Tuna Noodle Casserole

Tuna Noodle Casserole

Until I moved to the Midwest, I wasn’t a huge eater of casseroles. Casseroles just aren’t really “a thing” in California. At least in our household. As I’ve become a Midwestern girl, I’ve learned that casseroles here are a huge part of feeding lots of people whether it be on the farm or off. And that casseroles quite often are family recipes, everyone’s mom or grandma has their own way of making essentially the same thing. 

My husband is Catholic so every year during Lent I become the worst wife ever and completely forget that we aren’t supposed to eat meat on Fridays. Enter in lots of creative ideas to still feed my meat and potatoes husband without meat. One of the ideas I came across was tuna noodle casserole. The idea of tuna noodle casserole intrigued me. 

I pitched it to my husband. He looked at me like I had literally just lost my mind. Apparently tuna noodle casserole is “a thing” here. And apparently my husband had eaten a lot of it. You learn something new every day. 

So I decided to give it a go. 

I changed the recipe I found up a bit. Instead of putting a whole slab of cream cheese in it, I used heavy cream and chicken broth. That is lightening it up, right? 😉 

The thing that made this dish though, was the topping. I crunched french onions over the top. It was perfection. 

Tuna Noodle Casserole
Serves 6
classic tuna noodle casserole
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
20 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
20 min
  1. 1 - 4 ounce can mushrooms, sliced (or use fresh)
  2. 2 cloves garlic
  3. 1 medium onion, diced
  4. 1/4 cup butter
  5. 1/4 cup flour
  6. 1 1/2 cup chicken broth
  7. 1 cup heavy cream
  8. 2 teaspoons brown mustard
  9. 2 - 6 ounce cans tuna, drained
  10. 1 cup peas
  11. 12 ounces egg noodles
  12. 1 cup cheddar cheese
  13. french onions to top
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Heat a large fry pan over medium heat. Saute mushrooms, garlic, and onion in fry pan until onions are softened and set aside.
  3. While the onion and mushroom mixture is sauteing, cook the 12 oz. large bag of noodles in salted water until tender. Drain and set aside.
  4. Melt butter in large fry pan. Add flour and whisk together to make a roux. Add chicken broth and heavy cream, slowly, stirring with the whisk constantly. Add 2 teaspoon brown mustard.
  5. When sauce is thick and smooth, add cooked noodles, tuna, peas, and the onion and mushrooms mixture. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour into a large 9 x 13 greased baking dish.
  6. Top with cheddar cheese and then sprinkle crunched up French onions.
  7. Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes or until casserole is slightly browned over the top.
  1. If desired, add 4 ounces cream cheese.
Adapted from Just a Pinch
Adapted from Just a Pinch
Prairie Californian http://prairiecalifornian.com/
Jenny Dewey Rohrich



  1. April 7, 2015 / 1:37 pm

    This was a staple in my family growing up and I fix a lot of it nowadays too! We are a casserole family you could say…and this is one of my favorites! I have also used crushed up potato chips on top. Sidenote, for lent we eat a lot of cheese pizza and are thankful that my husband is an avid salmon fisherman 🙂 Take care!

  2. April 7, 2015 / 3:27 pm

    This sounds delicious! I might have to try it out, even though Lent is over now 🙂 Thanks for the idea!

  3. Melissa O'Gwin-Hansen
    April 8, 2015 / 4:01 pm

    My Mom made lots of casseroles, including tuna noodle, this one I’m definitely trying. I remember my husband asking me shortly after we’d been married if I knew how to cook any casseroles. I just laughed & told him of course, I was raised on casseroles. Since he was the youngest of 5 kids, I just figured he had plenty growing up & was tired of casseroles. I was certainly wrong. He told me there were never any leftovers in the house to make casseroles with. His Dad was strictly a meat & potatoes guy, so they had lots of meat & potatoes & few casseroles. My 9 year old hasn’t particularly liked casseroles, but since there are noodles in this one, I hope she’ll appreciate it.