Tuna “Not Like The Lunch Hall” Casserole

I have this recipe that I pulled out of one of the first issues of Rachael Ray’s Magazine and I adapted it just a bit to our liking, but that’s what recipes are all about, right?

Auntie Doni’s Tuna Casserole 

½ lb. Barilla Whole Wheat Medium Shells

1 Tbsp. Olive Oil

4 Tbsp. Butter

1 C. minced Onion

1 C. minced Celery

½ C. minced Red Bell Pepper

1 Tbsp. Flour

½ C. Dry White Wine (like a Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc, something you would drink, NOT cooking wine, EVER)

½ C. Chicken broth

1 C. Half and Half

1 C. frozen Peas

2 seven ounce cans of Tuna, drained and flaked

1 ½ C. Bread Crumbs (make your own, fresh is better then that stuff in a can)

Cook the pasta to desired doneness, I always take it 1 minute longer than the directions on the box say. Drain well and set aside.

In a large, deep pan (* I have Rachael Ray’s pasta pot, so I use this to boil the pasta and make the sauce, see below) over medium heat, sauté the onions and celery with the Olive Oil and 1 tablespoon of the Butter, for about 3 minutes or so, don’t brown the veg.

Add in the Red Bell Peppers and cook for about a minute.

Stir in the flour and cook for about another minute. Mix in the wine and reduce for 1 minute. Now whisk in the broth and bring to a boil to thicken.

Turn the heat down to low and stir in the half & half; season to taste with salt and pepper.

Throw in the peas, tuna and cooked shells, fold everything together and leave to heat through.

Preheat the broiler.

Melt the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter in a large microwaveable bowl (I use my big Pyrex measuring cup). This is optional, but I like to swirl in a couple dashes of hot sauce and then mix in the bread crumbs.

Spoon the Tuna mixture into a 9X13 inch ovenproof dish and top with the buttered bread crumbs. Pop the casserole under the broiler just long enough to brown the top and then …

Tuna "Not" Casserole

Let’s eat!

For our new neighbors

This makes too much for the two of us to eat in one sitting, so I split the recipe and this time I put half into a disposable aluminum pan to share with our new neighbors, who I know were too busy to make dinner.

Served with a green salad and the rest of that bottle of dry white wine and that’s dinner or lunch if you like.

When DH asked what we were having for dinner and I said Tuna Casserole, I got, “EW! I don’t like that”. Hmmm, really? Then why is it all gone? AND  why did you ask me, “Why are you giving away good food to the neighbor?”

Rachael Ray's Pasta Pot

*This is my new favorite pot!



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11 thoughts on “Tuna “Not Like The Lunch Hall” Casserole

  1. Krystle August 10, 2014 at 10:09 am

    Hi Auntie!
    That sounds delicious! 🙂 I would probably get the same response from my husband at first… until he actually tried it! Adding this recipe to my menu next week! Mahalo!

    • auntiedoni August 10, 2014 at 10:58 am

      Sometimes it’s best no to tell the DH what’s in stuff 😉 Aloha Krystle

  2. floursugareggsandbutter August 11, 2014 at 6:33 am

    Today is Monday and the weekly day of the “give up” at our humble abode.
    The weekends are always so busy and ya gotta have at least one day of rest, right?
    The fisherman gets home from work at about three and checks the mail.
    I will have just climbed out of a steaming bubble bath.
    We will enjoy a simple casserole, no sides on Monday… unless it is a veg and on the one pot ingredient list.
    We carry our bowls of goodness to bed and snuggle up with books and eat and pillow talk.
    I love Mondays.
    Have everything for your tuna casserole in the pantry.
    Thanks for sharing your secret of the canned mushroom soup substitution.
    I will never purchase the can ‘o salt again!

    • auntiedoni August 11, 2014 at 8:48 am

      Ya know Grace, I never thought about that before. I hadn’t made a Tuna Casserole in so long, I totally forgot that it called for condensed soup… I haven’t bought that stuff in YEARS! 😀 Let me know what the two of ya think of this recipe if you do try this for your Monday Supper.

  3. alifemoment August 11, 2014 at 7:04 am

    Delicious recipe! 🙂

    • auntiedoni August 11, 2014 at 8:45 am

      Mahalo, thank you Alice for stopping by. I do hope that you will try this pasta dish. A hui hou, until we meet.

      • alifemoment August 11, 2014 at 8:47 am


      • auntiedoni August 11, 2014 at 8:55 am

        Gee, I was just thinking Alice, this dish would be outstanding made with that wonderful canned tuna from Italy that is astronomically expensive here in the States. YEAH! 🙂

      • alifemoment August 11, 2014 at 9:23 am

        Lol, I completely agree with you! 🙂

  4. Mrs Beans August 11, 2014 at 7:29 am

    That looks delicious! The browning on top looks particularly nice. Speaking of nice, sharing with your neighbor was an awesome thing to do!

    • auntiedoni August 11, 2014 at 8:44 am

      Mahalo, thanks Mrs. B! We have loads of Seniors living around us and I think that sometimes they don’t eat well. So when I make up a batch of something or another that is too much for the two of us, I share. I keep disposable containers on had just for that purpose. One of the many meanings of the word ALOHA is “the joyful sharing of life”

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