Sometimes, you need a comforting meal that makes you feel like you’re having a cheat day. Don’t feel bad about it: We found a way for you to have your comfort without sacrificing nutrition! Ooey, gooey, cheesy baked perfection is what you’ll get with this Easy Tuna Casserole recipe. It mimics the delicious, creamy taste of tuna casseroles from days gone by, but this lightened-up version is much healthier than anything that was whipped up in your grandmother’s kitchen. Best of all, it is packed full with tuna, so you’ll enjoy the benefits of omega 3 fats and lean protein while warming up with this delectable dish.
Traditional tuna casseroles have a tendency to be greasy, fattening, and all-around unhealthy. They also gets a bad rap for being an “old-fashioned” dish, or something most people have little use for these days. Despite its less-than-stellar reputation, sometimes you get a hankering for the comfort foods from your childhood! That’s when it’s time to turn to this Easy Tuna Casserole recipe.
Cheesy and Delicious
You won’t believe that a meal this cheesy could also be healthy! Our Easy Tuna Casserole recipe is the perfect recipe to turn to when you’re looking for a tuna meal that’s out of the ordinary. Tuna is a great source of lean protein, but plain old tuna salad gets boring time after time. It’s also not always the right option when the weather is cold and blustery.
Mixing tuna with noodles and cheese gives this dish a rich, indulgent feel without all the unappealing aspects from other tuna casserole recipes. Instead of regular macaroni (which uses refined white flour), we opt for whole-wheat noodles. They contain plenty of complex carbohydrates to keep you feeling fuller for longer. We also snuck some veggies into the dish–mushrooms and peas–but don’t worry, this dish is so cheesy no one will notice!
The other big change we made was to ditch the condensed soup. Most traditional casserole recipes use canned condensed soup, like cream of mushroom or cream of chicken. While there’s nothing wrong with cooking using that ingredient, it does happen to be very high in fat and sodium. Instead, we used low-fat cream cheese and milk to get the same result with significantly more nutrition.
If you are looking for a fun dish to bring to a party or office event, or you know your kids will love a gooey tuna casserole, try our Easy Tuna Casserole recipe. It’s a great lightened-up version of the comfort classic that everyone expects.
Yields: 6 Servings | Serving Size: 1 Cup | Calories: 437 | Total Fat: 21 | Saturated Fat: 10 | Trans Fat: 0 g | Cholesterol: 65 mg | Sodium: 600 mg | Carbohydrates: 38 | Dietary Fiber: 6 | Sugar: 9 | Protein: 26 | SmartPoints (Freestyle): 13 |
- 4 cups cooked whole wheat noodles (macaroni was used in this recipe, egg noodles also will work)
- 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small yellow onion, diced
- 8 ounces sliced mushrooms, white or button (wipe clean)
- 2 (4.5 ounce) cans solid white Albacore Tuna in water, shredded (add tuna and water)
- 1 cup frozen green peas
- 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened, low fat
- 1 cup low-fat milk
- 1-1/2 cups (reduced-fat) cheddar cheese, shredded (recommend block cheese)
- Preheat over to 375 degrees.
- Note: If desired, add additional cheese to the top of the casserole before baking.
- Cook noodles according instructions on the package or al dente.
- In a medium skillet add oil and sauté onions and mushrooms over medium-low heat until mushrooms begin to release moisture, about 10 minutes. In a large mixing bowl, combine sautéed onions and mushrooms and all remaining ingredients, reserving 1/2 cup cheddar cheese for the top.
- Add the tuna mixture to a 3 quart casserole dish or 9" baking pan, top with the 1/2 cup of remaining cheddar cheese. Bake 15 minutes covered and 10 minutes uncovered, or until cheese is hot and bubbly.
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