healthy tuna casserole with gluten free bean pasta

Healthy Tuna Casserole with Black Bean Pasta

This simple, healthy tuna casserole is the perfect family friendly pantry meal!

Healthy Tuna Casserole with black bean pasta

I know what you’re thinking, 1975 called and they want their tuna casserole back. But all things become new again, right? I’m wearing circa 1986 skinny jeans and I feel pretty good about it. Plus, it’s new to me! I’ve never made a tuna casserole before. I literally just made it up as I went. I knew what the basic components were, and that’s about it.

Who knew tuna casserole was this good? Had I known, I would’ve been whipping this bad boy up years ago. For one, it’s a skillet meal. And you know how I feel about that. LOVE IT.  For two, it’s mainly pantry ingredients. I could have probably gotten away with using canned mushrooms, but that’s going a little off the rails for this girl. Fresh mushrooms, an onion, a little shredded cheese, and the pantry takes care of the rest. So simple.

healthy tuna casserole with gluten free black bean pasta

It’s also family friendly. Even after I announced it was healthy, it was scarfed down faster than most of my previous black bean pasta creations. Is it the creamy mushroom-based sauce that’s so alluring? Perhaps. Or maybe it’s the shredded cheese and bread crumbs I sprinkled on top? Cheese is always a good trick to get anyone to eat anything.

healthy tuna casserole with gluten free bean pasta

Regardless of the why, it was universally loved and I got some props for making a healthy dish the family loved. A win-win in my book.

healthy tuna casserole

I should mention, too. I cooked this “casserole” in a skillet. You don’t have to do that. You could prep the veggies and the sauce in a skillet, add the pasta to the sauce, and then throw it all into a casserole dish to bake.

healthy tuna casserole with gluten free black bean pasta

The next time you just have no inspiration in the kitchen, try making a quick tuna casserole.  Oh, and black bean pasta not required!

Here’s how I made it:

Healthy Tuna Casserole with Black Bean Pasta

Healthy Tuna Casserole with Black Bean Pasta

Ingredients

  • 3 cans tuna (albacore or chunk) packed in oil or water (I used oil), drained
  • 7 oz bag Explore Asian Black Bean pasta (or any pasta you have)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 cups white or brown mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup peas (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 can condensed mushroom soup
  • 1 Tbsp flour (sub 1 tsp cornstarch, if gluten free)
  • 16 oz vegetable broth
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded (I used Cabot)
  • Bread crumbs for topping (use gluten free version, as needed)
  • Sea salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Prepare pasta. Once cooked, drain and set aside.
  2. While pasta is cooking, heat oil on med-high in large skillet. Add onions and cook for 2 minutes, or until fragrant. Add mushrooms and cook for 3 minutes more, or until just soft. Add peas and cook 1-2 minutes more.
  3. Add flour (or cornstarch) to veggies and mix well to combine.
  4. Add canned soup and broth.Stir well and simmer until soup and veggies are combined well.
  5. Add cooked pasta and stir well again to combine.
  6. Add tuna and stir well to incorporate.
  7. Stir in 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese.
  8. If cooking right in skillet, add breadcrumbs and a sprinkle of cheese. If using casserole dish, transfer to dish and add cheese and bread crumbs.
  9. Bake in oven for 25 minutes, or until hot and bubbly!
http://foodconfidence.com/2016/01/29/tuna-casserole-with-black-bean-pasta/

Healthy tuna casserole with black bean pasta. The perfect weeknight recipe that will please the whole family!

Harissa Hummus Dip with roasted Brussels Sprouts

Spicy Harissa Hummus

Reinvent your tailgate fare with this easy to make harissa hummus. The perfect partner with roasted vegetables for a healthy, spicy bite! 

Spicy Harissa Hummus with Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Today we’re having a virtual tailgating party courtesy of The Recipe Redux and Sabra Hummus. By posting this recipe I’m entering a contest sponsored by Sabra Dipping Co. LLC. I received coupons for free product, but I was not compensated for my time. I am eligible to win prizes, though! Woo hoo!

Do You Like Spicy?

If you do, you’re going to love my Harissa Hummus. First things first, this recipe is crazy easy to whip up. Eating clean usually requires making food from scratch. Luckily, store-bought hummus has always been on my clean foods list!

For this recipe contest we used Sabra hummus (click the blue frog below the recipe to take a peek at my competition). I used the plain flavor because I wanted to doctor it up myself. The plan was to create a healthy option for dipping vegetables. I know…most people like pita, crackers, or tortilla chips with hummus, but once you’ve dipped a roasted veggie into your hummus, there’s no going back. It’s pretty amazing, especially when the veggies are warm from the oven.  It’s best to use a vegetable that doesn’t get really soft when roasted, so I went with Brussels Sprouts this time. Broccoli, parsnips, carrots or asparagus stalks would be lovely, too.

Spicy Harissa hummus dip with roasted vegetables

Beans, Beans…Good For Your Heart

Your typical hummus is made by processing together chick peas, lemon, tahini, olive oil, and some spices. The traditional base for hummus is chick peas, although there are many other hummus types out there. Have you tried beet, black bean, or cauliflower hummus?

