Mom’s Tuna Casserole


Easy Potato Leek Soup

Prep: 15 Minutes

Cook: 30 Minutes

Total: 45 minutes

Servings: 4


  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 leek, green woody parts removed, washed, and diced or sliced into small pieces
  • 2 russet potatoes, with skin, cleaned and cut into 3/4 inch cubes
  • 3 cups vegetable or chicken stock
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • Optional:  4 slices bacon, diced then fried (or fried then crumbled)

How To:

  1. In a medium-large soup pot, melt the butter over medium-high heat.  When butter is melted, add the minced garlic and saute for 1-2 minutes until garlic is fragrant.
  2. Add the chopped leeks to the pot with the garlic and butter and saute for 2-3 minutes until leeks begin to soften.
  3. Add potatoes and vegetable or chicken stock.  Bring to a boil.
  4. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 15-20 minutes until potatoes are soft.
  5. Using an immersion blender, blend the ingredients in the pot until they reach desired soup consistency.  (My husband likes the soup very smooth, I prefer some larger pieces of potatoes.  Blend it to whatever you prefer!)  Note:  You can also do this by ladling the mixture into a regular blender then pouring the blended mixture back into the soup pot.
  6. Add cream, stir or blend until combined.
  7. Serve.  Top with crumbled bacon or extra cream, if desired.

Nutrition Information:

Nutrition Facts
Servings 4.0
Amount Per Serving
Calories 362
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 30 g 46 %
Saturated Fat 17 g 85 %
Monounsaturated Fat 10 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 97 mg 32 %
Sodium 1366 mg 57 %
Potassium 494 mg 14 %
Total Carbohydrate 21 g 7 %
Dietary Fiber 2 g 8 %
Sugars 4 g
Protein 6 g 12 %
Vitamin A 33 %
Vitamin C 32 %
Calcium 9 %
Iron 9 %

*Based on a 2000 calories/day diet.

New Orleans Style Red Beans & Rice

Prep:  12 hours

Cook:  1-2 hours (depending on if you use a pressure cooker or the stove)

Total:  12-14 hours

Servings:  8



  • 1.5 cups dry brown rice
  • 3 cups water

Red Beans:

  • 2 cups dry red kidney beans
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 bag Pictsweet Seasoning Blend, frozen
  • 1 tbsp Seasonall or Tony Chachere’s Creole Seasoning
  • 1 package smoked sausage or kielbasa cut on the bias into 1/2 inch thick rounds (I tend to use Butterball Turkey Smoked Sausage for this but I’ve used other types and it’s always turned out ok)
  • 8-10 cups water, divided

How To:

  1. The night before place the red beans in a large bowl and cover with water until beans are submerged under approx. 1 inch of water.  Cover bowl with cellophane and set aside.
  2. The next day, at any time if using a rice cooker, 30 minutes before eating if cooking on stove top – cook rice according to package or rice cooker directions.

A:  Stovetop Red Beans

  1. In a large pot, saute sausage rounds until lightly browned.  Remove from pot and set aside.
  2. In the same pot, melt butter and add frozen seasoning blend and spices and cook over medium heat.
  3. When onions have turned clear and everything looks soft, add the sausage back in, stir to mix.
  4. Drain red beans.  Add drained red beans to pot with vegetables and sausage. Cover with enough new water for everything to be submerged under approx. 1 inch of water.  Bring to a boil.
  5. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 60-90 minutes, stirring every 10-15 minutes, until beans are soft and begin to have a texture between whole beans and mexican-style refried beans.  Serve over rice.

B:  Pressure Cooker Red Beans

  1. Set pressure cooker to saute setting.  Follow directions 1-3 of the stovetop directions above.
  2. Drain red beans.  Add drained red beans to pressure cooker with sauteed vegetables and sausage.  Cover with enough water for everything to be submerged under approx. 1 inch of water.
  3. Close pressure cooker and set to “Beans”.  (My pressure cooker will cook for 14 minutes on the beans setting then will depressurize for ~15 minutes.)
  4. After the pressure cooker has depressurized, open the cooker and stir.  If there is still noticeable water in the pot, change the setting back to saute and bring to a boil, stirring frequently until water has been absorbed or evaporated.   Beans should have a texture similar to that described above in direction #5.  Serve with rice.

Nutrition Information:

Servings 8.0
Amount Per Serving
Calories 408
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 11 g 17 %
Saturated Fat 2 g 10 %
Monounsaturated Fat 3 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 26 mg 9 %
Sodium 966 mg 40 %
Potassium 580 mg 17 %
Total Carbohydrate 57 g 19 %
Dietary Fiber 14 g 55 %
Sugars 4 g
Protein 19 g 39 %
Vitamin A 0 %
Vitamin C 5 %
Calcium 8 %
Iron 23 %

*Based on a 2000 calorie/day diet.

Japanese-Style Burdock and Meatballs

Prep:  10 minutes

Cook: 15 minutes

Total Time:  25 minutes

Servings: 2


  • Cooked Rice for Serving
  • 1/2 stalk burdock, cleaned and sliced into 1/4 inch thick discs


  • 4 oz ground beef
  • 1/4 cup white onion, finely chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp. dashi powder
  • Salt and Pepper to Taste


  • 1 1/2 cups prepared dashi soup
  • 1 1/2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp mirin

How To:

  1. Bring a pot of water to boil on the stove.  Add burdock slices and simmer on medium heat for 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, mix all of the ingredients for the meatballs in a bowl and then form into 8-10 meatballs.
  3. In a medium pot, add the sauce ingredients and bring to a boil.  Turn down heat to simmer and carefully add meatballs.  Cover and cook for 5 minutes on medium-low heat.
  4. Add burdock slices to the pot.  Recover and continue to simmer for 5 minutes on medium-low.  If water in the pot boils off, add a small amount of water (1/4-1/2 cup) to ensure burdock cooks through.
  5. Uncover and simmer for 5-10 more minutes until sauce thickens.   Serve over rice.

