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Sesame Crusted Seared Ahi Tuna

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 3 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Shinee
Sesame Crusted Seared Ahi Tuna is one of those effortless dishes that never fails to impress. It’s elegant and makes quite the presentation, but is simple enough for a weeknight meal in under 15 minutes!
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For sauce:

  • ½ cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1- inch fresh ginger
  • 1-2 garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar or honey

For tuna steaks:

  • 4 4-6oz Ahi tuna steaks (Note 1)
  • 1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup toasted sesame seeds or a mix of white and black sesame seeds
  • 1-2 tablespoons avocado oil


  • To prepare the dipping sauce, finely chop cilantro. Using a microplane, grate the ginger and garlic into a small bowl. Add cilantro, soy sauce, water, brown sugar and sesame oil into the bowl and mix well.
  • To sear the tuna, season tuna steaks with salt and pepper, and coat the steaks with sesame seeds on both sides, pressing them down to stick to the fish.
  • Heat a medium stainless steel, or cast iron skillet, over medium high heat. Add oil to the heated skillet.
  • When the oil is shimmering hot, add tuna steaks and sear for 1-1.5 minutes. Flip and sear for another 1-1.5 minutes. (Feel free to cook a little longer to your desired doneness.)
  • At the last 30-seconds of cooking, add about half of the dressing into the skillet with tuna steaks. Cook for a few seconds, flip and sear for another couple seconds.
  • Remove the steaks onto a clean plate, slice and serve!
  • Side dish ideas: plain brown or white rice, thinly sliced carrots and daikon, shredded lettuce, or thinly sliced cabbage.


Note 1: The cooking time in this recipe is for 3/4-1-inch thick tuna steaks. I recommend good quality Ahi tuna steaks from trusted source as we’re serving it rare. If frozen, thaw completely in the fridge overnight.