Tuna melts and macaroni and cheese are two of our family's favorite meals, but it can be tricky sometimes deciding which dish to make for dinner…luckily, this cheesy tuna pasta casserole combines the best elements of both dishes, filling everyone up and making them happy. (To make it even more tempting, it's simple to make and easy on the budget.) Our recipe calls for penne pasta, but you can also use elbow macaroni if that's what you have in your pantry – just be sure to use fresh herbs, as they up the flavor and tie everything together. Trust us, these two classic dishes are mighty tasty on their own, but combining them makes everything 100 times better, you'll see!
Tuna Melt Mac And Cheese
50 minutes to prepare serves 6
- 1 pound penne pasta
- 2 cans tuna, drained
- 2 cups cheddar cheese, grated
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley or tarragon, finely chopped
- 1 cup breadcrumbs
- 2 cups milk
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
- 3/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper, or to taste
- Preheat oven to 350º F and grease a 9x13-inch baking dish with butter or non-stick spray.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to boil and cook pasta until just al dente, 7-9 minutes. Drain pasta and set aside.
- Melt 4 tablespoons butter in a medium saucepan over low heat. Whisk in flour and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until smooth and paste-like.
- Whisk milk into roux, continuing to stir until sauce begins to thicken. Season generously with salt and pepper.
- Add cheddar cheese to sauce, and stir until melted and smooth. Pour sauce over pasta, then add tuna and mix together until coated. Transfer mixture to baking dish.
- Melt remaining butter and pour it over breadcrumbs in a medium bowl. Add fresh herbs and mix to combine.
- Mix parmesan cheese into breadcrumb mixture and sprinkle it over casserole.
- Place baking dish in oven and bake for 25 minutes or until top is brown and sauce is bubbly.
- Remove from oven and serve hot.
Recipe adapted from Food Network