Pasta with Tuna, Tomatoes and Olives

This simple Pasta with Tuna, Tomatoes and Olives will go down well with the whole family. If you don’t have fresh herbs, just use some dried basil instead. Olives can become bitter if cooked too long, so you should add them in at the end of a recipe. Vary the recipe for more grown-up tastes by adding in some chopped anchovies, capers or chilli flakes.


Recipe adapted from Apples for Jam by Tessa Kiros

Serves 4


  • 400 g pasta, such as penne, farfalle or spaghetti
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 x 400 g tin chopped tomatoes
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 x 170 g can of tuna, drained
  • 3 basil leaves, torn
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
  • a few handfuls of black olives, halved


Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water according to the packet instructions.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large saucepan over a medium-low heat. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and season well with salt and pepper. Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, then add the tuna, breaking up any large chunks with a wooden spoon. Add in the basil, parsley and olives and simmer for a few minutes more, then remove from the heat.

Drain the pasta and reserve some of the cooking water. Add the pasta to the sauce. Add some of the pasta cooking water to help the sauce coat the pasta if necessary. Serve immediately.

You can find these recipes and more family favourites on our blog,
You might also enjoy Pasta with Chickpeas (Pasta e Ceci) and Farfalle with Peas, Pancetta and Ricotta
Did you try this pasta with tuna recipe? Let us know in the comments below.
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Jill is one of the co-founders of Mykidstime and a mum of 2 girls