Healthy Tuna Casserole
About once a week I crave a casserole. Why? Because I find them warm and comforting but more importantly they typically make a large amount of food that I can use for meal prep/lunches. I also often find that like soup, casserole leftovers can sometimes taste even better as the flavours come together with time.
For this dish I was looking to create something from the pantry items I had in the house. I'm sure many of you are doing that right now as we try to make less trips to the grocery store during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Traditional tuna casserole is cheesy, creamy and pasta packed. My goal with this dish was to balance out the high fats and carbs while maintaining the texture and flavours that make this comfort dish... well... comforting.
I try to find a low-sodium canned light tuna for this recipe.
According to Health Canada canned light tuna contains species of tuna like skipjack, yellowfin and tongol which are relatively low in mercury and lower in cost compared to albacore tuna. Albacore tuna (also called white tuna) has some potential for exposure to higher levels of mercury than is considered acceptable and because of this Health Canada has issued the following advice for weekly consumption:
Pregnant or breastfeeding women - 300g/week
Children 5-11 years-old - 150g/week
Children 1-4 - 75g/week
2 cans light tuna (unsalted)
85g (2 cups) egg noodles
4 cups cauliflower (I like bite size pieces)
1 tbsp butter
1 med onion diced
255g mushrooms chopped
2 garlic cloves minced
1 cup frozen peas
1 cup low sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup 2% Greek yogurt
1 cup 1% milk (could use any milk)
3 tbsp all purpose flour
15g bread crumbs
60g partly skimmed shredded cheese (can use mozzarella or cheddar)
2 tbsp Parmesan
1 tbsp Italian spice
Salt & Pepper to taste
Top with fresh parsley
Cook noodles - set aside
Steam cauliflower while cooking pasta. You want it to be cooked but not too soft so keep an eye on it.
Preheat oven to 375 and lightly spray large casserole dish (9x12).
Warm non-stick pan to medium. Melt butter.
Add onions and garlic until soft.
Add the flour salt and pepper. Stir for about 30 seconds.
Add chicken broth. Continue stirring for 30 seconds. Add milk and Greek yogurt. Bring to a boil.
Then add mushrooms and peas. Season to taste. Reduce heat and allow mixture to thicken for 3-5 minutes.
Add drained tuna. Stir to combine. Remove from heat.
Stir in cheese and then egg noodles and cauliflower and gently combine.
Transfer mixture to casserole dish.
Top with breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese.
Bake for 25 mins.
To crisp the top of the casserole broil for 1-3 minutes. Watch closely to make sure you don’t burn it!
Top with fresh parsley and serve!
*Nutritional information is based off a web-based nutrition application and results may vary depending on the brands and products used
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