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Cheat’s Tuna Pasta Bake

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Super easy, super cheesy tuna pasta bake recipe that’s flavourful, quick to make and perfect for family dinner.

As much as I love a big plate of cheesy tuna pasta bake it never seems worthwhile making it with lovingly prepared fresh tomato sauce and flakes of fresh tuna although I’m sure it would be delicious.

Tuna pasta recipes always seem to be a big hit with the kids, so it’s always worth keeping a few cans of tuna in the cupboard at home as a standby dinner.

Our tuna pasta bake recipe is definitely a cheat meal, one you can throw together in minutes a fab quick meal idea that’s perfect for family dinner.

Filling, satisfying, proper comfort food.

And if your kids are like mine, then you’ll want to serve this baked tuna pasta casserole recipe with a garlic baguette and a quick salad or some broccoli.

tuna pasta bake in a blue oven dish next to a jar or dried oregano and pot of growing salad leaves

Equipment Needed

Our pasta bake recipe is easy – you’ll only need a few things to get cooking!

  • Tablespoon
  • Large saucepan
  • Colander
  • Large oven proof casserole dish
  • Grater
  • Cooking spoon

Tuna Pasta Bake Ingredients

Our tuna and tomato pasta bake recipe just needs a few ingredients, most of them you’ll probably have in at home anyway.

  • 350g penne pasta – feel free to use fusilli instead
  • 400g jar of shop-bought tomato sauce – I usually a pasta sauce with added Mediterranean vegetables – but if you like things spicy then get one with chillies.
  • Can of tuna
  • 250g of frozen peas
  • 340g can sweetcorn
  • 350g tub of ricotta cheese
  • 50g grated parmesan – you can use Cheddar cheese if you prefer
  • 1 tsp dried oregano – or use Italian seasoning
  • Pinch sea salt and cracked black pepper
  • 1 tbs olive oil
tuna pasta bake in a blue oven proof glass dish, with some served on a white plate

Get loads more delicious easy pasta dishes here

How To Cook Tuna Pasta Bake

You’ll just LOVE how simple our cheesy tuna pasta bake is to prepare and cook.

Step One – preheat the oven and cook the pasta

  • Preheat the oven to 200C / 400F / Gas Mark 6
  • Cook the penne pasta in boiling salted water as per the packet instructions – it usually takes around 10 minutes to cook. Add the frozen peas to the pasta so they can cook at the same time.
  • Drain the pasta and peas using a colander then tip back into the saucepan.

Step Two – add the sauce, sweetcorn and seasoning.

  • Tip in the jar of pasta sauce, the drained tuna and the sweetcorn into the pan with the pasta and peas.
  • Add a pinch of salt and black pepper and then stir gently to combine everything together in the saucepan.

Step Three – layer the tuna pasta bake in the casserole dish

  • Grease the casserole dish using the olive oil, this just stops the pasta sticking too much as it cooks.
  • Then tip the saucy tuna pasta into the casserole dish and flatten it down using a spoon.
  • Next top the tuna pasta sweetcorn mixture with the ricotta cheese. Be sure to give the cheese a good stir through first as it makes it easier to spread on top of the pasta bake.
  • Finally sprinkle over the grated Parmesan (you could use any other cheese you like – Cheddar works well here)then sprinkle over the dried oregano and season with salt and pepper.

Step Four – bake the tuna pasta bake in the oven

  • Put the tuna pasta bake into the hot oven and cook until the whole pasta bake is heated through and the cheese on top melted and golden. It should take around 20 minutes.

A super simple easy family recipe – ready in under 30 minutes. And a great way to get kids to eat towards their 5-a-day.

Mmmm real family food! One to remember for adding to your meal planning.

