Vegan “Tuna” Salad

by Leanne Vogel (Healthful Pursuit) on June 15, 2012

Oh do I have a treat for you today! It’s not a fresh batch of gluten-free doughnuts, vegan cake, or a fun green smoothie, it’s tuna… vegan style.

Before you go thinking that this recipe may be a bit too granola for you, I urge you to check out the ingredients list. Everything is easy to find and the recipe couldn’t be simpler to prepare.

Vegan tuna salad will change the way you do lunch, I swear!

So, make a plan to soak sunflower seeds this weekend, make it your mission to pack these tuna collard wraps in your lunch next week, and be sure to bring a couple of extra wraps for your colleagues so you can convert them, too.

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5.0 from 2 reviews

Vegan “Tuna” Salad
Author: 
Allergens: Vegan, Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Sugar-free, Yeast-free, Corn-free, Grain-free, Nut-free
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 cups, 8 servings
 
This vegan tuna salad is made with sunflower seeds and dulse making it high in zinc, enzymes and protein!
Ingredients
Tuna salad
  • 2 cups sunflower kernels, soaked 24 hours
  • ¼ cup pickle juice
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • ¼ tsp himalayan rock salt
  • ½ cup yellow or white onion, minced
  • ½ cup celery, minced
  • ¼ cup parsley, minced
  • ¼ cup fresh dill, minced
  • 2 tbsp dulse flakes *see note
Wraps
  • 8 collard leaves
  • 4 pickles, sliced
  • 1 carrot, cut matchstick
Instructions
  1. Drain and rinse sunflower seeds.
  2. Place seeds, pickle juice, lemon juice, and salt in the bowl of your food processor. Pulse 10-15 times until seeds are broken up.
  3. Drop mixture into a bowl and add remaining ingredients.
  4. Mix with a large spoon until incorporated.
  5. Wrap in collard leaves with carrot sticks and sliced pickle. To make collard wrap, lay chard leaves face down so that the stem is visible. Run a small knife along the stem to remove the bulk of it, but not so much that the full leaf separates. Divide the tuna mix and place on each leaf. Roll the leaf tightly [be gentle!] and cut down the middle. 1 large leaf will make 4 wraps. Or, you could use romaine wraps, too.
Notes
If you can’t find dulse flakes, dulse chips could work as well. Just rip apart and grind in your coffee grinder to create flakes. You can find dulse in the ethnic isle at many grocery stores, at Asian food markets and many health food stores.

What is your favorite healthy lunch recipe?

In addition to my new-found love of vegan tuna salad, I also enjoy packing chicken patties, pasta salad,  or fresh grain salads in my office lunches. They’re quick, don’t need to be microwaved, and always seem to make the ladies in the office a tad envious!

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{ 41 comments… read them below or add one }

IdaBaker

This looks good. I love the idea of using the collard greens.

My favorite healthy lunch is a hummus sandwich on multi-grain bread, all made fresh at home, of course.

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

Oh my goodness, I haven’t had a hummus sandwich in ages! Thanks for the reminder :)

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Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat

I’ve yet to try a vegan tuna salad, but this one sounds really simple! My favourite lunches are big rainbow salads with some sort of grain, a ton of chopped veggies, and usually a protein like tuna or edamame and chickpeas. I add some fresh herbs and a fruity vinaigrette, then let a huge batch sit in the fridge and take some for lunch each day. The flavour gets better as the week goes on!

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Danielle

Haha love the comment – too “granola” for you. Great looking recipe! I really enjoy make sunflower seed pates with ginger and tamari.

Favourite lunches.. Big salads! Gena from Choosing Raw has a great carrot curry chickpea slaw I’ve been enjoying. Quinoa usually makes it into my lunch too! Along with some avocado.

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

Oh my gosh, Gina’s slaw is amazing, right?! I’ve made it probably at least 10 times!

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samantha @ peach in the city

I don’t even like tuna and I think I’d like this!! Can you recommend a type of food processor? I’ve been meaning to get one but I’m overwhelmed by the options :)

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

Sure thing, Samantha! I wrote about my favorite processors on my FAQ page here: http://www.healthfulpursuit.com/faq/#kitchen

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Sonnet

The funny thing is that I have been working all week on creating various “tuna” salads! I made one with chickpeas and then tried white beans. My plan for the weekend was to make a raw version with sunflower seeds. Looks like you made it super easy for me! :) Love this, thank you!

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Averie @ Averie Cooks

Love the recipe and how PERFECTLY all your wraps are rolled. Wish I was that talented to make them all so even and not splitting open!

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

If it weren’t for wanting to take pictures of my wraps, these would have been a hot mess…

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Janae Wise

This is such a great raw recipe! Wish I had it a few weeks back when I did a 2 week raw cleanse.

My favorite healthy lunch is 1 1/2 c. beans (any kind), 4-5 c. spring mix or greens, 1 chopped tomato, 2-3 celery sticks chopped, a sprinkling of sunflower seeds, + my favorite dressing. Easy, filling, & nutritious!

