baking casserole in 100+ degree weather


posted by on family, Nebraska, Phoenix, portions, quick

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There are a few things that go through my head when I smell egg noodles boiling in a pot. Winter in Nebraska. My mother making her beef and noodles and more importantly, her tuna casserole.

We all make different life connections with food + recipes, but for me, my mother’s tuna casserole 1) can never be beat 2) is the only way, even to this day I’ll eat tuna 3) makes me miss home.

I thought it’d be fitting to do a take on her recipe now that I’m settled and back in Arizona AND have a kitchen fully equipped with an oven! We’ll ignore the fact that I made casserole in 100+ degree weather, okay?

This is an easy recipe with some additions that I’ve made over the years to spice it up a bit. Not a fan of tuna? This recipe leaves tons of room for experimenting (think spinach, chicken, corn… really any vegetable that’s sturdy enough to hold up in the oven). Honestly, my mother will laugh, but peas are the best mix in for this recipe. Don’t forget, as second day leftovers this is even better.

This make enough to feed 2 or 3 on the spot or a good helping and leftovers for lunch the next day.

What you’ll need:

  • ½ bag of egg noodles
  • 1 package of tuna (I buy the quick packets of tuna in water)
  • 1 can of cream of celery soup
  • milk (½ cup)
  • cayenne pepper
  • parsley (dried)
  • garlic salt
  • fresh parmesan
  • panko crumbs
  • casserole dish for baking


  1. Boil the egg noodles according to package, about 8 minutes.
  2. Drain the egg noodles + pour into casserole dish.
  3. Add cream of celery, milk, cayenne, parsley and garlic salt to your liking (easy on the cayenne if you’re not a fan of spicy… it can be omitted altogether).
  4. Stir together well with a wooden spoon and top with shredded parmesan cheese.
  5. Sprinkle panko crumbs on top.
  6. Bake in a 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes, until hot throughout + the top is slightly crispy.
  7. Serve in bowls + top with extra parsley and grated parmesan.
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