Deliciously easy Creamy Tuna Pasta with Asparagus, Mushrooms and Cheese… The perfect mid-week meal. On the table in 30 minutes. Make with gluten free pasta.
Originally posted 25th May 2013. Post updated 16th May 2022
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My favourite ever Creamy Tuna Pasta Recipe
Creamy Tuna Pasta with Asparagus, Mushrooms and Cheese is my absolute all-time favourite pasta dish. I’ve been making it for years… And while it’s the simplest dish ever, it’s also insanely delicious and never fails to impress. It remains a staple on my kitchen ‘feed the family’ recipe list. The combination of flavours and textures combine beautifully with just the right amount of unctiousness, saltiness, softness and bite.
Even with chopping up a few ingredients and grating some cheese, Creamy Tuna Pasta can be on the table in under 30 minutes… And that not only makes it great to share with friends and family, but a perfect mid-week meal too.
What ingredients are in my Creamy Tuna Pasta?
To make my Creamy Tuna Pasta, you’ll need the following ingredients:
- Pasta – gluten free or standard
- Tuna (see below)
- Mushrooms (preferably button mushrooms, as they hold their shape and colour better)
- Baby Corn
- Hard Cheese – preferably a good, sharp, mature Cheddar (or equivalent)
- Cream (double/heavy or single)
- Tarragon, Dill or Parsley
- Salt and Pepper, to season
- A drop of oil to fry-off the veg
Should I use fresh or canned tuna to make this pasta recipe?
When I make Tuna Pasta with Cheese, I always use fresh tuna steak. It may sound like an extravagance, but because it’s being used as one ingredient of several, it ‘stretches’ a lot further. And actually, when compared gram for cost against tinned tuna, the price difference is actually minimal… Even better, it can be bought as chilled or frozen steaks.
Honestly… It’s really a ‘no brainer’. Fresh tuna is so much better than tinned, especially if you want to get the full ‘firm and meaty’ texture, which holds together in definable pieces. I can’t think of any reason why not to use it.
But… If you’re still not convinced, or just prefer tinned tuna, that’s fine too. My Creamy Tuna Pasta will be totally delicious regardless! Tinned tuna or fresh… The choice is yours.
(NOTE: If you love fresh tuna, why not try these recipes too…)
What’s the best pasta shape for this recipe?
The debate about which pasta works best with which sauce is a long-running one. Nonetheless, when it comes to Creamy Tuna Pasta, I’m not convinced the argument holds. Over the years I’ve made it with everything from long and ribboned pastas (such as spaghetti, tagliatelle and linguini) and pasta tubes (penne and rigatoni), to bows, shells (Conchiglie) and twists (fusilli and Caserecce). All of them worked well.
However… My top choices for the sheer luxury of sauce-coated pasta… and to get the best eating experience would be:
Making Creamy Tuna Pasta gluten free
As a child, pasta was a staple in our house. My maternal grandparents were Italian and I have nostalgic memories of visiting their home to find drying homemade pasta draped around the kitchen. Of course, this was long before the need to eat gluten free.
Nonetheless, it remains one of my favourite foods, not least for its simplicity in making a quick, nutritious meal with any number of sauces.
But gluten free pasta can create a whole new set of dilemmas in itself. Ditch the wheat and suddenly, there is a plethora of grains being used. And to be honest… Some of the colours and textures are so far off the real deal, you’d be forgiven for questioning whether you’re eating pasta at all.
But with everything from dubious-looking yellow corn pasta, to products made with green pea flour, almost grey buckwheat flour, red-coloured lentil flour, black bean and the more familiar pale rice, which is best?
I guess you’ll have your favourites, but my advice as a life-long pasta eater, is steer away from the products that are predominantly white rice and yellow corn based. In my experience, they crumble into mush when over-cooked by seconds and taste grainy and unpleasant… Frankly nothing like pasta.
My favourite supermarket-accessible brands are Barilla (which uses mainly white corn), Garofalo (a balanced combination of flours), Sainsbury’s free from Casarecce and Linguini (mixed flours, including wholegrain rice and amaranth) and the generic pure Buckwheat Penne (it’s dark, but has a fabulous texture).
Or… You could try making your own…
What can I use instead of tuna in this recipe?
While I adore tuna, I am aware that for some people, it’s a ‘no’. That’s fine. I won’t judge… But I’d also hate for you to miss out on one of my favourite recipes. So, what can you use instead of tuna to make it?
