Instant Pot Tuna Noodle Casserole without soup has pasta, peas and carrots in a cheesy creamy sauce. An easy dinner the whole family will love! This homemade tuna casserole recipe is made from scratch without soup or boxed mixes, and it's absolutely delicious!
If you've ever had old fashioned tuna noodle casserole, you know it's definitely comfort food. Back in the day, my mom made the best tuna noodle casserole recipe and a lot of other recipes with canned tuna, including Tuna Helper and tuna fish patties -- especially during Lent when we ate meatless meals often.
I make my Instant Pot Tuna Casserole recipe from scratch without cream of mushroom soup. It's super easy, budget friendly and a quick weeknight meal. If you're looking for easy Instant Pot recipes, you'll love this pressure cooker tuna noodle casserole!
By the way, this easy recipe is done in 30 minutes, with almost no prep work. The perfect quick weeknight meal! Best of all, even my pickiest eater liked it!
You can make this Instant Pot tuna pasta using pantry staples and ingredients from your fridge and freezer:
- Canned tuna - I use albacore tuna packed in water
- Egg noodles -- You can use yolk free pasta if you have it
- Chicken broth -- for flavor, or vegetable broth
- Spices -- Salt, pepper, garlic powder, dried onions or onion powder and herbes de Provence
- Cheddar cheese -- or cheddar blend, shredded
- Heavy cream -- or heavy whipping cream
- Frozen veggies -- I use a blend of frozen peas and carrots or mixed veggies
How to Make Instant Pot Tuna Casserole
Since the tuna is already cooked, you basically just dump the dry pasta and everything into the electric pressure cooker and press start. But, I'll walk you through this simple recipe, and you can find step-by-step full directions in the printable recipe card.
First step -- Add the uncooked egg noodles first, then some low sodium chicken broth, chicken stock or vegetable broth.
You could also use water if you want. I just like the extra flavor you get from using broth.
Next, add your drained tuna and the seasonings. I love adding herbes de Provence seasoning blend when I make cook with chicken or turkey, so I used some here. If you can't find it, that's fine.
It just adds a little extra flavor. You can also use Italian seasoning or dried parsley or just the basic salt, pepper, garlic and dried onions.
You'll add the cheese and heavy cream after pressure cooking. This helps to avoid getting the burn notice and prevents the dairy products from curdling.
Egg noodles cook faster than other pasta. So, pressure cook the tuna casserole for 2 minutes on high pressure followed by a quick release.
If you need to use penne, shells, macaroni or other thicker dried pasta, you'll want to increase the cook time to 4 minutes.
After pressure cooking, stir in mixed vegetables, heavy cream and shredded cheese. I used a cheddar blend here, but I like using extra sharp cheddar, colby jack or Monterey jack, too.
The tuna mixture might look like it has too much liquid, but don't worry. It will definitely thicken up as it cools down. You can turn off the keep warm setting, and let it sit in the pot or transfer to a serving bowl or dish if you want.
Tender noodles, flaky tuna and vegetables in a perfectly seasoned creamy sauce. This is definitely the best instant pot tuna casserole out there!
And that's all, folks! Time to dig in and enjoy this super cheesy one pot meal. You don't even need a side dish, although we love to serve dinner rolls with this delicious family meal.
If you have the Duo Crisp, Ninja Foodi or mealthy crisplid or any pressure cooker that crisps with an air fryer lid, you can top this easy Instant Pot tuna casserole with a crispy topping, such as bread crumbs, cracker crumbs or crushed potato chips. Then, spritz a little cooking spray or add melted butter, and crisp it up before serving.
Or, transfer the cooked tuna casserole to a baking dish (grease with olive oil or butter), add toppings, and bake until the top is golden brown and the casserole is bubbly. You can do this in your air fryer toaster oven, as well.
If you want to add cream of celery soup, cream of mushroom soup or any cream soups to tuna noodle casserole in Instant Pot, you can add it before pressure cooking. Don't stir everything together until after pressure cooking.
How to Store
When refrigerated in an airtight container, this easy tuna casserole should last for 3 to 4 days -- if it isn't gone by then. Ours is usually gone by the next day! You can always freeze leftover tuna casserole for longer storage.
