7 Add-ins That Make Canned Soup Taste Amazing
Canned soup is wonderful to have on hand. It’s a budget-friendly buy, it boasts a long shelf life, and it’s ready to enjoy in minutes. Make your next bowl even better by stirring in these simple, tasty add-ins. Heat, eat, repeat!
1. Leafy greens
Whether you’re popping open a can of chicken noodle or tomato, soup can be a great way to use up chopped greens such as baby arugula, kale, and spinach. Incorporate whatever amount you prefer (fresh or frozen), then heat until warmed and wilted. Remember this next time you’re sick of salad!
2. Cooked veggies
Sure, soup is usually defined by its liquid status. But that doesn’t mean you can’t amp up the solids. Frozen veggies such as peas and corn make nutritious additions and simply need to be heated through. Canned soup also makes a great catch-all for leftover cooked veggies such as diced butternut squash, broccoli florets, and diced potato. Throw ’em in!
3. Lean protein
Level up a simple veggie puree or broth-based soup by adding a source of protein such as canned beans, shredded rotisserie chicken, or sliced precooked turkey sausage. It’ll eat like a meal and help keep you satisfied.
4. Fresh herbs
No reason to let that giant bouquet of parsley wilt in the fridge. Chop up a handful and scatter it on almost any soup for a fresh flavor hit and a pretty pop of green. Other versatile herbs include thyme, dill, and chives. All good options—fresh or dried!
5. Something crispy
After ladling soup into a bowl, add textural interest by sprinkling a crunchy element on top. Homemade croutons, a few crumbled tortilla chips, even some pieces of plain popcorn can all add excitement to your bowl.
6. Something savory
Boost the depth of flavor in your favorite canned soup with a sprinkle of freshly grated cheese, a spoonful of capers or chopped olives for briny flavor, or some chopped sun-dried tomato for sweet-tart complexity. Every bite will taste a little more special.
7. A tart finishing touch
Palate-tickling acid helps other flavors pop. If you’re serving a veggie variety of soup, try adding a squeeze of fresh lemon or lime juice just before serving. If you’re heating up a Mexican- or Asian-style soup, add a squiggle of sriracha or other hot sauce. Balsamic vinegar complements everything from lentil soup to tomato bisque. A simple splash is all it takes.
Leslie Fink, MS, RD, has been with WW for 20 years as a nutritionist and recipe editor. In addition, she works on food and program development for a variety of special projects.