Tuna and pistachio quinoa salad

This fresh flavoured tuna, pistachio and quinoa salad is sports nutritionist-approved for recovering from stressful exercise

Posted by for Fitness Recipes

Athletes eat this quick lunch when they need to re-energised their brain and body. So should you. 

Have you ever experienced the post-workout delirium that includes brain fog, an insatiable appetite and sore, heavy muscles? Eating enough to refuel after training can help – but eating enough of the right foods will supercharge your way out of the hanger. This tuna, pistachio and quinoa salad is a good place to start.

The base of high-fibre grains will fill your seemingly never-ending hunger hole and supports the production of serotonin that is produced in your gut to get you out of your lethargic slump. While we’re talking brain function, tuna contains omega 3s to help you feel alert – plus protein and potassium to ease muscle aches and cramps. Vitamin-B rich pistachios add a dose of crunch and energy, and their green and purple colouring indicates a high antioxidant content to help your body and mind recover from the inside out. You’ll be ready for round two in no time.

The best bit? It’s by Team GB nutritionist Nigel Mitchell, who regularly puts it in his athletes’ meal plan. You’ll be ready for round two in no time. 

Tuna, pistachio and quinoa salad

Serves: 4

Prep time: 20 minutes 


320g (or two tins) of tinned tuna in brine 

70g pistachio nuts (kernels)

300g quinoa 

600ml water

200g cherry tomatoes 

100g bell peppers 

50g spring onions 

20g flat leaf parsley

20g olive oil

10g lemon juice 


  1. Rinse the quinoa to remove any starch, then add to a saucepan with the water. Season with salt and heat until boiling (do not cover).
  2. Once the water is boiling, turn the heat down to a simmer and let it simmer until the water has absorbed. Put a lid on the pan and take it off the heat. Let it stand for 5-10 minutes.
  3. Open and drain the tuna, roughly chop the tomatoes, pepper, spring onion, parsley and pistachio nuts. Mix in a bowl and add the oil and lemon juice.
  4. Combine all of the ingredients in a large serving bowl. 
  5. Any leftovers are great served cold.

Plant-based tip: swap the tuna for double the pistachios. 

Recipe and images courtesy of Nigel Mitchell and Aldi. 

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Chloe Gray

Chloe Gray is the senior writer for stylist.co.uk's fitness brand Strong Women. When she's not writing or lifting weights, she's most likely found practicing handstands, sipping a gin and tonic or eating peanut butter straight out of the jar (not all at the same time).