Seared Sesame Tuna

by - 12:34 PM

I've got one last seafood post for Fish Fridays, and it's one of my faves. I've been making this seared Ahi Tuna in my rotation for a few years now and it is one of my Sunday go-to's after a long weekend of sometimes unhealthy eating.

This recipe works best with Ahi (yellowfin or bigeye) tuna, but I've made it with Albacore as well. What's the difference?

Difference between ahi tuna and albacore tuna fillets
Difference between ahi tuna and albacore tuna fillets
In my experience, Ahi tends to be fattier and tastes better a little on the rare side. Albacore is a little drier but still works well too.

The best part about this recipe is that it's quick - the tuna only needs to be seared for 1-2 minutes per side, so you can have dinner ready in less than 15 minutes from when you walk in the door.

Seared Sesame Tuna with Ginger Soy Vinaigrette

Adapted from Cuisine for Two Magazine

For the Vinaigrette
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
2 Tbsp dry white wine
1 Tbsp minced gingerroot (you can use the stuff in the jar)
1 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
1 Tbsp sugar (optional)
1 tsp minced garlic
Lemon Juice

For the Tuna
Equal parts black and white sesame seeds
Olive Oil or Grapeseed Oil
2 Tuna Steaks seasoned with salt & pepper
1 scallion bias sliced (white and green parts)
Toasted sesame oil to taste


Simmer vinegar, broth, wine, ginger, soy, sugar, lemon and garlic in a saucepan over medium-high heat until liquid is reduced to 1/4 cup, about 5-8 minutes. Keep vinaigrette warm over low heat.

I made some steamed kale for our side
Combine black and white sesame seeds on a plate or paper towel. Heat oil in a non-stick skillet over med-high heat.

Coat one side only of each tuna steak in sesame seeds.

Sesame tuna fillet

Sear tuna steaks, seed-side down for 1-2 minutes for medium-rare (3-4 for fully cooked), then turn over and cook for 1-2 more minutes. (I generally only sear my tuna for 3.5 to 4 minutes total which makes it cooked outside with raw pink insides).

Plate tuna steaks and tent with foil to keep them warm.

Before serving, add scallion slices and sesame oil to warm vinaigrette. Drizzle tuna steaks with vinaigrette and serve!

Seared Tuna Recipe

This goes great with sauteed greens or an Asian-inspired salad. I think it's substantial enough not to add rice but you can if you'd like.

Mistakes I've made:

  • Do not sub vegetable broth for chicken broth
  • Use a splatter guard so oil doesn't go all over your range (the pan needs to be pretty hot for it to sear quickly)
  • The ginger really makes the dish

Coming up next week...

I'll have Part 2 of my Post-Running Recovery Tips and I'll also be kicking off a new series called "FitGirlChallenge" where I'll be taking suggestions from readers on posts they'd like to see. 

Some suggestions already include: healthy snacks to take to work and a typical breakfast/lunch/dinner for a fit, healthy, happy life. If you have any posts you'd like to see, just leave a comment and let me know!

Enjoy this AMAZE spring weather! I just got back from a killer run on the lake and I can't wait to get back out there tomorrow.

#LiveHealthy -

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  1. kat, what's a good rule of thumb for buying fish that you're planning to eat somewhat rare? (no judgment, but i have an irrational fear of killing myself by eating raw meat that i haven't cooked enough... but love tuna as raw as i can get it)

  2. This looks delicious! I'm a bit intimidated about cooking fish at home, but I want to try this!

  3. @Kate as far as buying "quality" fish goes, I usually head to whole foods. I am the same way about fish - I feel like I can trust WF's quality moreso than at a discount grocer or mass market grocer. Rules of thumb: if it smells "fishy" or foul, don't eat it. Also, ask the grocer when they got the fish - they will always tell you how fresh it is. I have also never seen Yellowfin tuna for less than $11 per pound so if you see some that is, it may not be trustworthy.

    @Love, Laugh, Laurie thank you! Cooking fish at home is just as easy as chicken, I promise! Just light a candle and throw out the trash immediately afterwards :)

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