Special Diet Information

Coumadin® (Warfarin)
This recipe is NOT safe for Coumadin (warfarin) users.

This recipe is safe for those who are lactose intolerant.

This is a low sodium recipe.

GERD / Acid Reflux
This recipe contains GERD triggers and those with GERD may wish to avoid it.

Gluten Sensitivity
This recipe is safe for those who are sensitive to gluten. Use gluten-free pasta in this dish.


"I don't know what it is about food your mother makes for you, especially when it's something that anyone can make - pancakes, meat loaf, tuna salad - but it carries a certain taste of memory."
-Mitch Albom

The refrigerator light goes on...

This recipe is pretty close to the tuna salad my mom made when I was growing up. The mix of avocado and mayonnaise is different, but the avocado adds a great creaminess with a better quality fat than the mayonnaise used exclusively in the original. The flavor is close to the one that I grew up eating, with canned tuna, crunchy peppers, celery, and peas.

If you want to use small shells (the size of your pinky fingernail), that's a fine choice, but I prefer this with the medium sized shells because that's how my mother made it.


Because celery grows in almost all regions of the world it is an ingredient in virtually every cuisine on the planet. The most common variety is pascal celery. This is a hardy breed that produces a light green stalk that is slightly tough. The chewy, fibrous vegetable is often described as stringy because of long strands on the outer stalks.

The best celery has been blanched during cultivation. When the stalks are not fully grown they are wrapped to protect them from the sun. Less energy goes into production of chlorophyll and the pale stalks are more tender and have a stronger celery flavor. Think of how great the flavor of the tender inner stalks are in the celery you buy at the grocery. Blanched celery is also free of string.

There are self-blanching varieties of celery but these are not widely grown by commercial produce companies. More and more small producers are creating heirloom celeries that are either self-blanching or they are taking the time to wrap their plants.

Look for smaller bunches of celery. The larger the stalk is the tougher it will be. Pale celery will usually have more flavor. The stalks should be crisp and firm with little wilting. The best guide for freshness is the leaves. If they are the least bit wilted they are too far gone.

4 ounces celery = 18 calories, <1g fat, <1g sat fat, <1g mono fat, 1g protein, 4g carbohydrates, 99mg sodium, 0mg cholesterol


Tuna Noodle Salad

Servings = 2 | Serving size =about 2 cups salad

Cooking Time = 30 Minutes

This recipe can be multiplied by 2, 3.

This recipe keeps well, refrigerated, for 2-3 days. Note that cooking time does not include chilling time.

3 water
8 whole wheat or gluten-free pasta shells
2 5 ounce cans low sodium tuna (packed in water)
3 ribs celery (finely diced)
1 green bell pepper (finely diced)
1 1/3 frozen peas
1/2 avocado (about 4 ounces)(mashed)
4 reduced fat mayonnaise
1 dried oregano
1/4 salt
fresh ground black pepper (to taste)

Place the water in a large pot over high heat.

When the water boils add the pasta. Cook for about 15 to 20 minutes until the pasta is just tender. (Note that using quinoa based gluten free pasta is a better choice than rice based but will take longer to cook about 25 minutes.)

While the pasta is cooking place the celery, green pepper, peas, avocado, mayonnaise, oregano, salt and pepper in a bowl.

Add the tuna with the water from the can to the bowl and mix together well.

When the pasta is cooked drain and rinse under cold water.

Shake dry and add to the bowl with the tuna mixture.

Fold together until well blended and chill.

Nutrition Facts

Serving size = about 2 cups salad

Servings = 2


Amount Per Serving

Calories 415 Calories from Fat 77
  % Daily Value
Total Fat 9g 12%
    Saturated Fat 1g 4%
    Monounsaturated Fat 4g  
    Trans Fat 0g  
Cholesterol 25mg 9%
Sodium 328mg 15%
Total Carbohydrates 57g 20%
    Dietary Fiber 11g 34%
    Sugars 6g  
Protein 30g  
Vitamin A 16% Vitamin C 79%
Calcium 6% Iron 25%
Vitamin K 40 mcg Potassium 727 mg
Magnesium 133 mg