Instant Pot Tuna Noodle Casserole with pasta, peas and carrots in a cheesy creamy sauce is a quick and 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. 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 Tuna Noodle Casserole in the Instant Pot
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, you can top the casserole with 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 or another cream soup, you can add it before pressure cooking, but don't stir everything together.
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 leftovers for longer storage.
More Instant Pot Casseroles
- 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.
Recipe originally published in 2019 and updated in 2021