What chefs add to upgrade their favorite canned soups

Cans of soup are great for a quick meal.

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Cans of soup are great for a quick meal.
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Callie Ahlgrim/INSIDER

  • Having a good can of soup on standby is a good idea for those tired meals after work.
  • You can mix up your favorite chicken noodle soup by adding an egg.
  • Freshly grated parmesan and hot sauce can also amp up a can of soup.

Having a good can of soup on standby is never a bad idea. Whether you’re a soup chef or only proficient in the culinary art of microwaving, sometimes you just need an easy and comforting meal from a can.

Chefs across the US told INSIDER what their favorite cans of soup are, and how you can mix things up with a few easy kitchen tweaks.


The Campbell’s classics are classic for a reason.

“Two stand out – Campbell’s tomato soup, of course, is a classic. I like to add heavy cream and some fresh spices to make it a well-rounded bisque … and who doesn’t love the original Campbell’s chicken noodle soup? That I just heat up with saltines.” – Chef Joshua Dalton of Veritas in Columbus, Ohio.


Campbell’s chicken noodle soup gets better with eggs.

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Chicken noodle soup.
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Sarah Schmalbruch/INSIDER

“You can make a great egg drop wonton soup from – the noodles themselves actually act as the wontons. First, bring the soup up to a boil over medium-high heat, and while waiting … whisk an egg in a bowl. Once the soup is boiling, turn the heat down to low and wait until the soup to stop. Use a large wooden spoon to stir the pot and make the broth swirl in one direction. While the soup is swirling, slowly pour the whisked egg into the soup in a thin stream. Let the eggs sit in the hot liquid, undisturbed, for one to two minutes to fully set. I like to finish with toasted sesame seeds and thinly sliced scallions.

“You can also add sliced mushrooms when you bring the soup to a boil. I personally like shiitakes with this particular recipe.” – Daniel England, corporate chef of OMG Hospitality Group, San Diego.


Progresso traditional Italian-style wedding soup gets amped up with sausage.

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Progresso Traditional Italian-Style Wedding Soup.
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BBQRando/YouTube

“With sausage … I always add Sriracha and fresh grated parmesan to brighten it up.” – Nico Romo, executive chef of NICO, Charleston, South Carolina.


Campbell’s New England clam chowder gets a kick with some seasonings.

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Clam chowder soup.
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Campbell’s

“I am a sucker for Campbell’s New England clam chowder. I usually like to season it up with a splash of Worcestershire sauce, a bit of hot sauce, and a couple grinds of black pepper. To make it a little more of a substantial meal, I will griddle a piece of sourdough in butter and put it in the bottom of a bowl before I pour the soup on top. It acts like a quick bread bowl.” – Chef Eli Kirshtein, former “Top Chef” contestant and culinary director for Revelator Coffee Company, Atlanta.


Campbell’s tomato soup simply needs a good sandwich pairing.

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Tomato soup is a classic.
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Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

“Tomato soup is the soup of the past, present, and future. There’s nothing better than a hot bowl of served with grilled cheese, or grilled peanut butter, on a cold winter day.” – Billy Riddle, co-executive chef and partner at Spice Finch, Philadelphia.


Any Amy’s soup gets an upgrade with a bit of cheese.

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Amy’s soup.
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Amy’s

“Amy’s is my go-to canned soup because it is made with pure ingredients. The soup is MSG-free, low in sodium, and organic. My favorite way to eat it is by topping the warm soup with shredded cheese and garlic croutons to add crunch and creaminess.” – Nicolas Caicedo, executive chef at The Williamsburg Hotel, Brooklyn.


Amy’s organic lentil & vegetable soup gets better with a bit of hot sauce and an egg.

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Amy’s Lentil and Vegetable Soup.
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Amy’s

“This soup is hearty and packed with veggies. Usually I add a poached egg and Sriracha to it.” – Rick Gresh, executive chef at Flight Club, Chicago.