Creamiest Pasta with Tuna. Christmas Eve is just not the same without a bowl of pasta with tuna. This recipe is inspired by Steve’s uncle. Zio Iginio was born and raised in Trento which is the Northern part of Italy. He lived in the mountains right on the border of Austria and made this dish for us all the time. This is my take on his pasta with tuna and inspired by him and hopefully honoring him today. Rip Zio Jimmy we all miss you and love you. This recipe makes 2 large portions or 3 small. 

Creamiest pasta with tuna by the modern nonna creamiest pasta with tuna

Creamiest Pasta with Tuna

This recipe is inspired by Steve’s uncle. Steve's Zio Iginio was born and raised in Trento which is the Northern part of Italy. He lived in the mountains right on the border of Austria and made this dish for us all the time.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Servings 2 people


  • 1.5 large cans of tuna without the liquid
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • tablespoon olive oil
  • pepper to taste
  • 250 grams short pasta of choice cooked in boiling salted water
  • 2 ladles of pasta water
  • chilli pepper oil + fresh parm optional


  • In a skillet on medium heat add the butter and olive oil and make sure it shimmers.
  • Drain the oil or water from the tuna and add it into the butter and olive oil. Break it up and cook until the tuna “pops” and it’s nice and golden. Add some pepper to taste and take it off the heat. In the meantime, make sure you are boiling the pasta of choice in salted water until al-dente.
  • When the tuna is nice and golden take it off the heat completely, once the pasta is finished boiling add it in with the pasta starchy water which is liquid gold.
  • Top it off with some fresh Parm or chilli oil and don’t forget to share this recipe with your love ones. Enjoy.



You can use as much or as little tuna as you like, and this would be lovely with salmon or chicken too.
Please adjust the pasta water according to how creamy you like your dish. The pasta water should be as salty as the sea, and this is your only chance to flavour the pasta.
Grated parm is optional. Not traditional but absolutely delicious. Make sure it’s the good quality block of Parmigiano Reggiano. 
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
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6 Responses

  1. 5 stars
    This has been on my to cook list for two weeks. Just whipped it up and lunch and could not believe how good it was for being so simple. Big shout out to sunrise flour mill out of Minnesota for my HERITAGE FUSILLI PASTA! Organic and so delicious. This recipe is now a staple. Tuna took me about 10 minutes to brown!

  2. Had the ingredients and not much time. Whipped this up and it was really good. I had some smoky cheddar I mixed in and sprinkled on top (no Parmesan). Hard to believe how creamy a little pasta water made it!

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