tuna minilla casserole pati jinich


Tuna Minilla Casserole

Tuna Minilla Casserole

Cazuela de Minilla de Atún

Recipe Yield

8 to 10 servings

Cooking time

1 hour 5 minutes

Rate this recipe

4.58 from 7 votes


  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup chopped white onion
  • 1 garlic clove finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds (about 6) ripe Roma tomatoes chopped
  • 2 7-ounce cans tuna drained and shredded
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher or coarse sea salt or to taste
  • 1/4 cup roughly chopped raisins
  • 1/4 cup manzanilla olives stuffed with pimientos roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup pickled jalapeño chiles store-bought or homemade, seeded and roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • 3 tablespoons Italian or flat-leaf parsley chopped
  • 1 1.2-pound package frozen puff pastry thawed, or homemade puff pastry
  • all-purpose flour for rolling out the puff pastry
  • 1 egg optional
  • 2 tablespoons water optional

To Prepare

  • In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Once hot, but not smoking, stir in the onion and cook until it is soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, stir, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the chopped tomatoes and cook, stirring often, until completely cooked, softened and mashed-up and pasty looking, about 15 minutes.
  • Toss in the tuna, and with a spatula or wooden spoon, mix it well with the tomato mixture, making sure there are no big chunks. Add the bay leaves, brown sugar, oregano, thyme, salt and mix well. Add the raisins, olives, pickled jalapenos, capers, fresh parsley and mix well. Cover the skillet and reduce the heat to medium low. Cook for about 10 minutes, the mixture should be very moist but not watery. Taste for salt and add more if needed. Remove the bay leaves and set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 425°F.
  • Lightly flour a rolling pin and roll out 1 thawed sheet of pastry about 1/8-inch thick to line the bottom and sides of a round baking dish (you may wish to add a pastry sheet in the bottom and top of the casserole, or only on the top!). Add the tuna filling to the puff pastry lined baking dish, using a rubber spatula to evenly spread the filling. Roll out another thawed sheet of pastry and use to cover the tuna filling – pinching the edges of the 2 sheets of pastry together to seal.
  • Optional: In a small mixing bowl, beat the egg along with the water. Brush the top of the casserole with the egg wash.
  • Cut 4 to 5 vents on the top. Place the casserole in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes, until crisp, puffed up and golden brown.


45comments inTuna Minilla Casserole

  1. Carrie

    Sep 14

    After watching the show I felt I had to try this recipe. I was hesitant, because I typically don’t like tomatoes and tuna together. BUT this casserole is fantastic! My husband, who isn’t crazy about tuna, LOVED this casserole. It is simply delicious! However, between the two of us there was only one little slice left…. so I would say it does not serve 8-10 people. Maybe it’s because it’s so delicious!!!
    Thank you Pati!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Sep 20

      Hahaha, so glad you guys liked it so much!

  2. Vanessa

    Nov 20

    Hi Pati. I don’t like Tuna at all. Is there something else I can replace the Tuna with ? Please let me know. Thanks

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jan 01

      You could do ground beef or turkey 🙂

  3. Elisa Sanchez

    Feb 06

    Maravilloso el hojaldre de atún Paty. Lo hice para mis suegros ahora que llegaron a Houston. Les fascinó!!!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Feb 10

      Que alegria Elisa, me encanta que les haya gustado. Un abrazo para todos!

  4. Roberta Howe

    Jan 28

    My husband has made this many times it’s easy ,delicious and one of our favorites

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jan 31

      One of my favorites as well Roberta, so glad you guys like it 🙂

  5. MLago

    Oct 23

    Flavors are of the chart! Delicious and easy to prepare. This Minilla Casserole dish is one of my top dishes when pleasing a crowd and family! I will try and do beef and chicken next time!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Oct 23

      Oh thank you much!!

  6. Don Algeo

    Jun 17

    Just made this and ate with tacos I was shaking my head with pleasure the whole time. Best canned tuna dish ever.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jun 18


  7. Angie

    Apr 17

    After watching your cooking show, my 8 year old insisted we make this dish together. I am usually not a fan of tuna or casseroles, but I have to say, this dish was amazing and will be added to our regular dinner rotation! Thanks for the inspiration to try something new!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Apr 18

      Awesome! I hope you and your 8-year old have lots more fun cooking together, Angie.

  8. Maureen Kennedy

    Feb 03

    OMG, Pati! My husband and I were a bit skeptical about a canned tuna pie, but we’d had success with so many of your recipes we decided to give it a chance. We were blown away – so delicious in so many ways! We started watching you in repeats on TLN in Canada last November and record you every time you are on. We love not only your recipes but also your insights into the culture of Mexico, which is inspiring us to take a trip in the not-to-distant future. And your boys are so cute and poised. Such a great show. THANK YOU!

    1. Pati

      Feb 06

      Thank you so much for tuning in on TLN, Maureen! I hope you have a wonderful trip to Mexico!

