Tuna Tartare

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5 from 82 votes
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Learn to make the best tuna tartare recipe at home and NEVER buy it at a restaurant again! Deceptively easy to make and with a simple ginger soy dressing, it’s an elegant appetizer that is sure to impress!

tuna tartare.

I love some seafood appetizers.

I have a few favorites on hand, including bang bang shrimp and coconut shrimp, but I love a good tuna tartare when I want to be fancy. 

What is tuna tartare? 

Inspired by beef tartare, the tuna version is made up of raw tuna cubed and seasoned with soy sauce, ginger, and sesame oil. It’s an elegant appetizer in restaurants and bars and tastes incredible.

Thanks to the growing popularity of poke bowls and tuna sushi, raw ahi tuna is becoming readily available, meaning you can make tartare at home! 

Making it yourself is super simple, and you’ll love making it at home because:

  • No fishy flavor. Like other raw fish recipes, you don’t get the flavor of the raw fish. Light-colored belly albacore color tuna is very mild in flavor, even more so when the sauce and seasonings are added. 
  • Ready in 5 minutes. With no marination time required, this is the appetizer you can whip up immediately. 
  • Healthy and protein-packed. Tuna is super low in calories and packed with protein.
  • Cheaper than restaurants. Because tuna tartare is super trendy, it typically has quite a hefty price tag attached to it. This homemade version comes at a fraction of the price but with a much more generous serving! 

For all the tartare lovers, you will love how easy and delicious this dish is. You won’t believe how easy it is to make, and you’ll never order it at a restaurant again!

Ingredients needed

Besides the tuna and some seasonings, there isn’t much else that goes into this recipe. Here is what you’ll need:

  • Sushi grade tuna/Ahi tuna- You can ONLY use sushi grade or ahi tuna. While regular raw tuna may look appropriate, it has not been farmed the correct way to enjoy it in an un-cooked state.
  • Sesame seeds and green onions– Add some crunch and color. 
  • Ginger- A must when working with any kind of seafood. 
  • Soy sauce– Tamari or gluten-free soy sauce also works.
  • Lime juice– Adding citrus reacts with the sesame oil and soy to ‘cook’ the tuna while also balancing out the salty and rich flavors. 
  • Sesame oil– Just a drizzle to add a layer of richness and delicious sesame flavor. 

How to make tuna tartare

Simple is an understatement when it comes to this recipe. All you need is 5 minutes to follow an easy 3-step process. Here is how you’ll make this:

Step 1- cube the tuna

Cut ¼ inch cubes of your tuna and put them in a mixing bowl. I recommend using a very sharp knife and cutting against the grain of the fish, making the slicing so much easier.

Step 2- Marinate

Add sesame oil, lime juice, ginger, and soya sauce in a small bowl, and mix well.

tuna tartare marinade.

Add this prepared sauce to the tuna bowl, and whisk until absorbed. 

raw tuna in marinade.

Step 3- Serve

Transfer the tuna to the serving bowls and garnish with chopped chives and toasted sesame seeds. 

tuna tartar.

Tips to make the best recipe

  • Use fresh sushi-grade tuna or ahi tuna. This fish can be found at Japanese grocery stores, fishmongers, or specialty seafood stores. You can also buy cuts from traditional sushi shops. 
  • Don’t marinate the fish for too long, or else the fish will absorb too much flavor and detract from the natural flavors. 
  • Add some chili sauce or red pepper flakes for a spicy tuna tartare. 

What to serve with this dish

Tuna tartare is best served as an appetizer with freshly sliced avocado, over crackers, or as part of a charcuterie board. Keep the carbs down by scooping them up using keto crackers and keto chips.

If you are craving sushi, replace the crab and shrimp in our Alaska and dragon rolls with some of this tuna.

Alternatively, enjoy it as the main protein in a meal. Pair it with some healthy carbs like a baked potato sweet potato. Add some greens in the form of some broccoli or asparagus and you have a well-rounded and healthy meal.

Storage instructions

To Store- Keep it in an air-tight container, refrigerated, for up to two days. Do not consume raw fish if kept longer than three days. 

To Freeze- Do not freeze tuna tartare or raw tuna, as it will become rubbery and yield a foul smell once thawed. 

ahi tuna tartare.

More recipes using tuna to try

Frequently asked questions

Is tuna tartare healthy?

Yes, tuna tartare is healthy. Raw fish has many health benefits, including iron, iodine, and omega-3 healthy fats. To make it even healthier, you can add other healthy ingredients to the dish, like avocado and cucumber.

How can you tell if tuna is sushi grade?

If the tuna is sushi-grade, it will be translucent, shiny, and bright red. You should look for this color at the core and tail. The bloodline should also be a darker red than other fish. If it is black or brown, it is not suitable for tartare.

What is the difference between tartar and tartare?

Tartar refers to a sauce that is often served with seafood. Tartare is a food term describing raw meat or seafood, most often tuna, salmon, and beef, that is finely minced/chopped, seasoned, and served as an appetizer.

tuna tartare recipe.

Best Tuna Tartare Recipe

5 from 82 votes
Learn how to make tuna tartare at home and NEVER buy it at a restaurant again! Deceptively easy to make and with a simple ginger soy dressing, it's an elegant appetizer that is sure to impress!
Servings: 8 servings
Prep: 1 minute
Cook: 1 minute
Total: 2 minutes

Ingredients  

  • 1 lb fresh tuna sushi grade
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice freshly squeezed
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds to serve
  • 1 large green onion finely sliced, to serve

Instructions 

  • Slice your tuna into ¼-inch cubes and place them in a mixing bowl. 
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the ginger, soy sauce, lime juice and sesame oil until combined. 
  • Pour the sauce over the tuna and gently mix until incorporated.
  • Transfer into serving bowls and sprinkle with the chopped chives and toasted sesame seeds.

Notes

TO STORE: Keep it in an air-tight container, refrigerated, for up to two days. Do not consume raw fish if kept longer than three days. 
TO FREEZE: Do not freeze tuna tartare or raw tuna, as it will become rubbery and yield a foul smell once thawed. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1servingCalories: 115kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 14gFat: 6gSodium: 211mgPotassium: 169mgFiber: 1gVitamin A: 1271IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 18mgIron: 1mg
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Author: Arman Liew
Tried this recipe?Give us a shout at @thebigmansworld or tag #thebigmansworld!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial, and/or link to any products or services from this website.

Arman Liew

I’m a two time cookbook author, photographer, and writer, and passionate about creating easy and healthier recipes. I believe you don’t need to be experienced in the kitchen to make good food using simple ingredients that most importantly, taste delicious.

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This was so simple and absolutely delicious.
    I used black sesame seeds and served it over a little salted avocado. Perfect!

  2. 5 stars
    Obsessed with this recipe! It’s so light and refreshing and making it at home is so much cheaper! I shared this with friends and it was a huge hit.