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Easy Macaroni and Cheese One Dish Meal with Tuna and Peas - Kids Cook Monday Recipe

Updated on December 22, 2014
A quick, easy, and tasty meal!
A quick, easy, and tasty meal! | Source

So Easy a Child Can Make It

Cooking with kids can be fun and rewarding—especially for the kids! My brothers and I grew up watching our mother in the kitchen, sitting on the cabinets when we were only toddlers, watching her and sampling her wares, especially if it involved licking the beaters from the latest homemade cake batter. Besides the desserts, though, we helped out in the kitchen where we could and were often given jobs as appropriate to our ages.

Even little kids can stir something or spread butter on bread. As they get older, they can read simple instructions and mix up recipes. When they're responsible enough, they can handle pots on the stove without it being a danger. This recipe includes all of the tasks I just mentioned. And in no time at all, you have a meal for the whole family. It's quick, too, which is an added bonus for a week-night meal.


3 simple ingredients....
3 simple ingredients.... | Source

Kids in the kitchen

To this day, my brothers and I can all find our way around the kitchen. We can cook basic stuff, follow a recipe, or even be creative and make something up. As children, helping in the kitchen gave satisfaction. As adults, it’s a valuable skill, and, I don’t know about everyone else, but experimenting in the kitchen still gives me great pleasure.

Healthy foods to mix with macaroni and cheese

Today, I was having a craving for macaroni and cheese, but I wanted more with it. Then it came to me a recipe I hadn’t made in years—one that I used to mix up myself at home with mom. This recipe carried me through several times in college and many times as a young adult cooking on my own. This one is not only easy enough for the kids to make, but it's tasty enough for the whole family. Plus, it includes a healthy fish and a green vegetable…a real plus with mac and cheese!

Ingredients for All-in-One Mac and Cheese Meal

1 box macaroni and cheese mix, prepared according to the box

1 can tuna in water, drained

1 can sweet green peas, drained

Optional ingredients:

ground black pepper

1-2 garlic cloves, minced, or several sprinkles of garlic salt


What do You Think of this Recipe?

5 stars from 1 rating of Mac and Cheese All-in-one Meal

Get the kids involved with cooking!

A child of ten or twelve, with adult supervision, can read the instructions on the mac and cheese box, and cook it according to that. Generally, all the mac and cheese requires is boiling water, cooking for around seven minutes, and then adding some milk, butter, and the cheese flavored packet that is included.

The canned tuna and sweet green peas should be opened, drained, and added to the pot once the macaroni and cheese is fully cooked and mixed up. Simply pour in the tuna and peas and stir it all up. A younger child can help to pour in or mix up the ingredients if the pot is reachable and not too hot.

I add pepper to my recipe, as I love pepper. Also, a clove or two of garlic--or a few sprinkles of garlic salt--is excellent in this meal if your family likes garlic. Garlic is an ingredient that also has health benefits.

This meal is quick and easy, and even kind of attractive. Assign a child or two to spread butter or margarine on bread slices for everyone, and you’ve got a meal. And the children will feel proud, knowing that they helped.

A Simple Tasty Dinner

Macaroni and Cheese with Peas and Tuna All-in-one-Meal, complete with a slice of bread and butter!
Macaroni and Cheese with Peas and Tuna All-in-one-Meal, complete with a slice of bread and butter! | Source
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    • VeronicaFarkas profile image

      Veronica Roberts 5 years ago from Ohio, USA

      What a great idea, and so simple and quick! Just what a busy mom needs! =] & I looove that you use garlic! I can't get enough! hehe

      Up & useful!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image
      Author

      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Yeah, Veronica, I try to snake garlic into anything I can! This is really a great recipe, I think. Tasty and quick! Thanks!

    • savanahl profile image

      savanahl 5 years ago

      What a great idea. I make tuna mac occasionally for my daughter but I never thought to add peas. I also love your ideas about getting the kids involved. My 2 year old absolutely loves to help. It makes her feel so grown up like mommy. It's a blast.

    • Victoria Lynn profile image
      Author

      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      savanahl--Hope you try this with your daughter! Thanks for the comments!

    • rob_allen profile image

      rob_allen 5 years ago from MNL, PH

      This is such a great dinner idea on the the go (not just for kids ). If I want to eat mac and cheese when I am too busy I will definitely use your hub as a reference. Thanks for sharing Victoria Lynn. :)

    • Moms-Secret profile image

      Lissette 5 years ago from Central Florida

      I love one pot wonders! Mostly because I hate dishes!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image
      Author

      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Yeah, rob, it adds some nutrition to just mac and cheese! Hope you like!

    • Maddie Ruud profile image

      Maddie Ruud 5 years ago from Oakland, CA

      Peas and pasta with cheese sauce is such a classic! I'd never thought of modifying a box of mac and cheese this way, but it looks like an easy way to get some more bang for your nutritional buck!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image
      Author

      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Moms-Secret--I love one pot wonders, too! :-)

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 5 years ago

      I could eat tuna everyday and coupled with mac and cheese would be over the top! All of my favorite foods together at one time would complete my day. By the way, your white dinner plate is pretty as a background for the dish. Voted up.

    • Victoria Lynn profile image
      Author

      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Yep, Maddie, I even get the cheapest mac and cheese. When you put it all together, it tastes just great!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image
      Author

      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Yeah, teaches, it's a good way to eat tuna. ANd peas! Thanks for the compliment on the plate. I'll remember to use that again. It's my old china. I love it!

    • urmilashukla23 profile image

      Urmila 5 years ago from Rancho Cucamonga,CA, USA

      Looks perfect healthy dinner for any one! What a great idea to add peas. Thanks for posting it. Voted up!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image
      Author

      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      urmil...The peas make it healthier, right? :-) Thanks for the vote!

    • randomcreative profile image

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Tuna and macaroni and cheese is one of my all-time favorite combinations. I agree that the addition of garlic is genius. I sneak it into about anything that I can, too. This is a perfect kid-friendly recipe.

    • stephhicks68 profile image

      Stephanie Hicks 5 years ago from Bend, Oregon

      I love the idea of adding new ingredients to boxed dinners. Cheese, noodles, tuna and peas - kids should love these ingredients! Rated up, Steph

    • profile image

      kelleyward 5 years ago

      Love this! Thanks for sharing!

    • Ruchira profile image

      Ruchira 5 years ago from United States

      Vicki...my kid loves Mac n cheese. I usually make it but without meat/fish. Thanks

    • Victoria Lynn profile image
      Author

      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      randomcreative--Yes, sneak in the garlic! This recipe is kid-friendly and adult-easy! haha :-) Thanks!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image
      Author

      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      steph--It sure makes it easy! Thanks for dropping by!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image
      Author

      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      You're welcome, kelleyward! Hope you try it!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image
      Author

      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Ruchira--perhaps now and then adding the tuna and peas will add a healthy element to the mac and cheese!

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 2 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      this is super easy, but for the macaroni cheese, it requires fresh milk , can I substitute with water instead? I am out of milk

    • Victoria Lynn profile image
      Author

      Victoria Lynn 2 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      peachpurple--You could use water instead. It might not be as creamy. You could also substitute some sour cream or cream cheese, too. :-) Or leave out the milk and just use butter! Improvise!

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