Legume Risoni & Tuna Casserole

This healthy grain-free casserole will make you not miss pasta at all! The mixture of vegetables, tuna, legume risoni, bechamel sauce topped with crispy cheese is absolutely delicious!

Do you guys remember my recipe for Oma Val’s Tuna Pasta Casserole? This is a pasta-free version with more vegetables! So definitely healthier but not any less delicious than the original (which is a family favorite). Instead of pasta I’m using legume risoni which I LOVE so much!!

The recipe was born from my desire to eat a similar dish to my family but without the grains. This is definitely very close! So the base for this dish are my beloved risoni made from pulse flour (which in this case means lentils, chickpeas and peas). I really hope you can get the same ones or at least something similar because they are so yummy!

I have used other legume based pasta (like in the shape of spirelli or spaghetti) before and I’m honestly never really convinced. But these ones are really great! They retain a little bit of the bite that you know from al dente pasta and don’t get too soft / mushy like some other legume based pasta I’ve made before.

The sauce consists of lots of diced eggplant, tomatoes, tuna and green olives. Those are some of my favorite ingredients. Eggplant is severly underrated and I try to use it as much as I can. My family is NOT crazy about eggplant but it’s super versatile! I love using it as a dip and often have that as a quick lunch in summer. It’s great in any curry or pasta sauce, as a side… do you like eggplant?

The tuna, vegetable and risoni mixture is layered and then topped with bechamel sauce and grated cheese. Oh my goodness, the delicious smell while it’s in the oven!! So good! And the absolute joy of a melted crispy cheese layer on top of any casserole… is there anything that resembles comfort food more than this?

Will you make this for dinner soon? Or how about my Roasted Eggplants stuffed with lentils?

Difficulty: Beginner Prep Time 15 mins Cook Time 50 mins Total Time 1 hr 5 mins
Servings: 3


This healthy grain-free casserole will make you not miss pasta at all! The mixture of vegetables, tuna, legume risoni, bechamel sauce topped with crispy cheese is absolutely delicious!


Legume Pasta & Tuna Mixture

Bechamel Sauce


  1. Cut the ends of the eggplant, cut into slices and those into cubes. Heat up olive oil in a pan and fry the eggplant for about 7 minutes while moving them around every now and then. Add the salt flakes and fry for 3 more minutes. 

  2. Chop the date or cherry tomatoes. Add to the eggplant, cover the pan and simmer for 2 more minutes. Add the tuna including the olive oil, tomato paste and water. Mix all together and simmer for 5 minutes. 

  3. Pre-heat oven to 180°C (356°F). 

    Bring salted water to a boil and cook the legume risoni according to the package instructions. Drain well and add to the tuna vegetable mixture together with the sliced green olives. Mix well. 

  4. Melt the butter in a pot, add flour and whisk together. Gradually add the milk while whisking all the time. Season with pepper, salt, Dijon mustard and nutmeg. Keep whisking and simmer for about 5 minutes until the sauce has thickened. 

  5. In a medium sized casserole dish, layer the risoni mix and the bechamel sauce. End with bechamel sauce and top with the grated cheese. Bake at 180°C (356°F) for 30 minutes. Enjoy!

Keywords: dinner, pescetarian, tuna, canned tuna, legume pasta, legume risoni, pasta, pasta casserole, legume pasta casserole, easy dinner,

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Andrea Epstein in her kitchen

Andrea Epstein

Hi, I'm Andrea, a full-time food blogger, mother of 1 wonderful son, 2 equally wonderful stepsons and wife to a darling husband. I live in Munich, Germany with my family. I loves traveling, sharing new recipes, and spending time with my family.

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