Not only are beans a great source of protein and fiber, they also help to reduce your risk of getting heart disease and diabetes. What I love about bean-based hummus is that just 2 heaping spoonfuls per day satisfies the recommended 3 cups of beans per week. I don’t know about you, but for me getting in 3 cups of beans each week isn’t a reality (and I LOVE my beans). But #twospoons of hummus? That’s not going to be a problem!
Harissa hummus dip -- spicy tailgating food!

You Got This!

I mixed the Sabra plain hummus with some plain Greek yogurt so my mouth wouldn’t catch on fire from the harissa. It worked like a charm for the perfect hint of heat (which you can adjust to your liking) and a ton of flavor! To finish it off, I sprinkled the dip and the Brussels with chili powder and hemp seeds.

I hope you’ll try this delicious duo at your next tailgating party. It’s a smart strategy for bringing something healthy that you can enjoy, while everyone else eats well, you know…that other stuff.

Spicy Harissa Hummus

 

Spicy Harissa Hummus

Spicy Harissa Hummus

Ingredients

  • 1 lb Brussels Sprouts, cleaned and halved
  • Sea salt
  • 1 container Sabra hummus, plain
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 -3 tsp harissa
  • 1Tbsp hemp seeds
  • sprinkle chili pepper
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400. Toss Brussels Sprouts with olive oil and salt. Lay out on baking sheet. Roast until just tender, about 15 minutes. DO NOT OVERCOOK. I took mine out a little early so they did not get mushy and retained their green color.
  2. While Brussels are roasting, combine Greek yogurt and hummus in a small bowl. Stir well. Add the harissa, per your taste. The more you add, the spicier the hummus will be. Mix until well combined. Place into serving tray and sprinkle with chili pepper, hemp seeds and a drizzle of olive oil. Serve alongside warm Brussels sprouts.
http://foodconfidence.com/2015/10/16/spicy-harissa-hummus/

Spicy Harissa Hummus dip -- perfect tailgaiting recipe!

Freezer Friendly bean burgers on whole wheat pita! Perfect for a quick, healthy vegetarian dinner!

Freezer Friendly Bean Burgers

Make these bean burgers once and then freeze them for later. A simple weeknight meal made easy!  

Mexican Mayocoba beans

I mentioned yesterday that I love to make beans from scratch. I made a big batch of Mayocoba beans (aka, pinto) this weekend, so this week I’m using them in a few recipes. This month’s Recipe Redux theme is freezer-friendly foods, which is the perfect reason to whip up a batch of tasty bean burgers. I love my freezer. It’s probably more stuffed than my fridge! Because we are a small family of three, the freezer is an important part of my cooking strategy. I like to take advantage of bulk food pricing (especially with organic food, meats, and fish), but we definitely can’t eat those larger quantities fast enough. My freezer saves me time in the kitchen and tons of money on groceries.

Pinto bean burgers

Bean burgers are pretty easy to make and we eat them quite a bit at our house. Our burgers are not your typical bean burgers. They aren’t trying to be hamburgers! They have their own identity; super crusty on the outside and creamy on the inside. Of course, with a ton of flavor!

Pinto bean burgers stuffed into a whole wheat pita.

Because they’re a bit on the soft-side in the center, we eat them in a pita. The pita makes it easy to catch any pieces that fall apart. I like to actually squish mine in my pita and make it super messy. Hany likes his with a slice of melted Swiss on top. I like mine with tons of microgreens and ketchup. Another great thing about bean burgers is that they freeze well. This is important because one batch usually makes way too many burgers!

Prepping bean burgers for freezer!

Freezing these bean burgers is pretty simple. You just form the patties and then place them onto a baking sheet lined with wax paper. Then you cover them with a sheet of plastic wrap and place them in the freezer for about 30 minutes. This makes them easier to handle when you’re wrapping them up for the freezer.

Freezer-ready bean burgers!

Once they’re cold, I wrap them individually in plastic wrap, and then again in wax paper. My mom is the freezing Queen and she swears that the double wrap keeps anything from getting freezer burned. I rarely doubt my mom, so I double-wrap.

Freezer ready pinto bean burgers!

Once wrapped and secure, I just place them all into larger bag and pop them into the freezer.  Super simple. I hope you’ll try it!

Freezer Friendly Bean Burgers

Freezer Friendly Bean Burgers

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cooked pinto beans (if using canned, drain and rinse)
  • 1/2 cup brown rice, cooked
  • 1/2 cup cooked lentils
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3/4 cup almond flour (or breadcrumbs)
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots
  • 1/2 cup roasted red pepper, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 cup mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • Sea salt
  • Ground pepper

Instructions

  1. Pulse ingredients in food processor until well combined. Taste for seasoning and adjust to your liking. Form mixture into burger patties. It should be sticky but still hold shape. Heat olive oil in a cast-iron skillet on medium heat. Place patties onto skillet and cook for a good 5 minutes each side. Be careful not to burn the patties, you may need to lower flame. Burgers will be soft on the inside and crispy on the outside. Warning: these burgers are soft on the inside, crumbling happens. 🙂
http://foodconfidence.com/2015/09/22/freezer-friendly-bean-burgers/