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Hawaiian Style Ahi Tuna Poke Bowl

This traditional Hawaiian Style Ahi Tuna Poke Bowl recipe is made with sushi grade ahi tuna, soy sauce, sesame oil, oyster sauce, and scallions served over rice and topped with sesame seeds.
Servings: 2 people
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
ahi tuna on top of rice with slices of avocado

Hawaiian poke originates from early Hawaiian fishermen eating freshly caught fish that was served raw and seasoned with sea salt, seaweed, and anything else they had on hand. These days there seems to be a poke shop on almost every corner offering a wide assortment of add-ons that are not found in real Hawaiian poke. It does not include quinoa, carrots, zucchini noodles, radishes, pineapple, mango, bamboo shoots, tofu, crab, salmon, or any of the other ingredients that are usually found on these menus. Our ahi tuna poke bowl recipe is based on the simple, traditional Hawaiian poke that highlights the fish (in this case tuna) using a simple and classic marinade recipe.

ahi tuna on top of rice with slices of avocado

Key Ingredients and Substitutions


This poke bowl recipe is a raw fish dish so use only the highest quality ingredients.

The complete ingredient list and measurements are listed in the printable recipe below.

  • Ahi Tuna: The tuna in this poke is raw so only use sushi-grade tuna (or saku maguro). We buy our tuna at a local high-end grocery store but you can also find it at stores such as Whole Foods or a local fishmonger. Be sure to purchase only from a reputable vendor or stores that carry sushi-grade fish. If you buy your tuna frozen, the safest way to thaw it is overnight in the refrigerator the night before. It should be kept chilled until it is ready to be prepared and served. Once the tuna has thawed use a clean, dry surface, like a cutting board, and pat dry the tuna with clean paper towels.
  • Rice: We used jasmine rice for our poke bowls but you can substitute basmati or another long grain white or brown rice.
  • Oyster Sauce: Despite the name (and ingredient) it doesn’t taste like oysters. It is a little sweet and a little salty (think ocean water, not table salt). It adds a jolt of umami flavor to sauces. Because of the uniqueness of oyster sauce, and it’s being readily available, there really isn’t a good substitute.
  • Chili Garlic Sauce: Thicker and chunkier than Sriracha sauce, it adds a little spice to the poke bowl. Sriracha is an easy substitute, and based on your heat preference, you can add less or more.
  • Sesame Oil: Light color sesame oil is made from raw sesame seeds and has an earthy, nutty flavor. Dark sesame oil is made from toasted sesame seeds and has a thicker consistency and more pronounced flavor. For this recipe use dark sesame oil.
  • Soy Sauce: Adding a sweet, salty, umami flavor to the dish soy sauce is definitely a do not skip ingredient in the poke marinade. Tamari is a good substitute and doesn’t contain wheat for anyone following a wheat or gluten-free diet.
ingredients for hawaiian style ahi tuna poke bowl

How to Make Ahi Tuna Poke Bowls


Here are the quick step-by-step instructions with visuals; you can find the full instructions with the exact ingredients in the recipe card below.

Pro-tip: The ahi tuna steaks that you purchase at grocery stores should only be eaten raw if they are labeled as sushi grade or sashimi grade. When in doubt ask someone at the fish counter.

1. Prepare the Tuna: Pat the ahi tuna dry and then neatly cut it into small 1/2-inch cubes with a sharp knife. Place the tuna in a medium bowl and add the soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, chili garlic sauce, and green onions. Toss well to coat, cover, and refrigerate for 1 hour.

2. Cook the Rice: While the tuna is marinating cook the jasmine rice according to the package instructions. Allow rice to cool for 5-10 minutes so it doesn’t scorch the tuna.

3. Serve: To assemble the bowls, scoop half the warm rice into a bowl then top with half the marinated tuna, slices of avocado, seaweed salad, or microgreens, then sprinkle some white and black sesame seeds over the top. Repeat with the second bowl. Serve poke bowls immediately.

ahi tuna poke on top of rice with sliced avocado

Recipe Tips and Notes


  • You should only use sushi-grade tuna since it is being eaten raw.
  • Keep raw tuna refrigerated until ready to be prepared.

Frequently Asked Questions


How do I store leftovers?

Since this recipe uses raw tuna we recommended not saving leftovers so only buy, thaw, and prepare what will be eaten.

What is the difference between yellowfin tuna and ahi tuna?

They are the same fish. Ahi is the Hawaiian name for yellowfin tuna.

ahi tuna poke bowl on top of rice with sliced avocado

Let’s Connect! If you make our Hawaiian Style Ahi Tuna Poke Bowl or any other recipe on Casual Epicure, please don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave a comment below. It helps others who are considering making our recipes and we love hearing about your cooking experiences. And if you snapped some shots, share them on Instagram, and be sure to tag @casual.epicure so we can feature them in our stories.

Other Recipes to Try


If you enjoy this ahi tuna poke bowl recipe, we recommend checking out some of these other tuna dishes:

ahi tuna on top of rice with slices of avocado

Hawaiian Style Ahi Tuna Poke Bowl

This traditional Hawaiian Style Ahi Tuna Poke Bowl recipe is made with sushi grade ahi tuna, soy sauce, sesame oil, oyster sauce, and scallions served over rice and topped with sesame seeds.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Marinating Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Hawaiian
Servings 2 people

Ingredients  

  • 8 ounces saku maguro/sushi-grade ahi tuna
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • ½ tablespoon oyster sauce
  • ½ teaspoon sesame oil
  • ¼ teaspoon chili garlic sauce
  • ¼ cup green onions, chopped
  • ½ cup dried jasmine rice
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • sesame seeds, for garnish

Instructions 

  • Pat the ahi tuna dry and then neatly cut it into small 1/2-inch cubes.
  • Place the tuna in a bowl and add the soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, chili garlic sauce, and green onions. Toss well to coat and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  • While the tuna is marinating cook the jasmine rice according to the package instructions. Allow rice to cool for 5-10 minutes so it doesn't scorch the tuna.
  • To assemble the bowls, scoop half the rice into two bowls then top with the marinated tuna, slices of avocado, and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.

Notes

1. You should only use sushi-grade tuna since it is being eaten raw.
2. Keep tuna refrigerated until ready to be prepared.
3. Since the tuna is raw we recommended not saving leftovers so only buy, thaw, and prepare what will be eaten.
4. Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed. The nutritional value is only for the tower and does not include the nutritional value for any ingredients served with the tower such as fried wontons or tortilla chips. It does not include the nutrition for any substitutions.
5. Be sure to check out the Key Ingredients along with the Recipe Tips and Notes sections found in the post, for more tips, options, substitutions, and variations for this recipe! You will also find step-by-step photos there.
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