Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli Recipe from Portugal | Tuna and Cannellini Beans Salad

Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli

Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli Recipe from Portugal | Tuna and Cannellini Beans Salad
Region / culture: Portugal | Preparation time: 10 minutes | Cooking time: 0 minutes | Servings: 4


Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli
Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli

Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli, a classic Italian dish, combines the rich flavors of tuna with the creamy texture of white beans, accented by the sharpness of red onion and the aromatic presence of garlic and oregano. This dish, often served as a starter, is a testament to the simplicity and elegance of Italian cuisine, where quality ingredients speak for themselves. Perfect for a light lunch, a starter, or a side dish, this recipe is versatile, nutritious, and packed with flavor.


The origins of Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli trace back to the coastal regions of Italy, where seafood is a staple in the diet. This dish emerged as a way to combine readily available local ingredients into a hearty, yet refreshing meal. Over time, it has become a beloved part of Italian antipasti selections, showcasing the country's culinary tradition of using simple, high-quality ingredients to create dishes that are greater than the sum of their parts.


How to prepare

  1. In a bowl, combine vinegar, oil, oregano, mustard, reserved bean liquid, salt, and pepper. Mix well until the ingredients are thoroughly combined and the mixture becomes fairly viscous.
  2. Add tuna, beans, red onion, celery, and garlic to the dressing. Break up the tuna while mixing.
  3. Refrigerate the mixture for an hour before serving. Serve at room temperature.


  • Consider adding capers or chopped olives for an extra burst of flavor. For a vegetarian version, substitute the tuna with marinated artichoke hearts.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

To elevate your Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli, consider the following tips:

- Use high-quality, olive oil-packed tuna for the best flavor and texture.

- Rinse and drain the beans well to remove excess sodium and improve their taste.

- Let the dish marinate in the refrigerator for at least an hour to allow the flavors to meld together beautifully.

- Serve at room temperature to best appreciate the flavors.

Serving Suggestions

Serve this dish on a bed of fresh arugula or mixed greens for added flavor and nutrition. It can also be served alongside crusty Italian bread or as a topping for bruschetta.

Cooking Techniques

The key technique in this recipe is the marination process, which allows the flavors to deepen and meld. Ensure thorough mixing to evenly distribute the dressing.

Ingredient Substitutions

If white beans are not available, chickpeas make a great substitute. Apple cider vinegar can be used in place of red wine vinegar for a slightly different flavor profile.

Make Ahead Tips

This dish can be made up to two days in advance and stored in the refrigerator, making it perfect for meal prep or as a make-ahead appetizer for gatherings.

Presentation Ideas

Serve in a clear glass bowl to showcase the colorful ingredients. Garnish with fresh parsley or basil for an added touch of color and flavor.

Pairing Recommendations

Pair this dish with a crisp, dry white wine such as Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc to complement its flavors.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. This dish is best enjoyed cold or at room temperature, so reheating is not necessary.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

A serving of this dish contains approximately 300 calories, making it a moderate option for those monitoring their calorie intake.


A serving of Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli contains approximately 20 grams of carbohydrates. The majority of these carbs come from the white beans, which are also an excellent source of fiber and protein.


This dish is relatively low in saturated fats, with most of the fat content coming from the olive oil, which is rich in monounsaturated fats. These "good fats" are beneficial for heart health. A serving contains about 14 grams of fat, the majority of which is healthy fat.


Tuna and white beans both contribute to the high protein content of this dish, with a serving providing about 22 grams of protein. This makes Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli a satisfying, muscle-building option for a meal or side dish.

Vitamins and minerals

Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli is rich in several vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin B12 from the tuna, iron and magnesium from the beans, and various antioxidants from the olive oil and vegetables.


The primary allergens in this dish are fish (tuna) and potentially gluten, depending on the mustard used. Always check labels if you're serving this to someone with food sensitivities.


Overall, Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli is a nutritious dish, offering a balanced mix of proteins, healthy fats, and carbohydrates, along with essential vitamins and minerals. It's a heart-healthy option that supports a balanced diet.


Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli is a testament to the beauty of Italian cuisine, where simple ingredients come together to create a dish that is nutritious, flavorful, and versatile. Whether you're looking for a light lunch, a starter, or a side, this recipe is sure to impress with its combination of textures, flavors, and health benefits.

How did I get this recipe?

The first time I saw this recipe, I was immediately drawn to it. It was a warm summer day and I was strolling through the bustling streets of Rome, taking in the sights and sounds of the city. As I passed by a quaint little trattoria, the delicious aroma of garlic and herbs wafted through the air, enticing me to step inside.

I found a cozy table by the window and ordered a glass of wine. As I perused the menu, my eyes landed on a dish called Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli. The description read: a colorful medley of tuna, white beans, cherry tomatoes, and fresh herbs, drizzled with a tangy vinaigrette. It sounded absolutely divine.

When the dish arrived at my table, I was taken aback by its vibrant colors and enticing aroma. The tuna was tender and flaky, the beans were creamy and flavorful, and the vinaigrette added a zesty kick that tied everything together perfectly. I savored each bite, letting the flavors dance on my palate.

After finishing my meal, I struck up a conversation with the chef, a jovial man with a twinkle in his eye. I complimented him on the delicious dish and asked if he would be willing to share the recipe with me. To my delight, he agreed.

As he wrote down the ingredients and instructions on a napkin, he regaled me with stories of his grandmother, who had taught him how to cook when he was just a boy. He spoke fondly of the time they spent together in the kitchen, creating delicious meals and sharing them with family and friends.

I left the trattoria that day feeling inspired and eager to recreate the Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli in my own kitchen. I gathered the ingredients and set to work, following the chef's instructions to the letter. As the dish came together, I could almost hear the laughter and chatter of the trattoria, feel the warmth of the Mediterranean sun on my skin.

When I took the first bite of my homemade Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli, I closed my eyes and sighed with contentment. The flavors were just as I remembered – fresh, vibrant, and utterly delicious. I felt a sense of pride and accomplishment, knowing that I had successfully recreated a taste of Italy in my own home.

From that day on, Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli became a staple in my repertoire of recipes. I would often prepare it for family gatherings and dinner parties, delighting in the compliments and smiles of my loved ones. Each time I made the dish, I would think back to that warm summer day in Rome and the kind chef who had shared his recipe with me.

As the years passed, I continued to refine and perfect the recipe, adding my own personal touches and variations. I shared it with friends and neighbors, passing on the tradition of Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli to a new generation.

Now, as I sit here in my cozy kitchen, surrounded by the comforting smells of garlic and herbs, I can't help but feel grateful for the serendipitous moment that led me to discover this delicious dish. It serves as a reminder of the joy and connection that food can bring, bridging cultures and generations with its simple yet profound power.

And so, I continue to cook and share my recipes with others, knowing that each dish carries with it a story and a legacy of love. As long as there are people to enjoy good food and good company, the tradition of Antipasti di Tonno e Fagioli will live on, bringing a taste of Italy to kitchens around the world.


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