nicoise salad

Nicoise Salad with Sesame Seared Tuna

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Sometimes you have old recipes that are totally nice the way they are. Then sometimes, even though they are totally nice, you are dying to breathe new life into them. Maybe tweak some ingredients, and definitely, definitely take new pictures of them!

Nicoise Salad with Red Pepper Vinaigrette

I am going to start doing that from time to time because I don’t want some good old recipes to get lost because I was such a crummy photog earlier in my recipe writing career! And I only bring this up, because some of them I don’t even need to change the recipe on, so I will let you know when I am updating an old friend.

Nicoise Salad with Red Pepper Vinaigrette

Like this one! Nicoise Salad, a total classic. Except this is a bad example to start with, because I am not even updating, it is just like half different, so I will leave the old version up and I think I called it something kooky before anyways, like “Nicoise Salad Reinvented” sigh…

Nicoise Salad with Red Pepper Vinaigrette

But anyways, to stop babbling, this is my new favorite way to eat Nicoise Salad. I just made one mistake when I took these pictures. I forgot to put my green beans in. Don’t be like me- please add your green beans. Also, I can’t eat the eggs because of my allergies- But Pete is happy to take them for me, and I am still left with all of the incredible flavors, colors and textures of a sort of classic, sort of new nicoise salad.

Nicoise Salad with Red Pepper Vinaigrette

It’s a great dish and I totally recommend making it for dinner very, very soon, you will be happy you did ☺


Recipe: Nicoise Salad with Sesame Seared Tuna


  • 1 lb tuna steaks
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 heads of butter leaf lettuce
  • 2 large eggs, hard boiled and sliced in half
  • 12 green beans, trimmed
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • ½ lb small waxy potatoes, (I used purple and red)
  • ¼ cup nicoise olives
  • ¼ cup oil cured olives
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • Roasted Red Pepper Vinaigrette
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 large roasted red pepper
  • 1/8 cup red wine vinaigrette
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • Kosher salt to taste


  1. Bring a medium sized pot of salted water to a boil. Add the green beans and let them cook for about 2 minutes. Meanwhile prepare an ice bath. (A bowl filled with ice and water). Remove the beans with a Chinese spider or with tongs and plunge the beans into the ice water to stop the cooking. Set the beans aside.
  2. Bring the water back to a boil and cook the potatoes until tender, 15-20 minutes. Slice the potatoes and set aside.
  3. Season the tuna with kosher salt and then press the sesame seeds in a thick layer into all sides of the piece of fish.
  4. Bring a nonstick pan up to medium-high heat, add the olive oil and sear the tuna, about 30 seconds to 1 minute on each side, depending how cooked through you like it. Cut the tuna into ¼” thick slices and set aside.
  5. Arrange the butter lettuce leaves in a platter and follow with the beans, potatoes, cherry tomatoes and olives.
  6. For the vinaigrette, put all of the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth and creamy. Set aside.
  7. Top the salad with the seared tuna and garnish with the hardboiled eggs. Drizzle everything with the dressing and serve immediately.

Preparation time: 10 minute(s)

Cooking time: 30 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 4

Leave a Reply


  1. Prettiest nicoise salad ever! And your tuna is seared to perfection! Pinned. The colors are just so vibrant and amazing!

  2. Heather, I love Nicoise salad and this may be the prettiest one ever. I’m happy to hear you’ll be updating (or not, haha) the older recipes. Sometimes we just need a little reminder of old but great ones!

  3. So gorgeous and amazing flavors, must try this soon!

  4. Maria says:

    Gorgeous salad!

  5. Jenny Flake says:

    How gorgeous and colorful this salad is!!! I’d happily have this beauty for breakfast :) Happy Monday!!

  6. Gorgeous take on a classic!!

  7. Naomi says:

    I’m always breathing new life into old recipes, so I love it when others do too. Great recipe as usual!

  8. This salad is so gorgeous! Love that raw tuna center!!

  9. wow this is actually really beautiful, the use of the coloured potatoes makes all the difference! i love a good nicoise, especially when done correctly. i definitely will be recreating this recipe. thanks for sharing!

  10. OK I hear ya on updating older recipes, I soooo badly need to do that. It’s on my fall to-do list!!!
    Also, I think we need to call you the “Queen of Salads” you always make the most beautiful creations. YUM!

  11. Marina Delio says:

    Fabulous salad! This is one of my favorites and I haven’t had it in so long. Thanks for the inspiration. Hope your trip has been wonderful!

  12. Rachel Cooks says:

    Wow, what a remake! Gorgeous photos — the purple potatoes are a great touch!

  13. Mary Frances says:

    This salad is stunning! Talk about reinvigorating an old standard, it looks great!

  14. Such beautiful colors!

  15. If I didn’t know this was a salad, I would think it was a painting — seriously.

  16. You are truly an artist, and salad is your medium :)

  17. Nicole Ferrell says:

    I love would like to make that thanks for the recipe

  18. Maria says:

    The purple potatoes add amazing color to the salad!