Serving Suggestion:  Because this dish makes it’s own sauce, we serve it over rice almost like a soup or a stir-fry.

Nutrition Information (without rice):

Calories 435
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 15 g 23 %
Saturated Fat 5 g 27 %
Monounsaturated Fat 1 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 164 mg 55 %
Sodium 20913 mg 871 %
Potassium 430 mg 12 %
Total Carbohydrate 41 g 14 %
Dietary Fiber 5 g 18 %
Sugars 12 g
Protein 34 g 68 %
Vitamin A 3 %
Vitamin C 9 %
Calcium 7 %
Iron 24 %

Modified From:

Beef and Barley Soup with Mini Meatballs

Prep:  15 minutes

Cook:  20 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Servings: 4


  • 8 oz. ground beef
  • 1/3 cup white or yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 3/4 cup Quick Cook Barley
  • 4 cups beef broth
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
  • Additional Salt & Black Pepper to Taste

How to:

  1. Season ground beef with salt and pepper is desired.  Form ground beef into small meatballs (approx. 3/4-1 inch in diameter).  (I normally get ~16-20 meatballs from 8 oz. of ground beef.)
  2. Heat a soup pot on the stove.  Brown the meatballs until medium brown on all sides.  Once brown, remove from the pot and set aside on a plate.  The meatballs probably won’t be cooked through at this point, but that’s ok, they will be added back in and will cook more then.  Note:  I normally brown the meatballs in two batches.  Trying to fit all of the mini meatballs in a single layer of the pot doesn’t work well, in my experience.
  3. After all of the meatballs are browned and removed, add the chopped onion, celery and carrots to the pot.  There should be enough oil from the meat that no additional oil needs to be added.  Saute the vegetable mixture until the onions are mostly translucent.
  4. Add the thyme, salt, and tomato paste to the pot with the vegetables.  Stir until well mixed.
  5. Add the remaining ingredients to the pot, except for the red wine vinegar.  Add the browned meatballs back into the pot.
  6. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and allow to cook, uncovered, on medium-low heat for 15-20 minutes until barley is soft.
  7. Add red wine vinegar to the pot.  Stir and serve.

Nutrition Information:

Calories 250
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 7 g 10 %
Saturated Fat 2 g 12 %
Monounsaturated Fat 0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 35 mg 12 %
Sodium 2079 mg 87 %
Potassium 277 mg 8 %
Total Carbohydrate 30 g 10 %
Dietary Fiber 6 g 24 %
Sugars 4 g
Protein 18 g 35 %
Vitamin A 105 %
Vitamin C 12 %
Calcium 3 %
Iron 12 %

*Based on a 2000 calorie/day diet.

Modified From:

Chicken Chili Verde

Prep:  15 minutes

Cook:  45 minutes

Total Time:  60 minutes

Servings:  6


  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken (breasts or thighs are equally good)
  • 1 cup dried great northern beans
  • 3 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped white or yellow onion
  • 1 chopped serrano chili (leave seeds if you want a spicier chili)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 32 oz. chicken stock
  • 1 1/2 cup jarred salsa verde of your choice (I like Goya Medium Salsa Verda)
  • 1 tsp. salt + more to taste
  • Lime wedges, shredded cheese, sour cream, chopped cilantro, tortilla chips (Optional, for garnish)

How To:

  1. In a pressure cooker, place beans, chicken, and add enough water to cover by about 1 inch.  Add salt if desired.   Cook on “Beans” setting until done.  (I use this pressure cooker, but this could also be done in an instant pot or any other electric pressure cooker.  The “Beans” setting on my pressure cooker takes 14 minutes to cook, plus about 15 minutes to depressurize.)  Drain.
  2. Cut cooked chicken into bite-sized pieces or shred (depending on your preferences).
  3. In a soup pot or any other deep pot, add oil and saute onions on medium-high until mostly translucent.  Note:  If you want to do this as a one-pot meal, you can do this in the pressure cooker after the chicken and beans have been drained.  Just change the setting to a saute setting.
  4. Add serrano and garlic.  Saute for 2-3 minutes.
  5. Add Cumin and Oregano.  Sauce for 1-2 minutes.
  6. Add chicken, chicken stock, beans, salsa, and salt to pot.  Bring to a boil and cook for 10-15 minutes.
  7. Serve with lime, cheese, or other garnishes as desired.

Nutrition Information (for Chili with no garnish):

Calories 302
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 10 g 16 %
Saturated Fat 2 g 8 %
Monounsaturated Fat 6 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 49 mg 16 %
Sodium 1180 mg 49 %
Potassium 390 mg 11 %
Total Carbohydrate 24 g 8 %
Dietary Fiber 4 g 17 %
Sugars 6 g
Protein 26 g 51 %
Vitamin A 10 %
Vitamin C 22 %
Calcium 6 %
Iron 12 %

*Based on a 2000 calorie/day diet.