Spinach & Tuna Noodle Casserole

Spinach & Tuna Noodle Casserole

5 Reviews
From: EatingWell Magazine, September/October 2015

Homemade mushroom sauce kicks the can of soup out of the picture in this veggie-centric, healthy riff on a classic tuna-noodle casserole recipe. Serve with steamed green beans.

Ingredients 8 servings

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  • 6 ounces egg noodles, preferably whole-wheat (4½ cups dry)
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 cup finely chopped onion
  • ½ cup finely chopped celery
  • 10 ounces mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 tablespoons dry sherry
  • 2 teaspoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground pepper
  • ¼ cup white whole-wheat flour or all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth, divided
  • 1 cup reduced-fat milk
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 5-ounce cans chunk light tuna in olive oil (see Tips), drained and flaked
  • 10 cups baby spinach or 4 cups frozen chopped spinach (thawed)
  • 1 cup coarse fresh breadcrumbs (see Tips), preferably whole-wheat
  • ¾ cup grated aged Cheddar cheese


  • Active

  • Ready In

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Coat a 9-by-13-inch pan (or similar-size 3-quart baking dish) with cooking spray.
  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook noodles according to package instructions. Drain and set aside. Dry the pot.
  3. Heat butter and 1 tablespoon oil in the pot over medium heat until the butter is melted. Add onion and celery; cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until their liquid evaporates, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in sherry, soy sauce, salt and pepper and cook until almost all the liquid has evaporated, 2 to 4 minutes more. Sprinkle flour over the vegetables, stir to coat and cook for 30 seconds.
  4. Increase heat to high, add ½ cup broth and stir until starting to boil. Add the remaining 1½ cups broth, milk and mustard; bring to a boil and cook, stirring often, until the sauce thickens, about 2 minutes. Add tuna, spinach and the reserved noodles; cook, gently stirring often, until heated through, about 3 minutes. Transfer to the prepared baking dish.
  5. Combine breadcrumbs and cheese in a small bowl. Stir in the remaining 1 tablespoon oil and sprinkle over the casserole. Bake until the sauce is bubbling and the topping is golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes.
  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 4; refrigerate for up to 1 day. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes and finish Step 5 before baking.
  • For sustainable chunk light tuna, look for the blue Certified Sustainable Seafood label from the Marine Stewardship Council. The certification means the tuna was troll- or pole-and-line caught, which are sustainable for the fish and the environment. We call for chunk light tuna because it's significantly lower in mercury than albacore (“solid white” tuna)—making it a better choice for health, especially for pregnant women, nursing mothers and children. According to the FDA and EPA, these at-risk groups should still limit their consumption of lower-mercury tuna to 12 ounces a week. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) suggests limiting it even more. (For more info, see the EWG's Seafood Calculator at ewg.org.)
  • Don't toss your stale bread! Make your own breadcrumbs. Trim off any tough crusts and tear or cut the bread into pieces. Process in a food processor until coarse or fine crumbs form. Use right away or freeze in an airtight container for up to 6 months. Thaw before using. One slice of bread makes about ½ cup fresh coarse breadcrumbs.

Nutrition information

  • Serving size: 1¼ cups
  • Per serving: 323 calories; 16 g fat(6 g sat); 3 g fiber; 28 g carbohydrates; 18 g protein; 167 mcg folate; 43 mg cholesterol; 4 g sugars; 1 g added sugars; 3,869 IU vitamin A; 13 mg vitamin C; 188 mg calcium; 3 mg iron; 416 mg sodium; 580 mg potassium
  • Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (77% daily value), Folate (42% dv), Vitamin C (22% dv)
  • Carbohydrate Servings: 2
  • Exchanges: 1½ starch, 1 vegetable, 1 lean meat, ½ high-fat meat, 1½ fat

Reviews 5

February 24, 2017
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By: Saffers47
I thought this was just ok and yes, a lot of work. I added garlic and green pepper as well as used Chinese hot mustard to increase the flavor after reading the reviews. That didn't work. My husband liked it after he figured out it was tuna. Probably will not make again.
March 01, 2016
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By: EatingWell User
Standard casserole, but healthy! I prepared this casserole ahead, cooking it the next day. I definitely enjoyed it - tastes very much like a traditional tuna casserole. The tuna flavor is muted, with the mushroom coming out as the most dominant flavor. I did think it a tad bland and might season it differently (garlic?) if I were to make it again. Pros: healthy, vegetables
October 07, 2015
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By: EatingWell User
Awesome alternative to traditional tuna noodle pea casserole I used crimini mushrooms, twice as much as called for in the recipe, and sauteed them in olive oil with a little salt until they were browned, had released their liquids, and reduced. We had guests over for dinner and as we began to eat the table fell silent until everyone finished. Also used whole wheat fusilli noodles instead of egg noodles. Pros: Rich warm flavor, nutritious, healthy
September 22, 2015
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By: EatingWell User
Healthy Comfort Food Made last night for dinner and fairly easy for a weeknight dinner. Reminded us of beef stroganoff. Hubby and I liked it; kids ate it, but didn't love it. Honestly could not even taste the tuna which upped the likelihood my kids would eat it. Pros: Filling, delicious Cons: Lots of steps; had to keep rereading recipe
September 21, 2015
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By: EatingWell User
Delicious & nutritious alternative to tuna casserole Wow, a lot better than I expected it to be! Great alternative to standard tuna/ egg noodle/ cream of mushroom soup fare. More dicing and chopping than I prefer, for it can be time consuming for an amateur such as myself, but I can buy sliced mushrooms, chopped spinach in supermarket to save time at home when I make this again. Tastes similar to the canned cream of mushroom casserole, but definitely a lot less salt and more nutrition. Dry sherry relatively inexpensive at liquor store - my first time ever using it. Highly recommend! Pros: Healthy, very filling, Cons: a lot of prep work, time consuming
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