recipe: tuna noodle casserole

I hate seafood. Shrimp, fish, lobster, crab… not a fan at all.

Except for tuna.

I know that sounds insane, because of all of the fishes out there, tuna is one of the stronger-tasting fish. But tuna fish from a can is just something I grew up eating, so I guess I developed a taste for it. My mom makes a mean tuna salad, and one of my favorite dinners as a kid was her tuna noodle casserole. Creamy, cheesy, noodle-y goodness! The ultimate comfort food. And it is GREAT leftover.

(Side note: Ignore the fact that these pictures are OVER A YEAR OLD! and taken in the kitchen of our old house, with my old camera. I’m kinda behind on posting recipes, but I’m hoping to catch up and get some new ones up here pretty regularly!)

What you need for this dish: egg noodles, tuna (I prefer tuna packed in water), cream of mushroom soup, milk, Velveeta, Miracle Whip (JUST TRUST ME.), and cracker or bread crumbs.

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

Start out by heating the soup and milk in a medium saucepan. (Also, you can go ahead and get some water boiling in a large pot for the noodles.)

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

Make sure you stir it frequently and don’t let the milk burn on the bottom of the pan. Not that I’ve ever done that a million times or anything. Ahem.

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

Once the soup/milk mixture is heated through and smooth, cut up the Velveeta into chunks.

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

I’m kind of afraid to ask but… what IS Velveeta, exactly? Does anyone really know? I mean, other than delicious, that is.

Melt the chunks of Velveeta into the soup/milk mixture, stirring constantly.

(If you really really want to, you can drain the mushroom chunks from the soup/milk mixture before adding the cheese in. My mom used to do this when we were kids because EW MUSHROOMS! I still feel that way about mushrooms, but I’ve grown up a little bit and I’m okay with them in this dish. Or just lazy. Basically, this recipe includes two of my least favorite foods: mushrooms and seafood, and it is one of my favorite things in the world. I AM A VERY COMPLICATED WOMAN. You should feel bad for my husband.)

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

Add a little bit of black pepper too, if you’d like.

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

While the Velveeta is melting away, dump the noodles into the boiling pot you started back in the first step.

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

Let the noodles boil, and when the cheese is all melted, add a couple of large spoonfuls of Miracle Whip to the soup/milk/cheese sauce. (I know that’s a vague measurement, but my mom is notorious for not measuring and also for long, drawn-out explanations in her recipes for how to do things. I should take pictures of some of the recipe cards she’s given me. They make my sister and me laugh so hard. LOVE YOU, MOM!!)

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

Also: I know that Miracle Whip is a Very Controversial Condiment. You either love it or hate it. I personally love it in certain applications (mainly salads and recipes, as opposed to on a sandwich) But seriously- even if you hate it, do not skip it here. It adds something magically tangy to the cheese sauce. JUST DO IT, MAN.

You might need to use a whisk to break up the Miracle Whip chunks and get the sauce nice and smooth.

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

Next, open the cans of tuna and drain the water.

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

The noodles should be done by now- drain them and place in a small (round or square is fine) casserole dish.

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

Add the tuna. This is three cans of tuna- you can add less if you prefer.

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

Add the delicious cheesy mixture to the noodles.

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

Now, mix it all up!

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

Top with bread or cracker crumbs. Whatever you have on hand is fine- my mom usually uses crushed saltines, but for this time, I used panko crumbs I had in the cupboard.

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

Throw some chunks of butter or margarine on top. JUST TRUST ME, YO.

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

Bake for 20 minutes or so at 375 degrees F, until it gets all nice and bubbly.

recipe: tuna noodle casserole

Serve with salad, if you’d like!

recipe: tuna noodle casserole


Tuna Noodle Casserole
Creamy, cheesy, noodle-y goodness! The ultimate comfort food.
  1. 1 bag medium egg noodles (probably only need 3/4 of the bag)
  2. 1 can Cream of Mushroom soup
  3. 1 can (above) milk
  4. 8 oz Velveeta cheese
  5. 2-3 tbsp Miracle Whip
  6. 2 6oz cans tuna, drained
  7. Cracker crumbs for topping
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Boil noodles according to package directions. In a saucepan on medium heat, cook soup and milk until smooth. Add Velveeta cheese and melt. Then add Miracle Whip. Mix noodles and tuna in baking dish. Add soup mixture and mix well. Sprinkle cracker crumbs on top and dot with margarine or butter. Bake for 20 minutes or until bubbly.


  1. Laura

    May 13, 2010 11:28 pm

    Are you my food twin?? I also hate seafood, but I like tuna because I grew up eating it. (Although I’m actually a tuna snob. It’s either Starkist solid white or nothing.) I also don’t care for mushrooms, but I’m okay with them in some applications. I would never buy Miracle Whip normally, just because I love mayo so much, but it’s often the “mystery” ingredient in amazing dishes.

