Tuna & Macaroni Salad (WIAW)

Good morning! It’s Wednesday, so I’m linking up to share my meals from Monday- my day off.

Besides sharing my meals (that were all rather tasty), I’m sharing a recipe. It’s not totally my recipe, but a spin-off of an absolute favorite dish my Mom would make for us- Tuna & Macaroni Salad. 

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Breakfast: Baked oatmeal (1/2 cup rolled oats, 1/4 cup applesauce, 1/4 cup almond milk, cinnamon, 1/4 tsp baking powder) with cinnamon raisin peanut butter and half a banana. Served with HOT coffee and finished with a piece of 85% dark chocolate.

Tuna is one of those foods that I have loved as a long as I can remember. You know those little tuna salad kits that come with the little relish and mayo packets and little wooden spoon to stir everything together? I probably brought one of those to pre-school 90% of them time. And I probably wished it was 100%.

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Pre-gym snack: peanut butter filled pretzels. SO DANG ADDICTIVE. These are like kryptonite.

Is there a dish that your mom or dad would make that just screams “comfort food!”? I think of my Mom’s country fried steak that she would make on Sundays after church. Or her vegetable beef soup that she would make at least once a week during the winter. She would put canned whole tomatoes and big lima beans in her soup and that’s what made it my favorite. Those plus the tuna & macaroni salad were my all time favs. The soup is next on my list to make.

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Lunch: 2 rice cakes with neufchatel cheese and sliced almonds, sweet potato broccoli soup (which I made with almond milk instead of coconut and it worked great), and an orange. Soon after lunch I enjoyed an almond milk latte at group project meeting for class.

The tuna & macaroni salad was a quick summertime or school night meal. It made everybody happy. Not to mention, as an adult and grad student I can appreciate the fact that it is super budget friendly.

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Snack: Popcorn with raisins and a few dark chocolate chips. I tried the brown paper bag method and probably only 1/5th of my kernels popped. Try again next time… I suppose. Though to be real, air popped popcorn kind of sucks. Like it can’t even hang on to a little salt!?

As we know, comfort food isn’t always pretty. Neither is my favorite comfort sweater I like to wear around the house but Terry absolutely hates. (See below). Comfort food, however, is a great reminder of how food usually means more than just nutrients. Sometimes it can remind of us our childhood or our first date or freshman year when those microwave lasagnas were the best thing ever.

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So while this tuna & macaroni salad isn’t the hippest- it’s definitely delicious. And thanks to the Greek yogurt, peas, and whole grain noodles, it’s nutritious too.

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Dinner: Tuna & macaroni salad with carrot fries dipped in ketchup

Tuna & Macaroni Salad

Ingredients
2 cups dry macaroni noodles
1 cup frozen or fresh peas
2 5 oz cans tuna, drained
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/4 cup mayo (I used olive oil mayo)
2-4 tbsp yellow mustard
Salt, pepper, and dried dill to taste
Optional: 1/4 cup relish (wish I had this on hand!)

Directions
1. Cook noodles according to package, add frozen peas in with boiling noodles during last few minutes. Once noodles are tender, drain.
2. In large bowl, mix well together the Greek yogurt, mayo, mustard, seasonings, and relish. Add tuna and stir into mixture.
3. Add the noodles and peas with the mixture and still until well combined.
4. Refrigerate until cooled or serve immediately.

[In reference to the whole grain noodles and my attempt to lower my fiber intake… old habits are hard to break.]

More coffee at book club. Some people are social drinkers… I’m just a social coffee drinker

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Speaking of comfort foods, night time snacks are probably the epitome of that for me. Maybe I’m not hungry for it, but it just feels right. I’m going on 6 or more years of consistently having a snack before bed time and I’m pretty comfortable with it.

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Snack: S’more bar (recipe coming soon!!) and almond milk

Now, you tell me-

Favorite childhood meal?

Are you a tuna fan? 

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40 thoughts on “Tuna & Macaroni Salad (WIAW)

  1. Those oats look delicious! And I am a tuna fan as well. Favorite comfort food is probably spaghetti with red sauce that my grandma always makes! 🙂 hope you have a great day Kate!

  2. oooh I’m excited for that smores bar recipe! YAY, I love dessert stuff too. I know what you mean about those pretzel peanut butter delights. Once I start, I can’t stop. I actually like the paper bag method for popcorn, but it takes some trial and error to get it perfect. I also have a popcorn machine. The question is..why don’t I use it?