Well… My creamy tuna pasta recipe is actually really versatile… Instead of tuna, make a straight sub with:
- Smoked salmon
- Chicken breast
- Or (for the veggies) just leave it out altogether and use a little extra asparagus/mushroom/sweetcorn…
What can I use instead of asparagus in Creamy Tuna Pasta?
Asparagus is always my ‘go to’ vegetable to pair in Creamy Tuna Pasta. However, while it’s relatively easy to find in supermarkets all year round, it is actually a seasonal vegetable. So, if asparagus isn’t easy to track down, or is out of season, what can be used in its place?
These are my favourite alternatives that offer a similar delicate sweetness and work best alongside the other ingredients…
- Garden peas (frozen or fresh) are the best alternative
- Sugarsnap peas
- French green beans
What Cheese is best for making Cheesy Tuna Pasta?
The most important thing about any cheese used to make this recipe, is that it melts well and has a great flavour that pairs with the tuna. I usually use a good sharp hard cheese like English Cheddar. But it’s fine to use an alternative that is local for you.
I can also recommend heading ‘blue’, with a lovely, earthy and meltable veined cheese such as Stilton, for some extra pizzazz.
Can I use Crème Frâiche instead of cream?
While using dairy cream to make Creamy Tuna Pasta offers the richest and most sumptuous eating experience, if you want something lighter, then of course… It’s fine to switch out the cream for Crème Frâiche. Make a straight sub and follow the recipe as stated below.
Is this Easy Tuna Pasta recipe gluten free and safe for Coeliacs?
Other than the pasta, my Easy Tuna Pasta recipe is made with natural ingredients. So, providing you use gluten free pasta, the recipe is completely safe for people with Coeliac Disease (Celiac Disease).
Ready to make Creamy Tuna Pasta with Asparagus, Mushrooms and Cheese?
Thank you for reading and for visiting Gluten Free Alchemist. It’s been lovely to have you here. I hope you enjoy my favourite Creamy Tuna Pasta with Asparagus, Mushrooms and Cheese. If you do make it, I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment at the bottom of the post, rate the recipe ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️, or tag me on social media with your awesome pasta pics. Find me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest – #glutenfreealchemist.
And don’t forget… If you’re looking for other great gluten free recipe inspiration, we have hundreds of recipes to browse in our Gluten Free Recipe Index… All photographed and ready to inspire…
Shared for free with my love to the gluten free community
More delicious meal ideas to enjoy…
Creamy Tuna Pasta with Asparagus, Mushrooms and Cheese
- 320 g gluten free pasta eg Penne or Tagliatelle
- 330 g fresh tuna steaks approx. 2 medium steaks – cut into cubes
- 100 g button mushrooms halved
- 100 g asparagus tips cut into smallish pieces
- 100 g baby corn cut into smallish pieces
- 120 ml/g cream double or single (approx amount)
- ½ tbsp chopped fresh tarragon or sprinkle of dried
- salt & pepper to season
- 150 g mature cheddar cheese grated
- 1 tbsp olive oil (+ 1 tsp for cooking pasta) approx amount
- Boil some water ready to cook the pasta while you:
- Cut the tuna into cubes, the button mushrooms into halves, and chop the asparagus and baby corn into small lengths. Set aside.
- Grate the cheese and set aside.
- Cook the pasta with a teaspoon of olive oil until almost cooked but still firm.
- Drain in a colander and set aside, covered, to keep warm. (TIP: pour boiling water over the pasta to rinse through, as this will wash off excess starch and help prevent sticking)
- Heat the oil in a large saucepan and gently sauté the mushrooms, asparagus and corn for a couple of minutes before adding the tuna.
- Continue to cook for about 5 minutes until the vegetables are beginning to colour, but are still crisp and quite firm.
- Pour in about half of the cream and add the tarragon and seasoning. Stir to coat all the ingredients and allow to cook for a minute or so.
- Add the rest of the cream and the grated cheese and fold through until the cheese has fully melted.
- Add the pasta to the mix and stir thoroughly, but gently.
- Heat through, stirring intermittently. This will allow the pasta to finish cooking and blend the flavours through the dish.
- Serve with a sprig of tarragon, fennel or dill and some grated parmesan.
© 2019-2022 Kate Dowse All Rights Reserved – Do not copy or re-publish this recipe or any part of this recipe on any other blog, on social media or in a publication without the express permission of Gluten Free Alchemist