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Cheap & Easy Tuna Casserole

by Tiffany
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This delicious tuna noodle casserole is a cheap and easy dinner for a frugal family on a budget. It’s a quick meal that is affordable when you live a tight budget, and it tastes great! This is also a great make-ahead freezer meal recipe for a new mom or for busy days.

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Hey y’all, Tiffany here.

I have a hilarious story about this recipe for tuna casserole.  It’s actually my grandma’s recipe! (The same Grandma who taught me to make these pancakes and this canned apple pie filling).

Tuna Casserole

While I was a missionary in Puerto Rico for 18 months, we sometimes would get visitors from church headquarters in Salt Lake City, Utah (their title is General Authority).  One time, a General Authority came and visited all of the islands included in our mission, ending with a conference in Puerto Rico for the missionaries.

A couple of days before the conference, our mission president’s wife called my companion and me.  Their flight didn’t land until about an hour before the conference, and then a second conference was scheduled an hour after the first.  She asked if I would be willing to provide dinner for them that they could eat in that in-between hour.

I panicked.

(Thankfully, I didn’t panic until after I calmly said, “Of course, we’d be happy to” and hung up.)

Before I thought of this tuna casserole, all I could think was:

“What if it’s disgusting?  What if they’re allergic to something I make?  Or what if I poison them?  Oh gosh, what if one of them DIES after eating my food because I’m such a terrible cook?!  I’m going to be excommunicated for killing a General Authority!”

Those were just a few of the thoughts running through my mind that evening.  My companion (very wisely) refused to let us go to the grocery store, seeing how it was about an hour after curfew, so I had to make due with what we had in the kitchen.

Tuna Casserole

Fortunately for me, my very wise aunt had provided me with a recipe book filled with many of our family favorites, including this recipe for my grandma’s tuna casserole.  I knew it was one that I couldn’t mess up too badly (and therefore my Church membership wouldn’t be put in jeopardy).

It turned out deliciously, and no one died!  That gave me the confidence to make it for Phillip shortly after we married – and guess what – he didn’t die, either!  It’s now one of his favorites.

Basically, if I can make it without killing important people, then you can, too!  🙂  It’s very simple, but it’s really good. And you can get canned tuna for really cheap on Amazon!

Simple Tuna Casserole

  • 1 cans cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 lb egg noodles or shell noodles
  • 2 cans drained tuna
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 chopped onion
  • grated cheese

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Cook and drain noodles. In a large bowl, mix all of the ingredients together (including the noodles) except for the cheese and pour into a 9×13 casserole dish.

Top with the cheese.  Bake for 15 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Make it healthier

To help make this tuna casserole healthier, we like to add a can of peas to the mix before putting it in the dish.  You could also add corn, broccoli, or any other canned or frozen vegetable

Tuna Casserole

Freezer options

This delicious tuna casserole is one of our favorite make-ahead freezer meals!  Once you’ve put it together, just top with tin foil and pop into the freezer.

To cook, defrost in the fridge or on the counter.  Then bake at 425 degrees until heated through and cheese is melted and bubbling.

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4 comments

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