I love that this casserole can virtually be made from the pantry.  With a couple of refrigerator staples you are on your way to a delicious, comforting dinner for a crowd in less than an hour.  All this requires is some boiling of noodles, some opening of cans and some stirring and of course, some baking.  This is the first dish many young people learn to make in home ec class.  Is that still a thing?  I wonder?

I like to use extra wide egg noodles.  While those are boiling open up your cans.  One can of cream of mushroom soup, one can of cream of celery soup, one large can of mushrooms, drained, one can of black olives, that have been drained and sliced.  That is optional but oh so delicious, but if you hate olives, leave them out.  Open up four cans of albacore tuna but don't drain those and grate four cups of cheddar cheese.  Have a cup of milk at the ready in the event that you need to thin things out a bit.


Once your noodles are drained, take the empty saucepan you cooked them in and build your sauce.  Add everything to the saucepan, but only half the cheese and stir well.  Not too much work here.  Dump and stir!  Add your noodles and determine if you would like to add that milk.  I did because I did not use three cans of soup.  If you like your casserole a little more juicy than mine, add an extra can of creamed soup to the mix.  I like my casserole to stay together when I spoon it out of the dish.

Now pour that glorious mixture into an awaiting casserole dish.  Sprinkle the remaining cheese over the top and pop that into the oven for about a half an hour until melty, browned and bubbly.  Let this sit after you remove it from the oven for at least ten minutes then serve with your favorite side.  We love green beans mixed with stewed tomatoes.  It really compliments the casserole and offers the tart sweetness that cuts through the richness of the tuna casserole.

Noreen's Kitchen
Classic Tuna Noodle Casserole

Classic Tuna Noodle Casserole Retro Recipe, Noreen's Kitchen

Step By Step Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl or the pot you cooked the noodles in, blend together cream soups, mushrooms, black olives, tuna and 2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese.  Stir well to combine.

Add noodles to the mixture and stir well.

If you need to, add the milk to achieve the desired consistency.  If you like your casserole a little juicier, add an extra can of soup to the mix.

Pour the mixture into a 9 x 13 casserole dish and spread evenly.

Sprinkle remaining shredded cheddar evenly over the top of the casserole. 

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the cheese is melted, slightly browned and the casserole is bubbly.

Remove from oven and allow to rest for at least 10 minutes before serving.

Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week.

You can divide this into smaller portions before baking and freeze for later use and bake either from frozen or thawed.

To store frozen, do not bake. Once you have constructed the casserole, cover with foil and seal in a freezer bag.

Freeze up to three months and when ready to eat, remove from freezer and thaw in the refrigerator over night then bake the same way as above. 

If baking from frozen, bake at 400 degrees for 60 minutes covered with foil then remove foil and bake an additional 15 minutes until the cheese is melted slightly browned and bubbly.  You may have to adjust your baking time from frozen depending on the size and shape of your casserole and the accuracy of your oven.

I know some people like to add frozen peas and, of course, you can do that if you wish.  I hate peas so you will never see me add them to many things.  You are the master of your tuna casserole so you should make it how it makes you happy!

Now, I believe I promised to share how my mother would make tuna casserole.  first she would prepare a box of macaroni and cheese according to the package directions.  Then we would add one can of cream of mushroom soup, one can of drained mushrooms and two cans of drained tuna along with some shredded cheddar.  Pour that into a casserole dish and top with more cheese and crushed Lay's original potato chips.  Bake till bubbly.  I loved it.  I still do.  Most people think it to be very odd.  So what!?

I hope you give my classic retro, tuna noodle casserole a try some time soon and I hope you love it!

Happy Eating!


1 pound extra wide egg noodles cooked
4, 5 ounce cans albacore tuna, including liquid
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of celery soup

This is as retro as it gets!  Tuna noodle casserole, a staple of the 1970's dinner table.  Economical and delicious.  Everyone's mom had a recipe that was distinctly her own.  There, of course, were similarities between them, but enough differences to make them each unique in their own right.  Mine is no exception.  This creamy, comfort casserole is something you just have to have sometimes and it does not disappoint.  Creamy, cheesy and full of noodles, this classic is definitely a keeper.

If you are not familiar with the deliciousness of tuna casserole, then you must be a child of a different generation.  This was a staple in my house growing up, but as mentioned above, my mom's version was very different from this one.  I will get to that in a minute.  I don't think I had a friend growing up whose mom didn't have an arsenal of casserole recipes up her sleeve.  One look at their recipe box would reveal a plethora of hot dishes and casseroles.  Depending on where you grew up they were called something different.  


Classic Tuna Noodle Casserole RetroRecipe, Noreen's Kitchen

1, 8 ounce can sliced mushrooms, drained
1 cup sliced black olives
1 cup milk

4 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided

Classic Tuna Noodle Casserole Retro Recipe, Noreen's Kitchen

1 Cup good quality mayonnaise
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon celery seed
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper

Classic Tuna Noodle Casserole

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Hi!  I'm Noreen, wife, mother of two amazing, almost grown, daughters, content creator, cook, baker and sister in Christ. Welcome to my Kitchen!   I hope you stick around, enjoy the recipes and share them with those you love!

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