Pan-Seared Tuna Steaks with Lemon-Caper Sauce

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Pan-Seared Tuna Steaks are an excellent choice for dinner as they are a high-quality source of protein with almost no fat. This simple 30-minute recipe combines the tuna steaks with a zesty sauce featuring capers and lemon, for a healthy yet scrumptious meal.

Cooked tuna steak with a lemon slice and caper garnish sat beside a salad of cucumber, tomato and red onion. Text overlay says"Pan-Seared Tuna Steaks and Lemon & Caper Sauce". Similar photos of the recipe from various angles are used throughout but with different text overlays unless otherwise described.

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Pan-Seared Tuna Steaks with Lemon-Caper Sauce

The full ingredients list and instructions are found in the printable recipe card at the end of this post. I highly recommend reading the blog post all the way through so that you don’t miss any tips or substitution suggestions; to ensure that you have all the ingredients and equipment required, and to understand the steps and timings involved.

This fast, healthy, and delicious seared tuna dish comes together in one pan and is ready in less than 30 minutes. Serve with a mixture of seasoned cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onion for a light and refreshing meal.

When buying tuna steaks, look for firm, dense red or dark red flesh. Tuna has a meaty firm flesh and a rich, strong flavour due to its high oil content. It can spoil very quickly, so when buying, use it as soon as possible after purchase for the very best results in your cooking.

Tuna steaks are easy to prepare and fast to cook. They are usually sold skinned, boned and cut into portions, so there is minimal prep work to do.

Tuna can dry out quickly when cooking, so be very mindful of that. In this pan-seared tuna steaks recipe, they are cooked for just a couple of minutes each side. Tuna can be served pink in the middle, which in my opinion the best way to enjoy it!

Tuna Steak


Tuna is a saltwater fish, found in warm seas and depending on the species can grow to over 6 feet. It is one of the fastest fish in the ocean – the yellowfin tuna can reach speeds of nearly 50 mph!

Tuna it is extensively fished commercially, and is popular as a game fish. As a result of overfishing, some tuna species, such as the southern bluefin tuna, are threatened with extinction.

It can be tricky to select healthy and environmentally sustainable seafood options at the grocery store. To find options you can feel good about serving, check the following websites (which one you use will be according to your location in the world):

  • MSCUK.orgMarine Conservation Society, a UK charity.
  • SeafoodWatch.orga global leader in the sustainable seafood movement.
  • MSC.orgMarine Stewardship Council – look for the blue MSC label when shopping and dining out. An international non-profit organisation.
  • – Australia’s sustainable seafood guide.
  • SustainableFish.orgUS-registered non-profit that operates globally to rebuild depleted fish stocks
Pan-Seared Tuna Steak Recipe with Lemon Caper Sauce

Ingredients & Equipment Used In This Recipe

While most ingredients can be bought in grocery stores, for your convenience, any specialized or notable ingredients (and equipment) needed for this recipe have been listed below and linked to Amazon or other stores if available online.

It does not include staple ingredients such as oil, salt, and pepper, as you’re likely to have those in your kitchen already. The complete list of ingredients with measurements is found in the recipe card.

  • Protein – Sushi-grade Tuna Steaks
  • Fresh Produce – Shallot, Lemons
  • Dry White Wineuse wine that you enjoy drinking.
  • Chicken Broth/Stock
  • Capers

Recipes on The Purple Pumpkin Blog use both cup measurements and/or weighted measurements. American cups and kitchen food scales are handy pieces of equipment to have in your kitchen as it means you’ll be able to make all of the different recipes on my blog. I try to give American, imperial, and metric measurements in my recipes. You can mix cup measurements with weighted measurements, but never mix imperial (pounds, ounces, pints, etc.,) with metric (kilograms, grams, litres, etc.,).

Pan-Seared Tuna Steak & Lemon-Caper Sauce

More Recipes Using Tuna

One of the hero ingredients in this dish is Tuna, so here are some more recipes using the same:

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More Fish Recipes

Looking for more fish dishes to make? Check these recipes out next:

Pan-Seared Tuna Steaks with Lemon-Caper Sauce

How Do I Make Pan-Seared Tuna Steaks?

Check out the printable recipe card below with full ingredients and instructions. Any demonstration photos do not print out to save your ink.

How To Make Pan-Seared Tuna Steak

Pan-Seared Tuna Steaks with Lemon-Caper Sauce

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 18 minutes
Total Time: 28 minutes

This simple 30-minute recipe combines the tuna steaks with a zesty sauce featuring capers and lemon, for a healthy yet scrumptious meal.


  • 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 4 (6-oz/170g) sushi-grade tuna steaks, approximately 3/4” thick
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 1 medium shallot, finely chopped
  • ¼ cup dry white wine
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 organic lemon, sliced thin
  • 3 Tbsp capers, drained


  1. Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add tuna steaks to hot skillet and cook for approximately 2 minutes for rare (add one minute per side for medium).
  2. Flip tuna and season with salt and black pepper, to taste. Cook for another 2-3 minute, depending on desired level of doneness. Transfer tuna steaks to a plate and season with additional salt and black pepper, if desired. Keep warm.
  3. Add remaining olive oil and chopped shallots to skillet, Sauté for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until shallots are soft and start to turn golden brown.
  4. Add white wine, chicken broth, lemon juice, and lemon slices to skillet. Deglaze pan by scraping up any brown bits from the bottom with a spatula. Cook, stirring frequently, until the liquid is reduced by half.
  5. Reduce heat to medium and add capers. Stir to combine and cook for another minute or until heated through.
  6. Transfer the tuna steaks onto individual serving plates and top with a “melted” lemon slice and a spoonful of the lemon-caper sauce and serve immediately with your favorite sides. Enjoy!

    How To Make Pan-Seared Tuna Steak

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 156Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 13mgSodium: 429mgCarbohydrates: 5gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 9g

This site uses Nutritionix to provide estimated nutrition. Nutritional information is always approximate and will depend on the quality of ingredients used and serving sizes. If you need exact calories and macros, please do your own calculations.

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Make It A Full Meal

You’ve made the main dish, but what about the rest of the courses?

Here are additional recipes to make a full meal for a dinner party or special occasion:

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