Make Cheesy Tuna Pasta Bake Your Way…

  • Go Spicy! – use a spiced tomato sauce with chillies or add a pinch of red pepper flakes.
  • Switch the fish! – switch the tuna for sardines or salmon to boost oily fish in your diet.
  • Add a crunchy topping! – top with a scattering of breadcrumbs or even crushed up ready salted crisps mingled in with the cheese for a crunchy topping.
  • Gluten free tuna pasta bake – this is a simple recipe to switch to gluten free – just be sure to use gluten free ingredients.

Love to eat Italian food? Try out more of our easy Italian recipes here

How To Serve Tuna Pasta Bake

  • Fab midweek dinner, and great for cooking on busy school nights.
  • Any leftovers as long as they’ve been stored correctly are great cold next day, and delicious stuffed into a ciabatta roll with salad.

Love quick and convenient meals? Get our tinned tuna recipes here

More Canned Tuna Pasta Recipes To try

Get more fish and seafood recipes here

Get lots more delicious, healthy kid friendly recipes here

  • Canned tuna pasta recipe – a quick and easy store cupboard dinner that can be on the table in less than 20 minutes. Perfect for weeknight dinner.
  • Potato wedge melt – mmmm proper comfort food! Cook up this quick and easy kids dinner recipe in no time. Oven baked wedges topped with sweetcorn, jarred peppers, canned tuna and melted cheese. Easy and yummy!
  • BEST tuna cheese melt sandwich – our tuna melt is flavoured with pesto to make it extra delicious. We think this will be your new go to melt sandwich recipe!

Get loads more easy dinner recipes here

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Check out our meal planning here – it’s filled with recipes, meal planning tips and pre-filled printable meal plans weekly or seasonally. We’ve got hundreds of the BEST family recipes your whole family will LOVE!

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Yield: Serves 4 - 6

Cheat's tuna pasta bake

casserole dish filled with tuna pasta bake alongside salad and serving spoons.

An easy cheat's version of tuna pasta bake - packed with veggies a great family recipe.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 350g penne pasta
  • 400g jar of shop-bought tomato pasta sauce
  • 145g tin of tuna
  • 250g defrosted frozen peas
  • 340g can sweetcorn
  • 350g tub of ricotta cheese
  • 50g parmesan cheese - grated 
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1 tbs olive oil 

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 200C / 400F / Gas Mark 6
  2. Cook the penne pasta in boiling salted water as per the packet instructions – it usually takes around 10 minutes to cook. Add the frozen peas to the pasta so they can cook at the same time.
  3. Drain the pasta and peas using a colander then tip back into the saucepan.
  4. Tip in the jar of pasta sauce, the drained tuna and the sweetcorn into the pan with the pasta and peas.
  5. Add a pinch of salt and black pepper and then stir gently to combine everything together in the saucepan.
  6. Grease the casserole dish using the olive oil, this just stops the pasta sticking too much as it cooks.
  7. Then tip the saucy tuna pasta into the casserole dish and flatten it down using a spoon.
  8. Next top the tuna pasta sweetcorn mixture with the ricotta cheese. Be sure to give the cheese a good stir through first as it makes it easier to spread on top of the pasta bake.
  9. Finally sprinkle over the grated Parmesan (you could use any other cheese you like – Cheddar works well here)then sprinkle over the dried oregano and season with salt and pepper.
  10. Put the tuna pasta bake into the hot oven and cook until the whole pasta bake is heated through and the cheese on top melted and golden. It should take around 20 minutes.

Notes

Lovely served with a green salad. Any leftovers are nice cold the next day for packed lunch.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 381Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 38mgSodium: 641mgCarbohydrates: 45gFiber: 6gSugar: 8gProtein: 25g

Nutritional content will vary depending on the exact ingredients you use and how careful you are with measuring - this nutritional information is given as a general guide only and may not be accurate - you should always calculate your own nutritional information especially if you have specific dietary requirements.

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tuna pasta bake in a blue oven dish next to a jar or dried oregano and pot of growing salad leaves. Text overlay "super tasty tuna pasta bake - cheat recipe)

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