This seared blackened ahi tuna is made with a traditional blackened seasoning mix of paprika, cayenne pepper, ground ginger, black pepper, oregano, fennel seeds, clove. Best part is this is on the table in a flash.
Sometimes the spark for a meal comes from a gift and this ahi tuna was just that. With the summer here and a nice outdoor patio to eat al fresco, I decided that a quick dinner was in order and this Pan Seared Blackened Ahi Tuna came together in no time.
My go to BBQ grill was put on hold, and with mere seconds on each side, this ahi was on our plates after a quick pan sear. This is tastefully seasoned with blackened Cajun spices and served up with steamed leftover barley and salad.
A friend dropped off some fresh caught ahi and we decided it was time to use a little of our copycat Chef Prudhomme’s Seafood Seasoning and with a little butter, pan seared this to perfection. Great friend, right? Lucky us!
We had little in the refrigerator as we just got back from a family trip in Portland, so this was quite welcomed. I needed to hit the market and re-stock the house.
Just look at this beauty!
A nice side ended up being some leftover steamed barley and Shirazi Salad with Chickpeas I made the other day that we had on hand to round out a perfect summer meal. A little squeeze of lemon juice on top of the blackened ahi tuna to counteract the heat and we were set.
For the blackened ahi tuna, you will want to start by placing a frying pan or cast iron skillet over high heat until it almost starts to smoke. I have a well seasoned cast iron skillet I like to use. Be sure to keep your kitchen area well ventilated.
Funny thing was that when I reached for the copycat seafood seasoning it was empty! I made a similar version and we LOVED it! I’ve included mine in the recipe below, too. This is a blackened seasoning mix of paprika, cayenne pepper, ground ginger, black pepper, oregano, fennel seeds and ground clove that hits all the notes. Big flavor with a little heat.
I make my own copycat blackened seasoning mix, that’s great on beef, too.
Gotta love a fresh caught meal made in minutes and this blackened ahi tuna hits the spot. Enjoy!
Pan Seared Blackened Ahi Tuna
- 1 lb fresh ahi tuna
- 2 1/2 tsp blackened fish seasoning (See below recipe)
- 1/4 cup melted butter
Blackened Fish Seasoning
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/4 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp oregano
- 1/4 tsp fennel seeds
- 1/8 tsp ground clove
- Rinse the fish and pat dry with paper towels. Slice into 1/2 inch steaks.
- In a small bowl mix together the spices and set aside.
- Place a frying pan or cast iron skillet over high heat until it starts to smoke. Keep kitchen area well ventilated.
- Toss the ahi tuna in melted butter and then coat with spice mixture on both sides. Press spice mixture to adhere. Immediately sear on high heat each side for 10 seconds for pink in the middle, or for no more then 30 seconds per side to cook through well. Serve immediately.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice.
I usually sear ALL sides of ahi and then put in refrigerator for at least 4 hrs. Then slice and serve with shoyu and wasabi
Seared ahi is just THE best, right?! So good. 🙂
So good! I made them bite size and will definitely use this recipe again!
One of my all-time favorites, too! Thanks for coming back to let me know Anne.
I made this last night and it was out of this world!! At first I thought using fennel was kinda weird…thinking that it’s mostly in sausage, but WOW! I’m so glad I did it your way! The Hubby loved it too! Thanks for all you do, I love your site and refer to it often.
This turned out so freakin good!! A lot of smoke, but worth it! Didn’t have fennel, but still turned out very well. Will be making this regularly!
Thanks Tawni, one of my smoky favorites too!
You may be burning butter if too hot. Maybe use Avacodo oil as it has a high heat stamina and use melted butter after you cook the dish.
I give it a try and see, thanks Rich!
Thanks Kevin,,, Great Recipe😀
Thank you so much!
Thank you for the excellent recipe. I’ve made it three different times using a cast iron skillet – twice with tuna and once with salmon. The flavors if the rub tasted great with both types of fish. I altered the recipe slightly by cutting the regular paprika back to 1 half tsp. and adding 1 half tsp. of smoked paprika. It’s so good, it was worth having to open the windows even in cold weather to ventilate the kitchen to keep my smoke alarms from going off.
Thanks for taking the time to come back and let me know Joan. 🙂
thank you for this recipe!! Cut the tuna into bite size pieces, tossed with EVOO and your awesome recipe for the rub. Placed on a grill mat and it was deeelish!!! Keep em comin’!!!
Spices were perfectly aligned to bring out the flavor of the tuna!
That is a great idea cutting them into bite size pieces! I am glad you enjoyed them!
Thanks Kevin, this looks delicious.
Thank you! I ham glad you think so! I hope you try it!
Looking forward to trying, from OBX where tuna is super fresh!!!
I love that you are trying this! Let me know how you enjoy it!
I’m super jealous. OBX is my happy place and future home once we retire. I can’t wait to be there in August!
This is substantially like other recipes for the same thing with a difference: The others say two to four minutes per side and this one says ten seconds. But they look very much alike in the pictures. I’m not sure how to proceed.
I like to sear mine on high heat. I am not sure if other recipes you are looking at do that as well. I just prefer to to from 10 seconds up to 30 seconds but no longer. Give it a try and see how it turns out for you!
Ahi os the only fish that is okayed to be eaten raw. IF you are going to “sear” it, it is intended to be eaten somewhere more than raw, but less than medium rare. I cook mine between 60 and 90 seconds per side. Any more than that ruins the steak for what it is.
Many of the fish used in sushi are just fine eaten raw.
Thank you! I love this fish in this flavor! you should give it a try!
2 to 4 minutes on each side is way over cooked and will taste like a dried out chewy tuna steak. Ahi tuna is meant to be served on the rare side, AKA seared. But everyone has different taste so cook it however you like
The room filled with smoke. I couldn’t even cook the steaks through because I couldn’t breathe…
Sorry that was your experience. I did mention in the post writing and the recipe itself to keep the kitchen area well ventilated. Blackening a food does require it get a bit smokey due to the heated pan and the butter. Be sur eto open a window or turn the stove air vent on high!
I saw the note and thought, “C’mon, how bad can it be?” Haha! Needless to say, I’m going to sear them next time on my gas grill’s burner outdoors; even if it’s only 30 degrees out. Delicious recipe, Kevin. Thank you!
I am so glad you gave them a try! I enjoy this recipe a lot!