  3. Oh wow. Tuna noodle casserole. Who knew a craving could come on so quickly.. and strongly?
    My parents used to make a ham and potato cheese casserole… or this weird tomato pea sausage casserole .. we’d always have them from the crockpot in our church basement while they were in meetings. It’s been so many years since I’ve had either but they bring back all the nicest memories. Didn’t look nice at all. But so much yum.

  4. I am so with you – a lot of my favourite foods are the least pretty and least “trendy” but they are tied to so many memories and just taste so GOOD. Love the looks of the pasta – I am a tuna lover too 🙂 And I love the social coffee drinking haha – good visits are awesome but good visits with coffee in hand are just something else haha

  5. My mom had her tuna noodle casserole and it was dang tasty! I liked tuna in that, but hated it otherwise because it was always put with mayo, which I dislike. My favorite childhood meal was probably my moms spaghetti. She made her own sauce which simmered all day. Oh baby I could drink that stuff! Thanks for the recipe.

  6. Don’t laugh, but I’ve had a canned tuna phobia my whole life! I hated the smell, but for he first time ever, I tried it recently (well, packaged tuna in oil) and really enjoyed it. It was a non-mayo based salad though (another food phobia).
    I know what you mean about comfort foods. I have many!
    Side note: isn’t Wild Friends PB incredible? I recently discovered them and just wish that I had had the brains to start a PB company while in college. Ugh. Such a slacker! 😉

  7. I LOVE the Wild Friends nut butters – especially the cinnamon raisin one! I like to put it in my oatmeal too. My favorite comfort meal my mom makes is beef pot pie. She usually makes it around the holidays so it’s extra comforting that I’m always with my family when I have it. I’m not a huge tuna fan but my roommate loves it and is always making it for lunch so I’ll send along this recipe for her to enjoy! 🙂

  8. I used to eat tuna mixed with salsa for lunch, like all the time. Like, I may have burned myself out on tuna got a while. That bet said, I I love your take on this recipe! Greek yogurt adds such an amazing creaminess factor!
    I’m a big fan of nighttime snacks and have one every night. It is a comforting routine, plus, I can’t sleep if I’m hungry!

  9. Comfort sweater and all: you look so cute in that picture, girl. And I bet Terry doesn’t actually mind you wearing it that much.
    As it’s pretty labour-intensive they weren’t a regular but definite comfort food: my mum’s Käsespätzle [a kind of dumpling-like homemade pasta with fried onions and lots of cheese]. I haven’t had these in years, though.
    Tuna has never appealed to me so don’t take it personally but that S’mores bar would be all the more so up my alley.

    1. Aw thank you!
      Dumplings are on my to-cook list. I’ve never really had legit dumplings, only the canned chicken and dumplings we ate a lot as kids.
      Tuna is a hit or miss kind of food with people, but I feel like we can all agree on s’more anything!

  10. You have no idea how excited I am about the smores bars, I know they will have amazing healthy ingredients so I CANT WAIT to try them (although you haven’t even posted them haha). I have never tried the brown bag technique, I have a popcorn machine that is about 30 years old and still works great! If that is what you wear around the house (which was actually really quite fine), I feel like I am a total bum in comparison! The moment I get home I change into the largest, tallest, fluffiest socks, pyjama pants and walk around with a huge scarf-blanket around my shoulders haha

    1. They are nutritious but they are also really delicious, so it’s a win/win.
      I had my pajama pants on with the outfit. I was daring and even wore the sweater out in public, so I was really testing Terry, lol!

  11. I’m sadly not a tuna fan although I wish I was since it’s so healthy!

    My favorite childhood meal was what we nicknamed “soccer pasta” since we always had it on the nights we had soccer practice haha! It was just shell pasta baked with cottage cheese, marinara, mozzarella, and parmesan and it was DELICIOUS!

  12. Can you please cook something that looks disgusting so I don’t feel tempted to reach into my screen and snatch everything in sight? 😉
    As usual, the food looks absolutely DIVINE. You reminded me how much I love baked oatmeal. Sadly I only have steel-cut quick-cooking oats on hand but I will pick up a little bag of rolled oats just to make that. I’ve never thought of adding applesauce to baked oatmeal – GENIUS!
    Mmmm those carrot fries. Roasted carrots take on a whole new flavour. It’s incredible. Tuna mac is now on my menu for next week. You rock!

    1. Haha! I have never tried making steel-cut outs because I am turned off by how long they take! I think I need to try them in the crock pot.
      I hope you enjoy tuna mac- it’s one of my favorite!

      1. I have quick-cooking steel-cut oats which cook in less than 5 minutes! They are new to me and I absolutely love it. I made tuna mac and cheese last night and oh my goodness, it was a highlight dinner! LOVED it. Recipe will be shared soon 🙂 Thanks for the inspiration!

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