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Canned tuna brands?

I want to start getting canned tuna after a while of getting none. Any recommendations for a good product these days? I tend to buy albacore or other chunk and think of four types for different ends:

1. Packed in water
2. Packed in veggie oil (for neutral flavors)
3. Packed in olive oil
4. Packed in pouches

I am not looking for high-end Ventresca here, but I would like to locate a Midwest source for two products recommended by Cooks Illustrated: Wild Planet Albacore and American Tuna Pole Caught Albacore, which pack the tuna only in its own juices).

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  1. They are selling Wild Planet at SuperTarget now, it costs an arm and a leg. I get the Costco Kirkland Solid Albacore.

    1 Reply
    1. re: redfish62

      We also get the Costco Kirkland Albacore. Find it works well. When I lived closer to the beach, I used to can my own. But alas, no more.

    2. Wild Planet is a brand of canned fish - they sell tuna, salmon and sardines of various types. In my area it is available at health food stores and is not expensive compared to other "premium" brands but definitely costs more than bumblebee. Since discovering Wild Planet, it is the only brand I buy for canned fish. I love that all the fish is sustainably caught, and the tuna is low in mercury. It tastes good too. If you can't find it in a store near you, I'm sure it is available online.

      1. If you search the forum you'll find several prior posts, as this topic is discussed frequently.

        Regardless, I am a huge fan of tuna packed in olive oil, it's typically head and shoulders above any tuna packed in water. I buy the Genova brand by the case on Amazon. (It's yellow fin tuna packed in olive oil by Chicken of the Sea.) It's the best bang for the buck. The only down side is that the texture is inconsistent -- some times in large chunks, other times its not -- but since I typically mash the tuna for sandwichs etc. I could care less about texture.

        If you want Albacore, there are several on-line producers who provide great produce such as Dave's Tuna and the Tuna Guys, but you'll pay accordingly.

        9 Replies
        1. re: wanker

          I, too, like Genova brand. I also don't mind Chicken of the Sea's Premium Select line - Solid light yellowfin in olive oil. My husband grabbed some solid light in olive oil from I believe the premium select line, I haven't tried it yet, but I suppose I'll get to trying it at some point.

          Sure, I have other favorites - but as far as making a nice tuna sandwich, salad, etc., I like these two that I can find in our grocer's aisles!

          1. re: tiffeecanoe

            Have to reply to my own response to say that the one my husband grabbed on accident was NOT good. Tried it today with a salad. Hmphhh - too bad, it was at a really good sale price. Guess now I know why! Ha!

            1. re: tiffeecanoe

              Totally agreement on Genova brand...use it for tuna sandwiches, over pasta, for antipasto.

              1. re: pinehurst

                Genova is really the only tuna my family eats. Although I can't buy it here so on the off chance we eat tuna I buy the only olive oil brand my store has (don't even know what it is).

                1. re: melpy

                  Does the adorable kitten pictured as your avatar also occasionally get a taste? I hope so. For the record, Ben my dog loves tuna.

                  I too will buy other types of tuna in oil...in Massachusetts, Pastene is popular brand of packaged gnocchi, jarred artichokes, etc, and they have a decent (and decently priced) tuna in olive oil, esp when it's on sale (which is pretty frequently).

                  1. re: pinehurst

                    What I do with the extra oil in canned tuna is pour it over a separate dish of dry cat food for my furred gang. They love it!!

                    1. re: Bacardi1

                      That's actually a really great idea. I use all the "juice" when I put it over pasta, but not when I make a tuna sandwich (obv)...I'm going to do this from now on.

                      1. re: Bacardi1

                        Me too! My dad has always done that--got to the point where one cat would wake up from a dead sleep if she heard him setting the can of tuna out of the counter. Not even opening it, just literally putting the can down.

                      2. re: pinehurst

                        My kitty is so picky that she won't eat any people food. I try to give her bits of plain fish or meat and she completely ignores them!

              2. Starkist Brand "Gourmet Choice Solid Light Tuna Filet in Olive Oil". Only tuna I buy now. All major supermarkets carry it now. Can be found with the other canned tuna. Gold can.

                Oh, & by the way, there's a LONG thread just started on this topic here. Sigh. I always wonder why folks here can't seem to find the time to do a SEARCH first before starting a new thread on a topic that's already ongoing from just a few days ago.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Bacardi1

                  Thanks for all these suggestions, everyone.

                  Bacardi: I'm the OP, so I should say I did a search for "canned tuna" first and did not see that thread. These are the first-page-worth of threads I saw, from 2011 and 2012:

                  HOME COOKING Canned vs. fresh tuna, etc.
                  HOME COOKING canned tuna--what do you like to do with it (healthy)?
                  HOME COOKING How much liquid (white sauce?) for tuna casserole using two cans?
                  HOME COOKING Seared Tuna
                  HOME COOKING Tuna noodle salad.
                  HOME COOKING Tuna confit in pork fat...
                  HOME COOKING Smoked tuna appetizer?

                  I think there's some search setting which yields better results, but I didn't happen to see the thread you mention in the home cooking board, which I see every day or so, nor in whatever search setting I have.

                2. The best canned tuna, hands down (excluding Italian and super premium brands), is Kirkland Brand at Costco. I used to be a Bumblebee fan, but it's all mush now.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: roxlet

                    Yep, and the can is larger than the competitors.

                    1. re: Cheese Boy

                      I don't know if there are any Wegman's stores where the OP lives, but their tuna is my current favorite. Like the Kirkland, it comes in a larger can than any of the mainstream brands. It is Solid White tuna the way I remember, truly solid filet and not the murky mush that Bumble Bee, Chicken of the Sea, and StarKist have become.

                      And another big bonus is the price...less than .90 per can.

                    2. re: roxlet

                      Second the Kirkland recommendation.

                      And for a change of pace, Trader Joe tuna in curry sauce, in a pouch

                      1. re: roxlet

                        We've tried Kirkland brand in the past and found it very salty. Has it changed in the past 2 -3 years?

                      2. My most recent favorite is the Dolores brand, the Mexican style with vegetables.

                        1. I don't think you can find the American Tuna locally in the midwest and it is insanely expensive. As to whether artisanal tuna is worth a 300% premium over excellent brands like Kirkland - that's a subjective judgment. Noteworthy that Cook's Illustrated didn't include the popular Kirkland in its test, selecting only BumbleBee, Starkist and Chicken of the Sea products as mainstream alternatives to the smaller "boutique" labels.