(Family Features) Stocking up on pantry essentials is a productive practice, especially as people across the country spend more time at home. However, having all those ingredients on-hand doesn't do as much good if you aren't sure how to use them or feel as if you're constantly whipping up the same dishes.
For example, canned protein is a popular pantry item as it cuts down on prep time and holds a long shelf life while adding important nutrients to family meals. Canned seafood, in particular, is a versatile choice that can be used in a variety of easy recipes or simply eaten on its own.
An option like Chicken of the Sea Chunk Light Tuna in Water, which is 99% fat free and a good source of protein and heart-healthy omega-3s, makes for an easy and versatile addition to dishes like pasta. A 5-ounce can contains 24 grams of high-quality protein, making it a nourishing source of energy while helping to easily satisfy hunger.
Try adding some modern flair to the table with this Mediterranean Tuna Pasta, perfect for a family of four and ready in just 20 minutes. Virtually any canned seafood can be used from salmon to tuna in place of more traditional proteins used in this pasta and many other dishes.
If your family prefers to stick to tradition, Mom's Favorite Tuna Noodle Casserole provides a warm, hearty meal with a hint of nostalgia while gathering loved ones around the dinner table.
Ingredients in these recipes can be easily substituted for similar options you may already have on hand, such as another dried pasta in place of penne or carrots in lieu of peas.
Find more filling family recipes at chickenofthesea.com.
Mediterranean Tuna Pasta
Total time: 20 minutes
- 1 package (16 ounces) penne pasta
- 1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas, drained
- 1 can (14 1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes with basil, garlic and oregano
- 1 medium zucchini, sliced 1/4-inch thick
- 2 tablespoons sliced ripe olives
- 1 can (5 ounces) Chicken of the Sea Chunk Light Tuna in Water, drained
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
- Cook pasta according to package directions.
- In large skillet, bring chickpeas, tomatoes, zucchini, olives and tuna to boil; stir constantly.
- Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 5 minutes.
- Spoon mixture over cooked pasta. Top with Parmesan cheese.
Substitution: Use any canned seafood such as salmon in place of canned tuna.
Mom's Favorite Tuna Noodle Casserole
Total time: 40 minutes
- 2 cans (10 3/4 ounces each) cream of mushroom soup
- 1 cup milk
- 2 cups frozen peas
- 2 cans (12 ounces each) Chicken of the Sea Chunk Light Tuna in Water, drained
- 4 cups medium egg noodles, cooked
- 4 tablespoons dry breadcrumbs
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- Heat oven to 400° F.
- In bowl, stir soup and milk until smooth.
- In 3-quart casserole dish, combine peas, tuna and noodles with soup mixture.
- Bake 30 minutes, or until warm and bubbling; remove from oven and stir.
- In bowl, mix breadcrumbs with melted butter; sprinkle over tuna mixture.
- Bake 5 minutes, or until golden brown.
Substitution: Use any frozen vegetable in place of frozen peas.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images (Mediterranean Tuna Pasta)