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Old Fashioned Tuna Macaroni Salad

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tuna mac salad


Old-school classics like this Old-Fashioned Tuna Macaroni Salad stick around and stand up to the test of time for good reasons!

Not only because they taste good, but because they have the power to just make you feel better, too.

Our house had been under a lot of stress the past few days full of worry of the threat of yet another hurricane. We have only lived in this house a little over 5 years, and we have already taken direct hits from not just one hurricane, but TWO.

Hurricane Irene and Hurricane Sandy. The thought of a third hurricane literally had me in tears.

Not. Another one. PLEASE!


My stomach was in knots, and even my hubby was a bit stressed out.


When we moved to the east coast from the midwest, I thought that we had left tornado alley far behind, and wouldn’t have to worry about devastating weather ever again.

We have oddly already had tornadoes here, too, which they really never had before, but who would’ve ever thought that this far up the coast we would have to worry about hurricanes!!



So, even when you just don’t feel like it, you still have to eat something. So I thought to whip up a bowl of old-fashioned, easy on the tummy, quick-to-make tuna noodle salad.

It was just the medicine that we needed.

I hadn’t made any in years, and we couldn’t get over what we had been missing! We both have always loved this salad since we were kids, but it’s always such a nice surprise how good something like this tastes when you haven’t had it in a very long time!

Though I gave my hubby quite a healthy helping, he practically inhaled that bowl, and quickly came back for a second fill-up! I honestly don’t know where he puts it all! Neither one of us are overweight, and I swear, with how he eats, he should weigh 500 pounds! Ha!

Sure do love a man that can eat!!!! 😀

This salad cheered us right up, and even brought up childhood stories and memories. Funny how a simple bowl of noodles can do that. 😉

In an instant, we felt better. Worries dried up like a puddle on a hot day, and suddenly, things just didn’t seem so bad anymore.





So if you’re looking for the perfect salad to chase away your blues, or need something easy for quick lunches or light suppers, I highly recommend this old time favorite.


Classics stick around for a reason. And never fail to bring smiles! 😀



*Helpful Pasta Chart below for you to save, print, and stick to the fridge!!





Old Fashioned Tuna Macaroni Salad
Yield: 6 servings

Old Fashioned Tuna Macaroni Salad


  • 8 oz. (half of a 1 lb. box = 2 cups dry uncooked) elbow macaroni such as *Barilla, cooked al dente, drained well
  • 1 (12 oz.) can chunk white tuna in oil
  • 2 Tbl. oil from can
  • 1 1/4 cups heavy mayo such as *Hellmann's
  • 2 Tbl. thick sour cream such as *Daisy
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. coarse ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. regular mustard
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped sweet or red onion
  • 1 small rib celery, quartered lengthwise then thinly sliced
  • 3/4 cup frozen sweet baby peas, unthawed


Cook noodles to al dente according to package directions. Empty into colander to drain, rinse well with cold water, drain again well. Place noodles into large bowl.

Open can of tuna and add 2 Tbl. oil to cooked noodles. Toss to coat.

Drain rest of oil from can of tuna well, then add the tuna.

Add mayo, sour cream, salt, pepper and mustard. Stir well mixing in evenly and breaking up large chunks of tuna into small pieces.

Fold in onion, celery and frozen baby peas. (Peas will thaw within minutes. Do not pre thaw or cook.)

Chill. Serve.

Keep refrigerated.


*Above products mentioned are not a paid endorsement, they are my own personal favorites that work well for me that I trust, rely on and enjoy using.

Variations: Though we prefer this just as written, you may enjoy adding chopped hard-boil egg, cheddar cheese cubes, crumbled bacon, peppers, or sliced pimiento-stuffed green olives.


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Diane H.

Saturday 17th of June 2017

Hi Kelly - I'm an ex-Jersey gal living in Fl., this was always a staple @ cook-outs; Mine was pretty plain - tuna, elbow macaroni, Hellman's, vinegar.. looking forward to trying your kicked up version - will let you know how it turns out


Sunday 25th of June 2017

Small world!! :D So hope that you make it and enjoy! This has been a staple in my family since I was a kid! Still love it to this day, and have it quite a lot throughout the summer! Thanks for stooping by!


Friday 8th of April 2016

I will be making this very soon. It sounds wonderful. Thanks.


Friday 8th of April 2016

You're welcome, Darlene!! :D Hope you enjoy as much as we do! (I could almost LIVE on this stuff!!!!) :) :D


Thursday 7th of April 2016

I believe you mean "thawed" peas---unthawed are frozen---js


Friday 8th of April 2016

I never add peas thawed. I add them while they're still frozen. They thaw VERY quickly, and there's no need to add them thawed. They tend to break up and become very mushy if you do that. And NEVER cook them. There's just no need to at all.


Friday 8th of April 2016

I believe she is saying do not thaw peas before adding to other ingredients.


Wednesday 13th of January 2016

This is wonderful, pure heaven. I'm not one for celery, so i left it out and put in some fresh chives, which goes soo well with tuna, and when i served it i topped it with a chicken seasoning sprinkled lightly just top of individual servings and it was devine.


Thursday 14th of January 2016

Fantastic to hear, Jen! :D So glad that you enjoyed it! Love your addition of chives, and the seasoning sounds wonderful!! :D

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