All About Canned Tuna

tuna fish sandwich on whole grain bread

Tuna is a great source of protein and is a good buy too.  Which of these new delicious tuna ideas will you try? 

Tuna is nutritious

  • Tuna is part of the Meat and Alternatives food group in Canada’s Food Guide.
  • One Food Guide serving is ½ cup (125 mL) or 75 g (2 ½ oz).
  • Tuna is low in fat and provides an excellent source of protein and a source of iron.
  • Canada’s Food Guide recommends we eat at least 2 Food Guide servings of fish a week. 

Safety tips for tuna

  • There are many tasty fish that are nutritious and safe to eat such as canned tuna.
  • Canned tuna tends to be smaller fish with lower levels of methyl mercury.
  • For the least amount of mercury choose ones with skipjack or tongol instead of albacore (“white”) tuna.

Find out more:  Get the reel scoop on fish and mercury

Buy it best

  • For less fat, buy brands packed in water (not oil). Also choose brands with the least amount of salt (sodium).
  • Compare store brands for the best price. 
  • Larger containers of plain tuna are often a better buy than smaller containers of flavoured tuna. Check the unit pricing to be sure.
  • Buy extra on sale. Keep it on hand if you find it hard to get out to the grocery store often.
  • Do not buy cans that are leaking, rusted, dented, cracked or have bulging lids. These are signs the food is spoiled and may not be safe to eat.

Tips for storing tuna

  • Store unopened cans in a cool, dry place such as a cupboard. This helps prevent the can from rusting.
  • For best quality, use by the best before date or within 3 years. Also try to use older cans first.
  • Throw out cans that are: leaking, rusted, dented, cracked or have bulging lids.
  • Put any unused tuna into an air tight container. Store in the fridge. Use within 4 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

Tips for cooking tuna

  • For variety, canned tuna can often replace other protein choices (chicken, canned salmon or beans) in various recipes.
  • Remember canned tuna is already cooked which makes it a great time saver.

5 things to do with tuna

Use it as a dip or spread

  • Mix tuna with half yogurt and half light mayonnaise.
  • Spread the mixture over crunchy celery sticks or warmed pita wedges
  • Dip with apple or pear slices, red or green peppers or bread sticks.

Keep a can of tuna at your office with some whole grain crackers

  • Great for days when you forget your lunch. Just pick up a yogurt and piece of fruit. That’s four food groups!

Try macaroni tuna and cheese

  • For a different taste try adding: salsa, chopped sundried tomatoes, broccoli and cauliflower or even spicy mustard.

Instead of ordering pizza, make tasty tuna melts in just 15 minutes!

  • Top whole grain English muffin or bagel halves with: canned tuna, salsa, cheese, diced peppers, canned pineapple, grated cheese. Broil in the oven until cheese melts.
  • Pita or naan bread and tortilla bread works too.

Try a new twist on tuna sandwiches

  • Add chopped apples, pears, canned pineapple, peaches, kiwi, or halved grapes to canned tuna with light mayonnaise.

Recipe where you can use tuna:

Tuna Mini Sandwiches

You may also be interested in:

Video: How many meat and meat alternatives do you need?

Get the reel scoop on fish and mercury

Omega-3 fats deliver Oh Mega benefits

How to Eat Well on a Budget

Food Safety - Canned Foods

Last Update – February 27, 2019

Phone Icon

Dietitians look beyond fads to deliver reliable, life-changing advice. Want to unlock the potential of food? Connect with a dietitian.