When Sara suggested a tuna casserole contest, I thought the idea was kind of crazy because I’d always assumed that all tuna casseroles were essentially the same and thought there wouldn’t be enough difference between them to make it worth it. Trying to prove this point, I did some googling and realized how wrong I was. Not only are there all kinds of varieties, my family’s take on it a bit of a freakish outlier since our recipe doesn’t include two ingredients that appear to be canonical: cheese and potato chips. Instead, it places a bigger emphasis on mushrooms and has the bonus get-your-kid-to-eat-some-vegetables addition of peas.
The recipe below makes enough to serve a 5-person family as a main meal with leftovers but if you don’t need to feed an army it can be easily halved and baked in a 9×9 casserole dish. I do recommend making enough for at least some leftovers, though, because the casserole leftovers are also excellent cold. Yes, cold. (As if some of you weren’t grossed out enough by the topic of tuna casserole to begin with.) And take the pictures of our casseroles with a grain of salt – the Flophouse’s oven has been acting up and has lost its ability to brown. Your casserole will come out looking much prettier and with a crisp delicious crust.
THE BECKS FAMILY TUNA NOODLE CASSEROLE
- 2 12-oz. cans of tuna, drained
- 2 cans condensed cream of mushroom soup
- 1 small can sliced mushrooms
- 2 c. frozen green peas
- 2 c. milk
- 2 eggs
- 1 package of egg noodles (No Yolks extra broad noodles preferred)
- Progresso Italian-flavored breadcrumbs
- Salt and pepper to taste
1. Cook the egg noodles in salted water until al dente.
2. While the egg noodles are cooking, mix together the tuna, mushrooms, soup, peas, milk, and eggs.
3. When the egg noodles are done, add them to the tuna mix until the desired consistency is reached. If you’re feeding a crowd or like your casseroles more starchy, you can add all of the noodles. I like mine more “tuna-y” so I reserved about 3 cups of cooked noodles.
4. Salt and pepper to taste. Yes, you can taste the raw soup. It won’t kill you.
5. Pour the mixture into a 9×13 casserole dish and top with a layer of the Progresso breadcrumbs. To make sure the entire top is well covered, I recommend sprinkling breadcrumbs around the edges of the pan first and then filling in the middle.
6. Bake at 350 degrees until the breadcrumbs are brown and the sides are bubbly, about 30-45 minutes (or more if your oven sucks like ours).
Here’s a plate with the dueling casseroles and a mustard green salad Amanda made: