Tuna Poke {Ahi Tuna Salad}

This post was inspired by theskimm.com a few weeks ago. In case you haven’t heard about this fab news email service, you should check it out. I first heard about theskimm.com here and love how they deliver my news to me every morning, in a nutshell, with a dollop of humor. Anyway … I’m a sucker for raw tuna. And even more of a sucker for easy, tasty recipes. So here I bring you the latest fishy fad: Ahi Tuna Poke. It’s the Hawaiian version of sashimi or tuna tartare. Whereas sashimi is thinly sliced and tartare is chopped, poke-style fish is served also raw, cubed and marinated in soy sauce with sesame oil and a blend of other ingredients such as onion, ginger, garlic and chili.

It’s important to source good quality sushi or sashimi grade fish. In the UK we used to get all our seafood directly from a wholesaler who supplies seafood to most of the top restaurants in London and the south-east of England. Ron, who for years served his loyal retail posse of customers from a chilly room just inside the battered side-door of Simson’s Fisheries processing plant, retired just about at the same time we moved to Florida. Some things just come to a natural end. I’m sure Ron’s successor is great but it won’t ever be Ron. Fortunately, though with less folklore, our local Whole Foods carries this Sushi at Home sushi grade tuna (and other fish), making it much easier to make our own sashimi, sushi, poke, tartar or ceviche.

A note on pronunciation: Poke in this instance is pronounced po-kay and not poke or pok-ee. It rhymes with hay or stay and not with stoke, or broke.

My hubby and I love our tuna poke served chilled over a bowl of slightly warm short-grain brown rice and “crispy seaweed” (my next blog post) on the side. Do keep an eye out for my crispy seaweed recipe. It’s not what you think and it’s amazing! Short-grain brown rice has a much nicer consistency than the long-grain variety. Give it a go.

Tuna Poke Ingredients

Tuna Poke {tuna salad}

Tuna Poke - Bowl


  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

1 lb of ahi (yellowfin) tuna cut into ½ inch cubes
1 square inch of fresh ginger passed through the garlic press (or ½ tsp grated)
3 tbsp of finely chopped scallions (spring onions)
3 tbsp of soy sauce
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1 tbsp of toasted sesame seeds
1 tbsp of black sesame seeds
¼ tsp or Pinch of chili powder, paprika or add chili flakes to taste
Juice of half a lime

Cut the tuna into at ½” to ⅓” sized cubes – set aside and refrigerate.
Combine all other ingredients in a large glass bowl and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
To serve, toss the tuna into the marinade.
Serve chilled on its own or over a bowl of rice and seaweed.

I prefer go very light on the chili, only because I love the taste of tuna, but if chili is your thing, go ahead and knock yourself out with chili flakes!
Other recipes also include Maui onion. Personally, I don’t want to kill the delicate flavor of the tuna so I omit it. I think the scallions are more than enough.

© 2014-2015 Caroline’s Family Kitchen and CarolinesFamilyKitchen.com

You can also pin this ↓ image to Pinterest or share the recipe to other social media via the buttons below.

Ahi Tuna Poke Recipe


  1. Leave a Reply


    Hi Caroline! I found this gorgeous picture of your poke in Pinterest and had to try your marinade. I’m a huge poke fan and this was the best recipe I’ve ever tried. Nice work, and thank you! I’ll be following your site!

    • Leave a Reply


      Thank you Alisa! I truly appreciate your kind words. You have inspired me to get back to my cooking blog which I have put on hold for a couple of months. Thank you! I am working on a new tuna tartare recipe which I hope to post soon! Thanks for subscribing! Take care, Caroline

  2. Leave a Reply


    Hi Caroline. You truly have the best Poke’ image on the web! My wife is Hawaiian and I too love Tuna Poke. I am creating a flier for a Hawaiian food event and would love to use your photo for my poke’ image. Would you consider sharing the actual photo with me?

    • Leave a Reply


      Thank you Pat! I’m so glad you enjoyed it! I’m working on some fresh recipe ideas! Thanks for the feedback! Enjoy your weekend! 🙂

  3. Leave a Reply

    Peter mccall

    Caroline, your recipe is really excellent. Let’s the tuna shine and reminds me of Hawaii. Thank you.

  4. Leave a Reply


    Hi Caroline! I’m making it tonight! How many guests does this recipe serve?

    • Leave a Reply


      Hi! One 1 lb will serve 4 people as a main course, more (6 to 8) if served as an appetizer. I work it out as about 3-4 oz per person. Also it depends on the amount of rice and/or veggies you serve it with. Good luck!

  5. Leave a Reply


    Your picture of ingredients calls for a clove of garlic however the ingredients list does not mention garlic. Should I put garlic in the marinade?
    Thank you.

    • Leave a Reply


      Wow. I had not spotted that discrepancy. Thank you! The original recipe calls for it, but I admit, most of the time I do not use it. I may update the recipe photos so as not to include it. Often, if you’re not super careful, the garlic can be too overpowering if a little too much is added. The tuna and other marinade ingredients I feel are flavorsome enough. If you love garlic and add in small quantities, I’d say go for it. If in doubt, I don’t think you will miss it. Having made it so many times, I actually prefer it without the garlic. Thanks again for pointing this out! Enjoy!

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