuna and then head to the farmer's market for the ripest tomatoes and crisp cucumbers.

Over time, I perfected my Ahi Tuna Salad recipe, and it became a staple at family gatherings and potlucks. Everyone raved about how delicious it was, and I was always happy to share the recipe with anyone who asked. I loved seeing the joy on their faces as they took their first bite and tasted the flavors of the islands.

As the years passed, I continued to refine my Ahi Tuna Salad recipe, adding new twists and flavors to keep things interesting. I even entered it into a local cooking competition and won first place! The judges were impressed by the freshness of the ingredients and the bold flavors of the dish.

I started to get requests from friends and neighbors to cater events and parties with my Ahi Tuna Salad. I loved being able to share my passion for cooking with others and seeing how much they enjoyed my creations. It brought me so much joy to see people come together over a delicious meal that I had made with love and care.

One day, my granddaughter came to visit me and asked if I could teach her how to make the Ahi Tuna Salad. I was thrilled to pass down my recipe to her and show her all the tips and tricks I had learned over the years. We spent the day in the kitchen together, chopping vegetables, searing tuna, and mixing up the perfect dressing.

As we sat down to enjoy our Ahi Tuna Salad together, I couldn't help but feel a sense of pride and happiness. I had passed down a piece of my culinary legacy to my granddaughter, and I knew that she would continue to share this recipe with her friends and family for years to come.

In that moment, surrounded by loved ones and savoring the flavors of the Ahi Tuna Salad, I realized that cooking isn't just about following a recipe. It's about creating memories, sharing traditions, and bringing people together through the power of food. And I was grateful to have learned that lesson from a simple dish that had left such a lasting impression on me.


| American Recipes | Healthy Appetizers | Healthy Salads | Salad Recipes | Tuna Recipes |

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