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Under 30 Minutes

Spaghetti with Tuna and Caper Sauce

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4
Spaghetti with Tuna and Caper Sauce

Photography: Alphs Smoot

Source: Martha Stewart Living


  • 12 ounces spaghetti
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 10 ounces tuna packed in olive oil (from 1 to 2 tins)
  • 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons capers, preferably salt-packed, rinsed and drained
  • Pinch of red-pepper flakes, plus more for serving
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest, plus 1 tablespoon juice (from 1 lemon)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves


  1. Cook pasta in a large pot of generously salted water until al dente. Reserve 1 1/2 cups pasta water; drain.

  2. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add tuna with its oil and garlic and cook, stirring a few times, until garlic is golden in spots, about 5 minutes. Stir in capers and pepper flakes and cook, 30 seconds. Add 1 cup reserved pasta water; bring to a simmer. Add cooked pasta and simmer, tossing a few times, until liquid is reduced to a sauce that coats pasta.

  3. Remove from heat and toss in lemon zest and juice, oil, and parsley; season with pepper. Add more pasta water, a few tablespoons at a time, until pasta is evenly coated. Serve, sprinkled with more pepper flakes.

Reviews (1)

  • Elaine Dauwalder 31 Aug, 2014

    Excellent quick pantry meal. I chopped the capers because I do not like to get that much of a brine taste in my mouth at once when they are whole. I could have added 15 ounces of tuna with the whole 16 ounce box of pasta for 5 servings or so. I also used fresh chopped parsley as a garish on top than mixing it in - that looked better. I also was not shy with the red pepper flakes. This is worth making - esp with a nice glass of Riesling. Much better than the usual tuna fish sandwiches.

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