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Best Soup Brands

2012 Food Awards

Canned soups are a lifesaver for the modern cook, the office worker at lunch, or the one trying to feed the flu. However, these canned meals can also pack some pretty nasty additives and poor sources of nourishment. Finding a quality healthful soup can be like finding a needle in a haystack, but they are there if you are willing to search (and we were!). The two most important things to look at for soups are fat and sodium content, and remember that when a soup advertises it is fat-free, it usually makes up for that with higher sugar or sodium for flavor.

Nutrition Criteria

< 150 calories, < 3g fat, < 1g saturated fat, < 480mg sodium, < 2g sugar, > 3g fiber, and 10% of your daily value for at least one: vitamin A, vitamin C, iron, or calcium.


  1. Campbell's Select: The Harvest Chicken with Whole Grain Pasta claims to be 100 percent natural, made only with "real ingredients." It met our nutritional criteria for all but fiber, and one serving is a mere 100 calories so it is really a no-guilt comfort food. It smells delicious and tastes only slightly less so.

  2. Healthy Valley Organic No Salt Added: The classic Chicken Noodle Soup is, as the title states, USDA-certified organic and rates well nutritionally with only 80 calories, 1 gram of sugar, and 2.5 grams of fat. Upon tasting, however, it was less-than-palatable and the chicken pieces were miniscule at best.

  3. Healthy Choice: The Beef Pot Roast comes conveniently in its own microwavable container, making it perfect for packing a quick lunch. It was rich and hearty, rating great nutritionally with 110 calories, 0.5 grams of fat, and 3 grams of fiber.

  4. Healthy Choice: This brand made the first cut again with Chicken and Dumplings, more stew-like than a broth soup. Although it has lots of dumplings, the chicken pieces were sparse. While it met our nutritional guidelines, it was lean on vitamin content, and was probably the most processed of the soups we tried.

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