Yummy Tuna Tartare with Pomegranates – No Cooking Necessary!

After a long day of homeschooling my kids and managing their activities as well my own, I sometimes need a break. I just want an easy, light meal with no hard-to-clean pots and pans. This yummy tuna tartare fits the bill.

I imagine most of you need a break, too, some days. Maybe you are coming home from a stressful day at work, or maybe you’ve been tending to your little ones since 6am. Your family needs nourishment, but you feel like you need a shot of vitamin B6 just to move. At these times, cooking a complicated dinner for your family feels just about impossible.

Tuna Tartare Ingredients
Tuna Tartare Ingredients

My friend Cheryl Lange, Bonnie Plants Executive Assistant to the Vice President, works very hard. Although she LOVES her job, sometimes it’s a challenge to find time to eat.

Bonnie spends her time working twelve-hour days with a commute of two hours. Not surprisingly, this schedule has left her very little time to learn to cook. I was delighted to help.

Bonnie had a great idea of blogging about food that requires no cooking (at least, not with heat).

I was honored that Cheryl asked if she and I could “cook” a recipe that a California chef had given her for an upcoming blog that she is working on. Of course, my response was a resounding “Yes!” And I surprised her with a recipe of my own that I wanted to teach her to make.

 Cooking with Cheryl Lange
Cooking with Cheryl Lange

Our pomegranate trees are doing fantastically well right now, so I have been incorporating pomegranates into just about everything. I have put them in muffins and on pancakes. I have ground them up for vinaigrettes and sauces and put them in salads.

As I was thinking about this “no heat” method of cooking, tartare came to mind. Then I wondered: what would tartare taste like with pomegranates? Well…GREAT!

A New Take on Tuna Tartare

To prepare  this tuna tartare, you first marinate the fish in a citrus-based mixture of limes and lemons. I also add an orange for a more balanced flavor.

However, the citrus is not only for flavor. Just as important, it denatures the proteins in the seafood—breaks them down in a chemical process similar to cooking. Denaturing helps make the raw fish safe to eat.

You need to use very fresh tuna for this recipe. Adding the pomegranates to the fish gives an extra burst of flavor and texture to the dish. I usually serve this with avocados on the side.

Not only is this dish easy and quick to prepare, it contains healthy Omega-3 fatty acids as well as the antioxidants of pomegranate seeds. You can serve it alongside a few avocado slices to add even more nutritional power. This dish is sure to energize.


beautifully plated Tuna Tartare with pomegranates and citrus wedges
Tuna Tartare with Pomegranates
beautifully plated tuna tartare with pomegranates and citrus wedges

Tuna Tartare with Pomegranates

Pomegranate gives this no-cook tuna tartare an extra burst of flavor and nutrition.
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Course Main Course
Cuisine French


Tuna Tartare

  • 3/4 pound very fresh tuna
  • Grated zest of 1 lime
  • 3 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 3 Tablespoon freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 3 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 garlic clove crushed
  • 8 dashes Tabasco sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 cup minced scallions white and green parts (2 scallions)
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh jalapeno pepper seeds removed
  • 1/4 cup pomegranate berries plus 4 tablespoons for garnish

Pomegranate Dressing

  • 1/2 cup pomegranates
  • 1/2 cup good olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper


Tuna Tartare

  • Dice tuna into 1/4 inch cubes and place in a bowl.
  • In a non-reactive bowl, combine the citrus juices and gently whisk in the olive oil. Add the garlic, Tabasco sauce, salt, pepper, scallions, jalapeno seeds, and pomegranate berries.
  • Pour vinaigrette over the tuna and gently incorporate.
  • Place mixture in refrigerator for one hour.
  • Remove from refrigerator and divide the tartare evenly among four plates. I usually place the tartare inside of a round cookie cutter for a pretty presentation. Sprinkle about 1 tablespoon of the extra pomegranate seeds over the tartare and serve with Pomegranate Dressing or an extra drizzle of good olive oil.

Pomegranate Dressing

  • Place pomegranates into the mortar and pound them with the pestle until they have been crushed. Add the oil, salt, and pepper and continue to grind the ingredients until they are well combined. Strain the ingredients through a sieve over a bowl. divide dressing among the four plates and spoon on top of the tuna tartare. You can use a food processor instead of the mortar and pestle for combining the ingredients.
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