    However…… I’m pretty sure I would be the only one eating this in my household. My husband also hates seafood, but for him that includes tuna. Andrew likes tuna, but not saucy-casserole stuff. So that is an awful lot of tuna casserole for one girl who doesn’t eat much AND doesn’t like leftovers. ;)
    .-= Laura’s last blog post: evolve =-.

  2. Jane

    May 14, 2010 7:49 am

    Looks Awesome! Tuna is the ONLY seafood I eat as well… well I do take occasionally like a good deep fried fresh walleye or some other local (MN) fresh fish, but it has to be crunchy fried!

    Also Miracle Whip…strange food, but quite good in many things!

    Will be trying this, as I do not have a Tuna Noodle Casserole that I absolutely love.
    .-= Jane’s last blog post: Some More Details =-.

  3. Korinna

    May 14, 2010 9:13 am

    This post spoke to me on many levels. 1) I also hate seafood but will eat tuna. 2) I will only eat tuna if it’s mixed with Miracle Whip. For I find mayonnaise strange and suspicious and not at all tasty. 3) My love for all things cream soup is practically a religion. 4) As is my love for Velvetta. I love sharp cheddar but I’m sorry–it just turns sweaty and weird if you try to melt it.

    I am so, so making this.

    Printing it out now…
    .-= Korinna’s last blog post: Random useless tidbits =-.

  4. Burgh Baby

    May 14, 2010 9:25 am

    Let’s just compare how vastly different our moms made tuna noodle casserole, shall we? My moms ingredient list was macaroni, cream of mushroom soup, and tuna. That’s it. Boil the macaroni, dump in the soup (straight out of the can–no milk or anything) and then dump in the drained tuna. Tah-dah!

    I think maybe now we know why I’m a vegetarian.
    .-= Burgh Baby’s last blog post: The Pet Stopper =-.

  5. Mel

    May 14, 2010 5:17 pm

    I’m more of an albacore/white tuna (starkist whoo!) fan. But I can’t eat tuna unless it’s cold. Like tuna salad on crackers. I can’t imagine it warmed up. I might have to try this. Velveeta makes it all better. :)
    .-= Mel’s last blog post: A dating disaster =-.

  6. Jamie

    May 15, 2010 9:24 am

    Tuna Noodle Casserole is one of my favorites! We do ours different though. We do the Kraft Deluxe Mac and Cheese, add Tuna, Broccoli and Mushrooms – mix well, throw it in the oven with extra cheese on top and do it that way.

    I’ll have to try your version some time :) Though I can’t stand Miracle Whip….I’ll have to just trust you on this one!
    .-= Jamie’s last blog post: Sunny days (chasing the clouds away) =-.

  7. aly

    May 16, 2010 8:35 am

    So I have a hatred of anything seafood but this looks awesome.

    I have to ask, what IS that cheese? I’m living in London and have never seen anything like it.. but as a cheese lover, I’m down with doing some research. ;-)

    • Jen

      May 16, 2010 2:39 pm

      Honestly I don’t really know WHAT Velveeta is! Some sort of cheddar-like cheese, but it’s very creamy… and very processed, I think. But it’s delicious! heh

  8. ann

    May 16, 2010 5:40 pm

    My mom’s tuna casserole recipe was very similar. I’m not a fan of Miracle Whip, so I use a dollop of sour cream instead. Makes it very creamy and you don’t even taste it.

    When it comes to Velveeta, ignorance is bliss. I even own the Tupperware Velveeta Keeper!

  9. bessie.viola

    May 18, 2010 9:58 am

    I LOVE tuna & noodles casserole. LOVE. My husband doesn’t like it, but I make it all for my very own self. MMM.

    My mom has recently begun using a brick of smoky cheddar cheese. OMG… it is SO good. If you’re ever in the mood to experiment, try that in replacement of the Velveeta.
    .-= bessie.viola’s last blog post: snapshots of a Sunday =-.

    • Jen

      May 18, 2010 10:01 am

      oh WOW that sounds fantastic! Maybe half Velveeta and half smoked cheddar? The Velveeta is needed for the creamy-ness, I think. I have a mac ‘n cheese recipe that uses Velveeta and cheddar- the combo is awesome.

      I love cheese.

  10. Tustin Babysitter

    May 20, 2010 1:35 am

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! My friend and former roommate (from 20 years ago) has been asking me for this recipe that I made up for tuna noodle casserole and I couldn’t remember it, but this recipe is so close that I’m going to pass it on to her.
    .-= Tustin Babysitter’s last blog post: Find Babysitter Irvine California =-.

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