This Cheesy Tuna Casserole is just the kind of comfort food that we all crave. The noodles are baked in a cheesy white cream sauce with tuna and sliced olives and topped with sourdough bread crumbs and melted cheese. The kids love this traditional casserole and it makes plenty for everyone plus leftovers. Good news since this meal reheats perfectly!
Just look at that cheesy goodness. What I love most about this tuna noodle casserole is the cheesy boost you get from the jack cheese over the top paired with the crunchy sourdough croutons on top. Today I’m going to show you how to layer this cheesy tuna noodle dish into the perfect casserole!
Let’s get started. You’ll want to begin by cooking the noodles. Drain them and set them aside until your sauce is done.
We’re going to begin by making the white sauce. In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Once it’s melted, stir in the flour, salt, and pepper. Cook until the mixture is bubbly.
A little color in your bubbly mixture is great for flavor, so do get it just a tad brown, but don’t burn it! Begin stirring in your milk. I like to use a whisk to keep everything mixing together smoothly. Continue cooking and stirring until the mixture comes to a boil; boil for 1 minute then remove from heat.
Slice in the cream cheese and stir until smooth.
Next, add the drained tuna. Stir it in really well so that the chunks break apart and mix evenly into the sauce.
Add in the sliced olives! You can omit the olives if they’re not your thing, but the olives are one of my kids’ very favorite parts of this dish!
Time for a little freshness! I use kitchen scissors to cut my chives right into the pan. Yum!
Okay! That is everything for your sauce ingredients. Give that all a nice stir. It’s time to build your tuna casserole layers.
Spread half of the noodles into the bottom of a large casserole baking dish. For the portions in this recipe, you will need large 10 x 15 baking dish. I use this extra large casserole dish. (affil) No need to grease the bottom of the pan. Your sauce is going to seep down into every nook and cranny – oh yum!
Pour half of the sauce over the layer of noodles. Use a spatula to gently spread it around to coat the whole layer.
Now add half of the grated cheese. Yummmmmm!
Add the rest of the noodles. And continue layering with the remaining sauce and then the cheese!
Finally, top with a good layer of cubed pieces of sourdough bread. If you don’t have sourdough bread, you can use any type of bread, but I especially love the zing of flavor and crunch from the sourdough croutons!
Now, into the oven until your casserole is all bubbly and toasty brown. Nothing is actually needing to cook, the oven time is to melt everything together, toast up the sourdough croutons, and turn the cheese into bubbling perfection!
Now, round up the troops! It’s time to eat! This recipe will easily serve 10-12 people. And did you know that you can manipulate the servings in the recipe card if you want to make a smaller (or bigger) casserole? Half everything and you’ll have a good amount for a smaller dinner table. I hope you love all the warm, gooey goodness of this cheesy tuna casserole!
The Cheesy Tuna Casserole Recipe
Cheesy Tuna Casserole
- 16 oz. bag of wide egg noodles
- 10 tbsp butter
- 10 tbsp flour
- 2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 5 cups milk
- 16 oz. cream cheese 2 8-oz packages
- 3 cans tuna, drained
- 1/3 cup chives, cut
- 1 cup sliced black olives
- 12 oz. grated jack cheese
- 2-3 cups soft bread crumbs 6 slices sourdough bread
- Cook noodles and drain.
- Melt butter in medium saucepan over medium heat.
- Stir in flour, salt, and pepper. Cook till bubbly.
- Whisk in milk and cook until mixture boils for 1 minute. Remove from heat.
- Slice in cream cheese and stir until smooth.
- Add tuna, olives, and chives to sauce mixture.
- In a large casserole baking dish, layer half of the noodles, sauce, and cheese. Repeat with a second layer of each.
- Cut bread slices into cubes and spread evenly over the top of the casserole.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until casserole is bubbly and the bread is toasted brown.
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