About the Rambler

Welcome to my ramblings on dinner & drink, people & places, our planet’s health & the future of food. I’m a journalist, author and media trainer. My kitchen forever smells of garlic and curry. And much like my mother, I start thinking of dinner long before breakfast….

Tuna Juice

Yes, really. It’s far better than it sounds. Delicious, in fact. I’m talking fruit, not fish. Tunas are the little green, red and purple fruits of the prickly pear cactus. They’ve started showing up in Mexican markets around here (glochids already removed), so I thought I’d experiment. Tunas are packed with hard little seeds, edible but somewhat annoying. Toss them into a blender, however, and the seeds are easily pulverized.

Here’s how I made juice: I sliced each tuna (about 15 in all) lengthwise, turned each half over onto a cutting board and smacked the tuna on the skin side to loosen the fruit inside. I scooped seeds and flesh into the blender, tossing the skins to the side. Then I squeezed in two limes and tossed in a handful of sweet cherries. The result: a thick, pulpy juice with flavor akin to kiwis and strawberries.

Not only did it taste good, but it carried the nutritional benefits of the prickly pear. The plant’s paddles, called nopales, have long been eaten for good health, particularly in fighting diabetes.

15 comments to Tuna Juice

  • Actually our recently departed cat loved tuna juice – the type from the can – so when saw the title of this post I thought you were channeling him. :-) This sounds much more human-friendly, though.

  • Robyn,
    I’m very sorry to hear about Bob, who, from all reports, seemed to be a remarkable creature. It’s possible I was subconsciously channeling him – somehow I do that with cats. They sniff me out. As for Bob, I’m sure he’s resting in a happy place stacked with 1,000 cans of tuna.

  • julia

    How many servings did the 15-tuna juice make? If you’re just making a glass for yourself, how many do you recommend? Thans

  • Julia, that batch made about four 8-ounce glasses of juice. You might need 3-5 tunas for a single serving, depending on whether you add other ingredients.

  • julia

    Thanks so much for the answer, Karen! I have some tunas right now and can’t wait to make it.

  • julia

    Karen- THANKS so much for this recipe! I am drinking my first glass of tuna juice as we speak, and it’s GORGEOUS. For one person, I used 3 tunas, 8 cherries and the juice of an entire lime. My tunas were deep pink when I cut them open, so it’s a magnificent vivid magenta color. I’ll be making these for as long as I can find the tunas in the store!

  • So glad you liked it, Julia! My tunas were light greenish, almost a cucumber color inside. I would like to use the magenta fruits sometime.

  • I bought a 28 kg. box of the richest flavored ORANGE and YELLOW skinned TUNAS, on Tuesday and come Thursday I’ve juiced and refrigerated most and have been cutting and eating the rest right in my place of work.

    Did you know that they actually have more calcium than milk and 8 to 10 times more potassium than Gatorade? Fabulous feast for my stomach and nutrition.


  • Lorenzo – amazing fruits, indeed! Our markets don’t have orange and yellow tunas, but they sound beautiful.

  • Josephine Duran

    I just started eatting Tuna, Green nd red i didnt now they where so good nd healthy for u…I will be making the the tuna drink every morning…

    Thank you

  • Mary

    How many tunas can a person eat in one day? Or, how much tuna juice is it safe to drink? I have arthritis and have heard that the tunas are really good for get rid of inflammation. I just don’t want to over do it.


  • Hi Mary, good question. I’m not an expert on this, but I think it really depends on individual body chemistry. I know people who feel few effects from drinking tuna juice, while I’ve read about others who have severe reactions (especially depending on blood sugar). I mixed my big batch of tuna juice with equal parts apple and carrot. The first time I tried that batch, just after a 4-mile run (if I remember correctly) on little food, 1/3 cup made me feel lightheaded and cold in the hands. But at other times, I’ve felt no such effects. Jerry regularly drinks a small glass of that tuna/carrot/apple juice with no adverse effects. I would say try it in very, very small doses. And ultimately, you might want to consult a nutritionist familiar with the juice.

  • David

    Hi. We have recently bought a cactus. Are there any good recipes?

  • David,
    I love nopales in salads with cotija or marinated and sliced in tacos. But there are many things to do with a cactus – here’s one info page with a few recipes. http://www.succulent-plant.com/crecipe.html. I hope this summer I’ll have time to experiment a bit more. Happy eating.

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