Classic Tuna Noodle Casserole

Tuna Casserole is classic American comfort food topped with crushed potato chips. Made with canned tuna and egg noodles, this tuna casserole is always a family favorite.

Tuna Casserole using cream of mushroom soup
Elise Bauer

Family Favorite Tuna Casserole

My father and I have been reminiscing lately about my mom's tuna casserole, the one she used to make in the 60s, with cream of mushroom soup, broccoli, lots of cheese, and a crushed potato chip topping.

Mom has only the vaguest recollection of a tuna casserole ("I think it had broccoli in it.") In fact, today, she said she had no memory of it at all.

Did she really make it? Or are dad and I remembering something instead from a school cafeteria?

In any case, I attempted to reproduce it for today's lunch, in honor of the weekend and long forgotten family traditions.

Tuna Casserole With Cream of Mushroom Soup

Entering our pantry for the first time in 20 years was a can of Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup (really must use this one, no other will do.) Also, I used Kettle potato chips - very good quality.

The verdict? Yes, it's just what you want in a classic tuna casserole! Filling, cheesy, crunchy topping, not too tuna-y.

The visiting picky eater kids (okay, not that picky, thank God) had three servings.

Lighten Up Your Tuna Casserole 

  • Add in more vegetables 
  • Swap potato chips for bread crumbs or omit
  • Use a low sodium cream of mushroom soup
  • Halve the noodles and add chopped cauliflower florets
  • Use low fat milk and omit the cream
  • Use olive oil in place of the butter

Other Vegetables That Taste Great in Tuna Casserole

  • Diced canned or tomatoes
  • Frozen, fresh or canned corn
  • Frozen, fresh or canned peas
  • Green beans
  • Diced zucchini or other squashes
  • Add more fresh mushrooms

How to Make Tuna Casserole Ahead

Assemble all the ingredients in a casserole dish and store covered in the fridge a day or two before baking.

You can also freeze the casserole before you bake it. If you store it in a heat-proof dish (metal or ceramic, not glass), you can take it straight from the freezer to the oven. No thawing necessary!

If you're making the tuna casserole in advance, be sure to top it with your potato chips (or other topping) just before baking.

More Comforting Casseroles to Love

From the Editors Of Simply Recipes

Classic Tuna Noodle Casserole

Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Total Time 50 mins
Servings 6 to 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces wide egg noodles

  • 1 tablespoon salt

  • 8 ounces sliced fresh mushrooms

  • 1 medium onion, chopped

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • 2 cups chopped broccoli

  • 2 (6-ounce) cans tuna, drained

  • 1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of mushroom soup

  • 2 1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese

  • 1/3 cup milk

  • 1 tablespoon cream

  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • 1 cup crushed potato chips

Method

  1. Preheat the oven:

    Preheat the oven to 400°F.

  2. Cook the noodles and broccoli:

    In a large (6-quart) pot, bring 4 quarts of water to a boil. Add a tablespoon of salt. Return to a boil, then add the noodles. Cook uncovered on high heat on a rolling boil.

    Just before pasta is al dente (firm but cooked through, earliest cooking time minus 2 minutes), add the chopped broccoli to the pasta and cook for 2 more minutes.

    Drain in a colander and set aside.

  3. Sauté the mushrooms:

    While the pasta is cooking, dry sauté the mushrooms in a frying pan on medium high heat (There's no need to add butter or oil. Mushrooms will cook in their own juices.).

    When mushrooms have given up their moisture (about 5 to 10 minutes), remove from heat and set aside.

  4. Cook the onions:

    When the pasta is draining in a colander, heat a large oven-proof pan on medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons of butter and melt. Add the onions and cook until translucent.

  5. Combine all the ingredients:

    Put the pasta and broccoli mixture back into the pot. Stir in the mushrooms, the drained tuna, can of cream of mushroom soup, grated cheese, milk and cream. Add salt and pepper to taste.

  6. Top with crushed potato chips:

    Spread crushed potato chips over the top of the mixture.

  7. Bake:

    Cook for 20 minutes in the oven at 400°F, until the topping has browned.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
408 Calories
23g Fat
26g Carbs
25g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6 to 8
Amount per serving
Calories 408
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 23g 30%
Saturated Fat 11g 53%
Cholesterol 79mg 26%
Sodium 905mg 39%
Total Carbohydrate 26g 10%
Dietary Fiber 3g 11%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 25g
Vitamin C 29mg 143%
Calcium 352mg 27%
Iron 2mg 11%
Potassium 564mg 12%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.