Reheat this classic casserole in the microwave.
Be sure to add the cream and cheese after pressure cooking to prevent getting the burn notice.
Egg noodles cook faster than other pasta -- 2 minutes. If using a different type of pasta, cook for 4 minutes. Always use a quick release or controlled quick release with pasta.
If you want to make tuna casserole with mushroom soup, add the soup before pressure cooking, but don't stir everything together. You can it after cooking, as well.
The casserole will thicken as it cools down and absorb the extra liquid. No need to thicken the tuna casserole unless you want to add more cheese.
More Instant Pot Casserole Recipes
- Easy Instant Pot Turkey Noodle Casserole
- Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Casserole
- Instant Pot Pierogi Casserole
Instant Pot Tuna Noodle Casserole
- 12 ounces egg noodles uncooked
- 32 ounces low sodium chicken broth
- 10 ounces canned tuna drained, 2 5-oz cans or large 12 ounce can
- 2 teaspoons dried minced onion flakes or 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon herbes de Provence optional
- 1 cup mixed vegetables thawed
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 3 cups shredded cheese
- Add the egg noodles to the Instant Pot, then pour chicken broth over and around noodles
- Put drained tuna over noodles, and top with salt, pepper, dried onions, garlic powder and herbes de Provence
- Place lid on pressure cooker, turn vent to Sealing position, and hit PRESSURE COOK for 2 minutes
- Pot will take a few minutes to reach pressure, then count down and cook. When pot beeps, do a quick release
- When pin drops, carefully open lid, and stir in mixed vegetables
- Stir in heavy cream, and gradually stir in cheese, 1 cup at a time. Liquid will thicken as casserole cools
Nutrition information is estimated. Please do your own calculation to fit special diets.
I hope you enjoy this creamy tuna noodle casserole recipe as much as we do.
If you do make this creamy tuna casserole, please leave a star rating and/or comment.
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Recipe originally published in 2019 and updated in 2023.
So simple to make and I loved the leftovers!
What a wonderful old stand by! So easy to make as well. Used up some old mixed vegetables too!
Tara DelVecchio says
Best tuna noodle ever. So easy and customizable - skip veggies or change it up, try different cheeses. Just so creamy and comforting. Fave tnc recipe! Thanks!
Thank you so much for the wonderful review!
I am impressed with how this perfectly cooked the noodles. I used my nonstick pot liner, and no sign of sticking or burning. I stuck close to the recipe but tossed in a can of cream of celery soup I have been trying to use that has sat on my shelf for months. Also was out of dried onion, so I threw in some frozen diced onions as well as the last of some frozen peas, all with the tuna and seasoning. Looking forward to baking the leftovers with some breadcrumb topping.
I made this with penne noodles because i did not have egg noodles.
For vegetables i used fresh carrots, celery, half of a large onion and a cup of frozen peas.
I cooked it all together for 3 mins and did a quick release and used half and cream instead.
It turned out perfect and tasted awesome.
Best tuna noodle casserole ever!
Thank you so much for the wonderful review!
Monica caldwell says
Imake it biweekly delicioso
Do you need to adjust the cooking time if I half the recipe? There are only 2 of us.
Hi Tina. The cook time remains the same even when you adjust the amount.
Absolutely delicious and oh so simple to make.
This is the most perfect recipe because it is simple, quick, has good ingredients, doesn’t use canned soup, and always turns out perfect. I’ve used chick pea pasta as well as whole wheat and they’ve both been really good. I did add a few minutes when using whole grain pasta.
I also end up using 14oz of tuna and 12oz of pasta just because that is the package sizes I have. I just all a little water in addition to the broth.
Besides hamburgers this is my kids’ favorite dinner! I wish all insta pot recipes were like this one.
Thank you SO much for the amazing review, Amy! I'm thrilled that you liked the casserole this much!
I love, love, love, love, LOVE this recipe!! It was raining like crazy, so I wanted a warm and comforting dish, and this definitely did the trick! It was super creamy and flavorful, and even all my kiddos enjoyed it! I know I’ll be making this dish again in the future:)