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Seared Ahi Tuna Steaks

with Smashed Cucumber Salad

  • Grace Parisi
  • Albacore tuna
  • Fast
  • Greek
  • Heart healthy
  • Active Time:20 min
  • Total Time:30 min
  • Servings:2 to 3
  • Difficulty:Easy
Photo by Julia Gartland

Meaty ahi tuna, also known as yellowfin tuna, is at its best when lightly seared and rare in the center. In this Greek-inspired dish, a bright and refreshing salad of cucumbers, tomato, feta, and mint perfectly balances the richness of the fish.


  • 2 Persian cucumbers, ends trimmed, cut into 1-inch lengths

  • ½ cup halved grape or cherry tomatoes

  • 1 small garlic clove, grated or minced

  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more for cooking and drizzling

  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 (8-ounce) ahi ( yellowfin) tuna steaks

  • ¼ cup crumbled feta cheese

  • 2 tablespoons torn fresh mint or flat-leaf parsley plus more for garnish

  • Flaky sea salt for garnishing

  • Warm pita or flatbreads for serving


Prepare the Cucumber Salad

Place the cucumbers lengthwise on a cutting board. Using a meat mallet, rolling pin, or sturdy glass, gently press on the cucumbers to smash, then transfer to a bowl. Add the tomatoes, garlic, 3 tablespoons olive oil, and vinegar,  then season with salt and pepper. Let sit while you prepare the tuna.

Sear the Tuna

Rub the tuna with olive oil and season all over with salt and black pepper, pressing gently to adhere. Heat a medium cast-iron skillet over medium-high until hot. Add a thin layer of oil and swirl to coat the pan. Add the tuna and sear until golden, about 1 minute per side for medium-rare. Transfer to a cutting board and let rest for 2 to 3 minutes before cutting into ½-inch-thick slices.

Finish and Serve

Just before serving, add the feta and mint to the salad. Divide the tuna between 2 or 3 plates then drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with flaky salt and mint. Serve the cucumber salad and warm pita alongside.

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Pro Tips

Pair it Up

Island-hop and pair this Mediterranean dish with a fresh Greek wine like assyrtiko or a grassy New Zealand sauvignon blanc.

Spice it Up

Rub the tuna with cracked peppercorns, sesame seeds, or chopped herbs before searing.

Change it Up

For a yummy sandwich, fill a warm pita with sliced leftover tuna and cucumber salad.

Nutritional info

Filled with many heart-healthy fats, antioxidants, and lean proteins, yellowfin tuna is a nutritional powerhouse. Paired with vitamin C-rich tomatoes and whole grain pitas, this meal is delicious and nutritious.


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