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Alex@Spoonful of Sugar Free

I actually never liked tuna because I thought it had a weird fishy taste….I bet I’ll like this a lot more!

My favorite go-to lunch: baked sweet potatoes with almond butter and cinnamon!

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

Yum! I’ve never added nut butter to my baked sweet potato, I bet it’d be delicious though!

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Michelle

Do you have any alternate suggestions for the pickle juice ingredient? I suppose I could use a couple small sweet gherkins instead, but otherwise I’m just not a pickle fan at all. Looking forward to trying this soon!

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

Sure thing, Michelle! You can use white vinegar, although I’d use about half of what the recipe calls for. Enjoy!

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Michelle Roebuck

I came back to this post because I *believe* it was how I was introduced to your work (via a Google search, bien sûr) – I made this eons ago, probably without the pickle juice or dulse even though I usually have both at home. BOTH me and the hubby REALLY enjoyed it. Just thought it was worth coming back and following up with a resounding “Two thumbs up!” review. :)

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Dee

Thanks for this amazing recipe. Not to mention how healthy it is. Who says vegan meals ae boring, eh?

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

You wont hear me say vegan is boring, it’s anything but! Have a great weekend, Dee :)

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Val @ Tips on Healthy Living

Cool idea! Never thought of soaking the seeds first. I guess it makes them “meatier”? It looks like you used chard to wrap them up right? I bet that works great too!

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

It makes the mix meatier, AND it’s better for your digestion! win-win! And yes, I used chard :)

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Val @ Tips on Healthy Living

AH! Good to know – thanks :)

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katie @KatieDid

um YUM. this is so creative and I can’t believe sun flower seeds can wind up tasting like tuna! It’s gotta be that pickle juice… interesting addition but sounds like it would work really well in there.

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

The pickle juice makes it, not going to lie. I add pickle juice to just about EVERYTHING.

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Stefanie @TheNewHealthy

One of the things I’ve actually missed since becoming a vegetarian is a good tuna fish sandwich! So this is a must make. :)

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Maggie

Can’t wait to make this! It sounds (and looks) amazing. I’m happy to see that it’s veganaise free too! Thanks.

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Andrea

You are so creative! I would have never thought of this. I’m going to have to look for dulse flakes next time I’m at the store.. do they have a distinct taste? Or any benefits? Have a great weekend, Leanne! :)

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

They give the mix a fishy taste, but not the fishy you’re used to. Like ocean… hard to explain. Benefits of seaweed are vast! Probably the best benefit, in my opinion, is it’s ability to regulate your thyroid gland. All of us could use some thyroid love! Have a great weekend :)

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caralyn @ glutenfreehappytummy

sounds delicious! and in those wraps — YUMMM!! thanks for sharing!

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lou

yum! this looks delicious! question. what brand of pickles is your go-to brand? so many have high fructose corn syrup or yellow dye in them…

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

Thanks, Lou. I actually make my own pickles. I make enough in the Fall that I haven’t had to worry about them in ages!

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Tara

Just made this today and it was fabulous! Added a bit more pickle juice and mustard/horseradish sauce for an extra kick…served on whole wheat pita chips. Yum!

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

Great call on the horseradish. I’ll have to try that next time!

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Giorgia

Hi, Leanne! Just a question: how do I substitute dulse? In my health store, they sell it only fresh (preserved with salt) and it is quite a big package, way too big for this recipe. So I was wondering how to substitute it. I haven’t the faintest idea since before reading your recipe I did not know what dulse is. Thank you.

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

Hi Giorgia – you could try nori. It wont have the same strong seaweed taste so you may have to add a bit more. Good for your for trying out new ingredients, though, that’s awesome! You can find nori in practically any grocery store. It’s the seaweed wrap used to make sushi.

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Heather @Gluten-Free Cat

Love it! I was just going to ask for a substitution for pickle juice, but I just saw you answer that question. And what a great idea to use dulse for a fish flavor! I’ve been making a lot of nut meats, but haven’t tried tuna. Will try it this week! Thank you!!

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Lizzie

I tried this out– absolutely love it! Very refreshing, light, and reminiscent of tuna salad…

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Leanne (Healthful Pursuit)

I’m so happy you liked it, Lizzie!

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Jessica

I just made these and love it!!! 5 stars and so easy to make, just remember to soak your seeds the night before and you are good to go!

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Leanne Vogel (Healthful Pursuit)

I’m so happy that you liked the recipe, Jessica! Thanks for reporting back :)

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Christine

I just tried this recipe and it didn’t quite work for me. The flavor was off – maybe my Dulse flakes were old? The texture was weird too – kind of watery. But I like the idea and am will to try again, perhaps with nori.

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Leanne Vogel (Healthful Pursuit)

Hi Christine – I’m sorry that it didn’t work all that well for you. That’s a total bummer. Were they fresh flakes? Or had they been sitting in your pantry for quite some time? Did you soak the seeds and drain?

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