Skillet Tuna Noodle Casserole

Known as Tuna-Pea Wiggle to some, this family-friendly tuna noodle casserole tends to be made with canned soup and whole milk, which means high fat and sodium. We remedy this by making our own creamy mushroom sauce with nonfat milk thickened with a bit of flour. Look for whole-wheat egg noodles-they have more fiber than regular egg noodles (but this dish will work well and taste great with either).

EatingWell Test Kitchen

Used by permission. (c) Eating Well, Inc.

Skillet Tuna Noodle Casserole

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    8 ounces whole-wheat egg noodles 3 cups nonfat milk
    1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
    1 medium onion, finely chopped 12 ounces canned chunk light tuna (see Tip), drained
    8 ounces mushrooms, sliced 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
    1/2 teaspoon salt 1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese, divided
    1/2 cup dry white wine 1/2 cup coarse dry whole-wheat breadcrumbs, (see Tip)
    6 tablespoons all-purpose flour


    Prep: 40 min Total: 45 min
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    • 1

      Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook noodles until just tender, 6 to 8 minutes or according to package directions. Drain and rinse.

    • 2

      Position rack in upper third of oven and preheat broiler.

    • 3

      Meanwhile, heat oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, mushrooms and salt and cook, stirring often, until the onion is softened but not browned, about 5 minutes. Add wine and cook until evaporated, 4 to 5 minutes. Sprinkle flour over the vegetables; stir to coat. Add milk and pepper and bring to a simmer, stirring constantly. Stir in tuna, peas and 1/2 cup Parmesan until evenly incorporated. Then, stir in the noodles (the pan will be very full). Remove from the heat.

    • 4

      Sprinkle the casserole with breadcrumbs and the remaining 1/2 cup Parmesan. Broil until bubbly and lightly browned on top, 3 to 4 minutes.


    Tips: Chunk light tuna, which comes from the smaller skipjack or yellowfin, has less mercury than canned white albacore tuna. FDA/EPA advice recommends no more than 6 ounces of albacore a week; up to 12 ounces canned light is considered safe.

    To make fresh breadcrumbs, trim crusts from whole-wheat bread. Tear bread into pieces and process in a food processor until coarse crumbs form. One slice of bread makes about 1/2 cup fresh crumbs. For dry breadcrumbs, spread the fresh crumbs on a baking sheet and bake at 250°F until crispy, about 15 minutes. One slice of fresh bread makes about 1/3 cup dry crumbs. Or use prepared coarse dry breadcrumbs. We like Ian’s brand labeled “Panko breadcrumbs.” Find them in the natural-foods section of large supermarkets.

    nutritional information

    5 g
    8 g
    Saturated Fat:
    3 g
    47 g
    32 g
    681 mg
    Monounsaturated Fat:
    3 g
    2 1/2 starch, 1/2 nonfat milk, 3 lean meat
    53 g
    Carbohydrate Servings:
    591 mg
    Nutrition Bonus:
    Calcium (30% daily value), Potassium (17% dv), Iron, Vitamin A & Vitamin C (15% dv), good source of omega-3s.
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