  9. Bri Pizarro

    Dec 18

    I just made this for dinner!! I made the filling for empanadas and omg it was delicious, my husband loved it !! I’m so glad I found you! I’m from Durango,Mexico and I live in the USA and I miss Mexican food so bad and thanks to you I can made it and feel like I’m home!!

    1. Pati

      Dec 19

      Oh I’m so glad you found me too, Bri!

  10. Stephen Culley

    May 19

    Our oldest daughter lived and travelled Mexico for school for a month from Canada. We loved anything she made from there. Unfortunately she was tragically killed 3 days before our anniversary in August. She was very bubbly like you. Very crafty too! We now are going to celebrate Day of the Dead. My wife wants myself and our youngest daughter to go to Mexico to celebrate this year. Thanks for the amazing recipes!

    1. Pati

      May 21

      Celebrating the Day of the Dead is such a beautiful way to honor your daughter, Stephen. I hope your family gets to go to Mexico to celebrate this year. Sending you big hugs.

  11. Laura

    Feb 11

    I just made this. Thank you. I loved everything about it. Salt, Sweet, Heat. Amazing.

    1. Pati

      Feb 12


  12. Jane

    Feb 02

    Oh my goodness. I make this filling and put it in a sandwich (bolillo) and it is sooo delicious. Ten times better than any tuna salad you will ever taste! Thanks Pati!

    1. Pati

      Feb 05


  13. Brenda

    Aug 15

    I made this tonight. It was wonderful. My daughter came over and I had her try a bite, she ended up eating 2 tortillas stuffed with the tuna. I would definitely make it again. I just recently found your show and I can’t begin to tell you how much I have enjoyed watching you and your family. You have a beautiful spirit. I have tried several of your recipes and they were all good. You introduced me to chipotle in adobe and I love it. Thanks for teaching us about Mexico, the people, the history and the food.

    1. Pati

      Aug 16

      Thank you so much Brenda! It is such an honor sharing my love of Mexican food, culture, and history with you guys.

  14. Dave Moser

    Oct 24

    A great recipe, but it only serves 4 as a main dish.

    1. Kathy

      Sep 02

      I doubled the recipe to make it for a bigger group!

  15. Ilianette Montanez

    Jul 26

    Can’t wait to try this recipe! Thank you, Pati! I absolutely love to watch you cook!

    1. Pati

      Jul 26


  16. Sabrina

    Nov 13

    If I make this ahead, would you recommend adding the pastry at the last minute before it is baked? Will it get soggy if I put a bottom layer of pasty in ahead?

    Love your enthusiam and cookbook. My husband calls Alisa pound cake 2 pound cake because it comes out so moist and delicious!

    Thanks, Sabrina G.

    1. Pati

      Nov 14

      Hi Sabrina, Thank you so much for getting my cookbook! I like to have the oven preheated before I assemble the casserole with the filling and the dough, so I can just pop it right in. The dough shouldn’t get soggy if you put some on the bottom.

  17. Gus George

    Jul 12

    Hola, Pati – Me gusto mucho su programma. What port city did You say that Cazuela de Minilla de Atún originated in? Muchas Gracias!

    1. Pati

      Jul 13

      Veracruz! Muchas gracias por ver mi programa, Gus.

      1. Gus George

        Jul 13

        Si, de nada, mi Amiga, es un placer.

  18. Matt

    Apr 28

    Do you know the name of the Le Creuset pan this dish was cooked in? I see both a 2 quart and a 3 quart tarte tatin dish on the Le Creuset website, but the dimensions of both seem smaller than the one used in this episode.

    Any ideas?


    1. Pati

      Apr 28

      Hola Matt, It’s the 2 quart tarte tatin dish.

  19. Jessica

    Apr 07

    The tuna minilla casserole is my families favorite!!!! Thank you Pati, you are amazing 🙂 I love watching your show on monday.

  20. Jessica

    Mar 11

    Can I use coconut oil instead of vegetable oil?

    1. Pati

      Mar 11

      Yum, yes!

  21. Julie

    Feb 18

    When I was watching the episode, I thought Pati said to bake this for 20 minutes at 425F. Here, however, it says 25 to 30 minutes at 350F. Did I hear wrong? Will it work just as well to bake it a little faster at the higher temperature? Thanks.

    1. Pati

      Feb 19

      Hola Julie, Thanks for your message! 425 F for about 20 min. 😉

      1. Julie

        Feb 19

        Gracias, Pati!!

  22. Pat

    Feb 15

    Will this fit in a deep dish pie plate, or should it be a round casserole dish? Am I supposed to cut the puff pastry to a round shape?

    Love your food Pati & you’re a delite to watch.
    thank you!

    1. Pati

      Feb 15

      Thanks Pat! Yes it would fit in a deep dish pie! It can be any shape you want, just leave enough dough to go a bit over the rim, for a nice crust.

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